Big weekend for the sharpshooters in Premier B Men’s

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It’s games within games in Premier B. Big bags of beautiful goals was the order of the day in front of the big sticks, with the power forwards taking a stranglehold on the opposition defence across the weekend. 

While the gap at the very top continues to stretch and pull away, the jostling and manoeuvring for spots in the chasing pack is the most fascinating watch. Approaching the halfway mark of the season this weekend, it’s all likely to change again. 

University Blacks and Old Carey met at the Carey Sports Complex for a game that transcended football as former player of both clubs Tyrone Bean and Uncle Ringo Terrick, Wurundjeri Elder, conducted a smoking ceremony prior to the first bounce as part of Indigenous Round. 

On the field, the game played out as expected with the ladder leaders asserting early dominance over the bottom placed Panthers. Lachie Huntington had a day out in front of the goals kicking eight majors on their way to a 106 point victory. James Sansom was named the best player on the ground for Uni. 

Old Carey are battling to keep opposition sides under 100 points per game, with six of their 8 losses seeing them concede triple figures. They have the bye this weekend and will be aiming for the back half of the season, to be an improvement on the front half. 

Second placed Beaumaris headed out to Fearon Reserve and set the tone early against Williamstown CYMS with a 6.6.42 to 3.0.18 opening quarter scoreline. From there, they won every quarter and extended their lead at each break. The final margin of 65 points could’ve been much greater had it not been for inaccuracy in front of goal. 

Joel Cusack is running with the Peter Hudson theory at the moment, four goals in Round 6, five goals in Round 7 and six goals in Round 8. Can we pencil him in for seven goals in Round 9 this weekend? Fans of the Sharks sure hope so. He had support from Connor Murphy (3) and was named alongside Cusack in the best. 

Nicholas Ebinger is having a season to remember for the CY’s, another four goal haul up forward takes his season tally to 16. While Thomas Johnston (2) and Jack Noonan (2) also found their way to goal. 

Beaumaris head home to Shark Park this weekend to face St Bede’s who’ve had a rough run of late, while for Williamstown it’s a date with the best, the head to University Oval to face Uni Blacks. 

St Bede’s Mentone Tigers have now lost three consecutive games after a terrific win against Old Haileybury in Round 5. Ajax on the other hand, have responded emphatically after losing to Beaumaris last week to push themselves into the top 4. With scores level at quarter time, it was the Jackers who pushed ahead at half-time with a 2-goal buffer. The margin remained steady for the second half as Ajax left Brindisi St with a 16 point win. 

Ajax were led by Bren Krongold, Jordan Cohen and Adam Kaplan with the latter featuring regularly in the club’s best players. Braydon O’Toole is averaging three goals a game for the Tigers, after another four goals put his season tally at 21. 

The next challenger heading to Gary Smorgon Oval is Old Haileybury, despite the significant percentage discrepancy (Ajax: 87.96 v Old Haileybury 147.44%), a win to the home side will see them leapfrog the highly fancied pre-season contenders in third spot on the table. 

Old Haileybury fought off the most recent contender in fourth spot, Fitzroy with relative ease. Four goals to one in the opening term set up the day, and a 39 point lead at half-time was extended to 66 at three quarter time, before the Roys put some pride back in the jumper winning the final term, but it mattered little with the final margin being 56 points. 

Castan Racunica (2021 Rising Star nominee) was the pick of the goal kickers with a bag of eight, in a best on ground display. Durras Seccull assisted him up forward with three of his own, he moved to third on the sharpshooters list. 

The Roys fall to fifth on the table. They will welcome a fresh De La Salle to Brunswick St Oval this weekend, a win for them and an Ajax loss pushes them back into the top 4, while a loss sees De La Salle move past them.

A classic 8-point game is waiting for both of these proud clubs.

** Our regular Premier B reporter Eliza Wright is recovering from a broken leg and will return next week, all of us at the VAFA wish her well throughout her recovery journey