A twenty minute blitz has silenced the Queanbeyan Tigers' demons and reignited their premiership dream as they take one step closer to an AFL Canberra grand final berth.
Queanbeyan have booked their spot in a grand final qualifier with a nail-biting 10.15(75) to 8.5(53) win over Eastlake at Margaret Donoghoe Oval on Sunday.
Eastlake knocked Adrian Pavese's side out of the past two elimination finals and looked to do so again after kicking the first two goals of the game.
The Demons had the wind behind them and held a tight lead in the opening quarter, scoring two majors and one behind as Queanbeyan mustered just one goal in reply.
But Pavese implored his squad to "wrestle their demons" and they quickly stripped back the margin and gained a one-point lead over Eastlake at halftime.
"They stuck with it knowing there's some demons in the past they had to get over," Pavese said.
"They stood strong and stuck with the vibe which was the most pleasing thing."
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A see-sawing third term threatened to leave coaches on both sides of the race without fingernails as the scores remained locked going into the final quarter.
In the end Pavese's men reigned supreme as Tim Clowry kicked a clutch goal from 50 metres and sparked hope in the Queanbeyan side.
Queanbeyan's forward line found its rhythm and booted four major and five behinds to secure a 22-point lead, but Pavese credits the victory to a strong third-term.
"We had to minimise their impact with the wind in the third term which set up the victory for us," Pavese said.
"We had the wind in the last quarter but to the boys credit, you still have to kick the goals.
"Young Bailey Greenwood was outstanding and his impact on the last quarter was huge."
The final term blitz to set up a preliminary final date with the Belconnen Magpies at Manuka Oval next week.
But Pavese won't be taking them for granted after Queanbeyan lost all three games to the Belconnen side during the regular season.
"We need to take all chances next week but we go in with no fear because we have nothing to lose," Pavese said.
"Belconnen is very well coached and have been together for a long time, so there's a few things we'll implement that we haven't before. Manuka Oval suits our game style with the bigger field as well.
"The monkey is off our back and there's nothing better than winning a final, it boosts your confidence."
Queanbeyan have no casualties but will be without Jayden Cutts, who copped a three-week suspension for striking Ainslie's Ben Jamieson last week.
"We'd love to have him out there but he made an error of judgement and will play the price for it," Pavese said.
""He won't be back [for the final] but that's just footy and we just have to move on.
"We play pretty deep in terms of our reserves, who won [their preliminary final] as well."
Ainslie await the victors after they blew Belconnen away by 27 points in the major semi-final, putting them one step closer to winning four on the trot.
Minor semi-final: QUEANBEYAN TIGERS 10.15(75) bt EASTLAKE DEMONS 8.5(53)
Major semi-final: AINSLIE TRICOLOURS 16.11(107) bt BELCONNEN MAGPIES 12.8(80)