It all came together for Williamstown in a thumping 53-point win over North Melbourne in the Victorian Football League at Downer Oval on Saturday.
The Seagulls were irrepressible from start to finish in delivering their most complete performance of the season.
Seagulls coach Andrew Collins was as satisfied as he has been all season in the post game.
“We played some of our best footy for the year,” he said.
“If we played footy like that every week, you’d have a very happy coach and a very successful team.
“We haven’t put a game together like that this year.
“We’ve had some good quarters, we’ve had a couple of good wins, but today was definitely a game where we matched some really physical play with some really good ball movement.”
Williamstown had to bring its A-game to beat a North Melbourne side that had put ladder leader Richmond to the sword only seven days earlier.
In both their attack and defence, the Seagulls were exquisite in everything they did.
It was borne out of their insatiable appetite for the contest early on.
The foundation for the Seagulls was an 11-goal-to-six first half, including eight second quarter goals.
“It was just a real credit to our boys and the way they played,” Collins said.
“We were able to get the right dynamics in our group.”
A huge inclusion for Williamstown was impact forward Nick Rodda.
Rodda kicked four goals, but it was his one-per centers that were infectious to his teammates.
“He was so physical in the packs today,” Collins said.
“He was like a bowling ball taking down 10 pins.
“It’s an area that we’ve struggled with, bringing the ball to ground, but he just crashed packs and took some big marks.
“We were able to get some good crumbing goals as a result of that.”
Rodda’s physical style of play created space for key forward Joel Ottavi to run into.
Ottavi finished with three goals and formed a tantalising one-two forward punch with Rodda.
“That’s the first time we’ve been able to utilise that set-up for a long period of time,” Collins said.
“That’s a real credit to both of those boys, they worked well in tandem and were able to get the result.”
It was a big day for Seagulls onballer Mitch Hibberd and defender Joel Tippett against their former side.
Hibberd continued his stellar form with a game high 29 disposals, 12 tackles and two goals, while Tippett played 100 per cent game time at full-back and caused headaches for North Melbourne forwards Tristan Xerri and Ben McKay. It was Hibberd who claimed best-afield honours and further strengthened his bid to be re-drafted to the AFL later this year.
“I thought he was the best player on the field and he had great motivation to play against his old club,” Collins said. “He showed that perhaps they may have made a mistake [in delisting him]. He’s so talented and he’s just going to get bigger, stronger, faster.
“There’s a kid by the name of Sam Menagola at Geelong and I think he’s a pretty good player and Mitch Hibberd is going to be very similar.”
Leigh Masters did a good stopping role across half-back, finishing with a game-high eight marks.
Williamstown will square off with Port Melbourne in the clash of the traditional rivals away on Sunday.
“Before there was VFL, there was VFA and these are two of the oldest football clubs in the land,” Collins said. “When these two clubs get together, the history is as good as a Carlton and Collingwood clash.
“We might not get 100,000 there, but the people that are there understand how important the game is.”