STICKING TOGETHER: The Ipswich Eagles Reserve Grade side form a bond during their important victory over Griffith Moorooka.
STICKING TOGETHER: The Ipswich Eagles Reserve Grade side form a bond during their important victory over Griffith Moorooka. Sarah Marshall

Eagles rising to new heights

AFTER one of the most successful days in the club's history, the Ipswich Eagles can confidently prepare for a twin shot at this year's finals.

Ipswich's top side can still finish as high as second if they produce another comprehensive victory and competition leaders Victoria Point beat second-placed Carrara in the last round before the finals.

After watching his team thrash Griffith Moorooka by 150 points on Saturday, head coach Kym Mansell believes anything is possible from the rejuvenated Eagles.

Fittingly on the club's open and sponsor's day, the Eagles Reserves also showed plenty of spirit to hold out Griffith Moorooka and win by four points.

That secured the Eagles fourth place and a final spot along with the Senior team.

With matches against Pine Rivers away this weekend, Mansell is keen to see the Ipswich sides maintain their recent intensity.

After a scrappy first half, his team impressed by kicking 29 goals under the Mark Marsh Oval lights to complete a memorable day for players, officials, fans and sponsors.

Full forward Cam Viney had a good night out booting 10 goals in the 29.14-188 to 6.2-38 victory. That included kicking Ipswich's first four six-pointers.

An Eagles Reserve Grade player tries to shake off the defence of his Griffith Moorooka opponent.
An Eagles Reserve Grade player tries to shake off the defence of his Griffith Moorooka opponent. Sarah Marshall

Experienced footballer Viney was well supported by Duran Dick and Laikin Hutchinson with four, and captain Tyson Watts with three.

Regular defender Watts was pushed forward in the fourth quarter of his 100th game, given a chance to share in the goal-kicking spree.

Hard-working Eagles players Keith Brick and Chris Devlin were heavily tagged in the first half before sharing in Ipswich's free-flowing second half.

"It was pretty good,'' Mansell said of the overall performance. "In the second half, the game opened up a bit more.

"We moved the ball really well. We were just working on the intensity and the physicality that we need to work on for the next couple of weeks coming into the finals.''

The 10th win of the QFA Division 3 season for Ipswich followed Mansell receiving a two-year coaching extension last week.

But while happy to have his Eagles future sorted, Mansell was quick to refocus on the job ahead.

He's set his in-form team a challenge of beating Pine Rivers by at least 100 points in their last qualifying match to have a shot at securing second spot ahead of Carrara.

"I think that is quite possible,'' he said, backing his team, which has won nine of its last 10 games.

Victoria Point are runaway leaders on 60 points, ahead of Carrara on 44, Ipswich on 40 and Redcliffe on 36.

Eagles club president Clint Bateman with acting Mayor Paul Tully, Blaec Ablett (Lions State Participation Program Manager) and Ipswich councillor Cheryl Bromage at Saturday's open day at Limestone Park.
Eagles club president Clint Bateman with acting Mayor Paul Tully, Blaec Ablett (Lions State Participation Program Manager) and Ipswich councillor Cheryl Bromage at Saturday's open day at Limestone Park. Franca Tigani

The Eagles Reserves survived a late charge by Griffith Moorooka to cement their spot in the top four for the finals.

Earlier in the day, the club held activities for young players in a carnival style atmosphere.

Look out for a special photo spread in Wednesday's Junior Sport section.



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