The trip down to Albert Park was probably the farthest we’ve had to travel so far this season and by far the most ‘difficult’ in terms of grounds for a lot of our players to find!
Thankfully, despite the grey skies and a bit of wind there was also a bit of sunshine hiding behind the rather ominous looking clouds and we were hoping that any rain would hold off until after our game.
Doaky and the Senior men formed a ‘guard of honour’ as our girls, keen to atone for their horror brain fade 1st quarter of 2 weeks ago ran out onto the ground, a great gesture and certainly a ‘spark’ for the Lady Snakes.
We were a little bit (more) undermanned than usual this week, missing one of our key wingers and a key half forward whilst still badly missing two of our talls and a couple of our ‘engine room’ players all of whom are missing through injury or work commitments. Despite the missing run, we cracked in and came out 1st quarter winners kicking 2.3 whilst holding South Melbourne to 0.1 for the quarter. Some terrific play through the middle from Lauralee Rinaldi gave our forwards first use of the ball in the first quarter with Allysha Dyer slotting 1 and Mary Spillane adding 1. Our defensive unit once again held their ground superbly, allowing only the 1 rushed behind and assisting our midfield to clear the ball out of South Melbourne’s attacking 50 and back into our hands.
Second quarter was an arm wrestle for the ages! South Melbourne switched up their forward line and kept trying to drag our defence up the ground and they also dropped a spare back into our forward line to try to intercept the ball from getting into Allysha’s hands. Our girls got a bit frustrated but still managed to add 1.0 whilst South Melbourne added 3.2.
The half time message was pretty simple, keep applying the pressure, stick to the defensive rules and the mids needed to pick up their players more on the way out of our attacking 50.
Our missing winger and half forward were really obvious in the 3rd quarter when we could’ve used some additional run or even some ‘fresh legs’. We ran as hard and as fast as we could but South Melbourne hunted us in numbers and we just couldn’t do enough to support each other. Try as we might, we couldn’t find a clear path to our forwards. South Melbourne on the other hand were getting plenty of entries into their forward 50 and our defence was working overtime getting the ball out, only to have it come back in again! To the backline’s credit, they only conceded 1.2 for multiple entries and a good deal of time spent in South Melbourne’s forward 50.
At the last change an 8 point margin wasn’t too mountainous to overcome, we just had to hunker down and find something special…Allysha Dyer!!! In the opening minutes the number 68 calmly kicked truly for her 3rd and we found ourselves within 2 points! Then disaster stuck when in the midst of a big pack of players Elise Pittonet came crashing to the ground after copping 2 South Melbourne knees to the head and minutes later Mary Spillane came off with a blood nose and then went to hospital with a suspected broken arm. We were down to 1 on the bench when we’d only had 3 to start with! To the girl’s credit they didn’t thrown in the towel, they kept slugging it out and in the end South Melbourne kicked 1.4 to our 1.0 to run out 12 point winners.
A tough loss to take because they fought hard all day and the odds were well and truly stacked against them but valiant in defeat nonetheless.
Best Players: A. Carapetis, M. Kirk, L. Venditti, N. Stogdale, C. Bold, G. Ratnakumar
The first quarter we were slow to start and South Melbourne took full advantage and were out to a 3 goal lead .We started to win at the stoppages and move the ball with purpose which produced our first goal through Gumpy and than pricey kicked the next and late in the quarter Gumpy kicked his second. Even though we only played ten minutes of footy we were only 4 points down at quarter time. Carapetis was given us drive through the midfield and Gumpy and Pricey were dangerous up forward.
The second quarter was played with the same intent as the first, we seemed to be expecting that it was going to happen and not actually make it happen. We were just going through the motions and were relying on a selected few to get us motivated. Boyd kicked our only goal for the term. Our back line was holding up well and had keep south Melbourne to five goals for the first half. We were falling down at centre half forward and any opportunities we had were missed with poor disposal and decision making. At times in the first half we move the ball well, which was for a short period only, our efforts in D1 D2 pressure were virtually nonexistent, down by 12 points at halftime.
At half time we spoke about giving effort and moving the ball quickly to give our forwards one on one opportunity. We only kicked one goal for the term which was kicked by Jaime playing his first game for the cobbies. (Well done Jaime). We struggle to find any run in our game and we played so predictable footy for the first 3 quarters which only played into the hands of the opposition. The way we played in this quarter was like a team that hasn’t got the belief to win and were just going through the motions, which is very frustrating to watch. Mangoes in defence was intercepting a lot of their forward entries, but we weren’t capitalisation on the opportunities given, 22 points down at ¾ time.
