THE Mallee Eagles face a key test when they travel to Tooleybuc in tomorrow's Central Murray Football Netball League A Grade game of the round.
The Eagles have gelled in the past month or so, winning five games in a row to take their season record to 8-4.
Nonie Domaille's side now sits in fourth place, a fair whack of percentage ahead of the improved Kerang in fifth.
Domaille said the Eagles were expecting another level of competitiveness from the second-placed Tooleybuc Manangatang after wins over Koondrook Barham, Tyntynder, Lake Boga, Kerang and Balranald following a 31-goal defeat to Woorinen at Lalbert in Round 8.
"It's going to be a tough game for us but I think we've been preparing well," she said.
Domaille has a full squad to choose from and has been pleased with the consistency of some of her most important players.
"Whitney Kennedy in defence has been consistent and outstanding as has Emelia Bett in goal attack," she said.
The Eagles hadn't played together before this season, with Domaille returning to the coach the side after an absence of about five years from the sport.
Among the key inclusions has been centre Holly Rogers, who has been promoted from the Eagles' 17 and Under side, and former Echuca district player Libby Pellegrino, who lines up in the Eagles defence.
"We're coming good at the right time, we hadn't played together before so we're fairly new and we've started to gel in the last five weeks," Domaille said.
Domaille said the Saints were an experienced opposition and the game would be interesting.
"They've been around for a long time and they're quite strong, it should be tough but hopefully we can get up," Domaille said yesterday.