THE hard work is starting to pay off for surprise packet Terang Mortlake.
The Bloods have risen from cellar dweller last season to potential Hampden league finalist after winning three of their first five matches.
They won two for the entire 2018 campaign.
Second-year coach Lisa Arundell said the Bloods' standing was a "nice feeling, especially after the last couple of years".
But she identified areas of improvement to stem from their 54-35 win over Hamilton Kangaroos at Melville Oval on Saturday.
"We had a really good first quarter and I wish we had have played four quarters like that," Arundell said.
"We had a lull in the second and third quarters and then had a strong fourth quarter.
"We are trying to build four quality quarters. We're trying to tick off mini goals each week."
Arundell said Terang Mortlake would use the Hampden interleague bye week to work on its match fitness.
She hinted at a chance to train alongside the Bloods' footballers.
"It's one thing I've felt we need to improve on," she said.
"I've felt for a couple of weeks mentall fatigue and (a lack of) match fitness has started to show.
"This Thursday will go a long way to addressing that."
Arundell said the Bloods' versatility was a catalyst for their rise. Melissa Burt switched from attack to defence against the Roos and Aimee and Libby Moloney swapped mid-court roles in the final term.
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