After a fairly comfortable win last week, the mighty Rovers Div 5 team left home and travelled to Parkdale to verse a very strong and lightning quick Mordialloc team. The theme of the week was to not get complacent, ever. Even though we won last week means nothing, each week things change and we need to prepare to play our very best, against anyone, anywhere.
What a game it was. We welcomed a new Rover, Bailey L. He already loves the club from all the mates he has made already, and what a first game to be apart of. We all took a big breath of relief as Lucas C snagged the first goal very early in the first quarter. A lead, however it did not last long. Mordi had some serious talent in their midfield, with players tearing it up and taking us on. A big issue we needed to address was our cleanliness over the ball, picking it up contested and uncontested. It let us down and did cost us some opportunities. Jack ‘silk’ C was clean as usual, however in the first quarter his efforts, alongside with bulldozer James Mc, were not enough to compete against the tsunami of midfield attack from Mordi. Our second quarter saw us go out in the same fashion. Slow to pick the ball up, rushed our kicks and we didn’t get enough players to the contest. Peter P was very reliable as a tall all day however even he and the other forwards couldn’t win or halve our forward entries.
Half time siren blew and we went into the rooms with a lot to fix. Myself and assistant coach Zach believed out of everything we need to focus on, it was just composure with the footy. We weren’t taking risks, or pulling the trigger. If we started to take that tackle on, or lower our eyes to find a target, things might start looking good. With the huge help of Nick K and Xavier G joining the boys after half time, the Rovers turned up the heat in the kitchen. They ran out and absolutely rattled Mordi, giving THEM perceived pressure and forcing them to lose their composure. We starting to have some dare about us. We kicked a few goals to get within 2 points. That was our best 3rd quarter for the year hands down. Let that quarter be a reminder that THAT is how football is player. Taking risks through the middle, running and gunning with hands.
The last quarter was a massive challenge again. Mordi regrouped and came out of the blocks like they started, and it was two hungry teams going at it. However, maybe I am a tiny bit biased, but it did look like our boys would rather die than lose this game. This attitude was infectious throughout the entire team, with Chevi O crashing packs, and being a crucial element in our tackling was first gamer Bailey L who let no one pass him. As the coaches starting having nightmares from our close loss against St Bedes, we were quickly off the ground in an uproar as the ENTIRE team surged the ball forward, got it out to Colby purely on the back of us running and giving multiple efforts, and he sealed the game with the best floater you’ve ever seen.
We did not win every quarter, but it goes to show even if you lose the first two you can find something within us to reset, and win the game. Without those risks, we would never have seen the reward.
Things we did well:
- Were able to adjust and flip the game (not every team in the world can do this, it was truly special)
- In the second half, we pulled the trigger and FLEW. Faced up and took the first option. The fire started from a couple individual efforts and because of that it became INFECTIOUS
- Ran our guts out
Things we need to improve:
- Man up faster
- Find composure early and take more pride in your disposal. The way you kick it is how it’s going to be received.
- Faster on the press and more voice from behind. Side note, Jake M did this really well, but we need more pointing and directing.