WANGARATTA will enter next season with plenty of wind in its sails after a hefty 78-point win over Corowa-Rutherglen on Saturday.
The Roos failed to fire a shot in Cade Mills’ 200th game for the club and couldn’t send outgoing coach Adrian Pavese off in style.
Despite losing Josh Porter and Sam Maddern in the first 10 minutes of the game, the Pies rallied and never looked like losing.
The move of Matt Grossman deep forward in the second half proved the knockout blow.
The star Magpie kicked six goals in the final two quarters of the game.
Wangaratta coach Mark Knobel said his message to his players was a simple one on Saturday.
And they responded beautifully.
“I just said to the boys, let’s ignore the stats and play contested, one-on-one, footy,” Knobel said.
“The boys stuck to the task and spread from the contest really well.”
Grossman, who shapes as the favourite for Wangaratta’s best and fairest award, was a clear best on ground on Saturday but wasn’t alone in his strong performance.
Dylan Van Berlo rose to the occasion in the ruck, while midfielders Matt Kelly, Daine Porter and Ben Davies also impressed.
Pavese, who stands down after just one season at the Corowa-Rutherglen helm, said Saturday’s result typified the Roos’ year.
“We were flat as,” Pavese said.
“Give Wangaratta their due, they were up and about, but we were super flat.”
Meanwhile, Matt Gadsden took out the Roos’ best and fairest, the Jim Sandral medal, on Saturday night. Skipper Jamie Seymour was second.
Magpies coach Mark Knobel
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