THE race for South West Cricket finals is down to five.
Ladder leader Pomborneit, Noorat, Mortlake, Bookaar and Heytesbury Rebels will vie for the four finals berths in the last fortnight of the regular season.
Pomborneit (194.08) is the only side safe in the top four while just 2.11 points separates second-ranked Noorat (175.05) and fourth-ranked Bookaar (172.94).
Heytesbury Rebels (160.90) are a match further back in fifth but could sneak in with back-to-back victories, given Mortlake plays Bookaar in the last round.
But sixth-ranked Terang dropped out of contention after its upset defeat to Cobden at Cobden Recreation Reserve on Saturday.
The Bloods routed their hosts for 101 in 42.2 overs, with Tom McKenzie taking 4-21 from 10 economical overs.
But they collapsed to be all out for 96 in 38.2 overs in reply, losing wickets in bunches throughout their innings.
Melbourne Country Week-bound teen Jake Reed was the catalyst, snaring 3-23 to be the pick of the attack.
Cobden skipper Brent Goonan said a green wicket made life tough for batsmen, with his men having the better of the conditions.
“It was the first week on that wicket and it was a bit green,” he said.
‘‘We weren’t overly confident but we thought (our score) was defendable.
“It was holding up a little bit and towards the end it started to shoot through, we got a couple of wickets with the spinners keeping low.”
But Goonan also had praise for his attack, which was able to take wickets at crucial stages.
Terang twice lost 3-3 during its innings.
Tailenders Liam Venn and Tyson Hay put on 27 for the last wicket and loomed match winners before Angus Uwland struck at the death.
“They just hung in there all day ... we were thinking ‘we’re one wicket away’ and they were thinking ‘we’re a good partnership away’,” Goonan said.
“At it happens with low-scoring games, momentum swings both ways.
‘‘We were lucky enough to get that last wicket.”
In other SWC matches, the big guns fired as Mortlake thrashed Boorcan by 114 runs at Boorcan.
Shane Slater (95), Todd Lamont (83) and Tyler Schafer (81) all made half-centuries in the Cats’ 5-345.
The Dragons finished at 6-231, with Pat Heffernan top scoring with 64 — the sixth time he has passed 50 this season.
Bookaar captain Fraser Lucas made an unbeaten century to lead the Pelicans to a 39-run win against Noorat at Camperdown Showgrounds.
Bookaar finished at 7-252, thanks to Lucas’ 113.
The young skipper followed up by taking 4-45 as Noorat was all out for 213.
Shane Hutchins top scored for the visitors with 75 but the tail failed to wag after his dismissal.
Young paceman Coby Dudman took a destructive 6-29 as Pomborneit defeated Simpson by two wickets at Simpson. Simpson was all out for 123 from 37.2 overs but almost won, with Pomborneit reaching the target eight wickets down and finishing all out for 189.
And Heytesbury Rebels had multiple contributors in their 189-run win against Woorndoo at Woorndoo.
Three batsmen passed 40 in the Rebels’ 8-234 while two bowlers took three wickets to dismiss the Tigers for 47 in 21.3 overs.