Posted in Front Page News , Weekend Wraps

By Ben Pollard

Under 14 Division 1

(2) Beaumaris Sharks 10.9 (69) def (4) Hampton 5.8 (38)

GRAND FINAL: (1) EAST MALVERN BLUE vs (2) BEAUMARIS SHARKS

Hampton found Beaumaris too hot to handle in their preliminary final, a withering five-goals-to-one second term setting the Sharks up for a spot in the decider. The damage in front of goal was primarily done by Will Armstrong (three goals) and Ryan Heath (two). Beauy now casts an eye forward to a rematch with East Malvern Blue. The Knights put the Sharks away two weeks ago with a third-quarter goalscoring spree, but Beaumaris will be keen to make sure their opponents don’t strike again in the ‘premiership quarter’ this week, when it really matters… Oh, and if East Malvern takes home the title, it will have done so behind an undefeated season – so much at stake in this one!

Under 14 Division 2

(1) South Melbourne White 11.7 (73) def (4) St Peters 4.5 (29)

GRAND FINAL: (2) PRAHRAN vs (1) SOUTH MELBOURNE WHITE

What an intriguing grand final we have here! South Melbourne White’s slashing prelim final victory over St Peters sets up a delicious rematch of the semi final in which the 7-8 Prahran shocked the 14-1 Districts by six points… South’s prime movers found some form again last week – including Baxter Tilly, Zephyr Howson and Harry Gustin (three goals) – as they helped their team kick eight goals to none in the second half to run all over St Peters. It means there’s one massive question hanging over Prahran ahead of this week’s big game: Was it a flash in the pan two weeks ago or are they the real deal?

Under 14 Division 3

(2) East Malvern White 10.10 (70) def (4) Waverley Park 4.3 (27)

GRAND FINAL: (1) BENTLEIGH vs (2) EAST MALVERN WHITE

East Malvern White bounced back after their semi final drubbing at the hands of Bentleigh by crushing Waverley Park with a last-quarter goal blitz. The Knights must have copped a fair old three-quarter time spray, because they promptly came out and slammed on 7.3 (45) to nothing to blow this game to pieces in the final term. Finn Healy was instrumental with five goals, while Zachary Close and Sam Turner also had blinders. They now get another crack at Bentleigh in the granny, but it would take something special to see the Knights turn the tables on the Demons… Stopping the goalscoring power of Bentleigh’s Jayce Morgan and Jack Fennell would be a start, though!

Under 14 Division 4

(2) Beaumaris Great Whites 5.7 (37) def by (3) East Sandringham 6.9 (45)

GRAND FINAL: (1) SOUTH MELBOURNE RED vs (3) EAST SANDRINGHAM

It’s a straight-sets exit from the finals for Beaumaris, with the Great Whites unable to overcome a poor start in their prelim final against East Sandringham. The Zebs poured the pressure on Beauy early, opening up a decisive 29-point lead at quarter time. The Sharks edged their way into the contest with strong second and fourth terms, but East Sandy always had them at arm’s length. After a similarly fast start against Ormond in their semi final, the Zebs will need to be closely watched by grand final opponent South Melbourne Red once the first siren sounds this week – particularly given the Districts were held to just eight behinds last time these teams met…

Under 15 Division 1

(1) East Brighton Vampires 8.13 (61) def (3) St Peters 5.8 (38)

GRAND FINAL: (2) EAST MALVERN BLUE vs (1) EAST BRIGHTON VAMPIRES

East Brighton successfully recovered from a disappointing semi final loss to fend off St Peters and advance to the big dance. After being tied at halftime (despite the Vampires having double the scoring shots), East Brighton blew the game apart with a huge third quarter. Alex Mastromanno capitalised on the dominance with four goals, Christian Hatzis had three and Andrew McGrath was simply on fire. A grand final date with East Malvern Blue awaits… Last time they met, the Knights shocked the minor premiers in a semi final by coming from behind in the last quarter to win by 13 points. The Vamps can’t afford the goalkicking radar to be off in this one!

Under 15 Division 2

(2) Hampton 8.9 (57) def (3) St Bedes/Mentone Tigers 4.6 (30)

GRAND FINAL: (1) MORDIALLOC-BRAESIDE vs (2) HAMPTON

Hampton has set up a grand final with Mordialloc-Braeside after a strong prelim final showing against St Bedes/Mentone Tigers. Four goals to none in the first quarter would have had the Rovers dreaming of next week, but the Tigers hit back quickly to draw within six points at the main break. From there though, Hampton put the foot down… Hamish Brayshaw, Jack Nichols and Jackson Noske all booted two goals as the Rovers closed it out by 27 points. Here’s hoping they have short memories, because their grand final opponents dominated their last encounter in semi final week – the Mustangs had players such as Conor Larkin, Yves Hopkins-Gamble and Jack Love running amok in a 29-point victory. Can they do so again this week?

Under 15 Division 3

(1) Waverley Park 12.13 (85) def (3) St Peters 4.7 (31)

GRAND FINAL: (2) ST PAULS vs (1) WAVERLEY PARK

Waverley Park has earned the right to rectify the mistakes of semi final week by smashing St Peters in their prelim final. The Hawks lost their only game of the season two weeks ago against St Pauls (after leading by 15 points at halftime) and now get another crack at them in the decider. Players such as Lachlan Hogan, Matt Jones and Arlyn Khaiyath can say they’re definitely in form after superb performances against St Peters, but they have to back it up again this week or Waverley’s potentially incredible season will go begging… Mind you, St Pauls have only lost one game for the season, too! This will be high class, folks!

