By Jarryd McGuane
South Metro JFL 10.7 (67) defeated by Yarra JFL 15.13 (103)
The SMJFL Under 14 Division 1 side fell at the final hurdle as Yarra JFL proved too strong and claimed a 36-point victory. The SMJFL boys entered the game with a high level of confidence as they had previously defeated Yarra JFL in the group matches.
The match started in a tight fashion as each side had five scoring shots in the first quarter, but one more goal for Yarra JFL gave them a five-point quarter time lead. The SMJFL boys kept battling hard in the second quarter and added two goals but allowed four goals to see the margin rise to 19 points at the half time break.
The third quarter saw the momentum remain with Yarra JFL as they added six goals to two to lead by 42 points at the final change.
The SMJFL boys won the last quarter three goals to one despite the game being out of reach, which shows amazing fight and comradery in the side. The major difference between the two sides was Yarra JFL key forward Fraser Elliot, who was responsible for eight of their goals.
Despite the score line, the SMJFL midfield was very strong and shown by the players named in the best. Darby Hipwell was named the SMJFL’s best; with Nicholas Grech, Liam Kirkwood-Scott, Ryan Pietsch, Sam Pirola and Castan Racunica all influential.
Kirkwood-Scott along with James Hill and Jake Bowey all kicked two goals in the defeat and were the SMJFL’s only multiple goal kickers. Bowey’s second goal was the goal of the game and was remarkable as he gathered the ball on the half forward flank and slammed it home from 50 metres.
South Metro JFL 3.10 (28) defeated by Yarra JFL 9.12 (66)
The SMJFL Under 14 Division 2 side also fell to Yarra JFL by 38 points, as they proved to be the stronger side in the second half. In their previous meeting, the Yarra JFL inflicted a large defeat upon the South Metro Stars and the boys entered the match wanting revenge.
The Stars started well in the first quarter but would trail the Yarra JFL at the quarter time break 2.3.15 to 1.2.8.
Both sides would have five scoring shots in the second quarter but the South Metro boys were unable to kick a goal while allowing one to Yarra JFL to see the lead sit at 12 points at half time.
Inaccuracy continued to hurt the Stars as they would finish the third quarter with 2.9 on the scoreboard to Yarra JFL’s 5.8 to trail by 17 points heading into the final quarter.
The margin blew out in the final quarter, as the boys heads bowed when they realised the game was out of reach as Yarra JFL added four more goals to the SMJFL’s one.
Joshua Duscher was the SMJFL’s best, with valuable contributions from Samuel Rausch, Ross Sklavenitis, Harry Hawker and Liam Segar. Sklavenitis, Segar and Jordan Hayter kicked a goal apiece as they had no multiple goal kickers.
It may have been disappointing for the boys in both sides, but it is an amazing effort to make it all the way to the grand final and congratulations to all the players.