Defeats Sour University’s Return To The McG
Saturday wasn’t a happy return on the field for University who hosted its first games of 2020 with the A-Stream all going down while the Pirates, Dingoes and C-Gulls gave us some joy.
STEINEPREIS A GRADE
Steinepreis University 7.4 (46) def by Curtin Uni Wesley 7.5 (47)
The Uni A Grade side’s first game in over 9 months resulted in a heartbreaking loss on Saturday, going down to Wesley Curtin by a solitary point at McGillivray.
The side started the game in positive fashion against the undefeated 2019 B Grade premiers, with ruckman Hamish Murray giving the midfield brigade first use of the footy around the stoppages. Forward duo Sean Trombetta and Matt Davies combined early to register the first goal and put the visitors on the back foot. Uni’s skills were a touch rusty after the long hiatus but the players run and speed of ball movement proved effective and kept the footy in Uni’s forward half for the most part. Trombetta was particularly lively up forward and played in a hand in 2 more goals for the quarter, giving the home side a 2 goal lead at the first change. The only negative for the quarter was a hamstring injury to Uni utility Cameron Wilson, ending his day.
Uni’s intensity around the contest dropped in the second term while Wesley Curtin’s lifted, giving the visitors the ascendancy through the midfield. Uni’s poor ball handling and ball use proved costly, giving the footy back to the opposition regularly. Uni’s backline came under significant pressure for much of the period but held up strongly thanks to the efforts of Jake Colvin, Matt Goyder and Tim O’Hara in particular. The sheer supply to the Wesley Curtin forwards eventually paid dividends on the scoreboard though and visitors reduced the margin to a couple of points at the main change.
Uni resumed after the break with the aid of a slight Northerly breeze in the all-important third quarter and the side’s energy was bolstered on the back of a brilliant individual effort and goal from midfielder Ryan Williamson to start the term. But from there, again it was the visitors that took the upper hand through the midfield. Wesley Curtin won clearance after clearance, again putting Uni’s back six under the pump. The visitors let Uni off the hook with some missed opportunities in front of goal, keeping the scores tight despite the one-sided flow of play. A rare entry into Uni’s forward half resulted in another hamstring injury, this time to spearhead Matt Davies on the lead. At the last change, the sides were separated by just a couple of points but all the momentum was with the visitors.
There was a noticeable lift in Uni’s desire to win the contested ball after 3 quarter time as both sides fought desperately to control the footy. Scoring was difficult until key forward Brent Evans broke the drought, taking a strong pack mark and converting from a tight angle to put Uni a goal ahead. The arm wrestle continued as Uni dug deep to maintain field positon in the physical encounter. Those improved efforts paid off and again it was Evans that stood tall, marking and converting again at the northern end to give Uni a 10 point lead with about 10 minutes remaining. Wesley Curtin continued to throw everything at Uni however and created scoring opportunities of their own down the home stretch. An answering goal brought the visitors to within a kick as the clock counted down the final minutes, with Uni leading by 5 points with a couple of minutes remaining. Another forward thrust and a contested mark inside 50 for Wesley gave them a set shot from 40m and a chance to hit the front late in the piece. Hearts sunk around McGillivray as the footy sailed through, giving Wesley the lead by 1 point in what turned out to be the final score of the match.
Whilst Uni’s efforts to wrestle back momentum and almost secure the win in the last quarter were gutsy, Wesley’s midfield dominance in the 2nd and 3rd quarters made them deserving winners on the day. Uni were far from their best in most aspects of the game in their first outing since the September 2019 Grand Final. The Uni players will need to dust themselves off and regroup quickly to get back on track in this shortened 9 game season. Next week, Uni travels up the coast to meet the much improved Kingsway at Kingsway Reserve.
Best: Colvin, Goyder, Evans, Trombetta, Miller, Flint, O’Hara, Mantaras
Goals: Trombetta 3, Evans 2, Davies, Williamson
4 PINES A RESERVES
4 Pines Uni Bulls 5.5 (35) def by Curtin Uni Wesley 8.6 (54)
No match report submitted
PHIL SCOTT COLTS
Steinepreis Uni A-Colts 3.3 (21) def by Curtin Uni Wesley 8.15 (63)
Uni got off to a disappointing start to the season with a 5 goal loss to Curtin. With 14 debutants, the new look Uni side was off the pace for most of the game, with a polished Curtin side getting on top early and maintaining thier position for much of the game. In a promising sign, Uni wrestled back momentum to kick 3 goals in the final term. With plenty of lessons learnt, the Uni boys will look to turn things around next week on the road against Kingsway.
Best: Flecker, Longmire, Williams, Lowson, Kirk, Dowling
Goals: 2 Flecker, 1 Logan
CROSSING LAWYERS A GRADE WOMEN
Crossing Lawyers Uni Stormers 3.6 (24) def by West Coast 4.5 (29)
Round 2 saw the Stormers come up against their rivals, West Coast Cowan, in their annual “Best of the West” cup game. Top spot was up for grabs and after our win against Winnacott, the girls were keen to make it 2 from 2.
The first half saw the Stormers take a strong 2 goal lead, off the back of their ability to utilise the quick handball link and overlap to catch out the opposition’s backline. The half-back line, led by Boots and Molly, limited any penetration into our defensive 50. Goals from Buzz and Sizzler kept West Coast at bay, however inaccurate kicking with the wind, resulting in 6 behinds would come back to bite us.
