Division 2 Men’s 2022 Season Preview

Posted on - Latest News, Division 2 Men's

Division 2 had plenty on the line going into the back half of 2021 before the season was abandoned but after an off-season of deliberating, thinking about missed opportunities and waiting around, the moment for redemption has arrived for all of our clubs.

Johnny Edgar’s Glen Eira have made the jump up to Division 1 after winning 11 of 11 last season, while Tommy Hunter’s Brunswick come down after finishing the season winless.

MHSOB

The highest scoring team in 2021 will be out to continue the 10 game winning streak they’re on when it all kicks off this weekend. Last year they averaged 118.7 points per game kicking over 100 points on 5 occasions and over 200 once. From a defensive point of view, they were equally as tight only giving up 46.9 points.

Ashan Wijayakumara bagged 42 goals for the season to go with his 30 the year before, he will be one tough to stop if the Unicorns get the ball in quick out of centre square stoppages.

A big off-season recruit for the club is Julian Eimutis who returns home after a lengthy stint with Collegians, he’ll be joined by fellow class of 2013 member Jayme Lawson to help bolster the stocks at the club.

West Brunswick

In 2021 defence seemed to be the mantra for the Pies as they conceded an average of 54pts per game. While on the attacking side (Rank 3) they would average 28 scoring shots per game, 4 times kicking over 100 points.

VAFA legend Nick Mitchell has stepped out of the coaches box and Louis Martin has been welcomed into Ransford Oval.

It all kicks off for West Brunswick in the twilight spot of 3.20pm on Saturday against Aquinas away from home, a side they managed to get the better of in 2021.

Old Parade

Is this the year Old Parade forgive the VAFA’s For the Love of the Game podcast? We sure hope so.

2021 saw Parade finish with an 8-3 record, they’ll be aiming to build on that this season. An off-field recruiting drive has seen them release a “fee-free” footy season for registered players, while a commemoration of the 1951 B-Grade premiership has got the club right in the mood for a big tilt at the title this year!

The Paradians have farewelled coach Phil Plunkett at the conclusion of last year and brought in Justin Whitcher. Justin’s resume has experience left, right and centre having spent time at reserves level with both Collingwood and Carlton, before spending 3 years with South Fremantle.

Ivanhoe AFC

The Hoers come into the season full of steam, they were seriously pushing for a top 4 berth when the abandonment came in 2021.

Playing coach Ash Close took it up to Ashan in the goalkicking stakes with 38 majors while in his debut season, at the ripe age of 39 Wayne Schultz claimed the competition best and fairest award.

Not to be outshone by the Premier grade clubs, Scott Selwood was scouted and is coming out of football retirement to play with Ivanhoe AFC this year and it all kicks off with a ding dong battle against Old Paradians on Saturday night.

Manningham

It was the Cobras first year in Division 2 throughout 2021 after going down to Aquinas in the 2019 D3 Grand Final, unfortunately, due to COVID lockdowns and season cancellations we’ll have to wait until round 5 to see the Grand Final rematch between these 2 sides.

The club will be looking to fill the hole left by Kane Maghamez who kicks goals for fun. Anthony Raso will be one to watch this season as the Cobras push for a spot in the top 4.

On the leadership front Nick Zappala returns to the club after a stint with Old Trinity in 2021 and joins the leadership group. Chris Arman, club legend is the vice-captain after being the reserves skipper in 2021 is also an added member along with Mitch Keltie, Adam Baltruweit and Tom Flood all in support of Luke Morris who is one of the competitions most consistent performers.

Aquinas

It was a strong finish to the home and away run for Aquinas in 2021 winning 3 of the 4 final games they played. The season opens at 3.20pm against West Brunswick at Aquinas College.

They’ll be expecting a hot start to their season with 5 of their first 6 matches all at home and will fancy their chances against the teams that finished around them in 2021.

The club has reappointed Jarrod Fisher to the role of senior coach after his debut season and Fisher said at the time of his reappointment “My expectation for all three of the men’s teams – 19s, reserves and seniors – as a minimum would be for finals football,” he said ahead of 2022.

He will be joined by good friend Luke Harley, who joins the club as a playing assistant coach.

Yarra Old Grammarians

Despite lean pickings in terms of on-field success in 2021, it’s been an off-season of stability for Yarra Old Grammarians.

Ahead of the pre-season even beginning the club had already announced a number of re-signings and commitments for 2022, including Michael Scott returning. “Scotty” is a forward who oozes X-factor, capable of kicking big bags and can play as an intercepting defender when required.

They will be led ably by Rory Chipman, Jack Hall, Dean Letson and Liam Marshall as the on-field leaders for the Men’s side for season 2022.

Power House

Power House will recognise 75 years of existence in 2022 and they’ll do so with arguably the greatest clash strip in the competition.

Senior coach Anthony McMahon spoke to VAFA.com.au at the end of the 2021 season, with an eye to 2022 “We feel we have placed some excellent building blocks to ensure we improve on the win/loss columns next year” and there’s no question that vibe and feeling has only grown over recent months.

Matt Quinn joins the club from Bonbeach FC. Following in his father’s footsteps who played at the club back in 1979. Will the club give him the same number to run out this Saturday? All will be revealed when they face Bulleen Templestowe in what promises to be a close one to start the year.

Brunswick

Coming down from Division 1, Tommy Hunter is still on the lookout for his first win as senior coach of Brunswick.

They’ll see themselves as a strong chance in the opening 3 rounds of the season with Manningham, Power House and Yarra Old. Teams they’ll likely be competing with for a spot in the top 4 later on in the season.

There is strong leadership in Nick Burgin, Chris Gavaghan, James Schmidt, Rhyen Woods amongst many others. The core age-bracket of the group is right in the window of opportunity that would excite even David King in the Fox Footy lab!

Bulleen Templestowe

It’s been a lean couple of years for Bulleen Templestowe, but they haven’t stopped trying or thrown in the towel at any point.

Over the off-season a number of players have re-signed and re-committed to the club in a great show of faith.

They were pleased to announce and welcome Max Tiernan who comes across from Fitzroy, expect to see him playing a Luke Jackson type role in the ruck for the Ants this year.

They finished off 2021 with a win over Yarra Old which no doubt would’ve whet the appetite going into the pre-season and will fancy their chances this Saturday against Power House at Ted Ajani Reserve.

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