HOWLONG re-emerged as a team capable of going deep into September after a comfortable 43-point victory over Osborne in the second elimination final at Walbundrie yesterday.
The Spiders dominated from the outset to open up a 27-point buffer at the first change on their way to an impressive 19.12 (126) to 11.17 (83) dismantling of the perennial powerhouse.
Jubilant Spiders coach, Joel Price, was quick to label the victory as their most complete performance of the season.
“By far it was our best four-quarter performance of the year,” Price said.
“I think over the past month we have played some really good footy and today was obviously a huge test against Osborne in a final.
“To be able to come out and play the way we did for four quarters — I couldn’t be more proud of the guys.
“We had 11 guys playing in their first senior final and it was imperative that we were able to handle the heat early and cope with the pressure, which I thought we did.”
Albury recruit Josh Dicketts shook off the effects of a virus to claim best on ground honours.
Dicketts was bed-ridden for most of the week but dragged down several strong contested marks and booted four goals as the Spiders kicked their highest score of the season against a top-six opponent.
Midfielder Rohan Davies and Beau Walker were also vital cogs in the Spiders midfield, working in tandem with reigning Azzi medallist Peter Hancock who dominated the hitouts.
Tagger Jimmy Scannell was also important as he kept Sam Rutland relatively quite.
Jamie Parr, Max Baldissera and Tom O’Connell tried hard for the Cats.