Round 5 U18 Match Report
West Adelaide 17.6 (108) def. Glenelg 4.12 (36)
Over the past couple of weeks our group had been playing some pretty impressive football in patches. The main issue to address was our slow starts and the fact the we weren’t capitalising on the scoreboard when we were having our periods of dominance. With that in mind, we headed to the bay for our round 5 clash with Glenelg.
With the state U18 team playing matches against Western Australia and an Australian game against New Zealand in Melbourne, both teams made a large number of changes to their sides from the previous week. This presented some challenges but also some exciting opportunities with 5 players coming in for the first game of the year for our side.
The message was simple – we needed to compete better at stoppage and move the ball quickly in to our forward line at all costs. We knew if we could go forward we would score, but we needed better link from the stoppage to our forwards to ensure the ball didn’t get lost in the middle of the ground.
Our start couldn’t have been any better. The midfield were strong and surged the footy our way and our forward line operated very well together. Incredibly Beau Nunan kicked 5 goals in the opening 16 minutes of the game, the team kicked 9 goals for the quarter and we took a 48 point lead in to ¼ time.
In the second-term Glenelg were better set-up behind the ball and the game became more of a contest. To our groups credit though we were equally well structured and in a relatively even term we extended our lead to 56 points at half-time.
Whilst the mood in the rooms was good at half-time, we needed to ensure we didn’t let up in the second-half. We are a group that are still developing elite habits and can’t afford to stop working for any period of time. The second-half was more scrappy than the first… Glenelg had multiple shots on goal but couldn’t capitalise, whilst our group made some errors on the back of fatigue kicking in late in the game. We wanted this game to be as fast as possible – and for the most part we were able to make it that way.
Joel Groom led the way from a clearance perspective (finishing with 7 for the game) whilst Austin Forbes was strong in the contest with 6 tackles, and Mac Nield and Bailey Chamberlain ensured we transitioned well between the 50-metre arcs. Zac Wooldridge continued his great start to the season intercepting everything that came his way down back. Zac teamed up with Harvey Bock to between them take 22 marks and have 52 disposals. Luke Heitmann was impressive in his first game of the year with 3 goals. Beau Nunan finished with 9 goals in a dominant display up forward, playing with the flair that we know he has and we want to see more of.
Ultimately the final margin was 72 points and it was great to see our group get some reward after a frustrating 3-week period before that. Our attention very quickly turns to South Adelaide this week. Our focus as a group is on consistency in performance and we are yet to put wins together in succession so I am expecting a big week on the track to give ourselves the best possible chance against a strong opponent this Saturday.
Best: Beau Nunan, Zac Wooldridge, Joel Groom, Bailey Chamberlain, Harvey Bock, Mac Nield
Goals: Beau Nunan (9), Luke Heitmann (3), Lachie De-Cesare, Hugo Kelly, Bailey Boughen, Oliver Ebert, Austin Forbes (1)