PANMURE has picked the perfect time to break a four- game losing streak and keep its season alive.
The Bulldogs came up trumps with a 35-26 first semi- final win over Kolora-Noorat yesterday at Merrivale.
The result was a turnaround from when the teams met a fortnight ago in the last round of the home-and-away season.
The Power won that game and booked their place in the finals.
The Bulldogs were not so obliging this time around, showing they are still a premiership contender with a victory that never looked in doubt.
Panmure lined up with Maddi White at goal attack and Charlotte McCutcheon at goal shooter, giving them some tall targets under the ring.
At the other end of the court, Jorgia Brown lined up at goal keeper and her sister, Sally O’Keefe, at goal defence, giving the Bulldogs a new look.
The previous week against Dennington, White was goal keeper and Brown goal attack.
But given the Power’s goal shooting duo of Linda Clifford and Penny Smith are mid-sized, Bulldogs coach Megan Titmus decided to load up in attack.
White and McCutcheon proved to be a strong combination and got their team off to a good start to lead 10-8 at quarter-time.
The Power started the second well and had closed the gap mid-quarter with the scores tight as they trailed 15-14.
But the Bulldogs stamped their authority on the contest, shooting four of the next five goals to go into half-time with a 19-15 lead.
They continued to control the game in the opening minutes of the second half, shooting the first four goals of the third quarter to clear out to an eight-goal lead.
This was to prove the decisive break of the game as the Bulldogs kept the Power at bay to get their opening finals win for 2104.
They will be looking to make it two in a row when they come up against Dennington, a team that defeated them by 12 goals in the qualifying final.
Titmus said that despite the Bulldogs’ recent lack of wins, the team came ready to play against the Power.
“We haven’t dwelt on those losses, we just worked on what we needed to and we have done a lot of team bonding stuff,” Titmus said.
“Kolora-Noorat were very good the last time we played them so we knew we had to play well to get the win today.”
Dennington has two tall goal shooters in Lana Keane and Katie Burt.
Titmus would not reveal whether she plans to stick with the winning set up she had against the Power or if she would send White to defence to counter the Dogs’ height.
“I haven’t really thought much about next week but it will be a different game to today and to the week before.
“Last time we played them, we walked away thinking we are capable of doing better.”
For Kolora-Noorat the first semi-final loss brings to an end an eventful season that produced plenty of excitement.
The Power had to struggle to get their place in the finals and then had to pull out a mighty last-quarter comeback to topple Merrivale in the elimination final last week.
They were far from disgraced yesterday with coach Glenice Justin happy with her team’s efforts.
“I couldn’t have asked any more from the girls this season. The aim was to make finals and they were able to achieve that,” she said. “Winning that first final gave us a lot of satisfaction, I think it showed we deserved to be there.
“Today was a tough one. Panmure adapted to the conditions better and they seemed to have a lot of resolve and determination.”