2017 Elimination Final


By Robert Laidlaw

Central District started the 2017 SANFL finals off in fine style, beating Norwood in the elimination final at Adelaide Oval by 48-points in a classy display.

A scintillating opening, a number of magic goals, and an authoritative final quarter were the ingredients to a satisfying result, which allowed the Bulldogs to progress to a first semi final showdown with Sturt next Sunday.

The game's first goal was a brilliant snap from captain Trent Goodrem, under pressure at the two minute mark, with Nick Holman and Kyle Presbury converting set shots for the Doggies to be 18 points up within the game's first eight minutes.

And after Norwood kicked its first goal, Justin Hoskin threaded one through, followed by a piece of Goodrem magic, when Presbury worked hard to squeeze a handball out to the captain, who checksided a major off one step, from a standing start in the scoreboard pocket.

Just before time on the Redlegs managed their second major, with Josh Glenn having the answer when first he tried to shepherd a long bomb from Jack Hannath through the big uprights, then, after an awkward bounce, used sheer body strength to cleverly gather the ball and guide it through for a goal.

Norwood did manage a late major to reduce Central's advantage at the first break, the Bulldogs leading 6-1 to 3-2.

The second term was one of those forgettable periods, which Central has played numerous times, especially early in the season, but this time the damage was kept to a minimum,with the opposition only managing two goals, and the Dogs holding a six point lead at half time, 6-5 to 5-5.

The Redlegs had slowed the game and played it on their terms, but that type of footy can be taxing, and the positives for Central was that it still led at the long break, and had plenty of energy to come out fighting in the second half.

An early goal to Glenn – within the first minute of the third quarter – had Central back on track, but through to the time on period, it was a slog, Norwood kicking two goals around Fraser Fort's major, before the Bulldogs stamped their class on the contest.

After some courageous play down-field, Travis Schiller set up a forward foray that resulted in Justin Hoskin guiding a goal through, then another piece of magic from Glenn, when he cleverly converted a 50-50 ball into a running shot at goal for Luke Habel with a clever tap.

Unfortunately two simple shots on goal late resulted in just behinds, as Central led 10-8 to 7-6 at lemons, but with the momentum.

Missing the last two shots to end the third term was compounded when another “easy” shot was missed to start the final quarter, with Norwood rebounding the lost opportunity for a major to close within 15 points, three minutes into the final stanza.

But Hoskin and John Butcher made certain of their set shots to again give the Dogs the running, and after Norwood kicked a major at the 15 minute mark, Central went “crazy” with the next five goals.

Glenn was responsible for two majors in two minutes, the second a sublime effort, when he gathered the ball on the wing, side-stepped an opponent, went on a run, and after two bounces boomed in the goal of the game from 50m.

Into time on, running goals to Trav Schiller and Hannath, plus another from Trav, saw the Doggies comfortably up, although Norwood kicked a goal on the siren – yet Central still won handsomely, 17-13 to 10-7.

It was an even team performance by the Bulldogs, Holman, Chris Jansen and Goodrem leading from the front, while Glenn and Hoskin booted seven goal between them, and the defensive efforts of guys like Ryan Llewellyn, Dave Haydon and Luke Barmby were gritty and match-winning.

Now it's a first semi-final match-up against Sturt, a side the Bulldogs have not beaten this season, but Central has momentum and at its best, can match the reigning premier.

* * * * *

Central District 6-1 6-5 10-8 17-13 (115)
Norwood  3-2 5-5 7-6 10-7 (67)

Best: Holman, Jansen, Goodrem, Glenn, T. Schiller, Presbury, Hoskin, D. Fort.
Goals: Glenn 4, Hoskin 3, Goodrem 2, T. Schiller 2, Holman, Presbury, F. Fort, Habel, Butcher, Hannath. 


Nick Holman  
Chris Jansen  
Trent Goodrem  


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