Last-gasp goal saves Sunbury Kangaroos

Sunbury Kangaroos’ Jamie Cuffe takes a strong mark. (Shawn Smits)

Sunbury Kangaroos coach Chris Meacham and his coaching staff thought their side was heading for a second straight loss in the Riddell District Football League on Saturday.

Scores were level at three-quarter time against Broadford, but the Roos found themselves down with not long to go.

“They [Broadford] were up by two goals late in the last quarter and we were up against it,” Meacham said. “I thought we were gone. Everything was going against us and we were giving away free kicks.

“We kicked one goal, but we thought we were gone and didn’t think there was much time left.”

Enter Jake Young, who had been the Kangaroos’ best all day.

“He has been showing promise and threatening the last couple of years for a breakout game,” Meacham said. “He kicked
a goal and the siren went not long after-

The Kangaroos got home 23.11 (89) – 13.8 (86) to be 7-1 for the season and third on the ladder on percentage.

Next comes a clash with the winless Kilmore, then the bye.

The latest win, like many others this season, has come with an under-strength Kangaroos line-up.

Matthew Sullivan and Mitch Trimboli ended Saturday’s match on the bench injured.

Dylan Murphy, Jay Cheep, Simon Clarke, Matthew Leonard, Adam Fenton, Mitch Streiff and Ryan Hatty were among those to miss the game.

“We are laughing at the depth we have at the club,” Meacham said.

“When you have injuries like we have it tests the character of the players.

“[Mitchell] Kook was our only real forward who played. We had Joeb Ploog, Jackson Cheep and Jamie Cuffe having to play forward.

“We had about nine of our best side out and had to ring seven guys who hadn’t been training to play in the reserves, and they ended up beating Broadford, who had been undefeated.”

Meacham expects to have most players, with the exception of Murphy, back after the break.

“We’re probably in the situation that some of the guys are going to have to come back through the reserves.”

Meacham says the side is looking forward to the bye.

“We’ll go to the bye 7-2 or 8-1 but are under no illusions we have a hard run home,” he said.

Also at the weekend, Diggers Rest had a hard-fought win over Lancefield, Romsey was too strong for Melton Centrals, Riddell thrashed Kilmore, Macedon returned to the winners’ list at the expense of Rockbank, and Woodend-Hesket held on against Wallan.