Round 18/Semi Finals: Men's Football Review

Division 1:


And just like that another home and away season has come and gone, the season brought many highs and was a season like no other and the last round of the season didn't disappoint.


Premiership contenders Cranbourne Eagles produced another dominant display this time at the expense of Bentleigh, with the Eagles coming away 82 point winners.


The Eagles produced a solid first half without completely blowing away the Demons with an 8 goal to 5 first half to give the Eagles a handy halftime lead. It was then in the third term where the Eagles turned up the heat, piling on 7 goals to the Dees’ 1 and then a further 4 in the last term to make it a dominant 11 goal to 2 second half, handing them a comfortable win.


Ryan Jones put on a dominant display up forward finishing the day with a bag of 5, whilst Marc Holt was a strong presence up forward again booting 3 goals. Glenn Osborne has continued his strong late season form after putting together another solid display.


The Eagles will now turn their attention to next week's final series after finishing in second position whilst for Bentleigh it is season over.



Dingley took care of bottom placed East Malvern by 59 points in a cruisy affair for the Dingoes away from home at Dunlop Reserve.


The Panthers showed plenty of fight and hunger and gave themselves a real shot at recording their first win of the season in their last game after a good first half and in particular a strong opening term, which saw them lead at the first break and trail only just at the main break.


The Dingoes had to dig deep in the second half and eventually found their groove and started dominating the contest with a 6 goal to 1 third term to hand them an uncatchable lead. They then continued this in the last term to come away with an impressive win against a spirited Panthers outfit.


The Dingoes secured fourth spot with this victory and will head into the finals with some good form and plenty of confidence whilst with this loss the Panthers have now finished the season without a win, in a bitterly disappointing year for the club.



In the game of the round, Port Melbourne Colts recorded a thrilling 4-point win over the Springvale Districts in an instant classic.


The game got off to a ripping start with an arm wrestle being played out right from the first siren leading to an extremely tough and high pressure first half which saw an entertaining 6 goal to 5 first half in the way of the Districts.


The Colts then produced a brilliant third term which saw them kick 4 goals to zero to break the game wide open and hand them a 19-point three quarter time lead. The Districts then fought back in the final term kicking 3 goals to 1 but ultimately feel just short by 4 points with the Colts holding on for a thrilling win. With both sides not in the finals, it was a thrilling end to both clubs' seasons in what was a brilliant game of footy.



St Paul’s McKinnon continued their strong late season form after smashing Mordialloc by 11 goals in a one-sided affair.


The Doggies dominated this game all day and controlled the footy all day recording +42 disposals and having the better of the inside 50’s. However, the Bloods had enough chances to give themselves a shot at an upset, only recording 10 less inside 50’s than the Doggies but scoring at a low 42% of inside 50’s compared to the Doggies who went at 64% which was a huge factor behind the Doggies comfortable victory.


Stephen Muller finished his season in style booting another bag this time with 7 to cap off a wonderful season from the Doggies forward who booted an amazing 77 goals in 17 games to finish as the league's leading goal scorer, congratulations Stephen!



Top of the table Cheltenham capped off their regular season with a 17-point win over an inform St Kilda City outfit.


The first half was an enthralling contest with both sides going blow for blow in the opening half and neither side was able to establish any sort of lead which led to a 7 goal to 6 first half in the way of the Rosellas.


With the game right in the balance, the Rosellas produced a strong third term kicking 3 goals to 1 to give themselves a handy 17 lead heading into three quarter time. The fourth quarter produced a stunning display of attacking footy from both sides, with both teams kicking 5.1 apiece in a highly entertaining term of footy. After 4 cracking quarters of footy it was the Rosellas who held on for a well fought out win.


Robert Ludica starred for the Rosellas booting 4 goals whilst Oliver Moran was named best afield after putting together a brilliant all-round display. Whilst for the losing side, Dane Swan shone in defeat booting 3 goals whilst having plenty of the footy and Aaron Edwards kicked 4 goals to take his season tally to 65 and finishing second place in the leading goalkickers.


The Rosellas now will have a week off and await the winner of Cranbourne and St Paul’s McKinnon for a spot in the Grand Final and for the Saints they will face Dingley next week in an elimination final.


Division 2:


Doveton proved why they are a real premiership threat in this year's premiership race after comfortably dealing with Keysborough by 59 points in a one-sided affair.


The Doves came into this clash as slight favorites with a close contest expected to be played out but it was anything but that as the Doves showed their class and potential putting on a very impressive display to come away with a very comfortable victory.


The game got off to an extremely scrappy affair with neither side being able to take control and put scoreboard pressure on the other, which resulted in quite a strange half of footy which saw just the three goals kicked from both sides combined.


It was the Dove’s third quarter, where they produced a stunning ‘premiership quarter’ kicking

10.5 to the Burras’ one goal which completely broke the game open and gave them a unassailable 66 point lead at the final break.


The third term ultimately proved to be the difference as The Burras matched the Doves in the last term once again as they did in the first half, which will leave the Burras bitterly disappointed with their third quarter performance.


The Doves will now turn their attention to next week's blockbuster clash against league leaders Chelsea Heights, whilst Keysborough will now face the Caulfield Bears in a knockout clash.




Caulfield Bears recorded a comfortable win over East Brighton to keep their season rolling after coming away 50-point victors.


