Our round 12 clash with Norwood at The Parade shaped up to be arguably the biggest test we’ve had for several weeks. They have been playing as well as anyone over the last month, and while the first part of the season hadn’t gone to plan, they still have the core nucleus of the premiership team from last year, with several of them playing very consistent football. We expected the game to played with high intensity and at a frantic pace, and that was what we got, despite some wet and slippery conditions at times throughout the day.
Even though we had a slight scoreboard advantage at quarter time, we hadn’t played the type of football we were wanting to play. We were flat-footed and reactive for most part. Defensively we were able to scramble well and not allow too much scoreboard pressure, but offensively we played into Norwood’s hands by settling for kicking down the line to contests consistently.
Our second quarter was much better, with a willingness to challenge by changing angles and attacking the open side more often, allowing us to create scoring opportunities. Most of these opportunities were created by some control of the game around the contest which had been a big focus going into the game. We headed to the half time break with a 21-point lead which we felt was a solid position, but by no means a comfortable one.
The third quarter played out much like the first. To Norwood’s credit, they were desperate and energised and had the better of us in most aspects throughout the quarter. As we had done, we were able to scramble and hold on reasonably well and not concede too much on the scoreboard. The ability to scrap through periods when the momentum is against us is an area that has been pleasing as the season progresses. That being the case, it was important for us to respond.
The last quarter didn’t start how we wanted, as we conceded the first goal to make it a one goal game. Full credit to the playing group from that point on though, as they got control of the game again with some strong football to finish off with a five-goal win. We can take some big positives out of how we were able to respond, for it shows some real maturity and belief in the group.
After a slow start for our Reserves group, conceding the first three goals of the game, they were able to click into gear and play some strong football in the conditions they faced. While the group’s ability to hit the scoreboard continues to be strong, from a coaching perspective, the group’s growth in the team defence all over the ground is most pleasing. To only concede one more goal late in the fourth quarter after that point is an outstanding effort. As a club, we are thrilled with the development and the consistency right throughout. There are several players really pushing their cases strongly, which is great for the now and for the future. Well done to all in the group.
It doesn’t get any easier for us as we head into our Round 13 clash with the Adelaide Crows back at Stratrama Stadium next Saturday at the earlier 1.10pm start time. After an outstanding game the last time we met, we are looking forward to the challenge that they present this weekend. Look forward to seeing all our supporters there to help keep our momentum going.
– Darren Reeves, Senior Coach
Goal kickers: Liam McBean (6), Brett Turner (2), Matt Allen, Will Chandler, Cole Gerloff, Lachie Hosie, Corey Lyons
Best Players: Liam McBean, Corey Lyons, Jonty Scharenberg, Matt Allen, Brett Turner, Toby Pink