Uni A-Grade Loses Thriller, Stormers Into Prelim Final
It was a lean weekend for the A-Stream losing some tight games away to North Beach but the Uni Stormers provided the big highlight by winning their semi-final to progress to the Women’s A-Grade preliminary final.
Uni are at home again this Saturday, which will be a significant occasion as club great Greg ‘Erk Dog’ Erskine officially breaks Rob ‘8 Bucks’ Turner’s 377-game mark for most matches for Uni Footy Club.
Erk Dog will run out for the Uni Dingoes in the C5 Reserves from 12:45pm on McG 1 against North Fremantle with all fans, supporters, friends and family invited to get around the great man for this special occasion.
No doubt, the celebrations will spill into the night in true Erk Dog fashion, so we invite fans to stick around and enjoy the afternoon/evening.
STEINEPREIS A GRADE
North Beach 10.5 (65) def Steinepreis University 9.8 (62)
Uni’s best performance of the year ended in heartbreaking fashion on Saturday, giving up a late lead to go down to ladder leaders North Beach by 3 points at Charles Riley Reserve.
Uni were determined to turn around some recent poor form and take a big scalp and the players’ intent was evident from the outset. The players showed great physicality and desperation around the contest which has been patchy in recent weeks. North Beach were the first to hit the scoreboard but Uni answered quickly through the dangerous Matt Davies. Uni’s on-ball brigade were matching the star studded North Beach midfield thanks to ruckman Hamish Murray and followers Ben Miller, Basti Ashford and Dwayne Lake. The two sides exchanged blows and at quarter time the home side led 3.0 to Uni’s 2.1.
The even contest continued in the second term, with both sides playing some high quality footy. Uni were hard-nosed in defence but most pleasing was the attacking run and flare that has been missing for much of 2020. Wingmen Ben Harding and Daniel Hug were providing plenty of drive on the outside whilst skilful half-forward Ryan Donaldson was damaging in the front half. A 3 goal to 1 quarter in Uni’s favour put the visitors in front by a goal at the main break.
A strengthening northerly breeze gave North Beach an upper hand in the 3rd quarter and Uni looked in trouble after conceding 3 goals in quick succession in the premiership quarter. But unlike last week, Uni dug deep to arrest the momentum and kept themselves in the game through some desperate efforts all over the ground. Uni’s efforts were rewarded late in the term, converting from close range to reduce the margin to 1 goal at 3 quarter time with Uni coming home with the breeze.
The last quarter was one to remember as the 2 sides threw everything at every contest in an attempt to secure the win. Uni began to gain the upper hand and repeatedly drove the footy in the direction of Davies who was giving North Beach all sorts of headaches. Uni peppered the goal mouth and managed 3 goals, including Davies 4th, put Uni 10 points ahead with 10 minutes to go but the game was far from over. North Beach, desperate to maintain the standing on top of the table late in the season, didn’t let up and capitalised on a rare error from Uni’s back 6 to reduce the margin to just 4 points in the dying minutes. The next centre clearance went the way of the home side and a desperate scramble in North Beach’s forward 50 resulted in a behind. Uni’s kick-in was ill-directed and North Beach pounced, setting up a set shot from close range to take the lead by 3 points. Uni were unable to extract the footy from congestion in the final moments and the final siren gave North Beach victory in the tense affair.
The effort shown by Uni from start to finish could not be questioned and, apart from short periods of North Beach ascendancy in the 3rd and final quarters, were probably the better side on the day. The players left the ground with their heads held high but devastated not to have been rewarded with 4 points against the form team of the competition away from home. Next week sees the 2019 grand finalists face off for the only time in 2020, with Uni hosting CBC at McGillivray on Saturday afternoon.
Best: Davies, Harding, Miller, Murray, Hug, Lake, Ashford, Donaldson, Culloton.
Goals: Davies 4, Harding 2, Trombetta, Miller, Culloton.
4 PINES A RESERVES
North Beach 6.5 (41) def 4 Pines Beer Uni Bulls 6.4 (40)
The Uni A Reserves had a frustrating loss on the weekend going down by one point to an undefeated North Beach side.
As a team we played some season best footy across certain aspects of our game however lacked the killer instinct to put North Beach away when opportunities arose. Uni lead or the game was drawn the entire game bar the final 15 seconds when North Beach snapped a match winning point to edge in front.
To lose this game after having the majority of play and in this fashion was certainly heart breaking however knowing this playing group and their resilience, we will become a stronger side from this.
This week we focus in hard on CBC. We need to win one of our next two matches to make finals and we don’t plan on waiting until R9 to make it happen.
