Cobras leap into third in Div 3 ladder shake up

Posted on - Latest News, Featured, Division 3 Men's

Michael Davey

Richmond Central travelled to Westbourne to take on the in-form Warriors. The visitors started well, courtesy of a five goal breeze, with Steven Bugeja controlling play for the Snakes to give them a 23-point lead at the first break. The second quarter saw Westbourne score five goals to Richmond’s one, thanks to Chris Hudson’s dominance in the air and Patrick O’Brien’s work around the stoppages. The third quarter was an arm wrestle, with Luke James leading the way for Richmond who enjoyed another five goal term, but Westbourne kicked two important goals against the breeze.

Richmond led by 14 points at the last break, but the Warriors kicked two early goals and dominated the rest of the game, scoring 7.6 to one behind. Westbourne’s Tim Rogers led the clearances, Justin Porter was solid in defence and Michael Culliver kicked the goal of the day. Marek Pietrzak (4) was best for the visitors, while James, Jake King, Max Murray and Bugeja were good all day. The Warriors have turned their season around with three wins in a row, propelling them from the verge of the drop zone to the edge of the top four. Westbourne are sure to have plenty of confidence when they face fellow contenders Swinburne University in Round 11.

Glen Eira welcomed Swinburne to Packer Park on a wet and windy day, but despite the cold conditions, the heat around the contest was intense in the first quarter. The Gryphons were wasteful moving forward, giving Swinburne plenty of opportunities and allowing them to lead by a goal at the first break. The second term was in stark contrast to the opener, as the Gryphon juggernaut upped the ante to take the game away from Swinburne with 5.7 to a single behind.

Lachlan Pound had the ball on a string in the third, kicking four majors and stretching the home team’s lead to 63 points before they ran out the last with a 78-point victory. Julian Stone continued his stellar form for the Gryphons, supported by Pound, Brent Connolly and the Carey brothers whose hardness at the ball draws comparisons with the Scott brothers. Matt Greenwood, Will Gubbins and Joldy ‘Polar Bear’ Bradley played well for the Razorbacks, who host the in-form Warriors this week.

Aquinas travelled to a windy Albert Park, where the Falcons got off to a flyer, leading by 29-points at the first change. The Bloods turned it on it the second to lead by a goal at half time, which built to a two goal buffer at the third quarter break. The final term saw the accurate visitors run away with the game. A seven goal haul for the Blood’s Jake Cawsey gave him BOG honours, followed by Jon Kerr, Anthony Mattioli, Michael O’Malley, Philip Dyck and Sam Scanlon. Albert Park’s best players included Justin Mahoney, Jack Twite, Kirk Murray and Luke Udvardi. The Falcons will look to bounce back quickly against La Trobe, who they beat in their earlier outing, while Aquinas will take confidence from their win into their home game against Canterbury.

The Manningham Cobras travelled to La Trobe University, who started well, kicking with a strong wind in the first quarter with three early goals before the Cobras gradually got into the game to lead by six points at the first break. The second term saw the Cobras take control of the game, starting their 11 goal quarter which carried across until the final siren when they ran out comfortable 95-point victors. The visitors shared the goals around with Michael Muller snaring five and Adam Kinniburgh kicking four, while ‘Chief’ Sukkel and sharp shooter ‘Sugar’ Kane Maghamez bagged three majors each. Cobra’s defenders Tim Binks and Luke Morris had good afternoons, while Sean Leonard rucked well all day.

Sam Benetti-Baker was best for the home team, supported by the reliable pair of Tom Mooney and Brad Fendyk, Jake Anderson, Liam McClintock, and Nick McIntyre. While the Trobers may have only kicked one goal after quarter time, they competed resolutely all game and will look forward to having a red-hot go when they host Albert Park. In the context of the premiership table, the win was huge for Manningham, as they’ve leaped from sixth place to third, and now look forward to taking on the competition’s yardstick at Koonung.

Hawthorn hosted Canterbury at Rathmines Road, where a big crowd celebrated the football life of Dan Lauletta following his passing during the week. With more than 1300 goals in his 320 games, big Dan is true Hawk legend, and Hawthorn were determined to honour his memory. The day started well for the Hawk’s Reserves, with Dan’s brother Simon, and a few old club legends suiting up and winning well.The aptly named Hawthorn Seniors lined up with a combined age of 110 years in its fullback line of Jardine, Avery and Byze. Canterbury challenged hard early, and had the better first quarter to get out to a four goal break. A handy Justin Raiti goal after the quarter time siren buoyed the Hawks, whose back six thwarted every Cobra attack to concede only two more goals for the afternoon. Hawthorn halfbacks of Whittle, Zeschke and Boots were fantastic, as were ‘Sid’ Whittle, Justin Raiti, Brodie Johnston, Patrick Brooks, ‘George’ Priest and BOG Coady Travaglia with four goals. Canterbury were missing some key players, but Martin Astbury, Nick Joss and Nathan Walden battled hard all day.

The win was clearly worth more than four premiership points to the Hawks. In what was a difficult week for the club, Hawthorn would like to give special thanks to the VAFA and Canterbury for their support.

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