What promised so much delivered a huge blowout
AUSSIE RULES: AFL Capricornia's version of the Da Vinci Code has not been broken.
Yeppoon Swans went down to BITS Oval - the venue of the grand final on September 1 - and it was a TC which blew the Saints away by 99 points.
Thomas Cossens wreaked havoc to boot nine goals - seven of which came in the first half - to put the game beyond doubt at the long break on way to a 20.6 (126) to 4.3 (27).
It was a game that BITS Saints player-coach Jake Mostert deemed as a 'mini-grand final' and for his team to measure itself against the might of Yeppoon
James Malone picked up where 'TC' left off to finish with six as the Swans did what they pleased with scintillating sling-shot footy off half-back, led superbly by Matt Wallin and Mick Gallagher.
The hosts' turnovers and inability to lock the ball in its forward half and whenever it did it could not convert, save for a clever snap by Sam Pierpoint (three goals), for BITS' first.
Mostert said forward-line pressure was an issue.
"Going into the forward 50, we went in plenty of times but just not putting enough pressure on the scoreboard," the disappointed coach said.
Yeppoon Swans cashed in when it mattered most while the Saints slaughtered kicks, dropped marks and failed to help an under-siege defence.
"The thing that let us down was our inability to get to the contest because of our lack of fitness and they just had numbers at the contest and they just cut us to pieces with their run," Mostert said.
An example was when Jake King charged off the back of the centre square and speared a pass to Malone in the final quarter.
Best for the Saints was Brock Rothe, who like many of the Swan players was clean with his disposal in midfield, young key defenders Jack Grainger and the pacy Trent Millar and Danny Clay.
Swans coach Mark Wallin said his team had steeled itself for a stern contest against the hosts and added that the players looked forward to relish the challenge.
"We set ourselves for a close game and we expected Boyne Island were almost at full strength and we have still got probably five or six blokes to come in which is a scary thought," he said.
"Relentless was our word and I said we got to be relentless and we got to have a huge tackle count and to break their run down."
He lauded forwards Malone and Harry Boyd for their pressure in the forward 50. "Just the tackle count and the relentless work and to keep the ball in the forward line," Wallin said.