Saints bounce back

ON TARGET: Tom Kerlin kicks truly during Myrtleford’s reserves win over Wangaratta Rovers on Saturday. PHOTO: Justin Jenvey

MYRTLEFORD is confident of challenging the Ovens and Murray’s top two sides in its final two matches of 2017.

The Saints are away to Wangaratta Magpies this weekend before hosting Albury in the final round of the season.

After a solid 52-point win over Wangaratta Rovers in round 16, coach Leigh Corcoran said the Saints had regained some belief.

“It was a good solid win for us on the weekend in a game that ebbed and flowed for the first two and a half quarters,” Corcoran said.

“We had a really good battle against their midfield with (Sam) Carpenter, (Dylan) Stone and (Ben) Clarke pretty hard to contain at times.

“But were just kept working at it and eventually wore them down, a six goal to two last quarter was a strong finish for us.

“We had 10 different goal kickers and it was just a really solid performance by all the players.

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League title locked in

MYRTLEFORD is just one win away from wrapping up the AWFA senior men’s league title.

MYRTLEFORD is just one win away from wrapping up the AWFA senior men’s league title.

Three points against bottom placed Wodonga Heart this weekend will make it near impossible for the Savoys to lose top spot.

The Savoys maintained their three point advantage over Albury United with a clinical 6-0 win over Albury City on Sunday and now have a goal difference of plus 17.

Arron Redman continued his brilliant run of form netting a hat-trick in the weekend’s victory at Savoy Park while Nagus Henry, Will Dennis and Matt Park also got their name on the score sheet.

Co-coach Jayden Vescio said the winger was proving a barometer for the team in the back half of the season.

“The boys are really feeding off Redders, he is playing a massive role for us out wide and is scoring a heap of goals,” Vescio said.

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Taxi service trial

OPPORTUNITY: Denise and James Wei are reviving a Myrtleford-based taxi service with drivers Alan Muller, Gail Dawson and Arnold Sparks with a three-month, limited-distance trial which is to start on Monday. PHOTO: Jamie Kronborg

MYRTLEFORD doctor James Wei and his wife, Denise, are to launch on Monday a three-month trial to enable them to assess demand for a revived alpine taxi service and its viability.

The Taxi Commission has approved and VicRoads this week licensed the use of Dr Wei’s hybrid car for the trial, in which the couple will offer from Myrtleford a limited-distance Ovens Valley service.

They have engaged three drivers – Alan Muller, Gail Dawson and Arnold Sparks – to staff a time-tabled roster.

Passengers will be able to arrange taxi travel within Ovens Valley communities or to be taken to Wangaratta, but the service will not be available for travel to or from Mount Beauty at this stage.

Dr Wei, a doctor at Myrtleford’s Standish Street Surgery for the past two and a half years, said the pair had become concerned about the effect on one of their friends of the closure of the former Myrtleford taxi service late last year.

Their friend, a widow, had become solely reliant on the goodwill of friends or community volunteers to help her travel in the community and farther afield.

The Weis also found that others, including those who were either elderly or housebound, faced similar travel challenges.

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Growers say bye bye blight

CHESTNUTS Australia president Brian Casey is confident no new cases of chestnut blight will be found in the Ovens Valley when trees are checked in the coming months.

CHESTNUTS Australia president Brian Casey is confident no new cases of chestnut blight will be found in the Ovens Valley when trees are checked in the coming months.

Agriculture Victoria Biosecurity will begin the next round of chestnut blight surveillance in early September and plans to be completed by mid-October.

Checks in autumn found no new infections and Mr Casey said if any new cases arise they will most likely be during the next surveillance period.

“The disease sits dormant in winter and then becomes more active in spring,” he said.

“We were pretty disappointed by the single detection last July but we think it’s highly unlikely to happen again.

“After last year, surveillance officers decided they needed to be more thorough and they certainly have been, so we’ll be very surprised if another infection pops up.”

The single diseased chestnut tree found in July 2016 came as the region was about to be given the all clear from the foreign infection that threatened to destroy the $10 million industry six years earlier.

Agriculture Victoria Biosecurity officers found now new infections when they undertook autumn chestnut blight surveillance on 8188 chestnut trees across the Ovens Valley Restricted Area.

Autumn surveys focused on previously infected properties to check for any remaining contamination.

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Pumpkin Seed Company the face of small business

RECOGNITION: Australian Pumpkin Seed Company owners Sharan and Jay Rivett are thrilled to be one of nine Victorian Faces of Small Business. PHOTO: Justin Jenvey

THE Australian Pumpkin Seed Company has been named as one of the Victorian Faces of Small Business for 2017.

The Ovens-based business was recognised for its continued success in providing Aussie-grown pumpkin seeds and pumpkin seed oil, while also assisting other local farmers create new products.

Husband and wife team Sharan and Jay Rivett have been in business since 2002 and continue to grow their operation and have this year taken their product to markets in Queensland and NSW.

The annual Faces of Small Business campaign was designed to highlight and celebrate Victorian small business and their contribution to the Victorian economy.

Mr Rivett said it was great to be included among the nine selected businesses.

