THE Murray Bushrangers have sealed a finals spot in dramatic fashion, edging out the Northern Knights by three points in a thriller at Norm Minns Oval on Saturday.
With the ninth-placed Sandringham Dragons thrashing the Western Jets yesterday, Saturday’s triumph at Wangaratta ultimately proved the difference between making the finals, or not.
Bushrangers’ coach Darren Ogier was thrilled with the result and the fashion the club took control of its own destiny.
“Our effort was outstanding,” Ogier said.
“We didn’t want to rely on other results and we always wanted to be the ones that were in control of our fate.
“Win, lose or draw, we really wanted to make an impression at home because we’ve struggled this year and we were certainly able to do that.”
Seymour’s Josh Schache, part of the Australian Institute of Sport’s under-16 squad, proved an unlikely hero with four match-turning goals.
Captain Michael Gibbons, of Lavington, took control of the match when it was on the line.
Wodonga’s Kayne Turner, a mid-season bloomer, again impressed and is starting to draw attention.
“Kayne is getting better every week,” Ogier said.
“He’s played pretty much everywhere and done a job for us. He’s really getting people to take notice.
“The efforts of Gibbons as captain were enormous.”
Ogier said the Bushrangers weren’t content with just making the top eight.
They play an elimination final this weekend.
“We can’t wait,” Ogier said.
“Things in footy can turn very quickly and hopefully we can carry on Saturday’s form.”
Bushies coach Darren Ogier.
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