Breakers back in the hunt
A SIX goal burst in the opening term paved the way for Coffs Breakers to overcome Sawtell/Toormina in the third local derby of the season.
The Breakers were chasing victory or risk losing touch with the top two teams on the AFL North Coast ladder and a special effort was required.
Those six unanswered goals was just what the doctor ordered.
Not that the match was over at the first break, especially as far as Sawtell/Toormina was concerned.
The Saints bounced back in the second stanza to trail by only 13 points but at the end of the day, accuracy in front of goal proved the difference.
Fraser Duryea and Sam Hardes kicked four goals each for the Breakers while Leif Stuart was a shining light up forward for the Saints with a bag of six majors.
Meanwhile Grafton restored some lost pride with a drastically improved performance.
The Tigers were playing at their Ellem Oval home for the first time in almost two months and played with renewed zest against an undermanned Port Macquarie.
Port led by 22 points at the final break but Grafton wouldn’t give in and managed to reduce the margin to 18 points at the final siren.
Adam Mannes led the goalscoring for the Magpies with four while Sean Duroux kicked just as many for Grafton.
Port Macquarie is now a game clear on top of the AFL North Coast ladder but faces a challenging three weeks ahead with matches against their two nearest AFL North Coast rivals followed by a match against Summerland League powerhouse Byron Bay.
AFL NORTH COAST
Coffs Breakers 16.8 (104) def Sawtell/Toormina 11.13 (79)
Port Macquarie 12.15 (87) def Grafton 11.3 (69)