'Outstanding' Eagles young guns provide timely winning lift
AUSSIE RULES: With one more home game before the finals, the Ipswich Eagles have received another boost.
Eagles young guns Cyril Duncan and Toby McCullagh were among the "outstanding'' players in Ipswich's latest 91-50 away win over Gympie.
Head coach Kym Mansell has shown faith in players like Duncan, McCullagh and Nick Kennedy this season, eager to enhance their senior team experience.
He was thrilled to see Duncan and McCullagh provide much-needed spark when the Eagles were playing below their best on Saturday.
Although the Eagles led the QFA Division 3 match in the first two quarters, Mansell was concerned about his third-placed team's performance.
"Until halftime we weren't really happy with our game. We were just playing at their level,'' Mansell said.
However, backline/wing players Duncan and McCullagh joined centre/full forward Matt Whitlock in lifting the side to a 70-29 advantage by three quarter-time.
"They were outstanding,'' Mansell said. "Toby is only 20, Cyril is only 17.''
With regular goalkicker Jarrod Prakelt out managing a rib injury, the Eagles called on eight different players to contribute. That was another pleasing aspect with finals just weeks away.
"It was a solid hit-out,'' Mansell said.
Mansell expects to rest some key players in his team's final regular season home game against Hinterland on Saturday.
Meanwhile, the Ipswich Eagles women receive a second chance to make the QFAW Division 2 North grand final after losing 44-4 to Hinterland.
It was a valuable lesson for the Ipswich team missing a couple of their best players.
The Eagles women will face Moorooka in this weekend's preliminary final at a venue to be confirmed.
Moorooka qualified for the preliminary final by beating Pine Rivers 20-2.
State of play
QFA Division 3: Ipswich Eagles 13.13-91 def Gympie 7.8-50.
Reserves: Eagles 17.13-115 def Gympie 7.9-51.
QFAW Division 2 North semi-final: Hinterland 6.8-44 def Ipswich Eagles 0.4-4.