THE Redland Bombers huffed and puffed but couldn't blow the Gold Coast Suns Reserves house down, eventually sliding to a 61 point defeat last Saturday at Victoria Point.
Determined to give a good showing in captain Phil Carse's 100th game as well as knowing a win could secure a berth in the top five, the Bombers came out with all guns blazing and bothered the much vaunted visitors with their clearance efficiency and capacity to pump the ball inside forward fifty where Josh Pullman and Scott Clouston were marking everything that came their way.
At one stage during the first quarter, the Bombers led four goals to one before the Suns settled and started to really crack in at the stoppages.
Skill errors started to creep into the Bombers play after the Suns raised the contested footy stakes and pressure also played a part in the visitors narrowing the margin to two points at the first break.
As has been the case in all of the Bombers' losses in 2012, the opposition blew the game open with a big quarter, this time a 10 goal second stanza.
Despite the effort levels not dropping, it was men against boys as the Suns broke tackles at will and kicked several soft goals.
Having regained the ascendancy, the Suns toyed with the Bombers during this phase of the game and led by 33 points at the main break
The game levelled out in the third quarter with both sides going goal for goal.
While at no stage did the Bombers get themselves back into the contest, they kept chipping away with Carse lifting his rating, Brad Rees winning contested footy and key forwards Pullman and Clouston still causing the Suns some concern.
The lead was 38 points to the Suns at three quarter time and a break even quarter or better would have represented an honourable loss. As has unfortunately been the trend of recent times, the Bombers failed to cash in on numerous goal scoring opportunities.
At the final siren it was the Gold Coast Suns Reserves 24.15.159 easily accounting for the Redland Bombers 14.14.98.
Pullman and Clouston did a fabulous job to share eight goals and thrilled the crowd with several contested marks.
Carse never stopped trying in his milestone game and was especially good in the second half. Rees proved just how far his game has come this year with another polished performance and Tyler Jones showed poise beyond his three game career.
A number of the Bombers younger brigade such as Simon Taylor, Blake Grewar, Travis Reynolds, and Jones should have gained a wonderful learning curve from playing against this standard of opposition.
OTHER GRADES: The Reserves scored their first win of the season, downing Morningside 9.12.66 to 7.8.50 in a great performance. In what was a true team effort performance, a number of players including David Meli, Sam Godfrey, Jack Rusbridge and Jay Lewis really stepped up to the plate, while Brendan Beno and Anthony Deveraux where both important with two goals apiece.