The Bears came into this clash as warm favorites, with the Vampires only just sneaking into the finals and recording 4 less wins than their opponents in season 2022. But the Vampires have shown at times throughout the season that they can be a real handful to come up against.


The first half saw a real arm wrestle of a contest with both sides displaying great fight and the pressure and intensity was through the roof for both teams resulting in a low scoring and even first half which saw just the 3 goals for the Bears and the 2 majors for the Vampires.


Then in the third term the Bears stepped up whilst the Vampires dropped off leading to a dominant quarter from the Bears where they kicked 6 goals to 1 to take a 47-point lead into three quarter time. They then continued their dominance in the last term with 2 goals to zero to come away with a comfortable win and record a dominant 8 goal to 1 second half.


James Backway was dynamite up forward ending with a bag of 5 whilst Nicholas Schumann was named best afield following another impressive display. The Bears now face Keysborough


who have come off a disappointing loss and I'd say the Bears would fancy their chances next week. Whilst for East Brighton it is season over in what was an interesting year for them, but certainly many positives to take away from season 2022 for the Vampires.




Division 3:


Murrumbeena booked their place in this year's grand final after overcoming Black Rock by 17 points in a cracking contest taking place at Jack Barker Oval.


The Beena who claimed the minor premiership came into this clash against a red-hot Black Rock in a game that shaped to be a real 50/50 as to the way the result would go.


Black Rock started the game strongly, booting 4 first quarter goals to 1 to take a handy lead into the first change. The Beena then responded strongly in the second term kicking 4 goals to none to hold a 9-point lead at the main break.


The second half once again provided a thoroughly entertaining display of football, with the only difference being a real arm wrestle throughout both the third and fourth quarters. The Beena booted 8 second half goals whilst Black Rock managed 7 of their own but it wasn't enough as they fell short by 17 points.


Duncan Gardiner produced a stunning best on ground display, slotting 5 majors on the day whilst also racking up several disposals and ultimately proved to be the difference between the two sides. Black Rock now comes up against Ashwood in a die or die clash next week to book a rematch with Murrumbeena in the Grand Final.




In an absolutely thrilling elimination final between Ashwood and Carrum Patterson Lakes it was Ashwood who came away with a hard fought and dramatic win coming away with a 7 point victory.


The Magpies came into this contest as the higher ranked side but only by a slim 2 points on the ladder, so it always had shaped up to be a really tight affair and that's exactly what played out.


CPL started strongly, kicking 2.5 in the first term to the Magpies’ 2 behinds to go into the first change with a handy lead. Then the roles were reversed in the second term with Ashwood kicking 2 goals to nothing to have scores even and the game right in the balance at the main break.


The third term saw an entertaining display of football from both sides with the Magpies kicking

4.4 to CPL’s 4.1 to once again have the game still up for grabs at the final change. The final


term was a real slog, with a real tight and scrappy last term being played out with neither side getting on top with Ashwood booting 2.3 to CPL’s 2.5 resulting in Ashwood holding off a defiant Carrum Patterson Lakes to come away 7 point victors.


Joshua Cardamone stared with 3 goals for the Magpies whilst Mason Morgan was named best afield once again. Whilst for the losers, Samuel Simpson was brave in defeat, booting 4 goals and being the standout for his side. For CPL, its season over and for Ashwood they now face Black Rock for a place in the Grand Final.






Division 4:


In the first game of the finals series, first placed Frankston hosted second placed Lyndhurst for a spot in the grand final in a fortnight's time.


The Dolphins came into this clash red hot favourites after going the whole home and away season undefeated with 17 wins in the bag. However, the Lighting came into the clash full of confidence carrying some brilliant late season form into the encounter.


The Lighting lived up to their name, kicking 8 goals to 3 in a first quarter that had to be seen to be believed. The second quarter saw the Dolphins roar back into contention with 4 goals to zero. It was a half of two halves and the fans were left breathless at the main break.


The third term produced another cracking quarter of footy with the term being a real arm wrestle ending in a 3 goal to 2 term to the Dolphins who restored their lead at the final break, leading by 3 points. The Dolphins then produced a dominant last quarter of footy to come away with a 20-point win in a truly cracking contest.


The Dolphins have now booked their place in the big dance whilst for Lyndhurst they will get a second chance and take on Hallam in a die or die clash for a place in the Grand Final.




In the much-anticipated elimination final clash between South Mornington and Hallam a belter of a contest was played out at Power Reserve on Sunday afternoon.


The Tigers went into this clash as slight favorites, but all results seemed possible with everyone expecting a cracking contest to be played out and that's how it unfolded.


The Hawks absolutely flew out of the blocks with an 8 goal to nothing first term to completely stun the Tigers and have them on the verge of an upset victory. The Hawks played fast and exhilarating footy in the first term to completely tear the Tigers to shreds.


Over the remaining three terms that played out the Tigers were able to claw their way back into the contest but only being able to match the Hawks rather than getting on top and putting scoreboard pressure back on the Hawks, with the Hawks ultimately coming away 42 point winners as the Tigers will rue their poor start over the coming weeks and even months.


Jack Sharlassian and Mitchell Wood both proved a handful up forward with the pair both booting 3 goals each to ignite the Hallam outfit whilst Johnathan Daly was named best afield following another strong display. A special mention must go to Josh Abela of South Mornington who once again was dominant with four goals taking his season tally to a brilliant 73 goals in 19 games.

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