United emerges as a contender

NYAH Nyah West United put its hand up as a serious finals contender with an emphatic 173-point victory over the Cohuna Kangas at Nyah.

The Demons are entrenched around fifth position with a huge percentage boost thanks to Saturday’s win.

Jarrod Skinner’s team seems to have recruited the exact requirements needed for a tilt at this year’s finals.

The Indigenous boys put on one hell of a show mainly led by ruckman Daniel Stafford, whose skills on either side of the body were precise and his ability to go forward and use his height to kick goals will cause a lot of headaches for many backmen.

Alex Erlandson is another import who can play key position as back-up ruck or hold down centre half-forward.

The last few years of experience gained by United’s younger players is coming to fruition and with the talent around them they have risen to the occasion.

Zac Caccaviello gained countless contested possessions and his inside 50s numbered into double figures, giving him best on ground status.

He and Corey Daniels and Marcus Skinner dominated around the ground.

The Kangas missed the experience and height of coach Rick Easton as a focal target up forward to combat the Demons. Jackson Clark and Dylan Friedberger can hold their heads high for the visitors.

Clark’s ability to bring the Kangas younger players into the game was a rare highlight and his continued support in this area will only benefit their advancement.

Friedberger once again only knows one way to play and his commitment and head over ball style must encourage those around him not to throw in the towel when the chips are down.

Veteran Demon Daryl White looked like he was headed for a massive goal haul with five first quarter majors only to be subbed out with a knee injury early in the second term.

The relief for the Kangas was short lived as Stafford was able to rest up forward and show up the Kangas lack of defensive height. Adrian Knee roved the forward line to kick a lazy six goals at will.

Kangas hopes soured early with ruck Jack Glourey rolling his ankle and taken to hospital further robbing them of some valuable height and bulk at the stoppages.

In his absence, Griffin Williams showed encouraging signs when called to fill the ruck void but his youthful body will need support.

Ben Archard was a welcome return from injury for the Kangas but will take time to get back to peak match fitness.

Of the Kangas younger players, Marcus Rogers, Corey Miller and Williams showed encouraging signs against more seasoned campaigners.

United has the bye next week, before a season-defining fortnight of football with away games at Swan Hill and Woorinen.

If the Dees are able to keep the full squad on the park, two victories are manageable. The Kangas host the Swans next week.