Posted in Front Page News

by Nick Crook

The South Metro Junior Football League U15 Division 1 squad made it two from two at Moorleigh Reserve on Wednesday when they picked up the SMJFL’s second win of the night, defeating the South East Juniors by 42 points.

The clash began with the SMJFL looking like they would dictate terms for the majority of the match, however the SEJ weathered the early storm and responded with the last two goals of the quarter to go into the first break trailing by only 13 points.

It was the second quarter where the game was won as the boys piled on 6.2 and prevented the SEJ from troubling the scorers at all. The ball was zipping around at an incredible pace as the SMJFL displayed crisp skills despite the tricky conditions.

“Our tall forwards were able to take some really good marks and that made a big difference while our mids were able to avoid fumbling and give us first use of the football,” said SMJFL coach Tony Pucella, praising his team’s skills with the slippers ball.

“We play using the Dragons’ philosophy; we like to move the ball quickly and we don’t like to go down the line – we like to mix it up and play a modern game of footy.”

If Pucella’s goal was to play an intense brand of football due to quick ball movement then it was a success as they wore down the SEJ and extended their lead at every break. It wasn’t just the forwards getting in on the action either, with the midfielders pushing forward to create options and wreak havoc for the SEJ defence.

In the second half, Pucella’s charges showed they were human in front of the goals as they kicked 4.8 after an accurate first half where they were slotting goals from every angle.

Perhaps the most impressive aspect of the win was the even performance of the team across the board.

“I think it was well balance, you could throw a blanket over them, which is terrific for the group but also terrific for me that they’re able to have a performance like that,” said Pucella.

Displaying maturity beyond their age group, the midfield group managed their own rotations all game, making their coach’s job a lot easier.

“I don’t have to worry about blokes that aren’t fresh because if you’re tired then there’s always someone waiting to come on,” he said. “They did really well in taking ownership and doing that themselves.”

It looks like they managed their workloads perfectly as boys finished the game running just as hard at the final siren as they had been at the first bounce.

The U15’s will play the Essendon District Football League at Goonawarra Reserve on Saturday the 7th of June.


SOUTH METRO JFL:              4.1 10.3 11.7 14.11 (95)

SOUTH EAST JUNIORS:         2.0 2.0 3.0 4.0 (24)

Goal Kickers: H. Persson 3, I. Morrisby 3, G. Cappiello 2, J. Higgins 2, A. Trusler , W. Lewis , E. Casey , S. Williams
Best Players: L. Harris, A. Lowe, J. Hille, I. Morrisby, G. Nagle, E. Casey

Goal Kickers: C. Porter, T. Ellison , D. Jones , M. Lega Frost
Best Players: O. Clavarino, C. Porter, J. Smith, M. Lega Frost , F. Mitropoulos, M. Persoons