By Terry Wilson
Hawks finally break through for a win
Sandgate are finally back in the winner’s circle after they outslogged Wilston Grange in their northern Brisbane derby at Lemke Road Oval on Saturday night.
It wasn’t pretty but Sandgate’s victory, by 7.13 (55) to 4.17 (41), gave the club something to sing about after their maiden 2019 success.
A throwaway line from coach Jarad Marsh when contacted by aflq.com.au best summed up the atmosphere at the Hawks.
“Isn’t the sky bluer today” were the first words Marsh said over the phone on Sunday morning after too long labouring under dark clouds.
Sandgate’s last win before the weekend was in the fourth round last year when they upset Morningside at Jack Esplen Oval.
No wonder the mood was rollicking when players belted out the club song after full-time – or should we say when those who knew the words belted out the song because there would have been some in the group who had never done that before.
Look at the scoreboard and it indicates it was a dour clash. It was just that, said Marsh.
“It was not wet, it was not windy, it was just a battle between two teams desperate to win,” said Marsh.
Whatever the Hawks did to negate the firepower of the Grange certainly worked because the Gorillas took until mid-way through the third quarter to kick their first goal following 10 behinds straight.
They had 1.12 on the board at the final break and it was only three late goals that saved some face.
“We played dumb football and made silly mistakes again,” said Grange coach Barry O’Brien.
“As usual people score off our errors and this is something we need to fix.
“Full credit to Sandgate. They defend hard, and we probably didn’t adapt to their style.”
Marsh thought the Hawks dominated the first quarter and admitted relief that, although they had only 3.4 on the board at half-time, they were still 13 points up.
“Our tackling pressure was a hell of a lot better this week than it has been,” he said.
Marsh put the fact that the Gorillas were able to kick the last three goals of the game was all about his young side learning how to win.
“The pressure came but we were better able to handle it – it’s all a part of the learning processes.”
Tahj Abberley, a 17-year-old recruited from Morerton Bay in the off-season, starred on a wing for the winners, well supported by Max Homer in the middle, Ben Hogan across half-back and deep defender Toara Marango deep in defence.
Best for the disappointing Gorillas were Dann Farry in the midfield and up forward, Lochlainn Gaw at half-back and midfield, and big Dylan Reid in the forward zones.
Sandgate 1.3, 3.4, 6.7, 7.13 (55)
Wilston Grange 0.4, 0.9, 1.12, 4.17 (41)
GOALS, Sandgate: A. Fabian 2, J. O’Halloran 1, J. Taglieri 1, J. Maynard 1, J. Harding 1, J. Preval 1. Wilston Grange: D. Farry 2, T. Aarons 1, A. Hughes 1.
BEST, Sandgate: T. Abberley, M. Homer, B. Hogan, T. Marango, J. Harding, B. Hartley. Wilston Grange: D. Farry, L. Gaw, D. Reid, T. Smart, N. Dennis, H. Campbell
Tidy performance from Neate lifts the Vultures
Milestone man Frazer Neate responded to the occasion of his 100th game for Mt Gravatt by spearheading the Vultures to a vital win over Broadbeach on Saturday.
Playing through the midfield, Neate was a clear best-on-ground as the Vultures saw off Broadbeach to take precious points by 13.11 (89) to 14.4 (88) at Dittmer Park.
“Frazer won a mountain of clearances and probably had double digits in tackle numbers – he really got us going,” said coach Adam Boon of Neate.
The one-point victory was revenge for Mt Gravatt, who were beaten by a similar margin when they played Broadbeach on the Gold Coast in the second round this year.
Up until the final term it looked like the points were heading Broadbeach’s way.
The Cats led clearly by 25 points four minutes into the last term before the Vultures responded with goals to Dominic Nash, Jesse Green and Sam Stubbs.
The difference was then five points but Jackson Fisher put the Cats 11 points up in the 26th minute and victory looked theirs.
However up stepped Nash (28th minute) and Green (32nd minute) for goals that killed off the visitors.
That was hard to take for Broadbeach coach Beau Zorko who borrowed an old cliché to describe the result.