Under 15 Division 4

(2) Ajax Comets 4.9 (33) def by (4) Caulfield Bears 6.21 (57)

GRAND FINAL: (1) OAKLEIGH vs (4) CAULFIELD BEARS

The Bears are coming! From fourth position, Caulfield has stormed into the grand final… And its opponent this week has plenty of reasons to be worried – minor premier Oakleigh has already lost twice and drawn once from four matches against the Bears this season. However, a worry for Caulfield has been its recent inaccuracy in front of goal, kicking a total of 16.36 (132) in the last two weeks. The Bears were particularly inefficient in the prelim final against Ajax, keeping the Comets in the game long after it should have been over. Still, Olme Naccarella (three goals) and James Bailey (two) are in good scoring form and the Dragons will want to have players of their own – such as goalkicking machine Jordan Beaton – to answer the Bears on the scoreboard.

Under 16 Division 1

(1) Murrumbeena Gold 11.8 (74) def (4) South Melbourne District 3.9 (27)

GRAND FINAL: (2) MORDIALLOC-BRAESIDE WHITE vs (1) MURRUMBEENA GOLD

It’s fitting that the two best-performed teams in the division will square off in the grand final… Both Mordialloc-Braeside White and Murrumbeena Gold lost only twice this season and that was to each other. Beena answered a 55-point semi final thrashing at the hands of the Mustangs with a strong-finishing display against South Melbourne District in their prelim final. This one was just about up for grabs with 10 points in it at three-quarter time, but the Lions extended their lead in style, slamming home seven goals to one in the last term. One thinks they need to find an answer for the Mordi-Brae players that ripped them apart two weeks ago – such as Nathan Peterson and Dylan Atkins – to have any chance of hoisting the trophy.

Under 16 Division 2

(2) St Peters 4.7 (31) def by (4) East Malvern Blue 13.8 (86)

GRAND FINAL: (1) AJAX vs (4) EAST MALVERN BLUE

And with a six-goal-to-nil second quarter in the prelim final, East Malvern Blue sealed a straight sets finals exit for St Peters. The Knights are barging their way through the division’s top three teams after finishing fourth at the end of the regular season. Next stop is the minor premier Ajax in this week’s big one and East Malvern might just have their opponent a little worried – after all, the Knights defeated Ajax by 34 points the only time they met this year in Round 9. David Dassie is in supreme form for East Malvern, having booted eight goals in his two finals matches so far! There’s a lot to be said for teams peaking at the right time of year…

Under 16 Division 3

(2) Dingley 8.10 (58) def (3) Murrumbeena Maroon 1.8 (14)

GRAND FINAL: (1) ST PAULS vs (2) DINGLEY

The pecking order in this division appears to be well and truly established… St Pauls finished three games clear of Dingley and then crushed the Dingoes by 56 points in a semi final, while Dingley finished two games clear of Murrumbeena Maroon and thrashed the Lions by 44 points in the prelim final. But will St Pauls stand up when placed under the pressure of a grand final? Ben Lindsay, Karl Abourizk and Harrison Hunt (with five goals) were all brilliant in dismantling Dingley two weeks ago, but if they can’t do it again this week, they may well be ruing the flag that got away!

Under 17 Division 1

(2) Ormond 6.7 (43) def by (4) Caulfield Bears 8.7 (55)

GRAND FINAL: (1) BRIGHTON ROVERS vs (4) CAULFIELD BEARS

We all know Brighton Rovers are the ones to beat in this division, but the Caulfield Bears are certainly roaring… From fourth position on the ladder, they’ve dismissed the challenges of Beaumaris Sharks and now Ormond to book their spot in the big dance. In its undefeated season, Brighton has defeated a lot of teams by a lot of big margins, but it just so happens that the closest any team has got to the Rovers was 11 points by Caulfield in Round 6. The Bears will look to summon the memory of that day as they prepare to take on mission impossible this week, and doing so shouldn’t be too difficult for Sean Gunning, Kade Answerth and Perry O’Hehir-Vargas (four goals), as they all played very well.

Under 17 Division 2

(1) Waverley Park/Northvale 4.17 (41) def (4) Dingley 3.7 (25)

GRAND FINAL: (2) ST PETERS vs (1) WAVERLEY PARK/NORTHVALE

Waverley Park/Northvale gets the rematch it wanted with St Peters in the granny! The merged team may have been very inaccurate in front of goal, but it got the job done in the prelim final against Dingley. The win was set up in the first quarter, when WP/N jumped the Dingoes with 3.4 (22) to just two behinds. Dingley fought back in the second and third terms, but the damage had been done. Got Lok, Jacob Murdock and Francis Palleschi were the prime movers for the victors, but they’ll have to keep an eye on the St Peters stars if they’re to have any chance this week… John Barnes, Jacob McGaw and Frederick Jenkins were vital players as St Peters came from a goal down to topple WP/N in their semi final.