After a brave and gutsy performance the Dubbo Demons have narrowly gone down to competition leaders Cowra Blues.
The round nine match of the Central West AFL saw the determined Demons come with within three points of victory at the weekend.
The final score was Cowra 11.19 (85) defeating Dubbo 12.10 (82).
The Demons started the game full of running and caught Cowra by surprise to lead at the end of the first quarter by 14 points.
In the second quarter the Demons continued to force the ball forward at the stoppages and run hard in attack.
By half-time the Demons had kicked 3.5 to Cowra’s 2.5 and had increased their lead to 20 points.
The Blues came out at the start of the second half and lifted their work rate.
Cowra’s Dave Manning started to win more of the footy at the stoppages and the Demon’s centre line started to tire.
As Cowra peppered the goals, the Demons struggled to move their ball out of their defensive zone and battled with the breeze as the inexperienced backline and midfield faltered under the relentless Cowra pressure.
By the end of the third quarter the Blues had scored 5.9 to the Demons 0.1, moving into the lead for the first time by 18 points.
In the last quarter, the Demons struck back going all out in attack as they tried to make up the deficit.
They regained control of the midfield and were able to create more attacking opportunities.
The Demons again took the lead with just a few minutes left on the clock, thrilling spectators with spectacular play.
However experience proved all too valuable as Cowra exploited their opponents’ attacking ploys and kicked a very late goal to hold off the Demons challenge and win by a final margin of 3 points.
Despite the loss the Demons were happy with their performance as they hit the ball hard at the contest, showing plenty of character to get back into the game against the competition’s top team.
In the coming weeks the Demons will need to work on hard their fitness and skill levels to improve their competitiveness and take the next step.
Better players for the Demons were Steve Howlett, Doug North, Ben Bunt, Rohan Brill, Jacob Maljers and Hunter Johnston.
Doug North (4), Dale Lawrence (3), Greg Richter (2), Greg Sutton (1), Stewart Todd (1) and Mick Haley (1) were the goal-kickers for Dubbo.
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