LEAGUE heavyweight Bullioh flexed its considerable muscle to defeat top-two prospect Corryong by 42 points at Bullioh on Saturday.
The Bulldogs wrested control in the second quarter, booting six goals to one.
The victory, led by Tristan Norling and his defensive unit, gave the Bulldogs a stranglehold on second spot, four points and percentage clear of the Demons with three rounds left before the finals.
After contesting six of the past seven grand finals for four flags, Bullioh once again looks likely to be the most credible challenger to raging flag favourite Cudgewa.
Coach Peter Dean said the Bulldogs’ dominant second quarter proved the difference.
“Corryong probably missed some relatively easy shots so the end score line probably flattered us in the end,” Dean said.
“But it was a crucial win as far as our top-two aspirations are concerned and our destiny is in our own hands and we don’t have to rely on other results to finish with the double chance.
“We hadn’t previously been able to beat Corryong so we will take a bit of confidence out of it as well.
“Some of the blokes in the reserves have struck a bit of form so there is a bit of pressure on spots in the seniors as we build towards finals.”
Ball magnet Jacob Curran was Bullioh’s best, rolling up his sleeves when the game was at its fiercest.
Charlie Hindle, James and Joel Bannister and Chris Star were also prominent.
Versatile big man James Paton, Adrian Rijnbeek and Evan Nicholas tried hard for the visitors.
Cudgewa spearhead Brendan McEvoy continued his recent form with 11 goals as the Blues’ spanked Tumbarumba by 98 points.
Federal looks to have consigned Border-Walwa to another winless season after its 20-point win at Corryong.