Match Reports: Semi Finals
It was another must-win match for the Seniors, to keep their finals chances alive. One forced changed at selection saw Jack Hendricks – after a fantastic game the previous week in the DSquad – come in for an injured Callum Norris.
The cold weather had returned, with the rain and wind providing greasy conditions for both sides. There was a lot at stake for both sides and it was evident from the first bounce, as both teams applied the pressure. Boronia were kicking with the wind but the Jets managed to get the ball to their forward line for the first score – unfortunately a point. Both teams were forcing stoppages and the ball didn’t appear to be moving far as the pressure from both sides built up. Boronia scored the first goal of the match at the six minute mark of the quarter. The bounce of the ball was also proving hard to read and to handle – and the opposition managed another goal. At the next bounce Ben Irvine grabbed the ball and racing forward, found the safe hands of Leigh Odermatt, who in turn saw Fin Brown closer to goal. Fin took a strong mark and kicked truly for our first goal of the quarter. Although the Jets were applying the pressure and causing stoppages, Boronia kicked three unanswered goals whilst we only managed points when it went into our forward line. We couldn’t find the open spaces as well as Boronia in that first quarter and it was a 24 point lead to the opposition at the break.
We opened the second with another point, but some Brent English magic around the ground found Oders who scores our second for the day to narrow the lead. Matt Decler was strong up back, as was Lucas Grierson, Jake Sherriff and Captain Dylan Sverns and they had their work cut out for them. They were our first line of attack and the ball was finding its way quickly to our forwards on numerous occasions but the inaccuracy was starting to hurt. We had more scoring shots but could only manage 1.5 to their two points that quarter. The lead at the main break was still 24 points to Boronia. We had perhaps let our chance slip.
In a blink at the first bounce of the third quarter, Boronia have it in their forward line and a goal, extending their lead. Cam Evans is playing a vital role in the ruck and the ball is finding its way down to our forward line, but their defence is holding strong and continually rebounding it back down the field. Ryan Young is in the action but again it’s points not goals. Ryan Burleigh is in amongst it too; he finds Ben Abbruzzese in front of goal who at last scores truly. The pace of the game has certainly picked up this quarter and both sides are trying to produce their run and carry style. A great running mark by Oders is a highlight but we couldn’t take advantage and it’s quickly taken up the other end for a goal to Boronia. It was a more even quarter and the Jets appeared to have most of the play but just couldn’t convert. It was only a 19 point ball game at the last break -can the boys do it yet again and come from behind to win in the last? The crowd was hoping so.
So would this be the last quarter for the season for the boys? The Jets started off well with Ben A finding Oders but only a point. We seemed to be kicking to a contest and didn’t appear to be able to gain clean possession. Boronia score the first goal. Luck was not going our way…. The rain then came down again making for some very trying conditions. English was trying everything and Jordan Haynes hadn’t stopped all day as they both tried to get the Jets back into the contest. Chris Colombo was also trying to manufacture something down forward and a diving mark to Fin unfortunately only saw another poster. Boronia managed to take the ball down their end and score yet another goal. It’s not looking good for the Jets. Benny Irvine is running everywhere, evading his opposition, and he finally finds Ben A in front of goal and at last we have one on the board, but 24 minutes have gone, and we are 28 points down. The siren sounds, our time and luck had run out and it’s Boronia who advances to the Preliminary final next week.
Although disappointed, the coach congratulated the players on their efforts, as they never gave up from the first bounce to the last siren. He thanked all the support staff for their help in getting the team on the park each week, also his coaching support, and called for everyone to stick together and start looking ahead to next season.
Goal Kickers: B. Abbruzzese 2, L. Odermatt, F. Brown
Best Players: L. Grierson, J. Haynes, R. Young, J. Sherriff, D. Sverns
The DSquad were up against Scoresby who had had the week off last week for finishing top of the ladder. The late withdrawal of Dylan Robson-Long saw Brent Honey make a return to football after some time injured on the sidelines, and Wade Van Leeuwen also comes into the side after injury.
It was another wet and cold day, this time at East Burwood, and the early opening quarter saw the ball make its way down to our forward line and in a flurry of kicks we score first – a point, and then another! Scoresby managed to move the ball down to their forward line and score the first goal of the game. It seems nerves may be taking its toll, with a number of fumbles and turnovers from the boys. The ball is again pushed down our end with Robby Savory managing to kick off the ground to Nathan Parker, who tries to pick it up but the greasy ball slips through his hand and somehow lands on his foot and a quick snap to Justin Ballard running past and into an open goal! It’s all even at that point. Unfortunately they manage two unanswered goals in the later part and take in a 12 point lead at the first break.
Savory is making his presence felt and converts from a free for the first goal of the second quarter. Alex McIntosh is also in the thick of things pushing the ball forward. The opposition score their first for the quarter. From the centre bounce Wade gets it down to Jess Francis but only a point is the result. The ball is certainly spending a lot of time down our goal line but the boys just can’t convert. At last Wade manages a wonky kick with sees Rob Wood take a strong mark in front of goal and score, bringing it back to a one point ball game. In a controversial end to the quarter Boronia kick the ball through the goals only to find out later that the siren had already gone – all to do with travelling sound waves! – this was a time the writer was appreciative of the three umpires. So at the main break it was Jets 3.7-25 and Boronia 4.2-25. Would the boys rue the inaccurate kicking??
