Bracknell has kept its double chance alive and booked a second semi-final fixture by running over a wasteful Hillwood.
The 12.11 (83) to 8.17 (65) result marked the Redlegs’ fifth consecutive victory at Hillwood and their fifth win on the trot, having not lost since a 12-point defeat to next week’s opponent South Launceston.
The Redlegs’ ruthless forward line ultimately proved the difference, with star forward Glenn Dawson banging through three goals, Corry Goodluck four and coach Gary Shipton kicking two in the final five minutes to seal the game.
“Today was a tough game all round - the ground was a bit heavy on the legs in the end but Hillwood came out to play and to our credit we kept at it and got over the line,” Shipton said.
“Glenn Dawson played well all day, Jack Dyer played well, Richard Howe played a good four quarters and so did Trent Page, so we had a lot of players who stepped up at the right time.”
PHOTO GALLERY: Bracknell v Hillwood, St Pats v East Coast
Bracknell led nearly all day but the Sharks pressed hard either side of three-quarter time, cutting the margin to one point late in the third and levelling the scores early in the last.
Wingman Isaac Thomspon gave his all for the Hillwood cause, however, Shipton’s men had the answers when it counted.
“It was quite an intense game,” Shipton said.
“There was about a point in it at one stage there, but to our credit our boys responded really well and we got it back in our forward line and kicked a couple of goals.
“Hillwood had a good crack all day.”
A minor concussion to Mason De Reuyter-Keane and a groin complaint to ruckman Jye Balym halved the Sharks’ rotations in the second half, yet it was poor goalkicking that coach Nathan Lowe was left ruing after the game.
“We did the same thing today we’ve done the last three games - we kicked ourselves out of it,” Lowe said.
“It’s a bit of a concern at the moment ... it’d be different if all the goals we missed were from bad angles, but they were all from dead in front.
“It’s a bit disappointing but that’s what double chances are for I suppose.”
Lowe backed his side in to play better on the smaller surface of Invermay Park next weekend, and said his players would be better off for getting a taste of finals football.
“They’re a good side Bracknell, you can tell they’ve played a lot of finals football over the last few years and that showed today, whereas we’re new to it so we’ll learn from it.”