The Eaton Boomers recorded a workmanlike 15.13 (103) to 7.6 (48) win over Donnybrook in a spiteful contest at VC Mitchell Park on Sunday.
Both sides left nothing in the tank in their bid to secure victory, although several acts of ill-discipline from both sides threatened to spoil a quality contested game.
The Boomers controlled the opening exchanges, however were wasteful at times going forward, which left the door open for the reigning premiers.
At times, you could’ve cut the atmosphere around the ground with a knife, with both sets of officials and supporters riding every disposal and contest.
Star Boomers forward Jarrod Humphries burst to life early in the second term, booting consecutive goals to give the visitors a handy 16-point buffer.
Try as they might, the hosts routinely broke down across their half forward line, with the Boomers’ superior skill level during this period invaluable.
When Steven Jas stretched the visitors’ lead to 29 points at the 19-minute mark following a 50m penalty conceded by Dons defender Cody Miller, the reigning premiers appeared to be looking down the barrel of a hefty half time deficit.
Back-to-back goals from Sam Lowrie and Josh Rosel during time-on gave the Dons some belief heading into the second half and for the first 10 minutes of the third term, the home side threw everything at the Boomers.
However turnovers, coupled by a series of senseless acts of ill-discipline ultimately proved the home side’s downfall, as the visitors broke the game open with a marauding brand of football in the third quarter.
Humphries dazzled in the air and on the ground as Dons defenders heaved in gulps of air in a bid to catch the fleet-footed forward.
The visitors solidified their dominance in the final quarter, while Lowrie battled hard to add further respectability on the scoreboard for the hosts.
Boomers coach Brett Maguire smiled warmly as he reflected on a significant away victory and believed his side’s selection stability had improved over the past month.
Dons coach Julian Burgess felt that turnovers played a key role in the defeat and said he was keen to continue working with his players in perfecting their game style.