Sport

Reign is over

By Campaspe News

SEVEN years.

That’s how long it had been since Rochester’s previous loss to local rivals Echuca.

But the Tigers’ streak of dominance is over.

And didn’t it came crashing down with some force.

The Tigers suffered a 41-point loss at the hands of the Murray Bombers in round 10 of Goulbunr Valley League football on Saturday.

And a loss that was compounded by poor kicking for goal.

The Tigers booted 7.10 on the day.

Echuca, on the other hand, booted 15.3.

Including eight goals in the opening quarter — a near disastrous start for the Tigers.

And coach James Flaherty saw exactly that.

‘‘Echuca jumped us in the first quarter,’’ he said.

‘‘It was hard to bring that back as the game went on. It’s a huge lead to try and pin back, though I think we played pretty well afterwards.’’

Though the start was poor, the Tigers responded well for the remainder of the game.

Though a 2.5 second quarter meant the Tigers were still a long way behind.

‘‘After quarter time I thought we played a lot better,’’ he said.

‘‘But at half time there could have been four or five goals in it. We didn’t take our opportunities when we had them and it made it difficult for the rest of the day.’’

Flaherty gave high praise to his opposition on the day.

‘‘They played really well across the four quarters so it’s hard to match that,’’ he said.

It’s a show of how important goal kicking is in the game.

But the score isn’t the concern.

It’s the result that is a serious issue for the football club.

After 10 games, the Tigers are 4-6.

The shuffle for the final spots in the six is getting tighter.

And these recent results have not helped Rochester at all.

‘‘There are a group of seven or eight sides fighting to make the finals,’’ Flaherty said.

‘‘We really need to turn up and play our best football and hopefully get a few more wins on the board.

‘‘We need to play better football, but we obviously trust our game plan, it’s a question of execution as opposed to what we are trying to do.’’

But the Tigers have the opportunity to execute this week — as they take on the lowly Shepparton Swans.

This must be a win, and for the Tigers to stay in touch with the six, they need to win big.