GVL | Seymour and Rochester steal incredible wins in Sunday action

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Winding up: Seymour’s Dylan Scopel kicks the ball forward. Photo by Aydin Payne

Two goals in the dying stages of the final term has seen Seymour steal victory from the jaws of defeat in a Goulburn Valley League thriller at Kings Park on Sunday.

Rory Scopel was the hero for the Lions, booting two goals in the final term against Mansfield, including the winner from a rushed snap, to gift Seymour a victory that well and truly keeps it in the finals hunt.

Speaking after the game, Scopel recounted the match-winning goal that lifted his Lions to a season-defining 8.7 (55) to 7.12 (54) round 11 triumph.

“I didn’t touch it much all day, but I always thought I was there or thereabouts heading into the last quarter,” Scopel said.

“I seen little ‘Nugget’ (Nathan Beattie) launch a big fist forward and I got on the end of one and I didn’t want to kick it at the start, I wanted to give it off.

“And then I thought, ‘I’ll just snap it here because I don’t have a left foot’, and I just went for the banana and it floated through.”

Having dominated field position through the final term, it appeared Seymour was going to rue those missed opportunities after Mansfield’s Ben Christopher was awarded a free kick at the 20-minute mark and converted to put the Eagles 11 points up.

But the Lions’ midfielders continued the charge, driving the ball forward which allowed Nathan Beattie to get on the end of a ground ball and goal, before Scopel’s heroics put them in front only seconds later.

Down low: Seymour’s Nathan Beattie gathers the ball. Photo by Aydin Payne

Seymour coach Ben Davey said the win was incredibly sweet given the side’s push for finals and recent history of close losses against Mansfield.

“It was such a low-scoring game and just a grind for the whole day. You just get moments and we got a couple of good moments in the final few minutes,” Davey said.

“Because they’ve done that to us twice it makes it that little bit sweeter, but just the win is so important for our season.

“We lose that and the last four games we won don’t even count, so with a win today we are still in touch.

“The dream is still alive.”

Earlier, Mansfield took control of the contest with a brutal second term, making the most of the perfect conditions to open up a 15-point lead.

But as the rain began to fall at Kings Park, the Lions onballers started to come to life, with the likes of Ben Rigoni and Jack Murphy winning the ball at the contest and creating scoring opportunities.

Eleven point down at the final change, the match was set for a grandstand finish, with Seymour’s field position dominance eventually seeing it over the line in arguably the game of the season.

The big story out of the day for Mansfield was an injury to star midfielder Patrick Marks, who didn’t appear after half-time.

Meanwhile at Moon Oval, Rochester scored itself a similar season-defining triumph over Kyabram.

The Tigers held control of the contest at the final break, leading by 16 points, but Kyabram was able to mount a stirring final-quarter charge.

A goal in the final minute of the contest drew the Bombers within three points, however Rochester was able to hang on to clinch a memorable 11.12 (78) to 11.9 (75) win.

Arms up: Seymour’s Jess Lallo. Photo by Aydin Payne

Over on the netball courts, Seymour got the job done for two of its stalwarts.

Defenders Sarah Szczykulski and Grace Engel both celebrated game 150 for the Lions on Sunday.

It was a joyous occasion for the pair as Seymour skipped away to seal a 61-35 win.

Lastly, Rochester’s A-grade outfit mirrored the senior footballers and pulled off a stunning triumph over Kyabram.

In a heart-stopper, the Tigers, led by defender Bridgette Holt, fell over the line to claim a 55-54 victory to keep their season alive.