With a Blowes Clothing Cup finals berth one victory away, Orange City veteran Sam Coote has still warned his side against becoming complacent in this weekend’s must-win final round clash against the Parkes Boars, a side out of play-offs contention.
The Lions have worked into some impressive form in the last month while Parkes has done the opposite after a promising start to the season, that has many suggesting Orange City should walk over the lowly Boars and secure a finals spot as a result.
“We aren’t there yet,” Coote fired.
“They haven’t done that well recently, but at times they’ve competed with the best so which Parkes side shows up, well, only time will tell.
“We drew against them last time around too, although we shot ourselves in the foot discipline wise, and they’re a bit of an unknown so we have to just focus on ourselves and stay in control.
“That should put us in good stead to get a win.”
Coote pointed to the boost of enthusiasm his side’s youngsters have injected as the catalyst for the Lions’ recent turnaround, which started with a huge showing against Forbes in round 15.
Orange City lost that game, just, but has scored back-to-back wins in the two rounds since over CSU Bathurst and Mudgee.
It’s great to have our destiny in our hands ... but we aren't there yet.Lions veteran Sam Coote
They were strong wins too, and vital victories in terms of the Lions’ finals hopes.
So vital they’ve put the side into a position where it only needs to beat Parkes to make the top five, something which seemed pretty unlikely midway through the season.
“It’s great to have our destiny in our hands and that comes from that fightback, we’ve had 50 put on us a few times this year so I think a few people had written us off from finals,” Coote said.
“The confidence definitely started building after that Forbes game, yes we lost, but we were winning with five to go and just couldn’t close it out, and we more than competed with one of the best sides in this competition.
“The feeling’s still very positive and it’s all come from the colts who have stepped up. We’ve had eight this season, they have no fear and just love playing footy.
“It’s rubbed off on the rest of group who, at times I think, have maybe lost a bit of love for it.
“Hopefully that continues and we can get ourselves a win and a spot in the top five but as I said, we aren’t there yet.”
Kick-off at Northparkes Oval is at 3.15pm.