Best: Tommy Carmichael, Darcy Thompson, Lachie Davis, Matt Hannagan, T-Ferg, Tom Bowering
PHIL SCOTT COLTS
North Beach 7.7 (49) def Steinepreis Uni A-Colts 5.8 (38)
An inaccurate A Colts side was unable to overcome North Beach. The two sides traded blows throughout the game, but Uni were unable to capitalise on their opportunities.
After conceding the first two goals, Uni were chasing for the remainder of the day. While the teams were relatively evenly matched, the Green Machine was unable to reign in the opposition. The fourth quarter indicated the true ability of the Uni side, dominating the play and locking the ball inside our attacking 50. Unfortunately, we had left ourselves with too much work to do, and were unable to make up the deficit by the time the siren sounded.
We look forward to the last two games of the season against the two Freo’s, with the boys looking to finish off with some momentum.
Best: Rogers, Lowson, Donaldson, Longmire, Dowling, Morfesse, Garstone, Just, Williamson, Doggart
CROSSING LAWYERS A GRADE WOMEN
West Coast 5.3 (33) def by Crossing Lawyers Uni Stormers 6.2 (38)
No match report supplied
BREWHUB C5 GRADE
Armadale 2.4 (16) def by Brewhub Uni Pirates 16.16 (112)
The Pirates have remained perfect after a 96-point victory against Armadale out at Gwynne Park on Saturday. Following the significant victory against North Beach last week, we were provided an opportunity to play a few guys who hadn’t received a look-in over the past few weeks. Premiership heroes from years gone by and reward for effort at training made for a different look side to the one that ran out the week prior.
Once again, as has become commonplace with these types of games, it was challenging the blokes to not get complacent and put forward the best audition they could before finals. Like in previous weeks it was a fast start for the Pirates with the midfielders taking control from the outset. Diamo and Dekkers were their usual effective selves providing first use out of the centre. However, in the first quarter it was the forwards putting on a display. Bull Riley proved dangerous on both the ground and in the air, taking one of the great dangles ever seen in this grade. His danger was epitomised by the fact he kicked 3 and looked dangerous every time he got near it. The other forward proving effective early was Garstone, who worked up the ground and inside the forward arc adding another 2 goals to give the Pirates the early ascendency.
The second quarter was similar to the first, with the Pirates adding another 3 goals. A returning Joey Dale found his way onto the scoreboard, in addition to Blackers kicking his first and Sam adding another one. The backs proved solid with Frenchy being a very handy addition down back and Big O winning his one-on-ones regularly.
As we came out of the main break it was once again a similar sort of quarter with the boys adding another 3 goals and each line playing their role. To round out the game, Chaps added a couple late goals which contributed to the Pirates getting the win by 96 points.
Overall it was satisfying to get another game into a series of blokes who deserved a run given their hard work on the track. With one week to go and given the performances of this side, it makes both coaches job in selecting a final 22 extremely difficult, however it is a great problem to have.
Next week we take on North Fremantle, who have moved into second place after toppling Beach last weekend. It will give us a great opportunity once again to gauge how we are looking come finals time. The challenge is once again great, but one I am sure the boys will be up for.
I will also take a moment to thank Armadale Football Club who were hospitable to both the Pirates and Dingoes throughout the course of that afternoon and at the beginning of the evening. I think I can speak for both teams here when I say that we’re looking forward to our next trip to Gwynne Park.
On a final note, next week marks a couple major milestones worthy of acknowledgement. Firstly, JJ finally cracks the 100 game mark for the club which has been many years in the making. He won a flag with us in 2017 and proved a critical element for that season’s success and has been a welcome addition back into the side this year.
Secondly, and of great significance, Erk Dog will break 8 Bucks’ record for the most number of games played at this great football club. It marks a significant milestone being reached for the club’s greatest stalwart who will break a record which will probably never be broken again. I will touch on this more next week, but Erk has been one of the greatest supporters of lower grade football at this club in recent years. It will be a great privilege to watch him ply his trade and speaking on behalf of the 3s we look forward to seeing a packed MCG 1 crowd to commemorate the great man’s milestone.
Votes – Diamo (5); Garstone (4); Bull (3); Chaps, Bails & Big O (2); Menzies & Champ (1)
Goals – Garstone (4); Joe & Bull (3): Chaps & Dekkers (2); Blackers & Jim (1)
BDO C5 RESERVES
Armadale 0.2 (2) def by BDO Uni Dingoes 27.14 (176)
The Dingoes travelled to Gwynne Park and won by 174 points. The hospitality provided by Armadale was exceptional, with the tap Swan Draught and tap Canadian Club particularly popular. Thank you to the Armadale Demons for a great outing and best of luck for the remainder of the season.
BRETT JONES COLTS
Collegians 9.6 (60) def Uni C-Gulls 3.7 (25)
No match report supplied