Sea Eagles season cut down by Pambula, Narooma

Clear it: Dennis Paratene gets a kick clear before being swamped by Panthers players during Saturday's preliminary final.
Clear it: Dennis Paratene gets a kick clear before being swamped by Panthers players during Saturday's preliminary final.

The Tathra Sea Eagles have ended their 2017 campaign in seniors and reserves. 

The senior Eagles suffered a preliminary final loss to the Pambula Panthers on Saturday 16-17-113 to 7-6-48.

The Panthers kept play at a frantic pace throughout the four quarters, running the Eagles ragged in the dying stages to outscore the visitors five goals to two in the third quarter and four to one in the final stanza to claim the comfortable win. 

The Sea Eagles had matched pace with the Panthers in early exchanges, and only trailed by three goals at the main break. 

Play fluctuated end to end in a matter of seconds with both sides firing out of the blocks in the opening passages. 

The Panthers were stronger in the air, but the Sea Eagles had some great passages of play through the hands to evade their Pambula opponents. 

A lot of play focused around the flanks where Shane Gartside and Dennis Paratene had to do plenty of work for the Sea Eagles. 

Luke Taylor, Jarrod Palmer and Nick Forester were also kept extremely busy as they did their best to waylay the Pambula scoring assault. 

However, it was Pambula’s closely guarded goal square that proved a challenge for the Sea Eagles. 

Charlie Shepherd was influential in keeping Louis Coulton and Dean Gartside clear of their normal impact at the front. 

Officials from the Panthers also credited Hamish Wenczel with a great defensive effort that stemmed the flow of points from the Sea Eagles. 

Both teams were able to restrict the scoring, with Chris Dwyer the leading kicker for Tathra with two goals. 

Brenton Mace, Taylor, Dean and Coulton all had one apiece. 

Jono Di-Donato headed the scoring for Pambula with a three goal haul, while four players claimed a pair to ensure the winning margin. 

Earlier the development grade Sea Eagles also had their campaign ended by the Narooma Lions. 

The final result looked like a foregone conclusion with the Lions getting up 7-13-55 to 4-4-28. 

However, it was only in the final quarter the Narooma side surged after Tathra trailed by just two points at the three-quarter break. 

Narooma’s Luke Gardiner caused havoc up front with four goals for the the Lions, while Tathra’s four goals had each come from individual kickers. 

Wayne Flinn and Scott Orr had been key for Tathra in the early stages with great contests on the ball. 

Unfortunately, the Lions’ late surge proved too much as Narooma stole the show to secure the win. 

The Sea Eagles will advance as competition favourites in the women’s draw to face Eden, after the Whalers edged out the Panthers on Saturday.