Round 1 Wrap-Ups
DIVISION ONE REVIEW – JASON BARBIN
Round 1 kicked off last week and several teams got the start to the year they were looking for, while others still have some work to do ahead of Round 2.
Cheltenham kicked off the season at Jack Barker Oval against a St Kilda City team looking to get back in the top 5. It was the Rosellas however, who got the first win of the year behind a strong effort from their midfield. Chris Graham bagged 5 goals for the Rosellas while Zio Holdinghausen had 2 for the Saints.
St Pauls completed a demolition of Heatherton at McKinnon Reserve in their round 1 clash. Full forward Luke James kicked 9 for the doggies while new recruit Jay Bruno snagged for 4 goals while gathering plenty of touches in a strong midfield that completely overran a Heatherton outfit looking to improve on last year.
In what was perhaps the match of the round on Saturday, Clayton got their first win of the season after a stunning comeback against Chelsea Heights at Meade Reserve. The Demons lead by 32 points at 3 quarter time but were unable to hold on as the Clays came back to win by a solitary point. Dean Evangelista had 3 goals for the victors while Phil Mathieson had 4 for the Demons.
The reigning premiers opened their account in 2013 with a resounding win over Highett in round 1. Captain Ben Douthie bagged 6 goals for the vamps who looked like their premiership hangover only lasted the day after they won the flag in 2013. Tom Brown was among the best for Highett kicking 2 goals while Dean Francis had a strong start kicking 4.
Up and coming side Dingley won their first game of the season in a solid performance against newly promoted side East Malvern in round 1. The Dingoes had 11 different goal kickers in the 90 point victory, led by young gun Luke Bartholomew. 2010 East Malvern B&F winner Tom Delahunty was the best for East Malvern.
DIVISION TWO REVIEW – THE FOOTY TRAGIC
After Round 1, we get a chance to look back on what happened and wonder what might have been.
Mordialloc certainly made short work of Hampton. Is Mordialloc that good? < is Hampton that bad? Two questions that will be answered as we travel through the season. Mordialloc had a clean out at the end of last season and recruited vigorously. Hampton also increased their stocks in the off season but had no answer to Mordialloc’s stout defence. Being held goalless in the first half and then scoring 1 in the third and 3 in the last quarter certainly makes it hard to win, especially when the one quarter you manage to get goals, you only manage 3! Mordialloc did as they pleased, while Hampton goes back to the drawing board and hopefully finds a few answers before next week.
Bentleigh played host to Oakleigh District and showed no respect to their guests in the first quarter, running away to a 5 goal lead at quarter time, only to be disrespected by the District in the 2nd quarter with Oakleigh going into the half time break with a 3 point lead. In an entertaining display, Bentleigh wrestled back the lead at 3/4 time, only to have Oakleigh finish full of running with a 6 goal to 4 goal final quarter to run out winners by 9 points. I might add here that my tips so far are “zip, zip”!
South Yarra were never in the hunt against Caulfield who were returning from Division 3, and if it wasn’t for a spirited effort in the last quarter where they kicked 4 goals to 1 from the Bears, this would have been a shellacking! Caulfield has certainly recruited well and look a much better side than they were 2 years ago, but there will be tougher tests to come as we continue through the season before any judgements can be made. South Yarra have also been recruiting and should improve as the season progresses, but it appears at this stage they appear to be “off the pace”. At least I tipped a winner here. Score currently 1 from 3!
Moorabbin, our other side up from Division 3, will be disappointed with their efforts against Murrumbeena. I thought the tight confines at Moorabbin would be hard for Murrumbeena to overcome, forgetting of course that their home ground certainly isn’t the size of Carrara or the Paterson Stadium, and they had little trouble disposing of the Kangas. Mind you, it was even-stevens at 3/4 time, but Murrumbeena were able to outlast Moorabbin kicking 8 goals 5 to 2 straight goals to coast home. Tipping now disastrous at 1 from 4!
Final round was the Saturday Night match at Springvale, with the Districts taking on Skye. This turned out to be the Match of the Round. Dead set square at quarter time, Springvale kicked away to be just shy of a 2 goal lead at half time. 6 Goals to 3 in the third quarter saw Springvale with a “comfortable” 5 goal advantage. Skye was not finished there though; they kicked 6 majors to Springvale's 1 in the final stanza, just falling short by the smallest possible winning margin. Springvale Districts victors by 1 solitary point! My tips ending up 1 from 5!
DIVISION THREE REVIEW – WILL HUNTER
Tipping in round one is usually as difficult as quantum physics and the Pythagorean Theorem rolled into one. Hell, the Kiss of Death was leading almost every AFL tipping competition in the country after the opening round.
Thankfully, I didn’t disgrace myself with my round one tips last week.
The match of the round unfortunately didn’t live up to its billing. Sandown proved too good for Ashwood, running out comfortable 57-point victors at Essex Heights Reserve. It was a tight contest in the first half, with just 11 points separating the two sides at the main break. But the visitors then asserted their dominance and restricted Ashwood to just 1.7 in the second half.
In their first game in Division 3, Black Rock endured a baptism of fire. Up against the heavily fancied Mount Waverley at McDonald Reserve, the Jets faded as the game wore on. The Mountain Lions’ blistering eight-goal final term completed the 65-point drubbing.
Meanwhile, Doveton and Dandenong played out an absolute heart stopper at Power Reserve. There was never much between the two sides all day and they traded goals in an epic last quarter. The final few minutes were frantic and when the siren eventually blared, the scoreboard had the Eagles ahead by the barest of margins.
Down at Barry Powell Reserve, Lyndale notched up its first win since 2011 with a 38-point victory over Endeavour Hills. The Pumas kept the visitors goalless in the second term and then booted six majors in the third to build an insurmountable lead by the final change. It has been a long time between drinks for Lyndale, and on that performance, there will certainly be a few more wins to come for them in 2013.
The final game saw Carrum Patterson Lakes record a victory in its SFL debut at Roy Dore Reserve. After a terrific opening quarter, Hallam held a slight advantage at the first change, before Carrum Patterson Lakes put its foot down, slamming on five goals to none to open up a 23-point lead at half time. The home side added another five majors in a final term blitz to put the result beyond doubt. Their 31-point victory has certainly announced the Lions’ arrival on the SFL stage.