GVBD | Allan Matheson Shield round 12 wrap

By Alex Mitchell

Everything needed to go right on Saturday for Stanhope to make Allan Matheson Shield finals — and boy, oh boy, did it.

Entering the final round of the regular season fifth on the ladder and 17 points behind fourth-ranked Kyabram, the Lions managed to affect that unthinkable swing in points with a flawless win against Euroa, coupled with the Power failing to take a rink against Shepparton Golf.

The swing meant the Lions claimed fourth on the ladder and will take on East Shepparton in this weekend's semi-finals, while Shepparton Golf will take on Shepparton Park in the first-versus-second clash, with the winner heading through to the grand final.

Stanhope's big result was made possible by dominance across the board in a 119-78 triumph; Hayden Crilly (37-21) and Brad Robinson (33-20) each won their rinks by double-figures, Tim Hancock (24-15) had a comfortable result, while Shane Walsh's rink was the tightest, still able to eke out a 25-22 win.

Conversely, it was a tough day at the office for the Power, despite starting the day knowing they only needed one rink win to seal finals.

David Daws (30-19) and Brad Orr (29-22) won comfortably for Golf, but the remaining two rinks were tight, John Gribble hanging on to beat Philip Denham by three shots, while John Stokes beat Glenn Fields by two.

For what it is worth, Kyabram finished with the far superior shot differential despite missing the top four, finishing with a shot differential of 29 compared with Stanhope's -73.

Elsewhere, Shepparton Park warmed up for finals with a narrow win against Hill Top, winning 104-98.

The Parkers claimed two rinks with Paul Nichols (24-18) and Paul Warren (41-26) winning well, although Jarryd Tinning (33-23) and Garry Russell (21-16) ensured the Hillbillies would not leave the encounter empty-handed.

East Shepparton had an easier time against Nagambie, winning 104-98 while taking three of four rinks.

Daniel Nichols (32-13) and Geoff Franze (35-15) were the stars of the show.