Year 9's Match Report
Tom Parker - Year 9 Coach
An old saying in footy is that “good sides win, even when they don’t play well”. Perhaps the Bayswater Year 9 team brought truth to that maxim on Sunday. Yes, there were moments of great effort and team play, along with individual moments of brilliance, however in general, the team lacked the “zip” of previous weeks.
The game started with Bayswater losing the toss and kicking into a deceptively strong breeze. Thornlie had clearly come to play and were gallant in the first half – particularly in the first 10-12 minutes of the game with a number of inside 50’s recorded. Staunch defence by the back six – led by O’Rourke, Fewster, and Marchesani - managed to keep the Lions to one goal for the quarter. A number of times the ball managed to “get over the back” for Thornlie (due to the hard-to-read breeze) but on each occasion the Bears managed to repel the attack. Gasper and Panton were particularly strong in defence and were cool and collected when the moment required. In addition to this, the backline started to add a more physical touch to their play with Karageorgiou and Tot prominent in their attack on the ball and the man. By late in the first quarter, the Bears had managed to get on top with Portaro, Sapienza, Primerano and Anderson providing great drive from the middle and knowing the breeze would be at their backs in the second stanza, the work rate of the forwards lifted to match that of the defenders. By quarter’s end, Bayswater were able to post a couple of goals of their own.
The second quarter Bayswater were able to move through the gears and play with greater prupose, however the Bears did not receive just reward on the scoreboard, kicking a wayward 2 goals 6 behinds. The score at half time in this match of 4.8 to 1.0 was in stark contrast to the previous fixture against Thornlie which read 16.3 to 2.4. Either Thornlie had improved out of sight or a general complacency had settled into the Bears minds. Strong forward play was coming through Dixon, Cahill, Pincus and Petrich and with secret weapon, Jessie Hyne’s late appearance in the second quarter, gradually work rate and spirit lifted. Meldrum was starting to show his mobility for a big fellow, clearing space for the mosquito fleet of small forwards and Glendinning was starting to sniff out goals like a greyhound at the dish-lickers. With Strohmeier continue his strong season-long form, the feeling among the coaching staff was that the Bears would be in for a dominant second half.
The feeling was well founded, and despite Thornlie managing to kick 3.1 with the breeze in the third quarter they finished with only 3.2 for the half. Bayswater however were able to pile on 10.9 in the same period and save for inaccurate kicking would have run out at much more than 75 point winners. Despite a 12-goal win, the general feeling was that Bayswater could have – and should have – done better.
However, every mid-winter cloud has a silver lining, and in this game it was the versatility of the players that shone through. Many of the lads were put into positions that were unfamiliar to them to this point in the season. Xander Henson was dominant in the ruck early and was then impassable at centre half back; Coby Perry is continuing to build on his late start to the season and was excellent across half forward; Rei Poon and Cooper Horsfall continue to show how damaging they can be with ball in hand – whether on a wing or across the backline; and Big Nic Fry and Will Maughan presented very well in the forward line. As a general observation, some goal kicking practice for these two wouldn’t go astray.
Full attendance at training will required over the coming weeks as this team looks to go deep in September.
Bayswater Bears 86 Thornlie 26