DO OR DIE: Carlton's Johnnie Torrisi fends off Jamie Carnell in the men's preliminary final on Saturday at C.F White.
DO OR DIE: Carlton's Johnnie Torrisi fends off Jamie Carnell in the men's preliminary final on Saturday at C.F White. Matthew Purcell

Rivals to face off in grand final tie

Football

A solitary goal is all it took for Ballandeans' men's side to progress to this Saturday's grand final show-piece.

After falling at the first hurdle against Stanthorpe United in the major semi-final, Ballandean had a final throw of the dice against an improving Carlton side.

A late goal from forward Greg Dachs was enough to see them over the line.

"With Ballandean winning their previous encounters this year they were slight favourites heading into the match,” Ballandean club president Neil Newman

said.

In the opening exchanges they looked the goods, with Anthony Marino in particular coming back from injury and slamming a shot against the bar in the opening 10 minutes.

With Ballandean squandering their early chances, Carlton were invited back into the game and did their best to take up the challenge.

Carlton continued their resurgence in the opening stages of the second half as Ballandean looked frazzled from their first half onslaught.

With a renewed effort in the last 15 minutes of ordinary time, Ballandean's Aiden Fox made a decisive break down the left wing and provided a cross into the penalty area that could not be cleared by Carlton.

Greg Dachs was on the spot to drive home the opening and ultimately winning goal.

The win sets up a grand final showdown at C.F White against long-time rivals, Stanthorpe United.

In the preceding game United took on City in the ladies tie.

It was a dream start for the Redbacks as young striker Maddie Maguire hit the net with barely 10 minutes on the clock.

A head clash forced United's Brittany McEvoy from the field and City edged themselves back into the tussle.

They equalised and momentum swung in their favour. United battled hard but their chances on goal seemingly dried up.

City would eventually nick the deciding goal to devastate United and set up a grand final game against title favourites Ballandean.

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