In what was Adrian Goodwin’s first game as new Club Coach, and a long pre-season for the players, the opening game proved to set the future for 2011.
Starting slowly with the wind, the boys, under new Club Captain Justin Myers, lead by only four points at the first change.
The second quarter showed the Nu-Jet Blues in better light with Nick McWilliams adding another goal to his tally with newcomer Justin “Maz” Marriott blasting his way around all parts of the ground and booting some massive kicks to penetrate the forward line. Maz went on to kick five majors for the game with Nicko kicking four. Michael “Pup” Clark was sensational in contests, Justin Myers showed leadership though demonstration. An unselfish handpass to Assistant Coach Marriott from Cam Potter after taking a contested mark 40m out directly in front resulted in no score as the siren sounded as soon as Maz took the ball. Brothers Brody and Matt Phillips showed their respective talents, and Justin “Froggy” Fielding did some excellent ground work and Paul Jackson ably undertook the second ruck and forward roles with a newly-honed Ricky Batt proving a hard-contesting player in our back line.
With the Blues 20 points up at the last break, they managed to outscore the Hawks against the wind with the Blues ending four goals up over the Hawks at the final siren.
We look forward to taking on Cygnet at their Slab Rd home next week.
Last week saw us travel up to Boyer to take on New Norfolk which is always a tough challenge but we headed up there with confidence after winning our last four matches.
The first quarter saw us get off to a good start; controlling most of the play and being first to the ball which enabled us to get the ball into our forward line many times and give our forward players many chances. Unfortunately for us, I felt we didn’t take full advantage of this; kicking 3.3.21 for the quarter to new Norfolk’s one behind. Even though we had a lead of 20 points at the first break, I felt our lead should have been two or three goals more.
The second quarter saw New Norfolk take control with them kicking 6.4 to our 2.1 giving them a lead of seven points at half time.
The third quarter, I think, was an even contest, with the footy continually going up and down both ends of the ground with both defences standing up to the pressure. New Norfolk won the quarter by 11 points, leaving us 18 points behind going into the last.
Bracken scored the first goal of the last quarter and Tubb had a chance just minutes later but missed the shot on goal which would have got us to within a kick and maybe even an upset on the cards. However, New Norfolk steadied; kicking away in the last half of the quarter, winning the game by 44 points.
I thought our attitude, attack on the ball, and the way we played was very good which enabled us to compete and prove to each other that we are capable of matching it with the teams above us on the ladder.
Best players were: D Scott, S Bester, N McWilliams, J White, J Fielding and G Quirk.
The season opener had arrived as we travelled to Triabunna to take on last years cellar dwellers.
Not much pre-season gossip had been mentioned of the teams from Triabunna so the reserves group went into the game not assuming anything about the reserves team we were about to meet, especially in the first game of the season.
The new season also seen Chris 'Lloydy' Harper anointed as the new captain with Adrian 'AJ' Pennicott and Andrew 'Tonguie' Clarke as vice captains.
A lot of new faces to the club made their debuts, and for the reserves we had Henry & Jeremy Pfieffer, Dexter Bertoldo, Wally & Stuart Dare, Jesse Hamill and Damien Tunks. All these new players fitted in well straight from the first bounce and will definitely make the side stronger the more we all play together.
We took control of the game early and continued to dominate for the full game. We held an edge over our opponents with our run and fitness and continued to pepper the goals for the whole game. Our back six were fantastic setting up our attacks with a lot of run out of the back line and our on-ballers continually won the 50/50 ball to drive us forward.
The wind and our lack of goal kicking preparation (due to the unavailability of our ground) could of been a factor in our poor goal conversion rate but another factor could of been that we rushed our disposals when we didn't need too, and found ourselves having to many set shots from angles instead of straight out in front.
Dexter Bertoldo and Justin 'Warner' Fielding were hard workers all day busting pack and running lines. Our defense was well served by Wally Dare and Nathan Barton who continually ran to link up off the half back and to drive us forward. Jeremy Pfieffer showed a lot of skill in any position he played and Ricky Batt was sensational in a fill-in ruck roll. Up forward Matt Dunne was good as he used his strength to take many contested marks.
Next week we have a huge challenge against last years premiers New Norfolk and we will need to play some really good football to be a chance. As a team we have a lot to work on but our potential is huge and with a good bunch of blokes I'm sure with each game will come improvement.