RUPANYUP stamped itself as a legitimate contender with an impressive 76-point demolition of third-placed Laharum at Rupanyup Recreation Reserve.
The Panthers dominated the match, keeping their opponents goalless until the third quarter.
Rupanyup coach Glenn Wyatt said his side was intent on a good start.
“We played an attacking style and were hard at the ball and tackled well,” he said.
“We were winning the ball in the midfield and our defensive pressure was great, we were rebounding well from half back.”
The Mountain Men were left shell-shocked as they suffered their second loss of the season.
Laharum coach Marcus Demaria described his side as ‘very ordinary’.
“I don’t think we could have played any worse,” he said.
“They just dominated us all over the ground right from the start and didn’t allow us to play our free flowing game.
“They played really well.”
Nathan Sachse, playing in the ruck, was best for Rupanyup and Drew Tyler was influential, kicking four goals.
Wyatt said the win demonstrated how far his side had come from a seven-point loss to Laharum in round three.
“The confidence among the group is up and we’re gelling a lot better,” he said.
“Our rotations off the bench are working better too.”
A bruised knee to Tim Tyler was the only injury concern for the Panthers.
The result sees Rupanyup now sit just two points behind Laharum on the ladder.
“It keeps us in with a reach of a double chance come finals,” Wyatt said.
Demaria said his side knew it now had a fight to stay in the top three.
In other games, Swifts 110 continued their winning form against Taylors Lake 88, Kalkee 124 charged home against Noradjuha-Quantong 25, Edenhope-Apsley 112 demolished Natimuk 34, and Pimpinio 79 defeated Harrow-Balmoral 60.
For full scores, see today’s Mail-Times.
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