Wodonga Raiders 2.3 8.10 9.13 14.16 100
Yarrawonga Pigeons 2.2 2.5 4.10 8.15 63
Goals: Yarrawonga: Bailey Frauenfelder 3, Ned Mullins 2, Brandon Symes 1, William Gorman 1, Scott Oswald 1. Wodonga Raiders: Connor Newnham 3, Brodie Filo 3, Brodie A’Vard 2, Hayden Clarke 1, Jarrod Ardern 1, Daniel Bowles 1, Jack Haugen 1, Floyd Bollinghaus 1, Zachary Rouse 1.
Best: Yarrawonga Pigeons: Matthew Casey, Jake Wild, William Gorman, Timothy McAuley, Ned Mullins, Ryan Bruce. Wodonga Raiders: Alex Daly, Zachary Rouse, Jordan Rouse, Brodie A’Vard, Jarrod Hodgkin, Dylan Clarke.
On a sunny afternoon the mighty Pigeons travelled to Birralee Park to take on the Wodonga Raiders.
Many speculated that with the departure of their high-profile coach and several senior players that the Raiders might slip down the ladder this year, but Yarrawonga soon found that was not the case at all.
The Raiders started the better of the two sides seeming to settle into their rhythm better than the Pigeons and Yarra soon found themselves playing catchup football.
Brandon Symes and young gun Ned Mullins both posted goals late in the quarter to see their side down by 1 point at the first break.
The second was not one the Pigeons will want to review.
The Raiders came out firing and Yarrawonga seemed to have lost their appetite for the contest.
A six goal to zero quarter saw the home side in a dominant position.
Yarrawonga’s forward line were well held and if not for some great defensive work by Matt Casey, Beau Seymour, Ryan Bruce and Jake Wild, the score could have looked much worse.
After the long break, Yarrawonga came out and applied much more pressure to their opponents.
Brandon Symes working hard up forward narrowed the 38 point deficit with a goal inside the first thirty seconds.
Yarrawonga had lifted and had majority of the play during the quarter.
The Gorman brothers, Will and Matt, were both working hard around the ground along with new recruit Tim McCauley.
Debutant Cameron Tregenza worked his way into the game well and looked at home showing poise and clean hands when many around him struggled.
Down back Matt Casey was the dominant back man and continually outpointed his opponent.
Unfortunately, the Pigeons wasted opportunities in front of goal and despite a late goal to Bailey Frauenfelder still found themselves 34 points down at the final break.
The last quarter started poorly for the Pigeons with the talented Isaac McMillan stretchered off after a marking contest.
Yarrawonga continued to apply pressure around the contest and this resulted in another Ned Mullins goal.
Cracks started to show in the Raiders camp when 30 seconds later Scott Oswald goaled after some poor discipline from the opposition.
Xavier Leslie, Harry Wheeler and Jordan Urquhart all lifted their work rate and when Bailey Frauenfelder kicked his second the deficit was within 3 goals.
The Raiders however regained their composure and despite Frauenfelder taking his goal tally to three, the home side kicked away again to come away with a 37-point win.
Yarrawonga 14.14.98 def
Wodonga Raiders 3.5.23
In a much anticipated game, the Yarrawonga second 18 came up against their grand final nemesis of 2018, albeit both teams fielding vastly different line ups.
Young defender Kayden Sharp was given the job of trying the stifle the impact of the Raiders dangerous forward Scott Robinson.
The onballers were on notice to assist Kayden and stop the fast ball movement that the Raiders were renowned for during the 2018 season.
The game started as a bit of an arm wrestle with the evergreen Matthew Grinter getting the Pigeons scoring underway after a bone crunching tackle on an unsuspecting Raiders opponent right in front of goal.
Only three goals were scored in the first quarter and they all went the way of the Pigeons.
Mitch Collins-Bye was a workhorse in the middle of the ground.
When he wasn’t pulling down strong marks, he was joining fellow on ball hard nut, Travis Hargreaves and putting on bruising tackles and bumps that gave outside runners like Ronan Pritchard and Josh Simm time and space with the ball.
At half-time, the Pigeon team held a five goal lead and were looking the stronger of the two combatants.
With big Joe Gorman nursing a corked thigh, more reliance went onto Josh Tonna in the ruck duels to throw his light frame around and try to give the Pigeons first use.
Tim Lawrence and Darcy Norman who have both started the year strongly were recipients of the good ruckwork making sure that the ball continued to go forward towards Grinter, Marty Brooks and Ronan Pritchard.
By three quarter-time the Pigeons were holding onto an eight goal lead which they managed to extend to a twelve goal win by the end of the game.
The team now sit with two wins from two games and come up against the top of the table Wangaratta Magpies on Easter Sunday at Lonsdale Reserve in Mulwala.
Goals: Matthew Grinter 7, Ronan Pritchard 3, Matt Tregenza 1, Mtich Collins-Bye 1, Owen Conway 1 and Tim Lawrence 1.
Best: Mitch Collins-Bye, Josh Tonna, Kayden Sharp, Travis Hargreaves, Ross Mulquiney, Tim Lawrence and Matt Grinter.
Yarrawonga Pigeons 10.9.69 def
Wodonga Raiders 6.6.42
Goals: Yarrawonga Pigeons: Austin Frauenfelder 4, Brodie Tyson 3, Sam Mickelson 1, Tanner Nyholm 1, Jackson Meade 1.
Best: Yarrawonga Pigeons: Harrison Meade, Ned Pendergast, Thomas Whelan, Tanner Nyholm, Alex Byrne, Jackson Meade.