Well, we certainly started nicely and converted on the scoreboard early to be up by seven points at the first break. There was a lot of positivity and optimism in the group. Josh Gore was the standout with two goals and the team was challenging North with our ball movement.
The second quarter was an arm wrestle for about fifteen minutes. Nick Steele missed a set shot from 40m to level the scores, while Kaiden Brand had just gone off after a poke in the eye. He had been dominating the aerial contests along with Keough. North scored the next three and we were 26 points down at half time. The opposition were back in the game and growing in confidence.
We were getting smashed at clearance, so we changed Ellem into the ruck and changed the mix of mids and I thought we made a real fight of it in the third quarter as North were up and about by then. But we kept them three goals to one by just digging in!
At three quarter time we made the decision to try and close the gap more on the scoreboard, so we moved Keough who had been starring back forward and he got a shot within about four minutes. Unfortunately he missed. Then from the kick out North scored, which opened the floodgates for about another four goals in ten minutes. It would have been great to have more Keoughs, although having Josh Ryan down back would have helped the team too.
So, in the end we went down comprehensively. North are on top of the ladder and we competed strongly for a long period of that game, so we will analyze that and attempt to do it for longer as we go forward. Special mention must go to the entire backline group who were under siege all game, with North having 65 entries for the game and only just cracking the 100 points, so well done to them!
We will just keep chipping away and aiming to compete for longer to give ourselves a chance of winning as we go forward.