Hard work pays off for the Bombers
HOME FINAL: Darren Hunter's decade-long drought is over after his Hervey Bay Bombers thumped arch rivals Bay Power 16.12-108 - 7.8-50 in the preliminary final.
"The monkey is off the back and we're in," Hunter said.
"2008 was the last time I coached one, the last one I won by myself was 2007.
"It feels great. I'm really confident. The boys have been around each other all year, they've been fantastic, but I said to them keep a lid on it tonight, have a few beers and enjoy it, but enjoy this week.
"It's something that doesn't come around a lot as a player, so when you get it you need to enjoy it. We've done all the hard work, it's all done, you just have to enjoy it."
Hunter credited the win to his side's relentless pressure around the footy, and the season's success to date on the players' maturity.
"It's just the maturity. Millsy (Travis Mills), Jacko's (Jack O'Connell) matured, Luke Bish, even Lachie (Woodhams) had a cracker today," he said. "We've been working it all year, trying to guess the momentum. When it's running with us, pump it, but if it's not, hold it up and don't go flat knacker.
"I'm just excited for the boys. They've put in since December last year and they've earned it."
James Hickey kicked three, while Mills, Woodhams and Mark Davies all finished with two goals each.
While they already held a lead, the Bombers' five-goal-to-none third quarter blew Bay Power out of the water and sent Hervey Bay on the way to a grand final at home.
"It was to and fro for a bit, but there was a window of 10 minutes there where Millsy makes two tackles, Sam Gale makes one in the forward line. It was pressure, pressure, pressure in our forward line and it worked," Hunter said. "That set the game up. After that, they were cooked. They're not going to come back from 50 points down in the final quarter, it doesn't happen."