Round 9 proved to be very challenging for all involved as relentless spells of rain ensured chaos under foot resulting in many low-scoring encounters.
The top-age boys and girls braved the harsh elements to complete what was an interesting round of football with several upsets as the push to finals football begins.
With some convincing performances by some of our Youth Girls and a shock victory to a fast finishing Under 17 boys team, this round had it all.
Here is our weekend wrap:
Under 17 Boys –
A strong Ormond outfit looked poised to pull off what would’ve been upset of the round had it not been for a determined Highett/Cheltenham final quarter. The visitors looked sluggish to start with the home side pulling away in the first quarter. Inaccurate kicking cost the Panthers and saw them trail at every break. Strong performances from Jake Bowey and Austin Johnston ensured all four points were snatched from Ormond’s hand at the death, whilst Ormond showed why they are not a force to be reckoned with. Joseph Lloyd played well for the home side, kicking a goal in the process.
Beaumaris put on a masterclass at Banksia Reserve kicking an astounding 19 goals in the wet which saw them comfortably beat Mordialloc-Braeside. Jacquin Misfud led the way for the Sharks with a bag of 6 goals while Kyle Yorke followed suit kicking 4 of his own.
It was not to be for Northvale who opened up the match by keeping Ajax goalless in the first quarter and taking a two-goal lead. Ajax then powered on to kick 4 in the second term and steady themselves for a solid 27-point win after an early scare. Kai Gold was the leading goal scorer on the day with a brace for himself.
The early game at Highett Reserve saw the Panthers held goalless for the day after a strong performance from South Melbourne. This is an important win for the Swans who have now put together three wins on the trot as they push for a finals appearance. Oliver Bishop was in fine shape booting three goals.
Oakleigh have conjured up the upset of round 9 beating an inaccurate Bentleigh outfit who were unable to put their foot on the gas all day. Luke Ashen caused problems in the ruck whilst Ryan Shaw ran amuck all day at the very muddy Bentleigh Reserve. Oakleigh looked rattled by the likes of Kieran Foley and Joel Nankervis but held on to be 22-point victors.
Murrumbeena proved to be too good for St. Kilda City running out as 45-point winners. Their midfield stood strong and mixed with the potent Joshua Webb who kicked three, were punishing when they went up forward. Taj Clayton looked strong for the City but his two goals weren’t enough to drag them over the line.
The final game of the round saw a come-from-behind win to East Sandringham over Caulfield. The hosts led at the first break but a revitalised Rovers outfit got the job done in the end keeping the Bears to only a singular goal while they put on 5 of their own. Inaccuracy by the Bears put any sort of a fightback out of the equation. Liam O’Driscoll kicked 4 majors and was a key part of the Rovers inspired 2nd quarter performance.
Youth Girls –
Brighton Beach continued their strong season knocking off a hard-fighting Bentleigh outfit. The Roos won by 58, asserting their dominance this year but Angeles Aguilera and Mia Burns looked dangerous for the Demons who battled all day. The pace of the Roos has proven hard to beat all year and it was no exception for round 9.
St. Bedes have produced their first win of the year taking down Port Melbourne at Mentone Reserve. The Tigers looked convincing from the start with Tia Pastore dominating upfront and kicking two goals for herself. The wet weather looked like it hampered accuracy with the hosts kicking 7.10.
The girls at St. Peters were convincing over a fast-looking Prahan at Moorleigh Reserve wining by 49 points, with Caroline Hart booting three goals for the day. Prahan looked shocked but competed hard regardless to put on some late majors. Sarah Hartwig looked strong for the home side and proved too much to handle for Prahan.
East Brighton beat Oakleigh in unconvincing fashion kicking 3.14 with the below par weather causing goal-scoring problems. This allowed the Dragons into the game but not enough to take the chocolates. East Brighton held on by 10 points as they push for a higher finish on the ladder to help them come finals. The Vampires held Oakleigh goalless for the second half in a big come from behind win.
In the final game of the round for the youth girls, St. Kilda narrowly beat Hampton away from home. City led all day but were pushed right to the edge with Hampton nipping at their heels all day. In a match affected by the conditions, the Saints won by two goals straight and looked to be the more-deserving team on the day. Sophie Dethridge bagged a double for herself and looked in fine form as we approach finals.