Two teams face crunch games

TWO top five teams have vital matches in this week's Central Murray Football Netball League A Grade schedule. The Mallee Eagles are in a position to push for a berth in the elimination final, while a good three weeks from Woorinen can see the Tigers build a good platform towards going deep into the finals, writes ANDREW ROGERS.

The fifth-placed Eagles will start warm favourites against Cohuna, but coach Nonie Domaille said there was no room for complacency three weeks from September.

She said the Eagles wanted to redeem themselves after a disappointing 66-24 loss to Tooleybuc Manangatang prior to last week's bye.

"That wasn't what we were hoping to achieve, so hopefully we can put it behind us and look forward to improving," Domaille said.

The Eagles will have a full squad to choose from ahead of tomorrow's clash with the Kangas, but Domaille said she was keen to emphasise the importance of every match.

"We won the last game against them, but you can never underestimate anyone at the moment," she said.

"If you want to make finals we need to win these games."

Domaille said the form of defender Whitney Kennedy had been crucial the Lalbert club's chances, while GA Emelia Bett was also in good touch.

"There are lots of good goalies across all the teams at the moment, so Whitney has done really well," she said.

Currently third, Woorinen has a crunch game against old foe Tyntynder, with the Bulldogs needing to win to keep their finals hopes alive.

Woorinen has added WD Chelsea Watson since they lost a tight game to Tyntynder in the sides' last outing, while a few positional changes have also helped the Tigers push along.

"We've found our groove a little bit now, and we're hoping to carry that on to the end of the home and away season," A Grade coach Tessa Burton said.

Burton said her squad was "fighting fit and feeling great" about the next phase of the season.

"We've got Maddie Jeans displaying some phenomenal netball at the moment. She's just a great strength and leader on court for us," she said.

"And Tayla Stanley is performing at a level you want your shooters to be at, at this time of the year."

Burton said her team had achieved some key midcourt flexibility.

"We can mix and change the team around a bit, and nothing comes unsettled," she said.

"It's an exciting time for us to be so versatile."