Queensland Under 21’s three-year winning streak against the Victorian Amateurs came to an abrupt end at Fankhauser Reserve today.

Saturday 12 June 2010

Queensland Under 21’s three-year winning streak against the Victorian Amateurs came to an abrupt end at Fankhauser Reserve today.

The well-organised visitors overran the young Queenslanders in the last term after taking a 14-point lead into the final change, flying home to win 19.14 (128) to 12.13 (85).

The Victorians won the hard-ball gets and centre clearances and had two strong marking targets up forward.

In contrast the Queenslanders struggled to take a contested mark in their forward 50m arc all day, despite plenty of supply in the opening three quarters.

The young Maroons did have control of the ruck with giants David Hill and Dean Putt dominating the tap-outs.

However, best afield Jack Hellier constantly got his hands to the ball first and was dynamic in the tight going, receiving great support from Tom Overman.

Tall defender Tom Caven was superb in the last line of defence, Alastair Austin rebounded continually off half-back, and Nick Corp provided a powerful target up forward.

Queensland midfielder Justin Myers was a prolific ballwinner and was his side’s best four quarter performer, with half-back Matt Davis not far behind with a whole-hearted effort that saw him match a big possession list with a high tackle count.

The duo were clearly Queensland’s best, although Tom Bell stood tall at centre half back, Matt Thomson was lively and ruckmen Putt and Hill worked hard around the ground.

Queensland started brightly enough with three of the first four goals, although the visitors wasted several gilt-edged opportunities in front of goal and enjoyed almost double the scoring shots at quarter-time, despite trailing by two points.

While the first quarter was a dour affair with a big midfield press by both teams, the game opened up in the second and feature some impressive passages of play by both sides.

The Victorians kicked five goals to four to take a one-point lead into halftime, with Bradley Palipuaminni producing several special efforts for the Maroons.

Speedy forward pocket Adrian Delmonte’s chasing a tackling were a feature of the second term, and his goals either side of halftime and early in the final term were vital for the VAFA.

While Putt continued to work hard to provide a target around the ground, Queensland relied heavily on their smaller players for goals.

Stanis Susuve and Matt Fowler bagged two each in the first half but could not crack the suffocating defence in the second.

The Victorians broke the game open from the four-minute mark of the final term, when they produced five goals in 12 minutes to stun the home side.

Hellier, Daniel Sargent, Jack Bull and Delmonte ran amok, while Caven was unpassable in the last line of defence.

It took the Maroons 18 minutes to score and 26 minutes to register their only goal of the disappointing final term.

The VAFA claimed the Johnson-Harris Cup for the first time, while Myers was awarded the Sam Gilbert Medal for Queensland’s best player.     

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