THE MACKSVILLE Stingers have taken the step up this season, moving from men's third to second division in North Coast Football - but there were more than enough signs at home this afternoon that they can hold their own.
Missing some the machine today which had them whaling most comers last season in Brodie Bartlett and Quinton Threadgate, the men in red gave no quarter against the ever solid Orara Valley Dingoes.
The visitors put four into the strings in a telling first half while lone Stingers striker Tarryn Cook got the hosts on the board.
The second half was very even, although Orara's back four never lost their shape and won the bulk of the aerial contests.
When they got a sniff, the Dingoes edge in class kept the score ticking along, adding three more, while the Stingers doubled their tally with a nicely taken shot from the spot.
It's a cliche, but the final scoreline - 7-2 - was little indicator of the contest.
For Macksville, Paul Coulter led by example from the back and his effort was matched by Jack Rogan who had a licence to roam from D to attack. Connor Ford provided the 'go to' link for Macksville as they brought the ball out and assembled attack down the left flank.
Enjoy the photos.