After a disappointing display in Round 5 against South, a repeat fixture at home the following week provided us with an immediate opportunity to get to work on some of the areas we had let ourselves down. Contested possession, groundball and forward connection were all areas we were looking to improve as well as moving the ball with more purpose.
South began the match in a hurry with the first 2 goals of the match inside the first couple of minutes with effective centre clearances and our defenders giving their opponents a long leg rope. It was looking ominous with South’s contest and clearance game on song from the opening bounce and it was on our midfield to make some adjustments to their method to limit South’s effectiveness and get us going the other way.
Much like last week our rebound and intercept work was good however on our home deck we looked more comfortable advancing the ball up the ground and our forwards were prepared to work and connect with our rebounding defenders throughout the first quarter, helping us to level the score at 4.1 a piece at quarter time.
The second quarter saw us play extended periods in our front half which was really pleasing given our recent poor second quarter form. Our team had adjusted from the previous week and were recognising their ‘go forward’ opportunities and our forward pressure and rebounders behind the ball were giving us multiple looks at scoring opportunities. While we were able to add 4.3 to our tally in the second quarter we let some opportunities to assert some scoreboard pressure go begging and entered the main break with a 14 point lead.
South came out after the main break hunting the ball with more purpose and our team understood that they would need to match them or risk giving back their lead. Some overuse by hand and lack of ball security fuelled South’s game but we were able to transition the ball more effectively this week and didn’t allow any territory dominance.
We retained our 14 point lead into the final term and were able to eventually extend it to 22 points. There were moments where we may have been able to impose ourselves and take the game away from South but to their credit they are the type of team who always give a contest and work to outnumber you and are quick to pounce on any small mistake forcing you to play well for longer.
This week we move ahead to a Sunday contest at home against Centrals. Centrals are coming off the back of a 120 point turnaround against Sturt over the last fortnight so will be full of confidence and will be a great test for our group as we make a number of changes with college commitments commencing.
Scott Patching – Under 16’s Coach