They say the third quarter is the premiership quarter, would that ring true? It looked that way with the ball straight out of the centre to Jess who found Jon Knudsen who goaled within the first minute, but it was not to be. Scoresby were now playing catch up with the points. Connor Van Der Wal was strong in the ruck again and Al Knudsen was tackling all in sight and quickly getting it out of the centre. It was a very tight contest by both sides with neither making a real dent on the scoreboard. Pressure and stoppages by both sides that quarter, only saw that one goal scored and it was still only a point the difference at the main break, but it was the Jets with that slender lead this time.
So down to the last quarter and a win would see one of the sides straight into the Grand Final, and at this stage there was nothing in it. Scoresby jumped out of the blocks this time and goaled within the first minute. It is pressure football; congested, with stoppages occurring whenever a player managed to get near the ball. The opposition manage a point and now the difference is six points at the 10 minute mark – plenty of time! They manage to score the next goal to extend their lead to 12 points. A vital centre bounce sees the ball fly down to our forward line and the mark of the day was taken by Parks who flies and somehow manages to take and control a one hander and kick a much needed goal to narrow the lead back to a goal. The next bounce sees AMac take it out of the centre and kick to a running Jono who kicks towards Savory for yet another strong mark and he kicks truly to level the score at the 18 minute mark. The last minutes are frantic but there is no score as the siren rings and it’s a draw so the ‘extra time’ rule comes into play. Two five minute quarters [with time on] and if still even they just keep playing until the first score.
We kick the first point, and they score the next and it’s still all even at the first five minute break, unfortunately Al Knudsen is concussed and taken from the ground (he was up and about after the match). Scoresby score a goal early in the next five and from the next bounce Jess finds Savory who goals – even again. The minutes are ticking down and the ball finds its way down to the opposition’s forward line and despite the best efforts of the backmen, the ball dribbles through for a point and Scoresby has the lead. A dubious free from the kickout sees Scoresby goal just as the siren rings.
The game couldn’t have been any closer with two evenly matched teams. The whole team played as one today and the writer found it hard to single out the fantastic efforts by all the boys – as she was engrossed in the contest. The coach, although disappointed, urged the boys to stick together and get through next week’s Preliminary against Boronia to have another crack at Scoresby.
Phew what a match!
Goal Kickers: R. Savory 2, N. Parker, J. Knudsen, R. Wood, J. Ballard
Best Players: A. Knudsen, R. Savory, R. Wood, C. Van Der Wal, W. Van Leeuwen, A. McIntosh
After having the week off due to finishing on top of the ladder after the home and away season the U/19’s were keen to get their finals campaign underway. We were playing Waverley Blues again who we toppled in the last round to take their spot at the top of the ladder. We were interested to see what their response would be to that defeat and as it turned out they obviously weren’t very happy!
After a fierce battle in the first seven – eight minutes we managed to kick the first goal of the game due to a fine piece of play from Lachie Purkis. The Blues kicked the next two and we went into quarter time in a low scoring affair, down by seven points, 1.1-7 to 2.2-14. We were leading most of the stats at this stage and our tackle count of 16 for the quarter was a good start and exactly what the coach was after.
While there were some worrying signs in the second quarter we managed to keep them to only one goal. We were struggling to get our hands on the footy and when we did we turned it over at half forward every time. They were putting enormous pressure on us every time we got our hands on the footy and while we went into halftime only trailing by 14 points the signs weren’t good. Scores 1.2.8 to 3.4.22.
The third quarter was a disaster, with the Blues kicking a goal inside the first minute and then adding four more to make it five for the quarter. Our only goal came through a piece of Trent Wynne genius where tight up against the boundary line he decided to kick a left foot banana on the run which sailed through post high for the goal of the day. This was the only bright spark in a miserable day for us and we went into three quarter time down by 37 points, 2.5-17 to 8.4-52
After kicking only two goals for the game we were unlikely to kick six in the last quarter to get back in the game, so went into preservation mode and started to set our sights on playing Boronia in next weeks preliminary final. We rested a couple of key players but we were also determined not to get blown out of the water. We only allowed them to kick two goals for the quarter while we were kept scoreless. We went down by 50 points, which was a very disappointing result.
There weren’t a lot of positives to take out of the game but after winning 13 in a row capped off by defeating the Blues in the last game we were maybe due to drop one. Did we get ahead of ourselves? Maybe, and this result will be a good reality check and hopefully get us focused to put up a much better performance against Boronia this week to give us another crack at Waverley Blues in two weeks time.
Goal Kickers: L Purkis, T Wynne
Best Players: J Farrell, M Palmer, J Gosbell, L Purkis, A Puddy, L Coghlan