PORT Macquarie Football Club pulled off the great escape in the 3-2 win over the Saints last weekend, and this weekend the side will be buoyed by the return of some familiar faces for the round 17 match against Kempsey Saints.
Troy Mountain and Scott Spokes return for the Elders Insurance sponsored club's match at Tuffins Lane.
Spokes missed last weekend's fixture due to illness but will be back in the first grade ranks to bolster the side's defence.
The real highlight for the squad is the likely return of Mountain.
Mountain suffered as serious knee injury in a pre-season tournament and has only recently returned to training after the long wait for surgery kept him out of action.
Mountain has been a constant presence in the FC midfield for the best part of a decade.
His return will no doubt lift the spirits of the FC squad in what has been a difficult year.
Port FC's first grade coach Steve Pincham believes that Mountain's presence will help get them over the line.
"Tugg (Mountain) has been around for so long that all the boys know him, respect him and appreciate what he does for the team, both on and off the field," Pincham said.
"He's been training hard and will get his opportunity this week in reserve grade.
"I know that a few of the first grade boys will be watching closely to see how he goes and that his presence and determination will help us to qualify for the finals in both grades."
The difficulties that FC have faced this year are there for all to see.
A number of players have moved on throughout the season (Paddy Coelho and Sam Wilson) and the recent injury toll hasn't helped the side build consistency.
Stephen Bradley has been plagued this season with a back injury and regular goalkeeper Terrance Stafford suffered a dislocated knee during a mid-week catch up against Old Bar, and is out for the season.
Young keeper Joey Pearman finally gets his opportunity to show his credentials in first grade thanks to the injury to Stafford.
Stafford believes it was only a matter of time.
"Joey has great ability, reflexes and technique," he said.
"It was only a matter of time before he pushed an old bloke like me out anyway.
"I have full confidence that he can do the job and help the boys go deep into the finals series."
Reserve grade kicks off tomorrow at Tuffins Lane at 1.15pm with firsts following at 3pm.