The Pambula Panthers held off a fast-finishing Tathra Sea Eagles to take home the Sapphire Coast AFL Development Grade premiership at Narooma’s Bill Smyth Oval.
The wind played havoc with the match, a strong easterly that made scoring very hard at the Princes Highway end of the ground.
Pambula jumped out to an early lead thanks to the wind, completely dominating territory in the first quarter. Tathra did well to minimise the damage though, as Pambula led by only two goals at the first change.
The second quarter was all Tathra, who hit back with two quick goals to get right back into the match.
The Sea Eagles continued the dominance, but struggled to put it on the scoreboard to lead by less than a goal at half time.
The Panthers got the wind again in the third quarter, and quickly took the momentum back.
The quarter was played deep in Tathra’s defence, and Pambula piled on five goals to nil to hold a 8.4 (52) to 4.1 (25) lead at the final change.
The momentum, and the wind, swung back to Tathra in the final quarter, as the Sea Eagles laid siege on the Panthers’ defensive 50.
Despite the dominance, the Sea Eagles struggled to adjust in front of goals, as they missed three easy shots at goal in the first five minutes.
Tathra kept pushing though, and kicked two quick goals to cut the deficit to an even 12-points with five minutes to go.
The Sea Eagles kicked another goal with less than two minutes on the clock, but the Panthers’ defence did enough in the last minute to hold on for a 8.4 (52) to 7.4 (46) victory.