MOAMA Echuca Border Raiders were sent packing back to the twin towns after a 0-7 drubbing at the hands of league heavyweight Eaglehawk on Sunday.
In its final league match of the Bendigo Amateur Soccer League season, Eaglehawk showed why they are the newly-crowned champions in dispatching the lower-ranked Raiders.
It was a welcome return, if only a fleeting stay, for Italian Raiders favourite Tiziano Carbone.
But neither Tiziano, nor the other 10 players in green, could do enough to produce a consolation goal either side of the half-time whistle.
Despite the disappointment of the final game’s result, it is a huge improvement on the Raiders’ 2017 season.
Their 15 points this year was 11 more than they could muster up yesteryear. And while their goal difference in 2017 was -194, it was a far better -50 this time around.
In other results, the men’s reserves also lost 0-7, the women’s seniors won 4-3 and finished sixth on their ladder and the youth championship side won 2-1 and can consider themselves unlucky to have missed out on finals.
In other grades, the under-14 black recorded a 3-1 win over Epsom seeing them into the next round of finals.
Epsom attacked strongly at the start but were unable to find the net, with Noah Mundie making several excellent saves.
Charlie Mundie found space when a ball came his way and drove the ball past the keeper to score, while Lachie Gould was in the right spot at the right time, but could not convert for a second goal.
Leading the match 1-0 at half-time saw another goal recorded in the second half when Callum Shingles ran onto a ball from halfway, outran a defender and struck the ball into the net from inside the penalty box.
Black took over and forced an Epsom goalkeeping error to go 3-0 and with the game safe. Epsom scored a consolation goal with a few minutes remaining.
The win sets up a match against the top side for a shot at the grand final.
The under-14 green side hosted Spring Gully at home for the first of the finals series, and recorded a 1-0 win.
Playing great soccer all day the Raiders fought hard to earn their second half goal, scored by Alec Colturi in the 54th minute.
The under-14 green side now has a great chance of silverware as they go into the grand final in two weeks time in Epsom.
The under-16 Raiders defeated the Epsom Stingers 3-2 in their first finals game.
A tough first half saw the young Raiders down 0-2 with work left to do.
A regroup saw the Raiders push hard to increase the intensity of play, resulting in a 58th minute Josh Bavich goal.
Austin Linahan levelled the tie at 66 minutes with a magnificent goal.
Raiders wanted the game more and with 15 minutes to play, Andrew Martin sealed the game with the final goal.
They now head to the grand final in Epsom on Saturday September 22.