GREENSBOROUGH snapped its two-game losing streak with a runaway 27-point win over Macleod in the Meadows Greyhounds Division 1 grand final rematch at War Memorial Park.
Trailing by 10 points at three-quarter time, Macleod reduced the margin to under a kick early in the last quarter, however, a fantastic goal to Tristan Stead kick-started a late surge by the Boro as they ran away with a 12.11 (83) to 7.14 (56) win.
Needing to respond after a fadeout loss to Montmorency in Round 4, the Boro produced the goods late this time around, booting the final four goals of the game to improve their 2016 record to 3-2.
Leading the way for the Boro were Nick Carnell, Matthew Fowler (three goals) and ruckman Michael Hooper, who was the dominant tall on the ground in his return from injury.
The best in defeat for the Roos were Hayden Seivers, skipper Kane Shaw and reigning best and fairest Lucas Hobbs.
A strong wind wreaked havoc in the first half, with neither side able to get a good hold over the gusty conditions. Most scoring opportunities were broken down at half forward, with both sides struggling to hit up a target inside forward 50m.
Greensborough, however, was able to get the slightly better start – kicking the first two goals through Andrew Stellas and Josh Griffiths to take a 14-point lead.
That buffer was reduced to seven at the first break, after an off-the-ball free kick saw Macleod forward Reid Brandt convert a late goal from point-blank range.
The intensity applied from both teams was there for all to see, with the tackling pressure immense during the first quarter, and continuing right throughout the day.
The second term was much of the same, with the sides booting two goals apiece as the Boro held a three-point advantage at the main break.
Despite the Boro holding the lead, it was the Roos who were creating more scoring opportunities in the second term – however inaccuracy plagued the reigning premiers for a second straight week, booting a wasteful 3.8 in the first half.
The third term saw the game start to open up, with both sides creating momentum swings throughout the term, as the lead changed hands four times. Greensborough got on a run late to open up a 10-point buffer at three-quarter time.
Among the highlights of the term were two fantastic marks in defence by Dan McLinden. First he jumped over a pack for a neat hanger, before minutes later hauling in a flying one-handed mark.
With both sides at their desperate best, it took until the seventh minute of the final quarter for a goal to be registered. That major went to Nick Lynch, who made the most of a blunder in midfield by Greensborough and capitalised on the resulting counter-attack.
The Roos kept surging but inaccuracy played its part, before Stead’s 40m shot from the right forward pocket swung the momentum back the home side’s way.
Follow-up goals to Nick Carnell and Matt Fowler (two) saw the Boro storm home and leapfrog the Roos into third place on the ladder.
Greensborough makes the trip to winless, but dangerous, Whittlesea in Round 6, while Macleod is away to a red-hot Montmorency outfit which has won its past two matches to get its season back on track.
Final score: Greensborough 12.11 (83) def Macleod 7.14 (56)