SORRENTO has returned to the winners' list with an emphatic victory over Rye in their inaugural Queen's Birthday clash on Saturday at David Mcfarlane Reserve.
The Sharks led at every change to win by a slender eight-point margin over the second-placed Demons.
After dropping their first match since round seven last year, the Sharks came out firing, intent on sending a message to the rest of the competition.
Despite the Sharks not having star playing-coach Troy Schwarze, utility Dalton Sanderson made up for his absence in the forward line and booted three majors.
Centre half-forward Brent Kenyon, making his return for the Sharks after a number of weeks on the sidelines through injury, impressed coach Nick Claringbold.
"Kenyon was really good. He worked really hard for us up and down the ground," Claringbold said.
Sorrento key forward Leigh Poholke was subjected to some closing checking by the Rye defence. They focused on keeping the gun forward out of the game and held him to two goals.
At the other end of the ground, in-form Sorrento full-back Chris Bagot had his hands full with Rye gun forward Justin Van Unen, who was well held but still managed to slot four majors.
Sorrento took a handy 17-point buffer going into the final term and midfielder Caydn Beetham and forward Tyrren Head were damaging for the Sharks. "There was no more than two or three goals in it at any time," Claringbold said.
Rye came out hard in the final term, with captain Rhett Sutton and on-baller Ben Cain leading the way for the Demons. "'Sutts' was great for us in the ruck and gave our on-ballers first use," Rye coach Ben Holmes said.
The Sharks weathered the Rye onslaught. Captain and defender Ben McCormack was extremely composed under the mounting Rye pressure.
Darren Booth continued his rich vein of form for Rye. The former Mt Eliza gun was again tireless in his efforts off half-back.
The rest of the round 8 Nepean clashes will take place this Saturday.
For more MPNFL Sorrento and Rye pictures, click on multimedia Gallery link at right.
Victorian Football League: Sandringham 14.8 (92) d Frankston 13.8(86) on Sunday.
TAC Cup: Dandenong Stingrays, bye.
Casey Cardinia Football League: ROC v Cranbourne, Officer Recreation Reserve 2.15pm; Beaconsfield v Hampton Park, Perc Allison Oval 2.15pm; Doveton v Narre Warren, Robinson Oval 2.15pm; Keysborough v Pakenham, Rowley Allen Reserve 2.15pm; Tooradin-Dalmore v Berwick, Tooradin Recreation Reserve 2.15pm.
Nepean League: Sorrento 12.10 (82) d Rye 10.14 (74).
Peninsula League: Chelsea 15.15 (105) d Seaford 11.15 (81); Mt Eliza 20.8 (128) d Langwarrin 9.10 (64); Bonbeach 17.6 (108) d Pines 6.6 (42); Frankston YCW 14.22 (106) d Edithvale-Aspendale 5.5 (35); Karingal 24.21 (165) d Mornington 7.7 (49).
For full results click on Frankston Latest Sport Results link at upper right.
Victorian Football League: Frankston v Williamstown, Frankston Oval, Sunday 2pm.
TAC Cup: Bendigo Pioneers v Dandenong Stingrays, Epsom Huntly Reserve, 2pm.
Casey Cardinia Football League: ROC v Cranbourne at Officer Recreation Reserve; Beaconsfield v Hampton Park at Perc Allison Oval; Doveton v Narre Warren at Robinson Oval; Keysborough v Pakenham at Rowley Allen Reserve; Tooradin-Dalmore v Berwick at Tooradin Recreation Reserve.
Nepean League: Dromana v Devon Meadows at Dromana Recreation Reserve; Rosebud v Crib Point at Olympic Oval; Pearcedale v Frankston Bombers at Pearcedale Recreation Reserve; Red Hill v Somerville at Red Hill Showgrounds; Hastings v Tyabb at Thomas Barclay Oval.
Peninsula League: Karingal v Chelsea at Ballam Park; Mt Eliza v Pines at Emil Madsen Reserve; Langwarrin v Mornington at Lloyd Park; Bonbeach v Edithvale-Aspendale at No 1 Oval; Seaford v Frankston YCW at Seaford Oval.
All games on Saturday unless otherwise stated.