Koroit coach Chris McLaren wary of Hampden league's healthy even nature

LOOKING AHEAD: Koroit coach Chris McLaren (second from left) has his side in a good spot. Picture: Morgan Hancock
LOOKING AHEAD: Koroit coach Chris McLaren (second from left) has his side in a good spot. Picture: Morgan Hancock

KOROIT is wary of sides lurking below it on the Hampden league ladder despite looking assured atop the table.

The Saints hold a two-game buffer over second-placed Port Fairy and third-ranked Camperdown, who are both locked on nine wins, after edging out South Warrnambool on Saturday.

Saints coach Chris McLaren said their come-from-behind 9.12 (66) to 7.8 (50) win over the Roosters – another side vying for a finals berth – highlighted the competition’s unpredictable nature.

The two sides were tied at the final break before Koroit eked out two unanswered goals in the final term.

“It’s the story of the year, so it’s healthy for the competition,” McLaren said.

“After 12 rounds, to get through with one loss in a competition as even as it is is really pleasing and good reward for effort.”

South Warrnambool coach Mat Buck was pleased with the Roosters’ ability to push the flag favourites.

“In the end they had a bit too much class for us and were a bit superior in the fitness stakes,” he said.

“They scrape out a win better than anyone.

“I am particularly proud of our group – it was the best footy we’ve played in a month.”

Buck said the Roosters found the flair which had been missing from its game.

“We used the ball particularly well and weren’t afraid to make a mistake,” he said. 

Emerging defender Tanna Blackney-Noter earned praise from the coach for his “best game for the football club”.

His back six mates Harry Lee, who curbed Jarrod Korewha, and Nick Thompson were also recognised.