2023 has seen St Mary’s come down from Division 1 in 2022, and lean pickings throughout this year. However, the gallant efforts across the first 12 weeks of the year paid dividends in Round 13 with a hard-fought two point win over MHSOB.
Heading out to Woodfull-Miller Oval, St Mary’s were buoyed by a strong showing in the opening term to hold a 13 point lead. The Unicorns didn’t take full advantage of their chances in the second quarter kicking 2.7 and trailed the travellers by seven points at the main change.
At three quarter time with the scores level there was one final 30 minute fight left in St Mary’s who won the quarter and the game by two points. Their first victory since Round 3.
Eight different goalkickers on the scoresheet, Michael Flora named the best player on the ground. St Mary’s will fancy their chances of winning a second game in a row when they head home to Ferndale Park to face off against bottom placed Aquinas this weekend.
The Unicorns will be ruing missed opportunities in front of goal, Julian Eimutis led the way on the field through the midfield, along with Angus Lane. A second straight loss has caused a significant dent in their finals hopes for 2023. This weekend South Melbourne Districts await. A side they beat earlier this year.
South Melbourne will enter that contest against MHSOB on the back of a 42 point loss to Whitefriars.
A more than competitive, and equal first half saw the Bloods fade out in the second half being held to one goal while the Friars pulled away with eight of their own.
Samuel Kieseker was the focal point of the forward line for the side that has now levelled their wins and losses to equal with South Melbourne. Nicholas Garrot one of the main reasons the Friars were able to get on top in the second half.
Jamie Brooker played a lone hand for South Melbourne in the forward line kicking six majors, and was threatening to tear the game to shreds early on, before being curtailed after halftime.
Whitefriars head home to the College to face off against the Old Paradians this weekend with every game vital in the final five if they’re to make the final four.
Old Paradians’ Michael Boundy had a day out against Aquinas in Round 13. Bringing up a bag of 10 to assist in the club’s 53 point victory.
Most importantly, in the context of the season if gives the blue, green and purple monster a handy percentage boost and an extended game clear of the bottom two relegation spots.
The game itself started off in favour of Aquinas who were dead eye dicks in the opening term with six straight goals. Held to just three from there, the boys of Parade were able to march to the beat of their own drum kicking 13 after quarter time.
David Huntley and James King were pivotal in providing Boundy with a bounty of shots at goal.
For the third week in a row Tobias Box was named the best player for Aquinas, supported by Josh Robertson who also hit the scoreboard with two goals.
Parkside remain a game clear on top of the Division 2 Men’s ladder after running over the top of the Old Yarra Cobras.
The Cobras led at every change of the match but were overpowered by the ladder leaders in the final quarter with a seven goal onslaught to record a 25 point victory.
These two sides may well meet again in September, and no doubt the Cobras will take plenty away from this contest against the team that’s been the benchmark in 2023.
Michael Romano kicked three for the victors, as did Ben Radford who has taken his season tally to 54 goals for the year.
Kyle Margaritis kicked three for the Cobras with Luke Stacker kicking two and marked down as the best for them. The loss brings to end a terrific run of six straight victories.
They’ll be keen to get back on the winners list this weekend when they face Brunswick in a must win clash to keep the chance of a top two finish alive.
Following the theme for much of Division 2 over the weekend, Brunswick had to wait until after half time to pull away from Bulleen-Templestowe.
The Ants were within seven points at the main change before the home side exploded with an eight goal third term to put the game beyond doubt.
Thomas Wilson slammed home four goals, he’s kicked goals in every game except one this year and has been exceptional for Brunswick. Jonathon Haddad also kicked three in a best on ground display.
Jack Anderson has had a strong month for the Ants and named the best for them. The challenges don’t get any easier this weekend, tackling the ladder leaders.
With a two game gap to the relegation zone, this discussion will heat up further in the coming weeks when they face off against St Mary’s and Aquinas in back to back weeks.
Brunswick find themselves in a mini-final this weekend, a win against the Cobras almost locks away the double chance. A loss bridges the gap between the two sides and leaves the door slightly open for the slide.