“That was hot to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory,” he said.
“We were 25 points up so if you get beaten from there you deserve to get beaten.
“Mt Gravatt had plenty to play for and so did we but we shut up shop and stopped playing the game.
“Unfortunately, we lacked the poise to win it.”
Boon was understandable chuffed by the narrow win and was thankful his charges were able to overcome some finishing deficiencies.
“We dominated statistics in the forward zones but did not convert our chances,” he said. “But then then finishing came good.”
Away from Neate, the Vultures had a winner in Mick Hamill, usually a defender, who started on-ball.
Jonah Licht played on ex-Collingwood AFL forward Jason Cloke and served the team cause well, as did skipper Andrew Smith, a regular shining light in his role as a ruckman.
Broadbeach will make changes before hosting the Western Magpies next weekend, said Zorko.
Ben Hancock and Joel Newman in defence, Jackson Fisher as a midfielder/forward, and Grogan Medallist Blake Erickson were the best for Broadbeach.
The win pushed Mt Gravatt to 16 points, still in sixth spot just one win behind Surfers Paradise (third), Broadbeach (fourth) and Labrador (fifth).
The Vultures are away to Wilston Grange next weekend.
Mt Gravatt 3.5, 6.7, 8.9, 13.11 (89)
Broadbeach 2.1, 7.2, 12.4, 14.4 (88)
GOALS, Mt Gravatt: S. Stubbs 3, J. Green 3, D. Nash 2, D. Daye 2, D. MacDonald 1, D. Smith 1, A. Smith 1. Broadbeach: J. Cloke 3, J. Fisher 3, J. O’Shea 2, B. Neal 2, B. Chadwick 1, J. Newman 1, J. Searl 1, L. Nelson 1.
BEST, Mt Gravatt: F. Neate, M. Hamill, J. Licht, A. Smith, T. Carbone, J. Green. Broadbeach: B. Hancock, J. Newman, J. Fisher, B. Erickson, B. Neal, J. Rymer.
Lions continue on their winning way
Reigning premiers Palm Beach Currumbin remain clearly the team to beat for this year’s flag after displaying awesome on-ball talent against Morningside on Saturday.
It was the on-ballers who ripped Morningside apart in the second half on their way to victory by 15.8 (98) to 7.7 (49) at the Panthers’ Jack Esplen Oval.
With Tom Thynne, Jesse Derrick, Brock Askey, Dylan Troutman and Angus Munro burning, the Lions systematically destroyed one of the QAFL’s best teams in an ominous performance.
And the Lions did it without key forward Jack Anthony, who was a late withdrawal after officials decided not to risk his ankle injury and give him another week to recover.
It did not matter because up stepped Southport-listed Mitch Johnson, who led the scoring with a haul of six – after kicking seven against Wilston Grange the week before.
“It was an arm wrestle in the first half but we backed ourselves to have the fitness to overrun them after half-time,” said PBC coach Jess Sinclair.
“It was a good grinding win in the end.”
Tom Thynne was ‘unbelievable’ according to Sinclair after the free-wheeling midfielder’s class act.
“He had easily 35 touches but what was even better was what he did with them,” said the coach.
Derrick in the middle and forward, Munro and Troutman across the half-back line were also outstanding.
As Panthers coach Clint Watts said, it was not all doom and gloom after a result that kept the club in the top four.
“We were only seven points down at half-time and had done a decent job,” he said.
“But I suppose we just couldn’t lock them (the PBC runners) all away.
“I thought we looked a bit lethargic and listless but it is far from panic stations.”
Encouraging performances from teenage first gamers Saxon Crozier and Jesse Quint pleased the Panthers. They played mainly outside roles but did enough to suggest bright futures.
“There were some really good signs from them,” said Watts.
Brad Hodge continues his purple patch of form in the ruck and veteran Brad Howard did well in the middle and across half-back.
It hurt Morningside when they lost Luke Rogerson (head knock) and James Rayner (cork) in the third quarter, a period when the Lions got right on top.
