By Sam Watson
IN BACK-TO-BACK weeks Phillip Island has proven they will take a lot of stopping if anyone else wants to take home the cup this year.
If they didn’t send a message after they beat Tooradin Dalmore by 31 points last week, they certainly did on Saturday knocking off Inverloch-Kongwak by 34 points.
Coming into the game, IK were the in-form side of the competition.
Partly because they hadn’t lost a game since round 1, which was a kick after the siren, but also because they’d just beaten Nar Nar Goon by 84 points.
And Nar Nar Goon were the only side to have beaten Phillip Island.
The rain overnight did no favours for the ground at the Cowes Recreation Reserve but in the first quarter, IK took a liking to the conditions.
After the two powerhouses split the first two goals, former Hawthorn star and new Sea Eagle Jarryd Roughead launched one from outside 50 to give his side a seven-point lead at quarter time.
The Sea Eagle midfield of Tom Hams, Ryan Sparkes and Corey Casey were having their way with the Bulldogs early on, but in the second quarter they turned it around.
Gippsland Power captain Mitch Moschetti led the Bulldogs defence beautifully and Brendan Kimber started to find some form coming back from an injury.
A goal from Cam Pedersen saw the home side take the lead and they soon booted another one to give themselves a nine-point half-time lead.
At the break, IK coach Ben Soumilas obviously pushed the right buttons for his side, and they were able to take the lead back halfway into the third.
Tristan Van Driel and Lewis Rankin were both finding plenty of it and Campbell McKenzie continued his solid play down back.
But it didn’t take long for the hosts to wrestle back the momentum and three consecutive goals saw them take a 15-point lead into the final term.
The last of those three goals was by captain Jaymie Youle who had another great day in the engine room, where he was also assisted well by Hayden Bruce and Zak Vernon.
IK battled back to get within a goal in the early stages of the last quarter, but Phillip Island were able to settle and once again all the big names stepped up to help them to a 34-point victory.
Phillip Island’s run of powerhouse opponents will come to an end when they travel to Korumburra on Saturday and IK will also be hoping for a comfortable win when they travel to Koo Wee Rup.