Falling short Bulldogs can’t seem to maintain momentum - Lauren Bordin

July 11, 2017

Brad Ryan gets height against his Mansfield opponents in what was yet another dissapointing result for the Bulldogs on Saturday.

Yet another win for Tatura went begging after it led at three-quarter-time against Mansfield on Saturday.

The Bulldogs let slip a five-point lead, having been in front at every change, and the Eagles went on to over-run the home side and win by 16 points.

With Tatura again left with no fit players on the bench, coach Jamason Daniels said the side was struggling to run out matches.

‘‘It’s a combination of things, obviously we just haven’t quite got the match fitness that we need at the moment, a lot of the team hasn’t played consistently,’’ Daniels said.

‘‘We just don’t quite have the match fitness in key players Tom Miller and Matt Ryan and James Sullivan and Rian McGough.’’

Daniels was down a man when Aidan Maher was unable to take any further part in the game following an incident behind play.

With Maher going to hospital with a suspected dislocated jaw, Tatura is likely to ask for a review of the incident.

In a scrappy contest the Bulldogs gained the early lead, scoring the only goal in the first quarter through Andrew Ciavarella, whose midfield influence had him named his side’s best.

The Bulldogs continued to stay slightly ahead as inaccurate kicking from Mansfield stopped the Eagles from taking the lead at half-time.

Cameron Hotton’s side kicked 1.6 in the second quarter to still be 10 points behind.

But Hotton said the Bulldogs’ own mistakes kept Mansfield in the game.

‘‘I think we weren’t switched on and we weren’t manning up properly (in the first half) and probably letting them get easy transitions, but it was lucky Tatura didn’t dominate on the scoreboard,’’ he said.

But in came regular stars Tom German and Brett Mahoney to have a heavy impact on the match as both combined for more than 70 possessions.

Mahoney contributed two goals as the Eagles offset a five-point deficit at the final break.

But they were not the only players Hotton said helped bring the side its second straight win.

‘‘Adam Boshevski is getting better each week, he didn’t do much of a pre-season with his knee injury, but he’s slowly working his way in with Ben Fagan at full-forward presenting,’’ he said.

With yet another close loss, it is another case of groundhog day for Daniels as he coaches from the sidelines with a quadriceps injury.

‘‘We didn’t play poor footy, it was just unfortunately another one that got away,’’ he said.

‘‘It’s been pretty frustrating, but even more frustrating sitting back and not being able to do anything about it.’’

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