Round 3 vs South at Hisense Stadium, March 21st
The Young Bloods chalk up their first win against the Panthers at home.
This week’s game was shaping up to be like a final. It was one of our last opportunities to keep from losing touch with the other teams in the U16 competition after two narrow loses the preceding weeks. South Adelaide was coming off convincing wins against Sturt and Central Districts so we knew it would be a good challenge.
We made eight changes with Jack Hutton, Jackson Green, Max Jones, Archie Perks, and Zac Callaghan coming in for their first games, while Will Patton, Caleb McCormick and Lachlan Fox returned to the team.
Outs this week were Oscar Talbot, Jack Wilson, James Redden, Jayden Bubner, Mitch Dean, Angus Liebich, Toby Bywater, and Josh Sargent.
The first quarter saw us play some excellent football and despite 16 inside 50s and having 40 more disposals than South for the quarter, we struggled to hurt the Panthers on the scoreboard and were fortunate that the opposition couldn’t find the goals. Will Patton was dominate with 11 disposals and 5 marks across half back, and Judd Hansen and Luke Tippens found plenty of the football with 9 disposals each.
West 2.2 – 14 to South 0.5 – 5
The second quarter had South control the football with more composure, but we were able to find the goals and capitalize, kicking 3.2 to South’s 1.1. We entered the half-time break with a 22-point lead.
West 5.4 – 34 to South 1.6 – 12
We now faced a big challenge with only two on the bench, losing our main ruckman Marcus Pavlic with a heavy knock and one of our key on-ballers Darcy Hudson with a possible concussion. Will Patton was excellent with 18 disposals and 7 marks, Lukas Zvaigzne (15) and Max Downs (14) had come into the game, and we saw Kade Hilton enjoying a new role on the wing with 12 disposals and a goal. Defenders Fionn Keane, Jesse Schefe, Lachlan Fox and Zac Callaghan were doing all we asked, and Archie Perks, Bailey White and Max Jones were working hard too around the ground.
The next quarter was played in two halves. South came out firing and in a blink of an eye had entered forward 4 times to kick 4 unanswered goals and snatch the lead before we knew what had hit us.
Our boys were fantastic to gather composure and responded, kicking 4 goals in 8 minutes to regain control of the game before South kicked one more, seeing us lose the quarter only by 3 points and go into the last 19 points up. Jack Hutton was now carrying a huge load in ruck against a stronger opponent but continued to give a contest.
West 9.7 – 61 to South 6.6 – 42
The last quarter was a fierce battle as South pressed kicking two goals and closing the gap to within 8 points. Max Jones then bobbed up with a couple of goals as we held on bravely for a 17 point win. Many played well and, despite being down two players from half-time, we worked so hard to get the win. We dominated possessions 331 to 245 and were willing to share the football and play an exciting brand with some excellent ball movement.
It was so pleasing to see the boys get some reward for the hard work and improvement over the last few weeks. The win keeps us in touch with the competition which currently is extremely even, with all teams having lost at least one of their first 3 games. Next week’s game against North will be a defining moment in our season and a chance to even the ledger.
Final scores: West 11.9 -75 defeated South 8.10 – 58
Best players: Will Patton, Kade Hilton, Lucas Zvaigzne, Jesse Schefe, Judd Hansen, Archie Perks, Max Jones, Luke Tippens.
GoalKickers: M.Jones 3, K.Hilton 2, P.O’Donoghue, J.Schefe, M.Downs, J.Green, L.Zvaigzne, B.White 1