“We’re now starting to get recognised even though we have a rickety old fence out the front,” Mr Rivett said.

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Saints bounce back

DAY OUT: Brad Murray produced plenty of highlights against Corowa Rutherglen on Saturday finishing with eight goals. PHOTO: Justin Jenvey

MYRTLEFORD is back on the winners list after three straight losses in Ovens and Murray football.

The Saints eased to victory over Corowa Rutherglen on Saturday thanks to an eight-goal haul from veteran Brad Murray.

Murray booted the biggest bag of his career to lead the Saints to a 21.15 (141) to 8.3 (51) win over the Roos at John Foord Oval.

Frazer Dale (four goals), Liam Harrington, Tim Looby, Christian Burgess (three goals) and Mitch Dalbosco were also standouts.

The Saints kicked 14 first half goals and led by 72 points at the main break before Corowa limited the damage from then on as the Saints finished the game with 19 men.

“Tom McDonagh hurt a shoulder and sat off in the second half and Pat Sullivan had some general soreness in his knee which is to be expected after a pretty long layoff,” coach Leigh Corcoran said.

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Spring show returns

Wood chopping, machinery key attractions for 70th anniversary

OLD AND NEW: David Hogg, George McPherson, Lis Meehan, Alan Johnston, Ray McCarthy, Debbie Geddes, Rosemary Garoni and Bryan Meehan make up this year’s Myrtleford Show committee.

AFTER a few years hiatus, wood chopping will return to the Myrtleford Show this year.

Agricultural machinery is also going to be displayed again as the annual spring show gets set for its 70th year.

Myrtleford Show secretary Lis Meehan said the return of the two popular exhibitions were part of a plan to return the long-standing show back to its former glory.

“We’re hoping this year’s Myrtleford Show will be the biggest in many years,” she said.

“We’re very excited to have the wood chop back, at this stage we can confirm their will be seniors and we’re hoping to add juniors as well.

“On top of that we have arranged for some local farmers to bring their machinery along to include in a display.

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A Swan for life

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 25: Lance Franklin of the Swans congratulates Sam Reid of the Swans as he celebrates kicking a goal during the round one AFL match between the Sydney Swans and the Port Adelaide Power at Sydney Cricket Ground on March 25, 2017 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

SAM Reid will remain with the Sydney Swans until at least the end of the 2021 AFL season.

The 25-year-old’s current five-year contract was set to expire at the end of this season but he agreed to terms on another long-term deal on Monday, penning a new four-year contract.

The Bright product made it clear earlier in the season that he had no intention of leaving the Swans.

“I’ve said from the start that I wanted to stay up here and this year for me was really just about playing footy and being able to stay fit given last year I didn’t get a game,” Reid said.

Reid missed all of last season because of persistent hamstring, calf and Achilles injuries but returned to senior footy at the start of the current campaign.

He missed rounds 18 and 19 with a groin strain but returned against Geelong on Friday night where he played a key role in the Sydney’s 46-point win.

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Falls Creek’s famous Skyline

Mountain’s first ski lodge celebrates 70 years

ALONG with the best snow falls of the season Falls Creek has been celebrating the 70th anniversary of the mountain’s first ski lodge.

Skyline Lodge was scavenged from derelict high country huts and built in secret at night and weekends by hydro-electricity staff to avoid their boss’s scrutiny.

The week-long celebrations got under way on Monday with a different activity each day and will culminate in a day party at the Corona bar at QT to celebrate the 2000s and the future.

John Meyer, the son of Kiewa Hydro-Electric Scheme chief surveyor Ray Meyer, said it was a humble beginning to what is now a vibrant European-style ski village that attracts thousands of snow enthusiasts each winter season.

“An intrepid number of like-minded State Electricity Commission staff had a common interest that revolved around the skiing potential of the snow-covered high plains that included what is now the 450-hectare resort of Falls Creek,” he said.

“The six SEC employees Toni St Elmo, Ray Meyer, Jack Minogue, Lloyd Dunn, Adrian Ruffenacht and Dave Gibson together with their families banded together to secretly build a ‘hut’ that was the first ski lodge at Falls Creek.

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The blizzard of Oz

Dump of the decade brings more than 100cm of snow to resorts

PERFECT POWDER: Blizzards have delivered some of the best snow ever seen at the Alpine resorts and like every skier or snowboarder Drew Jolowicz couldn’t resist getting among it. PHOTO: Karl Gray

SOME have called it the ‘dump of the decade’ while others have labelled the storms of recent days the Blizzard of Oz.

One thing is for sure, the snow falls experienced from last Thursday were some of the biggest in recent memory.

More than 100cm of snow fell at both Falls Creek and Mt Hotham to Tuesday morning after snowing almost non-stop from Thursday afternoon.

The conditions also caused havoc on the roads with the Great Alpine Road from Harrietville to Mt Hotham closed for almost 48 hours from midday Sunday.

The road was yet to be reopened early yesterday morning after VicRoads and Mt Hotham Resort Management worked frantically to clear the road of snow and fallen trees.

The Bogong High Plains Road to Falls Creek was also shut throughout Sunday and Monday because of conditions and a number of separate incidents.

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