The Seniors welcomed in 6 players in for their first game for the club against last year's grand finalist Templestowe. Ben Abbruzzese, Regan Davis, Aaron Walton, Jonathan Wynn, Liam Douglas and Joel Merrett, all coming across from other clubs, were rewarded for their hard work in preseason.
The first quarter was almost split in half. After a contested and slow start seeing Templestowe kicking the first two goals and controlling the ball early, the boys fought back with 3 goals up the hill and into the wind, Kev Clark kicking the third late in the quarter to take the lead at quarter time.
From then on, Heathmont's pressure, ball movement and work rate was probably the difference. Templestowe are a quality side, yet were kept scoreless in the second quarter, with goals from Abbruzzese and Jack Cornwall extending the half time lead to 19 points.
Much of the third quarter was an arm wrestle, Douglas kicked his first senior goal, and Templestowe replied with a couple of majors, before some clutch red time set shot sharpshooting from Tom Rourke, Jon Knudsen and Kev Clark again extended the lead.
A pair of majors in the first half of the last quarter put the margin out to 43 points and the game was done. Templestowe managed 3 late goals and did get a bit of a run on, but it was too late.
Jonathan Wynn was great in his first game for the club, giving the midfield first use all day. Rourke, in his first game as Co-Captain had plenty of it, as did David Knowles and Jack Cornwall. Jake Sherriff and Alan Pettigrew probably shared best on ground down back, but it was a great team effort all round, everyone contributed and it showed in the result.
Goal Kickers: K. Clark 3, B. Abbruzzese 2, L. Douglas, C. Nayna, J. Wynn, J. Cornwall, T. Rourke, J. Knudsen
Best Players: T. Rourke, J. Cornwall, J. Wynn, D. Sindrey, J. Knudsen, J. Sherriff
A new look and young Development Squad took the field against last year’s Premiers and had a battle on their hands from the first bounce, against an older and more experienced side. The first quarter was a scrappy affair with Templestowe putting two quick goals on the board. The players rallied by just couldn’t seem to convert when the ball came their way. Too many turnovers saw Templestowe gain the edge and go in 24 points up at quarter time. An injury to Nathan Parker early in the first quarter forced the coach, VV, to make changes to his midfield.
The boys came out fighting again in the second quarter and goals to newcomer Aaron Abbruzzese and stalwart Dave O’Brien saw us on the board going into half time 30 points down. Unfortunately it was Templestowe’s quarter in the third, which saw them draw away to 60point lead – the turnovers were hurting the team on the scoreboard.
VV asked for one last big effort in the last quarter and the boys came to the party and outscored their rivals kicking 2.5 to 1.1 to go down by 50 points. To the boys credit they never gave up but couldn’t convert their opportunities when they came their way.
The coach was proud of players and made mention there were 11 new players in the line-up on Saturday and that the foundation has now been laid and will only improve in the coming weeks.
Goal Kickers: A. Abbruzzese 2, D. O'Brien, J. Kelly
Best Players: A. Abbruzzese, L. Fowlie, J. Francis, J. Hendriks, A. Bucello, D. MacDonald
The U19’s were pumped for the chance to start the season on our home ground in perfect conditions against Templestowe. We welcomed Lachie Phelan and Ben Savage for their first game at the Jets, plus Lachie Purkis, Jake Herring, Talby Dove, Nathan Amos and Cam Osborne all stepping up from the U17’s.
The first quarter saw the Jets utilising the conditions to run and carry, unselfishly share by hand, and constantly pressure the opposition when they had the ball. A whopping 38 handball receives for the quarter told the story. Cam Evans dominated the ruck and created many opportunities for Wade Van Leeuwen and Josh Kral to send the ball forward. Fin Brown posted three goals and Josh Robertson two in the first term and we lead by 37 points at the first change despite kicking into a stiff breeze.
We had all the play in our half in the second term, in fact Templestowe did not go inside their 50. Lachie Purkis and Jack McDonald combined well to turn defence into attack, and there were lots of second and third efforts from players including Nathan Amos, Daniel George and Lachie Phelan. The play was a bit scrappy at times and we missed shots to finish with 4 goals 7 points for the quarter, and took a 68 point lead into the long break.
Highlights of the third quarter included Lucas Grierson’s intercept in the midfield then running goal, a fantastic chase down tackle from Kyle Delaney, and great intensity and speed from Ben Irvine. Despite the opposition pushing numbers back we posted 4 goals to be in front by 81 points at three quarter time.
Ann Irvine’s lollies at the break did the trick and the Jets ran away with a dominant nine goal last term. Ryan Burleigh was opportunistic kicking two goals in the quarter, Josh Kral snagged three including a 45 metre ripper on his right, and Cam Osborne converted two to take his tally for the day to five. The final margin was 151 points in a great team performance to kick off the season.
Goal Kickers: C. Osborne 5, F. Brown 4, J. Kral 3, R. Burleigh 3, J. Robertson 3, C. Evans, T. Dove, L. Grierson, K. Delaney, B. Irvine, W. Van Leeuwen
Best Players: J. Kral, C. Osborne, L. Grierson, J. McDonald, F. Brown, R. Burleigh
Niko’s Award: J.Kral