CSU Bushpigs claim fourth win of season and dent Northern Jets finals hopes

LEADING BY EXAMPLE: CSU captain Tennyson Vance against the Jets.

LEADING BY EXAMPLE: CSU captain Tennyson Vance against the Jets.

Charles Sturt University claimed their first ever win at Ardlethan on Saturday beating the Northern Jets by two points.

The Bushpigs crashed the Jets’ 10-year premiership reunion celebrations with a 6.10 (46) to 5.14 (44) victory, and put a dent in the Jets’ finals hopes this season. 

The result also keeps CSU within a win of the top five but coach Daniel Athanitis was just pleased with a performance that ended their six-game losing streak.

“We’re in the hunt but it’s going to be hard,” Athanitis said. “But you’ve also got to look at the context of where our footy club’s come from.

“A couple of years ago, teams were winning by 120 points every week.

“We’ve won four games now, that’s huge for us.”

The Jets were on top early and led by 16 points at half-time in a low-scoring affair.

But, led by skipper Tennyson Vance and helped by the return of Rob Herzfeld, CSU kicked the only two goals of the third term and added three more in the last quarter to hang on.

Chris Bell, Alex Rogers and Mitch Haddrill were the pick of the Jets. 

“The Jets played well,” Athanitis said.

“That was probably the most pleasing thing – we were able to win, and their good players played well.

“We hung in there, we got the job done and we move on to next week (against Barellan) which won’t be easy.”

The Jets are the only team CSU have beaten twice this season and the result sets up a big game at Peter Hastie Oval against a revived Two Blues outfit. 

Athanitis said there’s a positive feeling at the Bushpigs as they come out the other side of university holidays.

“We can’t train (properly) because everyone goes home, they can’t stay on campus, so this was our first week back all training together,” he said.

“That middle part of the year is always tough but we’ve got through it now…

“Four wins is huge at the moment. If we can win six for the year, that’s a big year.”

The Jets are also a win outside the five now, ahead of CSU only on percentage. They have the bye next week before a trip to North Wagga.