North Ballarat's dismal record at Avalon Airport Oval in Werribee has continued after another loss there to the Tigers in round thirteen of the Peter Jackson VFL season. A strong wind favouring the Melbourne end of the ground helped Werribee boot seven last quarter goals to overrun the Roosters - 15.16.106 to 12.12.84.
The win sees the Tigers jump into the top four while the Roosters slide out of the top eight down to tenth place. Werribee hasn't been a happy hunting ground for the Roosters having won just twice there in the 18 years they have been in the VFL.
North Ballarat had the aid of the wind in the first quarter and skipped away to an early lead of 19 points thanks to two goals from Mitch Wilkins. However their lead quickly dwindled in the second term as Werribee's Ben Warren and Addam Maric each helped themselves to a couple of goals.
The Tigers booted seven goals to two to take a 17-point lead into the rooms at half-time - 8.9.57 to 6.4.40. After the main break the wind became stronger and the Roosters knew they had to capitalise.
They managed five goals whilst keeping the home side goalless. Without a focal point up forward, the Roosters ran the ball through the midfield finding runners to kick long to the goal square.
At three-quarter-time North Ballarat held sway by 16 points - 11.9.75 to 8.11.59 – however with Werribee favoured by the wind in the last term, their lead appeared a little narrow. With North Melbourne coach Brad Scott and former Australian cricket captain and Roo’s number one ticketholder, Ricky Ponting (above), watching on, Werribee slammed on the first five goals of the quarter.
The Rooster’s defenders struggled to contain the acrobatic Majak Daw while Warren added two more in the term. Kieran Harper had the yellow and black faithful on their feet when he snapped truly to put Werribee in front around the ten minute mark.
Jordan Staley booted a goal against the tide for the Roosters but it was little joy for the visitors as Daw and Mason Wood finished them off with another two for the Tigers. Warren finished with four goals to become the new leader on the league's goal kicking list, Daw and Maric snared three each and Kieran Harper kicked two for the winners. For North Ballarat, Staley, James Keeble and Mitch Wilkins all kicked two.
Better players for Werribee included Jarred Moore who bullocked his way around the packs gathering 25 disposals, Taylor Hine (21) who provided plenty of run and overlap out of defence, Tom Gribble ran all day from his wing, Jackson Davis and Daw (13) and for North Ballarat, Brad McKenzie with 28 disposals, defender Tony Lockyer (22), hard man Lachlan George (22), Nathan Horbury (22) and Trent Dumont (27) who is surely in the minds of North Melbourne selectors.
Werribee face Collingwood at Victoria Park in round fourteen in what should be a hard fought contest while North Ballarat are at home to the Northern Blues in a must-win game to stay in touch with the top eight.