CAMPERDOWN is in the five for the first time this season after thrashing fellow finals aspirant Hamilton Kangaroos at Leura Oval on Saturday.
The Magpies stormed to a 60-point win in what was billed as an early elimination final. The 19.15 (129) to 10.9 (69) victory elevated the Magpies to fifth on the ladder, percentage ahead of Portland, which slipped from fourth to sixth after a heavy loss against defending premier Warrnambool.
The Magpies set up their win in the first half, kicking 12.7 to 3.3, including seven goals in the second quarter.
Midfielders Damien Pemberton and Luke Clarke were outstanding for the Magpies with Clarke kicking a career-high five goals.
The Kangaroos remain seventh on the ladder but they are now a win behind the Magpies and Portland and two back from fourth-placed Terang Mortlake with two matches remaining, all but dashing their finals hopes.
Portland's percentage took a critical hit in its 17.16 (118) to 10.6 (66) loss to Warrnambool. Spearhead Jason Rowan kicked eight goals for the Blues putting him within sight of the magical 100 goals for the season. He now has 88 with two matches remaining.
Terang Mortlake climbed from fifth to fourth and opened a one-game break on its challengers with a tough 13.18 (96) to 11.6 (72) win over South Warrnambool at the Friendly Societies' Park.
Second-placed Koroit bounced back from last week's loss to Warrnambool with a 44-point win over Cobden while third-placed North Warrnambool Eagles took three quarters to shake off a persistent Port Fairy, winning by 50 points at Bushfield Recreation Reserve.