Our second half started very similar to the 1st, with the ball locked in our forward half. Pilot played a critical roll across the half-back to limit her multiple opponents and clearing the ball out to the kids. However, to West Coast’s credit, their persistence led to a handy goal and keep them in touch, by the last quarter. The last quarter saw both teams go score-for-score, but the last 10mins saw West Coast lock the ball in their forward half and capitalise on their opportunities. Within the last 2 mins, the Stormers have given away 2 turnovers as a result of the newly introduced rule of “uncontested out of bounds = turnover”, which eventually pushes the ball deep into the back 50. A dubious push-in-the-back call (after the girl fell onto her back???) saw West Coast slot a goal in the last 30sec, to steal a 5-point win off the Stormers.
A difficult pill to swallow after a tough grind all morning, where wins in A-grade this year are an absolute premium in a shortened season. Stormers and Peacocks move onto next week as we both travel to Charles Reilly Reserve to “Teach the Beach” and continue our push for a top-4 spot.
Votes: 5 – Pilot, 4 – Chicago, 3 – Boots, 2 – Cyril, 1 – Molly
BREWHUB C5 GRADE
Brewhub Uni Pirates 22.13 (145) def Whitford 1.1 (7)
The Pirates have started their season 2-0 with a comprehensive 139 point win against their Whitford counterpart on a picture perfect Saturday afternoon at MCG 2. A real sense of optimism surrounded the group after a great victory round 1 against CBC, but it would mean nothing if the boys were to falter against Whitford’s.
Into the side came several new players including Blake Riley and Dekkers, with the exciting returns of co-skipper Matty Bailey, Dingoes premiership hero Eggman, backline stalwart Gazza and the Macedonian Marvel 2.0 in Nova. These additions made for an extraordinarily strong outfit on paper. Pre-game though, as it was the week before, the message from Coach Day was to play physical and run Whitford’s off their feet.
An early goal to Whitford’s would be their only major of the day as they only added a minor score from that point onwards. The goal was the catalyst for the boys to lift, who then went on to kick 6 in the first primarily led by other co-skipper Andy Diamond who had the ball on a string to start off the contest. Also debutant Bull found his way onto the score sheet giving the Pirates a five goal lead at quarter time.
From there Whitford’s dropped men back trying to limit the damage, which they did to some effect in the second quarter with Uni only adding a further two goals.
After half-time though the game started to open up a bit further, with Chooka and the rest of the midfield group starting to take control. This control resulted in a 13 goal second half of which Garstone kicked 5 (just in case anyone had any doubts about how many he kicked) with Bando finding his way to 2 goals in the final 2 minutes helping the Pirates blow the margin out.
For a game that was decided early it was very pleasing to see the boys play the way they did. They came out after the early goal, stamped their authority, and never looked back. With still a couple to come back into the side the team is coming together and is shaping up to be a massive shout come September.
From here we visit Wesley Curtin out at South Oval, an always difficult test but one I am sure the boys will be up too.
Votes – Chooka (5), Garstone (4), Dekkers (3), Egg & Blake (2), Bails, Chaps and Diamo (1)
Goals – Garstone (6), Blake & Con (3), Bando, Diamo and Jack Mac (2), Bails, Blackers, Egg and Screech (1)
BDO C5 RESERVES
BDO Uni Dingoes 18.16 (124) def Whitford 1.0 (6)
A second round match-up against a travelling Whitfords side represented an opportunity for the Dingoes to get some match fitness ahead of a Grand Final rematch against Wesley-Curtin. The MCG was looking in pristine condition, with the wide-open expanses seemingly favouring a youthful and fit Dingoes side, as opposed to the Whitfords team who resembled a union meeting for retired rugby front rowers.
With the Dingoes rotation policy in full effect, the boys were buoyed by the reintroduction of several returning superstars; reigning BnF winner Demon and best looking man in the WAAFL, Hollywood were back while several first gamers, the Gingin King, Sam, Ginger Beer, Matso and Robbie Gray all primed for their DIngoes debut. However, the biggest lifter was the return of club legend, coach and all-round shy guy, Erk Dog who laced them up to bring himself one game closer to the UFC club record.
The opening term wasn’t one to remember, with no sideline siren and a general lack of polish contributing to a dull affair. Fortunately the boys turned it around in the second quarter, piling on six second-term goals to reassert control. The half-back line was dominant with Onesy, Spooner and Muzza all providing great run and generally showing no respect for their direct opponents. The experienced midfield cranked into gear with key forwards Hollywood and Tarzan presenting well, and Erk Dog finding some space where there wasn’t any to get himself on the scorecard. The first half finished as it often does against the Warriors from Whitfords – a late, high hit from an uneducated and likely previously incarcerated tattooed man led to a mid-game fracas and yellow card for Hollywood.
The second half continued in much the same fashion with the Dings kicking another bag in the third quarter to put the game to bed. The Hardy Rd Ratpack gifted the Whitfords their only goal with an embarrassing centre-clearance effort to start the fourth quarter. Fortunately, despite kicking with the wind, Whitfords were unable to mount a 15-goal comeback, with the Dingoes running out 118 point winners. With the only injury being a broken (but improved) nose to Big Al, the Dingoes head into a top-of-the-table clash next week with a full squad and selection headaches aplenty.
Votes: Demon 5, Spooner & Grock 4, Twiggy J, Matty M & Fido 3, Muzza, Jerk & Bobby 2, Matty & Onesy 1
BRETT JONES COLTS
Uni C-Gulls 15.13 (103) def Kingsway 2.1 (13)
No match report submitted
STEINEPREIS C3 WOMEN
Steinepreis Uni Peacocks 0.4 (4) def by West Coast 3.3 (21)
No match report submitted