Round 2 of Division 1 Men’s action was the week for absolute demolition, with more than being won by over a 50 point margin – some teams came in a big way to stamp some authority over their rivals.
Let’s start off with the first of the day which saw Prahran Assumption take on St Marys Salesian out at Ferndale Park. For assumption they were coming off a loss against the rising Glen Eira, whilst for St Mary’s they were trying to come back from a big first round loss at the hands of Old Camberwell. In terms of redemption, things did not start well for St Marys giving up 7 majors in the first term, with the onslaught of goals only continuing not seizing to rain down. In the end, the class of this Prahran Assumption side ran out overwhelming winners claiming their first win of the year by a whopping 113 points. Some notable performances for this Prahran team came at the feet of Matty Clifford with 5 majors to his name.
We’ll turn our attention now to Old Camberwell taking on bottom of the table Therry Penola at Gordon Barnard Reserve. For Old Camberwell, who ran out massive winners in round one, this was always going to be a game you expect them to win and after adding Pepper Medalist Riley Verbi back into the lineup it was almost going to be $1.10 for them to take the 4 points. A fight was certainly put up by Therry Penola, given their highest scoring quarter came in the 4th meaning they certainly didn’t give up – but the reason this team is at the top of the table is because when someone hands them a shovel, they have no issue burying a team. This Camberwell team is a clear force to be reckoned with, and as their matchups begin to get closer to their level it will be interesting to see how their style of play continues to stack up.
Now I thought this would be an interesting game, and for the wrong reasons my end certainly proved to be between PEGS and Whitefriars. It was actually Whitefriars who showed why they were second on the table at the end of last year, taking a small lead into the first break, but from there on out it looks like the game was absolutely played and dominated in PEGS style of football, capitalizing to run out 55 point winners against a quality outfit in Whitefriars. I will be honest I probably disrespected PEGS a little bit given I tipped against them and assumed they would be overrun, but with Riley Simmons going for best on ground and booting 3 goals they have clearly done some good recruiting and game play to be able to hold up against the best, it was an impressive victory and without a doubt throws them in the mix now 2-0 and has teams wondering. For Whitefriars, it’s 0-2 and back to the drawing board to work out just what’s going wrong, and how to fix it.
Big game. This game caught me by surprise if I am totally honest given the number of blowouts across the division, but Oakleigh took it right up to Kew, and almost came away with the surprise 4 points of the round. Oakleigh quite frankly jumped Kew it was as simple as that, there clearly mustn’t have been a respect for the boys from Oakleigh as they lead into every break before booting no majors of their own in the last to allow Kew to run away with it by a mere 7 points. I said at the start of the year I saw Oakleigh remaining at the bottom if they couldn’t get better defensively, well clearly, they have – with 2021 Leading Goal Scorer Cloak booting 2, this team is building, and they nearly caught a major player for the top of the table sleeping.
Saturday Night lights rounds out the Division 1 recap with Glen Eira taking on Old Peninsula down at Packer Park. Let me tell you, I called this game for the VAFA… Glen Eira are the real deal. It was astounding to hear they have 5 players out all with injury from their round 1 win, and after being restrained to only a 3 goal lead into the half they absolutely ran a muck in the second half running out 75 point winners, with a personal highlight being Riley Bass kicking two of the most party goals back to back in the second term. For Peninsula they desperately need to improve their rebound 50’s from defence, they have heart and good users of the ball they just seem to get caught up out of defence… If they improve, they win more games without a doubt.