The return of former Western Bulldog Josh Prudden helped Seymour to its fourth win of the season against Shepparton United.
With Footscray’s VFL bye, Prudden took the opportunity to return to his home club and help out the midfield alongside coach Jason Cole.
‘‘Josh was super — a good leader, experienced player and very strong around the football. He also makes the most of every disposal and is very damaging when he gets the footy, so it was great to play with him,’’ Cole said.
Seymour also had two new faces run out on to Deakin Reserve with Ben Rigoni and Liam Morgan handed their seniors debut, while Huw Jones and Liam Hockley retained their place in the side.
Recent injuries to Ben Clifton, Jake Anderson, Max McLean, Bryce Scoullar, Alex Lockett and Lachlan Watts opened the door for some fresh talent and Cole said the debutants had all impressed during the past two weeks.
‘‘Huw Jones and Ben Rigoni are going to be really good players as they get older and they definitely don’t look out of place playing in the seniors — we were really happy with how they went,’’ Cole said.
‘‘And the guys from the seconds who came up in Liam Hockley and Julian Morgan both played their role — it was great they got to have their first taste of senior footy.
‘‘It’s good we’ve got plenty of stock. The reserves are 9-0 and there are plenty of blokes knocking on the door, so the pressure is on for spots down the line.’’
The Lions made light work of the Demons, with Prudden slotting through two goals, as did Nagambie recruit Kyle Winter-Irving.
But it was Winter-Irving’s Lakers premiership team mate Harley Taylor-Lloyd who recorded the biggest haul of the day with five goals.
“Harley’s going really well,’’ Cole said.
‘‘He’s super dangerous when he’s one-on-one, so we’re trying to give him plenty of space. We just to try pop it up on his head and he was taking at least 50 per cent of those marks and he’s a great kick at goal as well — he makes the most of his opportunities.
‘‘But him and ‘Chook’ (Winter-Irving) work really well together. Kyle is a really hard worker, so he pushes up the ground and drags his defender with him, which allows Harley to have a crack at some one-on-ones.’’
Seymour was in solid form from the outset, jumping out to a 21-point lead at the first change.
And this was something the Lions had been focusing on in recent weeks after slow starts in the earlier parts of the season were putting Seymour on the back foot in important games.
‘‘It was something we talked about before the game, and the same for the week before against Mooroopna,’’ Cole said.
‘‘But recently we’ve been making sure we get the warm-up right and that everyone is switched on from the start so we can get that jump on the opposition.’’
And with five goals in the first quarter the Lions got the early lead they wanted.
But after Demons managed just the one goal in the first quarter, the home side started to up its output with three goals coming from six scoring shots in the second term.
Although United found a path forward, the Lions still pushed and continue to have a commanding position, despite Shane Neaves dominating in the ruck.
Young gun Jack Norman again showed his talent with two goals in the third term to be one of his side’s better performers and helped the Demons remain even with the Lions.
Shane Sali and rising star Jye Limosani gave their all for the Demons, but Seymour pushed out the final margin to 35 points.
And while it was Cole who took the honours as best-on-ground for the Lions for the ninth straight game with 38 possessions and two goals, the co-coach was quick to divert praise from himself.
‘‘My body is feeling really good but I’ve got good support in there and a lot of the guys are playing good footy,’’ he said.
‘‘The guys who are making the most of their opportunities, players like Mitch Waite and James Wooster coming through the middle, they’re taking plenty of the load in there as well, so that’s making my job easier.’’
After two wins on the trot the Lions now face a huge challenge in the form of Kyabram — undefeated in nearly 50 games straight.
‘‘Obviously it’s a good test to see where we’re at, because they’re the benchmark of the competition. But hopefully we can give them a run for their money,’’ Cole said.
Shepparton United: 1.5, 4.8, 7.10, 9.12 (66)
Seymour: 5.2, 9.4, 12.6, 15.11 (101)
Goals, Seymour: Harley Taylor-Lloyd 5, Josh Prudden 2, Jason Cole 2, Kyle Winter-Irving 2, Xavier McMahon, Mitch Waite, Ben Rigoni, Aiden Adams.
Best, Seymour: Jason Cole, Josh Prudden, Harley Taylor-Lloyd, Billy Cox, Aiden Adams, Dylan Scopel.
●After a tight first quarter the Seymour reserves blew Shepparton United out of the water to secure a 56-point victory.
With the home ground advantage at Deakin Reserve against a Lions outfit missing Liam Hockley and Julian Morgan — both playing in the seniors — an upset looked possible for the Demons as just six points separated the two sides when the quarter-time whistle blew.
But Seymour stamped their authority on the game in the second quarter as they kept Shepparton United scoreless while booting five goals.
From there the Lions never looked back and the side’s ninth win for season keeps their perfect record intact, along with top spot on the ladder.
Seymour: 2.2, 7.4, 9.7, 11.14 (80)
Shepparton United: 1.2, 1.2, 2.3, 3.6 (24)
GOALS, Seymour: Harry McLean 4, Jordan Zuccala 2, Taylor Apps 1, Tyler Clarke 1, Rhys Clarke 1, Jacob Rowlands 1, Cameron Muir 1.
BEST, Seymour: Cameron Muir, Jacob Rowlands, Joel Durham, Joel Brooks, Harry McLean, Tyler Clarke.
●Seymour’s under-18s showed some old-school guts and determination to pick themselves up off the canvas after getting belted in the first quarter and grind out a 16-point win against Shepparton United.
The home side raced out of the blocks with five goals to Seymour’s three behinds in the quarter. Jhett Cooper had a field day for the Demons, finishing with seven majors.
But Seymour came out guns blazing in the second quarter to register eight scoring shots to three and successfully wiped out Shepparton’s lead.
An arm-wrestle in the third quarter saw the Lions take a four-point lead into the last break before edging out the Demons in the final quarter of play.
Seymour: 0.3, 5.6, 8.8, 11.10 (76)
Shepparton United: 5.3, 6.3, 8.4, 9.6 (60)
GOALS, Seymour: Kieren Binion 3, Keegan Grant 3, Gareth Sharp 1, Thomas Garner 1, Michael Quine 1, Dylan Cook 1, Samuel Durham 1.
BEST, Seymour: Nicholas Davey, Sydney Voogt, Samuel Durham, Keegan Grant, Dylan Cook, Kieren Binion.