With the crazy wind from the day before having abated and the sun shining, this was at least going to be a good game for the parents and the multiple oodles that showed up at the home of football for the game.
For those who have forgotten, our opposition St Pauls were last years U12 Div 1 premiers. We had faced them once before this season at their home ground – but before that game Ollie Horigan split his knee open to the bone running onto the oval – and the team played their hearts out and won by a solitary point.
Although I can’t confirm this – rumours were that Ollie was carried onto the ground to avoid a similar incident this game. So while one Ollie was playing, we were still without Olli Hotton with a broken foot and some kid who used to play for us once about 10 weeks ago called Jim Bob who was apparently pretty handy. I believe Jamie is back next week – let’s hope the English summer has not eroded his fitness.
But on to the game. The first quarter started well with a quick goal to Jack Kennedy. But then St Paul’s responded with a few of their own. The crowd could sense it was going to be a close game. The ball was back and forth between the half forward and half back lines with both teams very evenly matched in height, speed and skill. Luke NS had his eye in and was taking plenty of marks around the ground while Ned was making the most of his role in the midfield. Quarter time 6-13 to them.
The second quarter the boys were much harder at the ball- Jamie D was leading the way with some incredible chase downs and hard body work – winning some crucial one on ones. Henry Hamilton also putting in a lot of hard work. We kicked two goals in the second quarter both from the same pocket from great plays that ended in marks. The first was to Sam Marshall, the second – according to my notes was from some kid called “Hottie” ( thanks google auto spellcheck). I’ve a vague recollection that this may actually be “Horrie” – so we’ll go with that but apologies if I’ve got that wrong. Half time we held the lead 19-14
The third quarter started with an early one to them but the quarter was played in our half. We had some great chances – one went over the back and Jack Tuffley ran onto it but was side by side with a St Paul’s player of equal speed and it was rushed through for a point. Eventually some great work (Dan Hall was involved somewhere in this) resulted in a great pack mark to Zac Z in the goal square who converted this into a goal. 28-21 lead at the final break.
The final quarter started well – we held the ball in our forward line but only managed one point. St Paul’s then came alive and the last half of the quarter was spent in their forward line with them peppering the goals but some great pressure – including a great chase from Oliver Hope, ensured that they could only kick 5 points. With a few minutes to go one of the St Paul players went down with what looked like a fairly serious leg injury. The stretcher was called and for a moment it looked as thou the game would end as it would take a few minutes to get the child off the ground. Fortunately he was able to be carried from the ground and we hope his injury is not serious. We were three points up and I thought that was the final score – so I went to get a hotdog – but I later discovered that Ned kicked one after the siren to given us a 9 point win. I’m sure it was a cracking goal with brilliant linking set up play! Final Score 35-26.
Only 2 games to go and the boys have the chance to move up a few more spots on the ladder.
Awards to Jamie D, Luke NS, Henry H, Ned and Sam