Match Report Round 7
Windy conditions were always going to be a challenge against our ‘Roy’s Brothers’ Fitzroy 3, and it proved to be our undoing in the second quarter where the opposition opened up a margin we were unable to bridge.
The game was played in great spirits with quite a few schools mates, cricket mates and boys who have grown up loving their FJFC football together manning up on a superb Sunday morning at Ramsden St.
Our Captains Hugh Almond, and in particular Brodie Hogan had amped up the pre-match build up with plenty of stirring words. And they provided immediate results in the in the opening term – kicking with the wind we managed to drive home two great goals via some wonderful congested work and snap from Emile Jacobs and a terrific running mark and play on for a long range bomb from Jamieson Cohen.
But sadly that is where the scoreboard stopped ticking over for our team, as we struggled to hold back a second term avalanche from Fitzroy 3, with their big men starting to dominate and midfielders finding an extra metre on our boys.
It was always going to be a difficult proposition to reign in the deficit, and that was compounded in the third term when they managed a few goals against the wind, and we are unable to maximise our time with the breeze (something we need to address at out home ground). The margin was extended in the final term as they kicked long to advantage, resulting in a disappointing loss.
Both the players and the coaches will take plenty out of the game in terms of learning about better ways at sticking to tasks, providing quick movement and looking for (and providing) best options. Tackling and accountability will need to be substantially raised this week against Bundoora, and there will also be consideration given to player rotations and as always the perpetual balance between victory and parity.
On the positive side there were some great signs of planned team work coming together on occasions, especially in the third term with the long kicking of Hugh, after the likes of Brodie and Jack Mortimer shared the ball by hand as requested.
Overall some dogged run-with work by Emile Jacobs (who copped a fat lip after rushing to tackle in typical style) and Noah Nieuwenhuizen helped quell some of their best players, Freddie Newing took some defiant marks on the half-back line, Griffen Lowery bustled in and out of the play, and in his typical in-and-under style Leo Duggan-Gross took home the opposition medal for his relentless tackling and clearing kicks around the midfield.
All players had various cameo efforts, with moments of real inspiration and endeavour – there were some good shepherds, nice marks, neat passes and spirited tackles……but one of the big learnings will be that we need to do more of that, more often.
Looking ahead to this week, Noah and Morgan will be our Captains leading from the front, and it is also a celebration of indigenous football with the Joe Johnson medal awarded to the best player… Here is a bit of history about the man after whom the medal is named https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joe_Johnson_(Australian_footballer) and his great-grandson currently plays with the FJFC Colts.
We are now sitting third on the ladder and play fifth-placed Bundoora this Sunday, (with Iggy hopefully back in the line-up!) but I think everyone involved in Fitzroy 2 realises that there are no ‘easy’ matches in our division – and we will have to be aggressively on our game, first to the ball, hard on our opponents and ready to help out our team mates to earn the right to sing our song at the end of the game.
And I have no doubt they are all things we can deliver on this weekend.
Match Report Round 6
Round 6 – Squashing the Redbacks
After a tough day at the office last week, the U-12-2 line up was looking to get back in the winners circle away against Ashburton. And it was immediately apparent one of the vital strengths we missed last week was the ferocity and bottom-of-the-pack determination delivered by Leo Duggan-Gross as he felled tall and small timber and made the going tough from the outset for the home team.
He was ably supported by Brodie Hogan, who would go on to claim best on ground honors at the end of the day, while Iggy Gorman Andrews lit up the field all day long with a return to his blistering pace, evasion and long kicks.
Livewire Liam Watts opened his account early with a textbook goal sneak small forward special, helping the boys to a two point lead at the first change
With the assistance of a solid breeze Fitzroy peppered the goals in the second term but found it tough to split the big sticks. Resting ruckman Marcus Klimas snagged a major after some great bullocking work to stretch the lead. Morgan Karatselios was marking strongly in one of his best displays up forward.
Steadfast and stubborn work by birthday-boy Freddie Newing, Jack Mortimer, Joe Schickerling, 50-gamer Griffen Lowery and Hugh Almond made it tough for the opposition to get the ball past our half back line, as they denied attacks time and again with glimpses of ‘play-on’ football starting to emerge via brave handballs and hard running from the midfield.
At the long break the boys held a hard-won 10 point advantage.
In the third term Jamieson Cohen’s trademark marking was again on show, amidst packs and good leads, Emile Jacobs continued to hand out harsh tackling lessons with his head over the Sherrin, and Noah Nieuwenhuizen and Otis Craven provided plenty of athletic attack on the ball. Marcus dropped into forward mode again and kicked his second goal to have the boys in front at the last change 26-8.
The final term saw the Roys with the wind advantage again, but the defenders still had to work and Charlie Macleod made smart decisions with his kicking while Edward Redlich provided plenty of contests and structure and Declan McMullen blanketed one of their prime-movers.
Moses O’Carroll was battling a finger injury but fought on with this contribution and Piero Lanza showed his commitment finding the ball at ground level. Goal kickers in the last were two of our hardest workers in Leo and Brodie – just returns for a dogged duo, while the home team did not trouble the scorers after the half-time break.
Overall – there were some inspirational passages of play that had the coaches clipboards chattering – with adventurous clever running handballs, great team-oriented shepherds and some ferocious tackling. The team is starting to gel as unit and we look forward to the possible return of Finley Wilson, Flynn Taffs-Healy and Liam Murphy for the ‘local derby’ against Fitzroy U12-3 at Ramsden St this Sunday.
Fitzroy U12-2 5-11…41
Best-on-ground – Brodie Hogan
50 Game milestone – Griffen Lowery