Round 16 Wrap Ups
DIVISION 1 with JASON BARBIN
Round 16 shook up the ladder as the top 2 starts to take shape.
Cheltenham took on ladder leaders St Pauls in a bid to hold on to the 5th spot on the ladder. It was a battle of the big full forwards with Chris Graham and Luke James lining up at either end. It would be James who won the spoils after kicking 6 goals to lead his side to victory. The loss leaves the Rosellas only percentage ahead of Clayton.
Clayton took on Highett in an attempt to gain some percentage ahead of the finals. Though Clayton took the points, the Dogs put up a good fight for parts of the game and showed a much improved team effort. But in the end the Clays were too strong and were victorious by 34 points. Paul Tsoucalas and Chris Morrison had 3 each for Clayton.
St Kilda City took the points against Heatherton and boosted their percentage ahead of the finals. The Saints midfield was just too good for Heatherton as they ran out 92 point victors. The win leaves the Saints a game and percentage out of the 5, but with a more favourable schedule ahead, this game could be the springboard they need to jump into the finals. Simon Hislop kicked 8 goals for the Saints.
The battle for 2nd took place between Dingley and East Brighton at Souter Reserve in Round 16. The in-form Vampires were just too good for the up and coming Dingoes as simple mistakes cost them dearly throughout the game. In the end it was the half forward line for the Vampires that proved too dangerous and was the difference in the game. Dan Reid and Matt Jamieson were among the best for the Vamps.
Chelsea Heights moved into 3rd place on the ladder after a comfortable 37 point win over East Malvern. The win was set up by a 7 goal to 3 second half from the Heighters with forward Luke Manders and Phil Mathieson doing the damage with 8 goals between them. East Malvern tried hard but in the end the Heighters were just too good.
DIVISION 2 with THE FOOTY TRAGIC
Well, Skye’s finals dream still lives on. A stirring victory at home against the ladder leaders Oakleigh District 2 weeks ago, followed up by defeating Murrumbeena at home last week. Once again I failed to get it right, tipping Murrumbeena, but I did say it would be a tight struggle, and that it was! Five points was the difference in the end. Skye has moved into the five, taking 4th spot and Murrumbeena finds itself in sixth position, separated by percentage. If Skye wins the last two games it plays Finals! All the other games went as predicted, so let’s take another look at the last 2 games for the top 6. Can Murrumbeena get back in? If so, who misses out?
Bentleigh (1st), with 12 wins and a percentage of roughly 150%, play Caulfield away and then Skye at home. A win at Caulfield should keep them top 1 or 2, even if they lose against Skye at home in the last Round.
Oakleigh District (2nd), 12 wins and a percentage of roughly 130%, play Murrumbeena at home and Moorabbin away. Danger game for Murrumbeena this week; lose this and it could be curtains. Oakleigh is no certainty to win the final game against Moorabbin as they have struggled on the smaller grounds this year. Could lose both games but should hold a top 5 position if they do.
Springvale Districts (3rd), 11 wins and a percentage of 132%, play Mordialloc at home and then Caulfield away. They can afford to lose one and still play finals, and they should win against Caulfield in the last match.
Skye (4th) 10 wins, percentage of 158%, play Moorabbin at home and Bentleigh away. Need to win both, but if they lose one, their percentage may save them (if Mordialloc or Murrumbeena lose a game also).
Mordialloc (5th), 10 wins, percentage of 149%, play Springvale Districts away and South Yarra at home. If they lose against Springvale this week they will need to belt South Yarra in the final match to ensure their percentage keeps them in the finals.
Murrumbeena (6th), 10 wins and a percentage of 123%, play Oakleigh District away and then Hampton at home. Ideally need to win both games, but like the others, lose one and it’s down to percentage!
Too many scenarios for me. I can’t tip the final outcome with any confidence. Bentleigh, Oakleigh District and Springvale Districts will play finals. Who misses out from the last 3 is intriguing; they all have a chance. I think Mordialloc should be safe, but Murrumbeena or Skye, I really don’t know!
DIVISION 3 with GOOD WILL HUNTER
Lyndale’s finals dreams still have a faint pulse after overcoming Hallam by 27 points at Barry Powell Reserve. The two sides traded goals in a terrific opening term, before the Pumas gained the upper hand after the first change. They sealed the hard-fought win by booting the only goal of the final term. Alex Bertucci was instrumental in getting his side over the line, while Matt Neve kicked two majors in a fine display for the Hawks.
Meanwhile Sandown’s chances of sneaking into the five appear shot after going down to Dandenong at Greaves Reserve. After facing a halftime deficit, the Cobras sensed their season was on the line and rallied to get back within five points at the final change. But the Redlegs rose to the occasion and booted four unanswered goals in the last quarter to get up by 30 points with Dylan Bracebridge best on ground.
Ashwood’s grip on fifth loosened slightly following a 90-point thrashing at the hands of Doveton at LS Reid Oval. To their credit, the Magpies fought hard early and trailed by just a straight kick at quarter time. But it was simply one-way traffic from that moment on, as Peter Dye dominated up forward for the Eagles with an eight-goal haul.
At Barry Simon Reserve, Mount Waverley registered a 26-point win over Endeavour Hills. The Mountain Lions were running hot early, flying out to a 33-point lead at the main break. But just when it looked like getting ugly for the lowly Falcons, they held the visitors goal-less in the third term as they clawed their way back into the contest. But solid performances from Chris Cafiso and Chris Coleman saw Mount Waverley home.
The last game went as expected, with Carrum Patterson Lakes getting the better of Black Rock at McDonald Reserve. The Lions had some nervous moments as the Jets took a lead into the sheds after a five-goal second term. But the visitors hit back with seven of their own in the third to wrestle back control of the game before finishing 16 points to the good. Brett Willson was outstanding for the winners, while Tom Dewar booted four goals for the Jets.
UNDER 19s with GOOD WILL HUNTER
Fans were treated to an epic at Meade Reserve between the two bottom sides in Clayton and Carrum Patterson Lakes. The Clays got out to a big lead early before CPL pegged it back. It came down to the last kick of the day for Clayton and a miss after the siren handed the Lions a nail-biting four-point win. Brandon Butterworth was outstanding for the winners.
At Beena Arena, Murrumbeena took the chocolates over Chelsea Heights. In a low-scoring tussle, Beena got the jump early in the first term before holding the visitors at bay for the rest of the game to record a 25-point win. Sam Moloney was among the best for Murrumbeena.
Meanwhile the Dingoes were impressive in their big win over Hampton at Souter Oval. Dingley took control of the match in the second term and never looked back, extending their lead at every change. Dingo Adam Lloyd dominated up forward bagging 10 goals.
The last game saw ladder leaders Bentleigh dispose of St Pauls by a big margin at Bentleigh Reserve. After a promising start by the Doggies in the opening stanza, the Demons kicked away and then left them in their wake in the second half. The best afield Mark Smith was one of Bentleigh’s 11 individual goalkickers.