OUT OF REACH: BITS Saints' Colby Bidmade is tackled by Rockhampton Brothers' Steven Munchow in the Saints elimination semi-final loss at Clinton Oval on Saturday.
OUT OF REACH: BITS Saints' Colby Bidmade is tackled by Rockhampton Brothers' Steven Munchow in the Saints elimination semi-final loss at Clinton Oval on Saturday. Matt Taylor GLA170819AFLM

Late flurry not enough as BITS bundled out of finals series

AFL: On paper it appeared to be an upset but BITS Saints coach Jake Mostert said his side's three-point loss to Brothers in the AFL Capricornia elimination final was no less than they deserved.

The third-placed Saints took on fourth-placed Brothers at Clinton Oval for a place in the August 31 preliminary final, but for a large chunk of the match it appeared only one team wanted it more.

Mostert said the 11.11 (77) to 10.14 (74) result boiled down to his side not making the most of their opportunities.

"We had chances to kick goals but ultimately during the first half they were much better than we were and we didn't do a few little things as well as we should have," Mostert said.

"We weren't as tight in defence as I would have liked, playing off our man a bit, they kicked a couple of quick goals and we didn't really tighten up in that space.

"They made the most of their opportunities - in the first half they played really well and we played really poorly."

 

BITS Saints' Sam I'Anson in action against Rockhampton Brothers.
BITS Saints' Sam I'Anson in action against Rockhampton Brothers. Matt Taylor GLA170819AFLM

BITS finished the contest with a flurry of late goals and had a chance to kick into the lead inside the dying stages but could only managed a behind.

It was a case of too little too late for the Saints.

"At the 13-minute mark of the final quarter we were still five goals behind, so we played seven minutes of good footy towards the end," Mostert said.

"We could have won the game but we didn't deserve to win. They deserved to win because they played a better brand of footy, played more collectively as a team and had more contributors.

"Whereas we relied very heavily on a few key people and had a few passengers that didn't contribute as much as they usually do or just had a bad day."

 

BITS Saints' Jackson Magnion contests the ball against Rockhampton Brothers' Benjamin Phillips
BITS Saints' Jackson Magnion contests the ball against Rockhampton Brothers' Benjamin Phillips Matt Taylor GLA170819AFLM

One player missing from the match-day squad was BITS' key target man Jamie Cunninghame, who had kicked 25 goals in nine games.

"He came back from a hamstring injury two weeks before but he got a new job so couldn't get crazy amounts of time off for footy," Mostert said.

 

BITS Saints' Brendan Clarke
BITS Saints' Brendan Clarke Matt Taylor GLA170819AFLM

"He said if he took (the elimination final) off he couldn't get the preliminary off, so we had to weigh up our options.

"Either way we were in a bind... It was a decision between Jamie and I (but) I still think it was the right call.

"It just wasn't a good day at the office for the team... We only kicked six goals up until three-quarter time and then kicked another five in seven minutes of football.

"We showed that we can play good footy and put a score on the board, it's just unfortunate we didn't show up for the other 80 minutes of the game."



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