Old Trinity will compete in their first-ever William Buck Premier grand final following an epic seven-point come-from-behind victory against St Bernard’s at Highgate Reserve. Trailing by 32 points at the final break, the T’s ran rampant and piled on 6.4 in the fourth quarter while keeping Bernard’s to just one point. Despite scoring on eight less occasions, the T’s made every opportunity count on their way to victory, with Harry Tinney and Jack Osborn kicking two goals each. Nick and Ben Howell were named best afield for the T’s, while the Hunt brothers continued to exude the class they’ve showcased all season with ball in hand. Despite the loss, Bernard’s top-of-the-table home and away finish ensures a second chance in next week’s preliminary final against University Blues.
St Bernard’s will not have it all their own way in next week’s clash with the Blues, after Quentin Gleeson’s men put an end to De La Salle’s monumental run of wins, defeating them by 22 points at Sportscover Arena. With the Elsternwick wind blowing towards the scoreboard end for the entirety of the game, it’s no surprise 21 of the 25 goals scored went through at that end. Jack Watts was by far and away the best player on the field, kicking six goals in two quarters and standing strong in defence throughout the alternate two terms. Ross Young and Marshall Rippon oozed class through the Blues’ midfield, while Xavier Murphy and Leigh Harrison provided the spark for De La’s final quarter fightback. The win keeps the Blues’ premiership hopes well and truly alive, as they will now clash with St Bernard’s in a mouth-watering preliminary final match-up. What cannot be understated is the effort De La showed throughout the season, after they slumped to 1-8 and then commenced one of the greatest midseason comebacks this association has seen to roll into the finals. If they can keep the momentum heading into 2016, they will be a handful for every opposition team.