The last quarter I ask for a big effort as we were still in the game even through our efforts to date had been poor. We obviously didn’t come to play today and only actually play 15 mins of good football for the whole game. Pricey kicked our only goal for term late and we ended up losing the game by 43 points. There were some players who tried their hearts out today for the club Carapetis, Mangoes, Stogdale, Gumpy, Boyd, but as a whole it was a very disappointing effort.
Playing football is not just measured on winning, if you come off at the end of the game and you can honestly say you tried your best, than that’s all we can ask of you.
So as you can see we have a lot of work to do during the week and let’s look forward to giving 100% next game.
Cobbies keep your heads up and let’s give our all over the next six weeks, so keep positive and work hard together and the results will soon come our way.
Go Cobras !!!
Goal Kickers: M. Szabo 4, N. Szabo 4, G. Driscoll 3, A. Hummerston 3, J. Wilson 2, R. Walmsley 2, J. Coghlan West, J. Lloyde, A. Wheeler
Best Players: J. Blakemore, M. Szabo, T. Lowden, G. Driscoll, S. Murphy, N. Szabo
With the weather gods smiling on us yet again on Saturday, we ventured out to the home of the Sth Melb Swans by the Albert Park Lake with an intent to kill and boost our % as much as humanly possible to keep in touch with the top 4 and claim a finals berth for 2017.
It was great to see the girls have a kick on the oval next door, but not so great to see the reserves get beaten by the bottom placed Swans with a tough run home in the remaining 6 for the Scooby Doos to follow. I must say, it was a real luxury to have the space that we had in the change rooms pre game, as most weeks we are squashed in like sardines in a can, which certainly made the boys feel more comfortable and relaxed I felt. With a late change of Fitzgerald out due to a flared shin suffered the previous week, we brought in Arun from the 2s as a reward for his solid form and training levels over the last month to play as a small forward/wingman where he would be best suited. We restructured our spine and spun the magnets to accommodate Jimmy going into the ruck, by throwing big Tommy “The Ghost” Lowden to CHB and James “Proud Mary” Wilson to FF one out for the cobs.
The first term was an arm wrestle for around 10mins, with a only single goal on the board for each side, until we managed to kick slightly away late in the term to go out to a 2 goal advantage by quarter time. With Skipper Sammy Murphy starting to find good space on the outer wing, and our midfield of Jim Wilson, Wombat, Blakemore, Wheeler and Mreulje starting to crank it up and serve our forward set up of Wheels, A. Hummerston, Mitchy Szabo & Lloydy, we started to kick away and open up a 34pt lead at the main break. We knew Sth would come at us hard in the third, so if we could hold them at bay and play our brand of footy and keep taking risks, we knew we could blow them away eventually and really start to get on top. And what a quarter of footy was to eventuate, as we kicked 8.3 to 1 goal straight to extend the lead to 79pts with our tails up and the lads playing season best footy!
Our backline of Goodwin, Wishart, Richy Hummerston, Carrington, Scooter & Dan Walden were locking down well, and providing much needed run and slick ball use from D50, with big Tommy Lowden intercept marking an absolute treat as we resisted many of South’s F50 entries. The first half of the last term saw us drop off a little, as our forwards and mids got hungry near goals rather than giving the ball off to a team mate who was under less pressure. But to the lads credit, we regrouped and really put Sth Melb to the sword by kicking 5.3 to 3.2 to run out big winners by 92pts and gain a much needed % boost of 10% to see us back in the 4 for the first time since round 4.
Best players for the day were all the mids, Mitchy Szabo kicked 4 and was outstanding up forward, presenting well and chasing/pressuring like a man possessed, Bucky also kicked 4 from the wing and looked extremely comfortable “back at home” on the wing, little Guy Driscoll was dangerous in space and played his best game for the seniors, gaining a stack of possessions, kicked 3 goals and applied serious forward pressure which was delightful to see, A. Hummerston was super up forward, taking several strong marks on the lead and converting whenever in range, and above all chased as hard as he could when not in possession as did all of the forwards including Wheels, Lloyde & Coghlan-West, Sammy Murphy was dangerous again on the far wing, playing his defensive wing QB role very well and will be sorely missed over the last 6 games, Tommy Lowden probably took 15 contested marks and will be hard to move away from CHB from hereon, big Jimmy Wilson was super dooper in the ruck, jumping all over his opponent and taking a stack of contested marks around the ground playing a kick behind the play beautifully, and the whole backline did their jobs well and blanketed their opponents.
With a big game coming up v old foe Westbourne Grammar out there, we are now in a position where we can challenge all sides in the run home to the finals and see how far we can go. Exciting times are upon us!!…..Train hard boys and leave no stone unturned…….this next month could set us up and nail that finals spot!!……get excited, real excited……..