A FORCED change due to injury might just be the key to Lismore-Derrinallum’s grand final hopes.
The Demons lost then-leading goalkicker Ryan Elliot (69 goals) to an anterior cruciate ligament injury last month, forcing them to get creative with scoring options.
The luxury of multiple avenues to goal shone through in the Demons’ preliminary final win, with eight goalkickers booting 19 goals between them – including six players who slotted multiple goals.
Lismore-Derrinallum coach Jahn Knight hopes it will help his side cut through a strong Wickliffe-Lake Bolac defence in Saturday’s Mininera and District decider.
“Their defence is probably one of the best in the league,” Knight said.
“We have to find a way to score and get through them.
“(Because we’ve got multiple options), hopefully that plays in to our hands a bit: that they can’t just shut down one or two, they’ve got to shut down all six.”
Newly-crowned MDFL senior footy best-and-fairest Michael Lockyer has taken the lead for the team’s goalkicking, slotting through 72 majors this season from 20 games, and will be looking for another big game against the Magpies – he was the Demons’ best in the first and third weeks of finals.
Knight said the Demons would be without a few starters, but was confident they would cover the loss.
“We’ve had three guys who would probably be in our starting 21 unavailable – we’ve know that for the last three weeks,” he said.
“But it’s been good to find that diamond in the rough who will step up and perform in finals.”