The Pitcher Park locals suffered their first loss of the season as Parkside went down to Hawthorn AFC by 52 points. Seven goals to one in the first half set the Hawks up for the win as they limited the Red Devils to just 1.3 in two quarters of football and entered the main break with a 38-point buffer. Without the division’s leading goalkicker in Simon Mackie available, it was Isaac Romano (3) who picked up the slack, earning himself best-on for Parkside, while for Hawthorn, five of their eight goalkickers scored multiple majors. Darcy Johnston kicked three, as Dean Monohan (2), Aaron Downie (2), Harry Rand (2) and Justin Raiti (2) contributed to the fourteen goals kicked on the day. For the winners, Hugh Clancey took the top honours as his team takes top position on the ladder.
A 15-goal second half has seen Richmond Central run away 62-point winners against North Brunswick at Kevin Bartlett Reserve. It was an arm-wrestle up until the main break as the Snakes went in six points up, but they came out firing in the third term, piling on nine goals to the Bulls’ four to all but seal the deal with a quarter to go. Jack Bilson dominated and kicked nine goals as Richmond Central’s best, while Thomas Rivers (4), Jake Munro (2), and Cameron Pullen (2) all rode shotgun. For North Brunswick, Sam Willatt (4) and Andrew Ramzy (3) tried their best to keep their team in it, as did Peter Butler, who kicked two and earned himself top honours.
Emmaus St Leo’s led at every break and took the four points against the Cobras at Canterbury Sportsground. It was relatively close as the game went on but the Cobras were always on the back foot, going into the main break 14 points down. Both teams kicked 2.2 in the third term but it was the Animals who steadied the ship to be 18-point winners at the final siren, despite kicking 13 behinds to their 12 goals, and Canterbury outscoring them in the last quarter. Sam Barrah (3) and Jacob Anthony (2) were two of ten goalkickers for Emmaus St Leo’s as Nathan Bird (1) earned himself best-on honours for his work all over the ground. For the Cobras, Thomas Lowden kicked four majors to see him top the best players list while Mitchell Szabo slotted two goals.
Albert Park went agonisingly close to securing their first win of the season but ultimately fell short by just 11 points against Westbourne Grammarians. Both teams were in it until the very end but the Falcons’ 1.3 in the final quarter was outdone by the Warriors’ 2.4. The first break had Albert Park up by 9 points, but that would be the one and only time the Falcons had the lead as Westbourne kept at it to get their second win of the season. Kelsey Rameka kicked four for the winning team to take top honours while Sam Lee (3) earned best-on for Albert Park.
Hawthorn will take their winning ways on the road on the weekend as they travel to Allard Park to face a North Brunswick side eager to rebound after disappointing loss in Round 7. The Hawks will be seeing this game as a big opportunity given their newly-appointed top-of-the-ladder status hangs on by .13%, while the Bulls search for their third win of the season. Emmaus St Leo’s are returning home to Bennettswood Reserve to welcome Parkside, who will no doubt be looking for redemption after suffering their first loss of the season so far. The Red Devils are 1-0 against the Animals in 2021, but it’s the latter who have won three in a row and are aiming to even out the ledger as the top two looms.
Canterbury is travelling to Bill Woodfull Oval to face Albert Park on Saturday as the Falcons look to get their first four points of 2021. The Cobras are left to rue a missed opportunity in Round 7 after losing a close contest and will be aiming to get back on winner’s list. Westbourne Grammarians get to stay at home for another week as they welcome a fit and firing Richmond Central side to Westbourne Grammar. Both teams had wins in Round 7 and will look to continue that form as the Snakes aim to keep their noses in the top four, while the Warriors’ finals chances will start to slip away slowly if they don’t get their third win for 2021.