GVL - United defeats the Swans

By Tyler Maher

For the first time since rounds eight and nine in 2014, Shepparton United has claimed back-to-back Goulburn Valley League victories.

The Demons followed up their upset win against Benalla last time out with another gritty performance on Saturday, putting the foot down in the last stanza against the Shepparton Swans to record a 50-point triumph at Princess Park.

‘‘The emphasis during the week was that we needed to get back-to-back wins,’’ United coach Stephen Scott said.

‘‘It was a really consistent performance.

‘‘With the weather the way it was, it was just about getting the footy forward and it was a bit scrappy, but it cleared up a bit after half-time and we were able to open up the game.’’

Tim Looby proved the destroyer for the Demons in attack with four majors (three in the last quarter), but the shuffling of a magnet reading ‘Rendina’ on Scott’s whiteboard was also a crucial factor in the outfit’s win.

With Liam Fiore returning from Murray Bushrangers duty — and Zane Barzen heading back to representative football — captain Matt Rendina was thrown forward and snared three goals in a starring role.

Adam Pigatto’s tackling in the midfield was outstanding, while Adam Fichera, David Gillespie, Harrison Osborn and Beau Caia were also impressive for the victors.

‘‘Matt Rendina is very flexible, Liam was in and we put him down back and moved ‘Renny’ up forward and he was great,’’ Scott said.

‘‘The backline played really well, they’re starting to jell together, and David Gillespie is in really great form and is using the ball well and kicking it long.’’

For the Swans, scoring 1.5 after quarter-time was never going to be enough to secure victory, but Jordan Gattuso, Tom Preece, Ian Fry, Ryan Pfeiffer, Kurtis Dixon and Mitch Bell all battled hard.

Scott also revealed that this season would be his last at the helm of the Demons, with the club on the hunt for a replacement.

‘‘We sat down earlier in the year and we’ve decided it’s the right time,’’ he said.

‘‘With what I’ve been able to achieve over the last two years we think we need a senior coach to come in now and bring a few players with him.

‘‘It’s harder to draw players to Shepp from Melbourne than it used to be, so hopefully we can find a coach who can bring a couple of players and provide support to the list we’ve already got.’’