Anna Pavlou – @Annalyst_Sports
There is only one team left undefeated in Division 2 for 2018, with UHS-VU causing a major upset beating Whitefriars to leave Old Paradians alone on top. More hard-fought wins came from Bulleen, who crushed an undermanned Power House and Yarra Old Grammarians holding MHSOB to only seven goals. This week proved that to earn the four points, a team must be willing to put their head over the ball for four full quarters to create opportunity around the ground. Wins from now on will have a lasting impact come seasons end, so each side must now evaluate where they stand in the race for the final four. Let’s see how Round 6 went down.
Emmaus St Leos vs Eltham Collegians
A six goal to one first quarter set up Emmaus St Leos to take the four points against Eltham at their home ground by 74 points. While it was a gutsy effort from the undermanned Turtles side, they could not stop the onslaught of goals coming from each contest. The Animals were consistent in front of goal and sealed the game in the last quarter with five goals to one. Eltham’s poor kicking (4 goals 12 points) could have made the game a closer battle, but their goals came from young guns Eden Simpson and Fraser Cloney. Tim Woods worked hard around the ground also. The Animals had a spread of 9 goal kickers, led by Tom Birkett’s stellar 4 and Harrison Davis with 2. Across the ground, Paul Baranello and Newbegin Baxter were solid.
UHS-VU vs Whitefriars
UHS-VU caused a major upset when they defeated top-of-the-table Whitefriars by a solid 14 points at Brens Oval. A tight battle ensued with the Friars staying in front for the first three terms, with help from a variety of goal kickers, including Nick Mercuri (2) and Kristan Height. Entering the final quarter with a two-point lead, it was up to defensive pressure to hold each side out, with the Vultures proving too good in the end. Goals were consistent from both sides all day but it was the Vultures final quarter burst of 4 goals to the Friars 2 that pushed them out in front to take the points. The big plus for UHS-VU was the spread of 12 goal kickers. Power forwards Lewis Neate (5) and Michael Nitas (3) again were strong along with Jamus Campbell and Darcy Spence named in Whitefriars best. For the winners, Ben Dimattina and James Ford starred along with multiple goals from Chris Lund (2), Brandon Jackson (2) and James Dimattina (2).
Yarra Old Grammarians vs MHSOB
Jack Hall (4) and Michael Scott (3) led Yarra Old Grammarians to a much-needed 75-point win over MHSOB at Doncaster Reserve. The Rangers kicked six majors to the Unicorns one in the first term and from there did not stop up forward, kicking six more in the second quarter. Liam Marshall (2) was another leader in the spread of the Bushrangers 11 goals kickers. MHSOB seemed to have no answers and only managed 3 leading into the final term, but had a better last quarter where they kicked four. However, the Rangers big first half and strong defence that broke down MHSOB’s forward structures put them in prime position as they settled in the last and took their well-deserved win. Kane Smith kicked five of the Unicorns seven goals and was named their best with support from Will Suhr and James Tran. More support for the Bushrangers came from Jesse Woolley and Bailey Johnson, both one goal each.
Old Paradians vs St Johns
Old Paradians held St Johns goalless in the first quarter and again proved why they are a force to be reckoned with in 2018. Coming out 68 points winners, the Raiders managed eight goals in the first half and kept the Jocs quiet all day. In the first half, the Jocs kicked eight points and continually struggled to impact the scoreboard, kicking 4 goals 17 points for the day. The Raiders had 29 scoring shots kicking an efficient 16 goals 13 points and Raiders utilised their chances in front of goal. Old Paradians covered all areas and did not allow St Johns to play their free-flowing game. Consistency across the ground from Old Paradians’ BOGs Michael Bellizia and Michael Deligiorgis ensured the Raiders took home the four points, as they sparked five goals from Michael Boundy and another three from Chris Kandilakis. Alex Thornton had three of St Johns four to his name and the consistent Keith Ash was best for his side.
Bulleen Templestowe vs Power House
There were loose men everywhere for the Bullants who ran out 73-point winners over an injury-struck and undermanned Power House side. Celebrating the anniversary of their 2008 Premiership (coincidently with 2008 Premiership Coach Dave Matthews now coaching Power House), it was a battle that both sides were eager to dominate. However, Bulleen showed who was boss in the end, holding the House, led by a brilliant defence, to only 1 goal in the first three quarters and stopping the House from finding their feet. The Bullants were low scoring until they turned a corner in the third quarter and kicked eight unanswered goals to set them up for a big last term. Power House managed to kick two late goals but it was too little too late for a side that must regroup next week. Bulleen had a range of goal kickers, including Anthony Lucisano and Jack Cowell who shared four between them. More support for the Bullants came from BOG Lachlan Bruce who shut down the opposition through the middle and backline. For Power House, Luke Stubbs kicked one, Fiachra O’Deasmhunaigh and Dom Mitchell were strong in the backline.
Photo: Phil Skeggs