Jason Bast – @Jason_Bast
In Round 6, it was another loss for Masala who will continue the search for their first win of 2017 after going down to Elsternwick. The win gave the Wickers their third week in a row where they’ve collected the four points (two wins and a bye). Aquinas made light work of Parkside to stay in touch with the top of the ladder, while the Bulls continued their charge to remain undefeated and hold steady in first place, just four points clear of the chasing Bloods. Lastly, the Sharks made it two in a row with a big win over St Francis Xavier at Whitehorse Reserve.
Elsternwick 23.15-153 def Masala FC 12.10-82
Elsternwick won their second game in a row down at Elsternwick Park, gaining the 12 points from three rounds including the bye. The win was a nice percentage booster for the Wickers who now boast a better percentage than the two teams sitting four points above them, Mt Lilydale and Eley Park. It wasn’t until the last quarter that Masala lost touch with the Wickers, only down by 24 at three quarter time. But out came Elsternwick in the fourth to shut down any hope for their opposition, putting on 11 goals to three in the final term. It was a great game for the Wickers’ forwards with six multiple goal scorers and five players kicking three goals or more; Luke Grabowski led the way with five majors while Luke Forsyth booted four. Leigh Murphy performed as well as he could for Masala, finishing best on ground for the Tigers.
Mt Lilydale OC 7.4-46 def by North Brunswick AFC 12.9-81
The Rams hadn’t lost since Round 1 while the Bulls were undefeated. On paper, this match shaped up as the game of the round. However, you don’t win games on paper and by quarter time it looked grim for Mt Lilydale. North Brunswick managed to hold the Rams goalless and position themselves with a comfortable 21-point lead. The Rams clawed back a little over the next two quarters getting back within two goals at three quarter time. The final quarter began and the Bulls proved too good and ran away to finish the game 35-point victors. Adam Thorne was best on ground for Mt Lilydale finishing the contest with a bag of four to his name. Patrick Notaro for the Bulls was unstoppable, bagging six of his teams 12 goals and taking his season tally to 18.
Parkside FC 6.5-41 def by Aquinas 13.15-93
Aquinas notched up another win, maintaining second spot on the ladder and continuing to chase top placed North Brunswick. It was a close game at halftime, with the Bloods only holding a six-point lead. The second half is where Parkside fell away allowing Aquinas to kick nine goals to three. In the end, the Bloods proved much too strong and ran the game out 52-point victors. Liam Whelan continued chasing his old man’s goal scoring record and once again hit the scoreboard, bagging a further four goals to take his 2017 tally to 30. Alexander Guthrie was judged best on ground after an exceptional display for the Bloods. Shane McLaren played his heart out for another week again finishing amongst the top players for Parkside while Matthew Soligo kicked three goals.
Eley Park Sharks 22.15-147 def St Francis Xavier OC 11.18-84
Another disappointing round for the X-Men who are struggling to find form as they were knocked around by the Eley Park Sharks in Round 6. The Sharks came out firing, kicking eight goals to four in the first quarter and refused to slow down. Leading by 30 at halftime, the Sharks finished the second half with 11 goals to five. The X-Men will be none too happy with their poor kicking for goal, particularly in the last term as they only managed two goals from 10 attempts. Josh Balon and Jesiah Mcgarvie had a day out up forward for the Sharks, kicking five and four respectively. Another gallant effort from Connor Spalding and Brendan O’Hara just wasn’t enough to get the X-men over the line.
In Round 7, Manningham coming back from the bye are going to make it extremely difficult for Masala to notch that first victory of the season down at WJ Turner Reserve. Aquinas and the Eley Park Sharks will battle it out at Aquinas College with Aquinas desperately trying to stay right on the heels of the Bulls who have the bye this week. Mt Lilydale will play Parkside at home as they try to jump back on the winner’s list following a disappointing loss to the North Brunswick. Finishing the round, St Francis Xavier take on Elsternwick at home.