Next weekend Palm Beach host Sandgate at Salk Oval while Morningside have an away match against Surfers Paradise at Sir Bruce Small Park.
Palm Beach Currumbin 2.4, 5.5, 10.8, 15.8 (98)
Morningside 2.1, 4.4, 5.4, 7.7 (49)
GOALS, Palm Beach Currumbin: M. Johnson 6, J. Croad 2, R. Buckland 2, B. Askey 2, J. Derrick 1, R. Harris 1, J. Harrison 1. Morningside: N. Colenso 2, A. Stewart 2, H. Livesey 1, H. Joyce 1, J. Rayner 1.
BEST, Palm Beach Currumbin: T. Thynne, D. Troutman, J. Derrick, B. Askey, R. Harris, A. Munro. Morningside: B. Hodge, H. Livesey, B. Howard, S. Crozier, D. Cameron-Reeves, J. Quint.
Tigers take first Col Bourke Cup clash
Labrador did it for their current football manager when they brought of an upset of sorts against Gold Coast rivals Surfers Paradise at Cooke-Murphy Oval on Saturday.
The clash for the Col Bourke Cup honoured the significant input by Col Bourke into Coast footy after long service to both Surfers and Labrador since 1983 when he arrived on the tourist strip from East Burwood in Melbourne.
A premiership coach at both clubs, Bourke was pretty happy to be able to present the Cup to Tigers coach Liam Burke and stand-in captain Rhys Coombe after what is best described as a dour scrap with few highlights but plenty of physicality.
When Labrador lost Bryce Retzlaff, Jaicob Kenny and Andy Hollis, then prime movers Alex McKay and Ben Fagan late, things looked to be stacked up against them and the Demons were warm favourites to win the Coast derby.
But someone forgot to tell the Tigers because the response from the replacements was outstanding and it was the Demons who played like they were the rank outsiders for much of the game.
Surfers kicked badly for goal, assisted plenty by the tackling pressure from the Tigers, yet led by 1.3 to 0.2 at quarter-time and by 3.11 to 3.4 at the big break.
Two goals to nil in the third term set up the Tigers who finished with 2.2 to 1.2 in the last term.
After back-to-back losses in which they have managed to score only 32 points (v Western Magpies) and now the weekend’s 38 points, the spotlight is now right on the Demons with questions being raised about their flag credentials.
Their form is way, way down and coach Brad Moore knows it.
They will be better when Dan Green, Jack Yelland, Noa Corbett, Nick Harrison and Harris Newton return, but they need to be much, much better than they were on Saturday.
“We were very poor,” said Moore. “Footy’s a simple game and it all comes down to your effort, work rate and commitment and that’s pretty much it.
“When you don’t have that and the other team does you’re in trouble.
“So full credit to Labrador, they completely outplayed us all over the ground.”
Burke gave credit to all of his players but was particularly pleased with Matt Daniel and Matt Fraser.
“I thought the hunger of Daniel at centre half-back, then centre half-forward was outstanding.
“He flew for marks, he tackled hard and he ran himself into the ground.
“And young Matt Fraser was exceptional early on running with (Haydn) Kiel and we gave him a few other jobs when Kiel went off.
“He just looks like a senior footballer. He uses the ball well and he doesn’t panic.
“And Jarrod Mills in the midfield. He’s a 1i9-year-old and is a gun, a really good footballer.”
Best for Surfers were Jack Prestegar, Dylan Mutu and Dale Eames.
Labrador 0.2, 3.4, 5.5, 7.7 (49)
Surfers Paradise 1.3, 3.11, 3.12, 4.14 (38)
GOALS, Labrador: H. Barry 1, S. Walker 1, M. Fraser 1, P. Murtagh 1, E. Baru 1, T. Davidson 1, M. Watmuff 1. Surfers Paradise: B. Haberfield 1, M. Green 1, M. Pescud 1, C. McKenzie 1.
BEST, Labrador: D. Watmuff, T. Davidson, D. Budarick, M. Daniel, J. Mills, M. Fraser. Surfers Paradise: D. Mutu, K. Ford, M. Pescud.