No team won at its own ground in NAB League Boys Round 10, with the Northern Knights defeating the previously-unbeaten Dandenong Stingrays away from home and the Murray Bushrangers returning from Tasmania on Sunday with four premiership points.
On the second weekend of NAB AFL Under-18 Championships games for Vic Country and Vic Metro – and first for the Allies – Murray (10th on ladder, 3-6 record) overcame the absence of several key players to defeat the Tasmania Devils (8th, 4-5) at University of Tasmania Stadium 10.14 (74) to 4.12 (36).
The Bushrangers asserted their authority on the contest early, booting five goals to one in the opening quarter and then keeping Tasmania goalless in the second term on the way to a match-winning 42-point lead at half time.
Just an hour before the NAB League match – Tassie and Bushies with heavy fog to make for an interesting start at UTAS Stadium in Launceston pic.twitter.com/NtNuvIehlT
— Kevin Sheehan (@AFL_Shifter) June 8, 2019
Murray head coach Mark Brown was pleased his team produced a four-quarter performance, given that inconsistency within games has contributed to the Bushrangers losing three encounters by less than 11 points this season.
“We’ve had some really good snippets in games, but in terms of maintaining it for four quarters, Sunday was as close as we’ve been to our desired brand of play all year,” Brown said. “We were really pleased with how they went about it. Their tackling pressure and contested footy was through the roof and we didn’t over-possess the football, which I think is the one area we probably battle a little bit with.
“It’s always been the Bushrangers’ way – we’ve always prided ourselves on minimum possession and maximum pressure, and we’d like to maintain that. We have a slightly different squad this year though; traditionally we’ve been flush with big, strong key-position players, but this year we don’t have that size or mass, so we’ve needed to tinker with our game style.
“The DNA stays the same though – being strong in the contest and disciplined.”
Brown pointed to a range of players who stepped up against the Devils in the absence of Vic Country representatives Lachlan Ash, Cameron Wild and Elijah Hollands, as well as Allies squad member Will Chandler.
“I was really pleased with the next batch of leaders who sit right under them,” Brown said. “Our co-captain alongside Lachie Ash is Cam Wilson, and he was huge with 19 disposals, 12 tackles and a goal.
Jimmy Boyer (game-high 27 disposals and five rebound-50s) has been really strong over the last three weeks off half back, Jye Chalcraft (20 and a game-high 15 contested possessions) was really good and so was Dylan Clarke (25 and five clearances).
“The kids came in and supported them as well – Ryley Bouker kicked two goals and looked dangerous in his first game, while Tom Panuccio also came in for his first game and kicked a goal.”
* CLICK HERE to see full match results, goalkickers and best players from NAB League Boys Round 10.
The Knights (9th, 4-6) inflicted a comprehensive first loss for 2019 on Dandenong (3rd, 6-1-1), running away with a 16.12 (108) to 6.5 (41) win at Shepley Oval. The Stingrays were within 12 points of Northern at the main break but conceded eight straight goals upon the resumption of play – and managed only one second-half major of their own – to see any hope of victory disappear.
Adam Carafa starred for the Knights in recording game-highs of 24 disposals and 10 clearances. The returning Vic Metro representative and fellow on-ballers Sam Philp (19 disposals, five clearances and two goals) and Josh D’Intinosante (14, nine tackles and two goals) were among 12 individual goalkickers in an even team performance from Northern.
WHAT A WIN! 🙌🏼🙌🏼
— Northern Knights (@NthKnights) June 8, 2019
At Mars Stadium, the Geelong Falcons (13th, 1-7-1) let slip a golden opportunity to post a second win for the season, unable to hold off a surging Sandringham Dragons (2nd, 7-2) outfit in a thrilling 7.18 (60) to 8.10 (58) result. Geelong led by as much as 30 points during the third quarter – and by 23 early in the final stanza – but the Dragons crept over the line with seven consecutive behinds to finish the match.
Bill Mackay was influential with 23 disposals and a game-high eight clearances in Sandringham’s third straight triumph, as was Archie Perkins – despite kicking five behinds from his 20 touches. The Falcons were well served by the contest’s leading ball-winner Charlie Harris (27 disposals) and Cameron Fleeton (24 and a game-high nine rebound-50s).
The Western Jets (5th, 6-3) were another Melbourne metro-based club to venture beyond the city and return with the four points, defeating the Gippsland Power (4th, 6-3) at Morwell Recreation Reserve 9.11 (65) to 7.5 (47). In a match of swinging momentum, the Jets led by 36 points during the third quarter but saw that gap reduced to four early in the final term before reasserting control late in the clash.
Co-captain Lucas Rocci again topped the stats sheet for Western with 25 disposals and eight rebound-50s, while Jonah Horo (20 disposals, nine tackles and eight clearances) and William Kennedy (18 and 50 hitouts) were also important. On the other side of play, Harvey Neocleous shone for the Power with four goals from his 20 touches.
The Oakleigh Chargers (6th, 6-3) were too strong for the Calder Cannons (7th, 5-5) at Rams Arena, prevailing 15.9 (99) to 4.6 (30) to notch their fourth win in a row. A burst of three Oakleigh goals in the six minutes before half time created a 26-point gap between the teams and proved an indicator of what was to come, the Chargers booting nine majors to two after the long break to pad out their winning margin.
194cm Oakleigh bottom-ager Jamarra Ugle-Hagan proved a handful for the Cannons’ defence, bagging five goals from 15 disposals and seven marks. Ball-winners Will Phillips (game-high 33 disposals), Fraser Elliot (32, eight marks and eight clearances) and Lochlan Jenkins (27 and six clearances) were also among the best players in victory.
Finally in Round 10, the Eastern Ranges (1st, 7-2) moved to the top of the table with an 18.8 (116) to 0.5 (5) defeat of the GWV Rebels (12th, 2-7) at Mars Stadium. The Ranges piled on six goals and didn’t concede a score during each of the second and fourth quarters en route to a third consecutive win.
Jordan Jaworski (18 disposals, nine marks and seven goals), Connor Downie (23, seven inside-50s and three goals) and Jamieson Rossiter (13 and three goals) did the bulk of the damage on the scoreboard for Eastern, as Ranges midfielder Zakery Pretty (game-highs of 35 disposals and 11 clearances) found the ball with ease at stoppages.