We ventured up to play Ferntree Gully for the first time in six years, it was to be another top of the table clash. There had been quite a few forced changes for the game due to injury and unavailability, and we welcomed another two Under 19 players into the side, Fin Brown in the forward line and Cam Evans in the ruck, to join Cookie Grierson and Brent Honey. FTG had all the running in the first part of the quarter and were hitting the scoreboard, their inaccuracy did keep us in the game with Spuzz kicking our first goal to lift the side and they did in the second part of the quarter. A mark to Kev and another goal saw us 6 points in arrears with debutant Fin Brown kicking a goal on the siren to level the scores at quarter time. We had also lost English with a game ending injury. It was pressure football in the second with FTG again out of the blocks and pushing consistently up forward. Our defence stood strong and repelled the attacks with a goal by Jono a steadier. We appeared to be missing our targets while FTG were hitting theirs but their work didn’t show on the scoreboard. Another goal to Kev helped our score and it was 8 point ball game at the main break.
The third quarter was to be a very tight, contested one with neither side able to gain the advantage on the scoreboard. Another goal to Fin and one from the boundary by Kev made it a one point ball game at the 15minute mark of the quarter. FTG replied with two quick goals and extended their lead. The Jets fought back with a strong mark and goal by Ben Abbruzzese, a toe tap on the line by Jono and to top it off a great snap on the run by Ryan Young and it was again a 1 point ball game just on the siren. The game was up for grabs in the last and it was goal for goal in the opening minutes with FTG edging in front before a reply by Kev narrowed the margin. In a momentary lapse, FTG managed to kick three unanswered goals and left us to play catch up half way through the quarter. The pressure was on and we managed to keep them goalless after that and attack the scoreboard with another goal to Abbruzzese and one to Colombo, to be within in 8 points in the closing stages. Unfortunately it wasn’t to be and we suffered our second loss for the season. The coach reflected on lost opportunities, not slowing down the opposition and the slow start to each quarter hurt us. We have a big month of football coming up so we need to step up and play more on our strengths. He congratulated Fin and Cam for their hard work today against tough opposition.
Ferntree Gully 13.17-95
Goal Kickers: K. Clark 4, J. Knudsen 2, B. Abbruzzese 2, F. Brown 2, R. Young, C. Colombo, J. Spurrell
Best Players: J. Sherriff, F. Brown, K. Clark, D. Sverns, B. Abbruzzese, R. Young
It was a very different side that took the field against FTG, with injuries playing a major part in the restructure - there appeared to be more players behind the fence than on the field. It was great to see Rob Savory back playing football after his travels overseas. The players had to step up this week – thanks to all those that took the field. It was a very competitive first quarter by both sides, but we couldn’t make it count on the scoreboard. The siren beat us in the first just as we were about to post our first goal and we went in 15points down at the break. The boys came out firing in the next with a solid mark by Jack Hendricks resulting in a goal followed by a great running goal by Under 19 player Daniel Wynne, to make it a 3 point ball game at the 12 minute mark of the quarter. Godra appeared to be everywhere both up forward and back trying to get the team into the game. Two unanswered goals by the opposition increased the pressure and we clawed back one with a great passage of play by Savory who marked, kicked to Dave O’Brien, who in turn kicked back to Savory, who marked on the goal line after running downfield to follow the ball and kicked truly. It was a 17 point game at half time.
It was another pressure packed third quarter but the Jets couldn’t make an impression on the scoreboard with FTG taking advantage with accurate kicking. Another long goal by Savory through everyone’s hands increased our score, but kicking only one for the quarter didn’t make any inroads and we were down by 39 at the last break. It was always going to be a hard task to close the gap and to the team’s credit they kept trying to do just that. A goal to Blake Van Leeuwen early in the quarter, from another good running passage of play, lifted the side. The scores certainly didn’t reflect the competitive nature of the game on the field and in the latter part of the quarter the opposition pulled away with a big win. After the match the coach said the effort and endeavour was there which was great, but the application in that last 10 minutes let us down. There were many positive signs to take out of this game and work with the players in the coming weeks.
Ferntree Gully 16.12-108
Goal Kickers: R. Savory 2, B. Van Leeuwen, J. Hendriks, D. Wynne
Best Players: D. Hoffman, J. Hendriks, R. Savory, D. MacDonald, J. Francis, L. Fowlie
The Under 19’s numbers were down to 19 this week, and with FTG only having 17 we matched them and ran two off the bench. We were stoked for Fin Brown who was called up for his first Senior game, joining Cam Evans, Lucas Grierson and Brent Honey in the last game of the day.
James Bruce stepped into the vacant ruck role, and started by winning the first tap of the day, then gathering our first kick soon after. Our rovers Trey Braione, Ben Irvine and Ryan Burleigh were electric, bursting away from contests, whilst the half backs Lachie Purkis, Joel Gosbell, and Jack McDonald rebounded repeatedly. Daniel Wynne fired a dart into Josh Robertson who slotted his third for the quarter and the Jets were up by 45 points at quarter time.
The familiar game style of sharing by hand and foot, and running in packs was evident in the second term. Cam Osborne put on a great block and later channelled Cristiano Ronaldo for a classic soccer goal. Josh Kral’s precision left foot slotted two goals in the term, and Connor Van Der Wal was leading by example in defence reading the ball well and impacting contests. We had our first 10 goal quarter for the season, and our lead at the long break was 107 points.
Jake Herring’s game was his best for the year, and he slotted his first goal for the season in the third quarter. Henry Ballard intercepted when the oppo threatened to take the ball forward, Talby Dove linked well in transitions out of the back line, and Wade Van Leeuwen drove the ball inside 50 on many occasions. Lachie Phelan also registered a major, and with Robbo kicking 5 and Burls 4 in the term the Jets piled on 11 to have a 179 point advantage at the last change. Our 62 handball receives in the quarter was a record that will be hard to beat!
Ben Savage was a multiple goal kicker in the last quarter, and Jack Lacey became our 11th goal kicker for the game. The Jets never once took their foot off the throttle, best exemplified by James Bruce’s second and third efforts late in the last term, and a light moment occurred when Ben Irvine’s bootlaces became tangled with his opponent’s! The final margin was 236 points, in a genuine team effort that our Coach-for-the-day Craig Rutley was very pleased with. Well done lads, enjoy the weekend off, and we look forward to The Basin in two weeks.
Ferntree Gully 1.0-6
Goal Kickers: J. Robertson 14, R. Burleigh 8, W. Van Leeuwen 3, J. Kral 3, T. Braione 2, B. Savage 2, C. Osborne 2, B. Irvine, J. Herring, L. Phelan, J. Lacey
Best Players: T. Braione, J. Robertson, R. Burleigh, J. Gosbell, C. Van Der Wal, L. Purkis