THE Bathurst Lady Bushrangers breathed life back into their bid for a major semi-final appearance on Saturday when posting an impressive 8-8-56 to 1-2-8 win over the Orange Tigers.
Though winning that match at George Park 1 didn't see the currently third-placed Lady Bushrangers leapfrog the Tigers into second, there is now just two competition points separating the pair.
"I'd been confident all year that if we got our best side, or close to our best side on the paddock, then we'd be right up there with Orange and the Giants," Lady Bushrangers coach Brian Matheson said.
Orange really stepped up in that second quarter, it was a really good game in cold and difficult conditions, but they never gave up the whole game.Lady Bushrangers coach Brian Matheson
"It was a massive game for us, if we didn't win that game we wouldn't be a shot at a top-two finish, second chance come finals. We're still in third spot, but I think we play Orange again in two weeks' time."
While falling by 16 points to the Tigers earlier in the season, in Saturday's rematch the Lady Bushrangers stamped their authority on proceedings early.
They booted four majors in the opening term and restricted their rivals to a single behind.
"The girls were switched on right from that first quarter and by quarter time it was 29-1," Matheson said.
"There were just some really, really good passages of play, good team work and passing the ball around well. It was really impressive.
"Orange really stepped up in that second quarter, it was a really good game in cold and difficult conditions, but they never gave up the whole game."
By half-time the margin stood at 34 and while the Tigers finally booted a major in the third term, the hosts were never threatened.
"I love coaching them, the girls just want to learn, they ask a lot of questions ... they are just so keen, they get to training, the information you're giving them they soak it up and work to see that it's applied," Matheson said.
"Seeing those good passages of play, it makes them even more keen because they can see all that hard work they're doing at training actually paying off on the field."
BATHURST LADY BUSHRANGERS 8-8-56 (Amelia Wright 3, Sonia Lang 2, Beth Durham, Alora Dickson, Nicole Harrison) defeated ORANGE TIGERS 1-2-8 (Charis McKerrell)
DO YOU WANT MORE ORANGE SPORT?
- Receive our free newsletters delivered to your inbox, as well as breaking news alerts. Sign up below ...