K rock Football

Patience pays of for Hawks

Forward Josh Bouwman kicked four goals in Inverleigh’s elimination final win over East Geelong. (Sports Media Image/Marcel Berens)

INVERLEIGH coach Adam Donohue has praised his team’s patience as it survived a challenge from East Geelong to keep its hopes of ending a 27-year premiership drought alive.

The Hawks overcame the Eagles by 19 points at St Albans Reserve to book a first semi-final meeting with Werribee Centrals next Sunday.

“In the third quarter we pressed really hard, (and) we got some good ball by got being patient,” Donohue said.

“We got some goals, and they were just chipping it around in our back half and they couldn’t get it out of forward 50.

“So that was the most pleasing thing; and you look at it, seven goals up at three-quarter time, the game’s nearly over.

“Whilst they came at us, we ran out of gas.”

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Billy Cations played one of his best games of the year, ruckman James Huybens was crucial as ever, and Casey Meehan didn’t look like someone who had just returned from six weeks overseas studying.

“I said before the game, “I don’t care who you are, seven weeks out, you don’t come back the player you were”,” Donohue quipped.

“He didn’t really miss a beat, did he?

“He’s tough; he crashes packs, and (he’s) that big-bodied midfielder we’ve been missing.

“He’ll be better for the run, no doubt. To get a game under his belt and get us one more week forward, he’ll definitely benefit from that.”

Playing against his former team, Josh Bouwman proved hard to handle for the Eagles’ defence on his way to four goals.

“His hands are vice-like. He just doesn’t really drop them,” Donohue said.

“And when his one-on-one, the use of his body is really strong as well.

“If we can isolate him, that’s really good for us.”

Despite losing to the Centurions by 44 points in Round 17, Donohue is confident Inverleigh can turn the tables on Father’s Day.

“We outplayed them in the first half in Round 17,” he recalled.

“Third quarter, they just got a roll-on, and we just made some basic fundamental errors.

“They were just attacking, but we just made some poor defensive decisions.

“We spent the Tuesday night after that game just sitting watching the third quarter and we learnt a lot from it.”

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