The Rock-Yerong Creek aren’t getting carried away after their third win of the season but Saturday’s 14.9 (93) to 3.4 (22) victory at Coleambally keeps them in the picture for a late tilt at finals.
The Magpies avenged a shock loss to the Blues at home earlier this year with a strong start and a powerful finish, kicking five goals to none in the first and last quarters, to run out 71-point winners.
“It was good to get the job done, it’s been tough out there, we’ve always had a battle when we go out there so it was good to get the win,” Yates said.
“It was pleasing the way we finished the game, the way we ran it out and played the way we wanted to play in that last quarter. That was a real good sign.”
Derek Murray led the scoring with four goals while Heath Russell produced another strong performance off a wing and Justin Driscoll and Harri White were also good contributors.
The icing on the cake was dodging any new injuries. And a crucial four points brings the seventh-placed Pies back to two wins behind CSU (fifth).
With four of their last five games at home, the Pies certainly aren’t ruling out finals.
“I still believe we’re a chance,” Yates said. “Obviously we’ve got a bit of work ahead of us… if we can get a few results go our way and we can have a few wins, anything’s possible.”
Yates knows the Northern Jets (who are sixth) and CSU won’t be easy to overtake but both of those sides have already had their second bye. The Pies face the daunting task of tackling Marrar next week before having a bye.
The Jets are away to Barellan next week and CSU are at home to Temora.
Coleambally kicked all three goals of the second quarter to get back into the game, down by 13 points at half-time. But they were held scoreless in the second half as the Pies ran away with it.
Co-coach Tom Groves again led his side well while Dillan McGillivray and Tom Mannes were also among their best.