Wagga Tigers claimed their fourth reserve grade flag in six years with a comfortable victory over Ganmain-Grong Grong-Matong.
Inspired by co-coach Matt Noonan’s three first-quarter goals and a best-on-ground effort from midfielder Scott Pearce, Tigers enjoyed a 10.3 (63) to 4.3 (27) win.
Tigers co-coach Brenton Crawford said returning the club to the top of the reserve grade tree meant plenty.
“It does, we’ve had pretty good success in the lower grades over the last couple of years, so it's a testament to the juniors coming through… it's a pretty special club,” Crawford said.
“It's a bit of a relief. We've had a fantastic year… we knew if we attacked the footy hard like we have all year, we'd get the job done.”
Co-coaches Damien Papworth and Noonan had big games. Noonan kicked the first goal of his goals in the opening minute and Tigers led by 18 at quarter-time.
“He was fantastic,” Crawford said. “We didn't think this weather would be suited to 'Nug' but he came out and slotted three early, it was really his day and Pappy was just fantastic in and around the ball.”
The Lions were dealt a huge blow when their reserve grade league medallist Nathan McPherson was carried off with a knee injury in the opening quarter.
Tigers kicked the only two goals of the second quarter and Ben Kelly’s second goal shortly after the main break had them up by six goals.
GGGM had the best of the second half, and got back to within four goals at one stage, but it was no weather to be playing catch-up in and Tigers held on to win.
WAGGA TIGERS: 4.1 6.1 7.1 10.3 (63)
GANMAIN-GGM: 1.1 1.1 2.2 4.3 (27)
Goals: (Tigers) M Noonan 3, J Carroll 2, B Kelly 2, J Larwood, S Lucas, N Angel; (GGGM) M Steele 2, N Anderson, S Kefford.
Best: (Tigers) S Pearce, D Papworth, J Carroll, P Harrington, J Hodge, B Kelly; (GGGM) P Hamblin, P Lucas, S Kefford, J Peck, K Steward, R Menzies.