Division 4 contest heats up

Posted on - Latest News, Featured, Division 4 Men's

Jake Morris

Two rounds of Division 4 football is done and dusted for the year and only three teams remain undefeated so far this season. South Melbourne Districts won their second game in a row for the first time since Rounds 12 and 13 in 2016 while playing in Div 3, while St Francis Xavier and North Brunswick continued their hot starts to remain undefeated for 2018. Parkside and the Eley Park Sharks both picked up big wins to keep pace with the top three sides while Mt Lilydale, South Mornington and the Masala Football Club remain winless through the first two weeks. Round three is upon us and it’s time to deep dive into what we can expect from this weekend’s round of football.

Two of the three competitions new sides will square up for the first time this year as Box Hill North and the South Melbourne Districts will lock horns in what is shaping up to potentially be match of the round. After a solid outing in Round 1 against Parkside, the Demons ran into the freight train that is the North Brunswick Bulls, hell-bent on avenging their disappointing finals campaign a year prior. Trailing by only 23-points at the final change, the Demons allowed the Bulls to kick seven of the last eight goals of the match to run out convincing 64-point winners and leaving Alan Chung’s men searching for answers. Nick Lang and Nicholas Boothman were the only multiple goal-kickers on the day for Box Hill North, with Eugene Charles and Sean Donovan each having strong outings on a disappointing day for the Dees. Their opponents this week in South Melbourne Districts etched up win number two to start the year in a comfortable 37-point win over Elsternwick, 11.8 (74) to 5.7 (37). In what was a wet and windy day for football, the Bloods were able to hold the Wickers to just one goal for the entire second half, while piling on six of their own to put the result beyond doubt. Ryan Chirgwin booted three majors and Torren Wright and Jason Clifford were both strong across the ground in what was an impressive performance. South Melbourne Districts to continue their hot start and grab win number three.

Speaking of the Wickers, wet weather footy played a big role in their sides’ 37-point loss at the hands of the Bloods on the weekend. With only five majors being registered for the day and Andrew Oldfield not having his usual impact, it was always going to be a tough ask against a strong South Melbourne Districts side. Julian Yeatman continued his good start to the year in-front of goal booting two while another impressive outing from Kyle Van Der Pluym was the highlight on a dark, cold and windy day for the Wickers. Mt Lilydale aren’t fairing much better to start the year, sitting winless and in the bottom three after a 33-point loss to ladder-leaders St Francis Xavier. The final margin seemingly flattered the Rams as their opponents dominated the second half but were wasteful in-front of goal, something that Mark Holly and his men know won’t win you football games. Stephen Donald kicked three while Daniel Perry was once again prominent up-forward with two, while Luke England and Luke Corrin stood out for their side. Wickers to get back on track in a close one.

The Bulls will have to give themselves plenty of time to make the long trip down to Mount Martha for their first clash of the year with competition newcomers South Mornington. Sitting winless and in 9th position heading into Round 3, it hasn’t been the ideal start for the Tigers and with one of the competitions best teams coming to town, they’ll need a herculean performance to put their name on the winners list. The Tigers were simply outplayed from the opening bounce in their 45-point defeat at the hands of Parkside in what was a very disappointing performance against a team they probably should have beaten. Managing only seven goals for the game, with four of those coming in the last quarter after the match was essentially in the books, it was an outing that South Mornington will have to put behind them quickly. Travis French once again put himself in the multiple goal kickers with two majors while Anthony Simpson and Jason Bland can hold their heads high with respectable performances across the ground. North Brunswick continued their run towards redemption with a 10-goal pummelling of Box Hill North to remain undefeated and a perfect 2-0 to start the year. Brendon George booted eight majors while Michael Salloum kicked a bag of four after kicking three last week. Rob Santacroce was instrumental across the ground and took home BOG honours in the demolition performance. Bulls to win here, and win well.

Masala showed a lot of heart and spirit in their clash with the Eley Park Sharks on the weekend, with just one bad quarter from the Tigers being the only thing that separated the two sides at the end, giving the Sharks a 27-point win. Alan Sutherland’s men were hanging tough up until half time, trailing by just 16-points before a five goal to nil term from the Sharks pushed the margin out to 45 at the last change. A gallant effort from a side that failed to show up last week, one they can look to build on as the year progresses. Samuel Freeman kicked three up-forward while Sri Lankan born forward Janahan Kumaralingam kicked two and featured in his sides best for the day. Their opponents this week in Parkside showed they had completely moved on from their round one performance against Box Hill North with a dominant outing over South Mornington. The 45-point win could have easily reached 100 or more if Parkside were able to convert in-front of goal, and make the most of their abundance of opportunities in the second half. Adam Moffa and Isaac Romano each kicked three apiece while Maroun Fahl continued his strong start to the year with another two to add to his five from last weekend. Marco Creek was awarded best on ground for his performance in the blustery conditions. Parkside to take care of business and hold a winning percentage for the first time since Round 17 2015.

The X-Men put on another defensive clinic on the weekend, holding their opponents to just six goals to run out with a comfortable 33-point win over Mt Lilydale. In contrast to Round 2 last season, the Rams kicked 23-goals in a 67-point drubbing of a very different SFXOC side. Today, St Francis Xavier are undefeated on-top of the Div 4 ladder, with a staggering 534.04 percentage and have been able to hold their two first round opponents to a combined 47-points, a truly momentous turnaround. Dylan Alexander followed on from his six-goal haul last week to kick another five majors to take the early spot on the leading goal kicking tally, while Stephen and Daniel Chin were both instrumental in the win. The Sharks used a strong third quarter to separate themselves from the Masala Tigers in a comfortable 27-point victory at home. Seven majors to Noel Bahnsen and four to Jayden Pritchard was more than enough firepower to hold off the Masala Football Club. Jesiah McGarvie continued his fantastic start to 2018 in the captain’s role with another huge performance throughout the midfield, while Joshua Balon also stepped up to help secure Eley Park’s first win of the year. It will be a close contest that should go down to the wire, but look for the X-Men to remain undefeated to end Round Three.

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