Top three too classy
Reports by CHRIS McKINLEY
NORTH COFFS 133
COFFS SWANS 35
THE gap between the top three teams and the rest of the competition was clearly evident across all three games on the weekend but none more so than North Coffs dismantling of cross town rival and finals aspirant Coffs Swans.
Early on the Swans were actually going goal for goal with North Coffs as the red and whites scored two early goal through Wade Hickey.
Hickey looked like grabbing a third but badly injured his ankle in a tackle and was unable to play for the rest of the game.
From that point on, the Swans chances of winning were like Hickey's chances of grabbing a bag of goals, gone.
North Coffs put their foot on the pedal from that point on pulling away throughout the contest to record a very comfortable 98 point win.
Best player was easily Tom Campbell.
The diminutive defender was given a tagging role on Swans play maker David Colman and completely shut him out of the game.
Campbell robbed Colman of the space that he craves and needs to perform while collecting plenty of the football himself, finishing with three goals.
Roos coach David Velt speaks with such intensity during a game that sometimes its hard to work out the mood that hes in but his pride in Campbells game in a foreign role was obvious.
"We've struggled to man up all year which is why I think Tom's tagging role was awesome," the coach said.
North Coffs also had a lot of drive provided by a dominant midfield of Jason Bencich, Brad Giri and Jason Mayer in another positional change.
"We did things today that we worked on at training and they paid off," Velt said.
"We can still win it (the premiership), we can still lose it.
"Its basically up to the players attitude whether we win or not but I think we still need to find a bit more passion."
The Swans tried hard but aside from Nick Butcher's hard running and Scott Morgan deep in defence it was actually a disappointing display from a team that had players backing themselves to win prior to the match.
One last chance to make fourth spot on the table awaits the Swans next week when they come up against Nambucca Valley in a game which looks likely to settle the makeup of the finals teams in 2005.
North Coffs 5.3 10.10 15.13 19.19 (133) d Coffs Swans 2.2 3.2 3.5 5.5 (35).
North Coffs - T. Gill (4), J. Mayer (4), T. Campbell (3), R. Temperly (3), J. Bencich (2), J. Henry, G. Jarman, C. Frost.
Swans - W. Hickey (2), S. McGrath (2), J. Reed.
North Coffs - T. Campbell, J. Bencich, B. Giri, M. Crispe, G. Jarman, J. Mayer, D. Robinson.
Swans - N. Butcher, S. Morgan, K. Dumas, G. Wingfield, J. Sincock.
Umpires: B.Upfield, G.Massaad.
Reserves: Coffs Swans 9.6 (60) d North Coffs 3.1 (19).
Under 18s: Coffs Swans 18.14 (122) d North Coffs 2.4 (16).