KILCUNDA-Bass has got its 2018 campaign off to a great start after defeating Dalyston by 27 points at Bass.
With the Panthers keeping Dalyston goalless in their 107-point victory in the Reserves, the Senior side was hoping to continue a dominant day of footy over their rivals.
The Seniors were off to a good start after nailing the opening goal but it was Dalyston who looked dangerous kicking three goals in succession.
The home side pegged one back before the break to bring it within 8 points.
As the second quarter began, Dalyston’s midfield began to take control of the contest with great ruckwork from Kurt Thomas feeding the ball to Kainen Schrape and Kristian Butler.
The firing midfield was able to hit up Tylah Osbaldeston and Matt Rosendale who both split the middle to extend the Magpies lead to four goals.
With all the momentum in the visitors favour the Panthers were in desperate need of a good finish to the opening half.
Kilcunda-Bass’ Jake Calvert wrestled back control of the ruck and his midfielders were able to launch the ball forward.
Jimmy Phillips took full advantage of the constant entries snagging multiple goals in the Panthers four goal run to bring the margin to three points at half time.
With the momentum coming out of the break, Kilcunda-Bass moved Taylor Gibson, who was dominating at centre half back, to centre half forward.
This was a move that proved to be vital, as the Magpies did not have many answers for the strong marking swingman.
After kicking two majors in the first half Luke Callander was his replacement down back where he continued to play really well.
After Kilcunda Bass took the lead the game continued to be a tight one with both sides desperate to win possession.
As the siren for three quarter time sounded, Kilcunda-Bass led by 10 points but a big final quarter was required to secure the four points.
With the game still in the balance it was Kilcunda Bass’ defence who really stood up as the visitors struggled to get easy kicks inside 50 and the transition play from Aiden Paton and Jake Smith split the game open.
Halfway through the fourth quarter the home side began to lock the game up as their lead grew to six goals and both sides were looking out on their feet.
Dalyston managed to kick one goal just before the final siren making Kilcunda-Bass 27 point victors.
Next week Kilcunda-Bass will be tested by Korumburra-Bena, who will be looking to make amends for last week’s tough loss and Dalyston will face rivals Phillip Island with both sides coming off close losses.
The 2013 Ellinbank and District Football League grand final was just four-and-a-half years ago, but that might as well be a lifetime ago.
It was the second of two straight years that neighbouring rivals Bunyip and Garfield met on the biggest day of the league’s calendar, but on Saturday at Bunyip the two senior sides that ran out on to the ground bared almost no resemblance to the 2013 versions.
For the Yips, only Brent Heus, Rob Hughes, and Brad Walker remain, whereas for the Stars not a single player who played in the club’s 2013 premiership win was a part of the weekend’s clash.
Number 19 for Bunyip for the 2013 grand final was Sydney Swans small forward Tom Papley, while number 20 for Garfield was Inverloch Kongwak champion Andy Soumilas.
Ultimately – time waits for no man.
On the weekend, two very different looking Stars and Bulldogs sides faced off, led by two very different coaching groups. Instead of former player coaches Brent Eastwell and Callum Pattie leading the charge, it was Hayden Stanton for Garfield and the duo of Ricky Clark and Aussie Jones for Bunyip.
In every facet, this is a new era for these two proud clubs – one in which their rebuilding senior sides are embarking on a fresh challenge with entirely different lists. They’ll be aiming to leave their own park, to set their own standards, and ultimately create their own legacies.
For now, at least, it’s Garfield that seems far better placed to do that.
After getting the early jump on Saturday against Bunyip at The Kennel, the home side cut the margin back to just one straight kick at the main break.
The second half, though, belonged to Stanton’s men ultimately running away with a 68-point win, 18.11 (119) to 7.9 (51).
“In the first quarter our pressure, ball movement and composure was really good, but in the second quarter we went away from that and back to some old habits,” Stanton said in the wake of Saturday’s clash, adding that his side took a few too many risks moving the ball from deep in defence.
“From centre-back we try and be composed and use the full width of the ground,” he said.
“We readjusted and had a few words at half-time, and then we kicked away and broke their back a bit in the third.”
From six points, the margin extended out to 49 with a quarter left to play and although the defeat was heavy enough for Bunyip, it could have been a whole lot worse – with the Stars unable to make the most of their 20 forward 50 entries for the term.
But, overall, Stanton was particularly happy with the “adjustments” his players made after half-time, with the focus of their game revolving around the tackle count, stoppage possessions, and keeping the footy in their own half of the ground for longer.
“From our point of view, we unashamedly try and work on things that happen at the highest level (in the AFL) – we look at patterns and behaviours to try and filter back to our own standard,” Stanton said, adding that excitement around the current Stars group was palpable.
“The feedback I was getting from people around the club is how committed they (the players) looked in playing for each other.
“We laid 92 tackles and had 34 more inside 50s, and we got the game how we wanted it.”
Stanton was particularly bullish about the performances of hard-nosed, inside ball-winner Jayden Goumas and versatile tall Corie Intveen (two goals).
“As a ruckman, Corie Intveen was terrific with his aerobic capacity,” Stanton said.
“He’s not a naturally huge ruckman, but he’s almost like an extra on-baller once the ball hits the deck.”
Tim Vrevc and Tanner Stanton also impressed with two goals apiece, while Daniel Johnson and Adam MacGibbon each booted three.
Stanton said the most pleasing aspect of his side’s win was that “the hunger and eagerness to compete was there”.
But, clearly, there’s plenty of room for improvement – particularly when it comes to ball movement from the back half.
“We’re not overly tall so we need to use it well and use our hit-ups (against Nar Nar Goon this week),” Stanton said.
“Goon is a taller team, so we need to counteract the way they play.”
In a disappointing day for Bunyip on Saturday, newcomers Damien Szwaja, Nathan Allen and Jordan Wyatt all stood tall alongside the likes of favourite son, Walker.
Nar Nar Goon were one of the big movers in the off season recruiting 11 new players to the senior team and they were all on show over the weekend as they defeated Korumburra-Bena by 70 points at NNG Rec Reserve.
New coach Dean Blake would be pleased with the way the new team gelled in the opening game, with fluent play across ground which is a real credit to the work put in over the preseason. However it wasn’t all roses for the Goon who trailed by five points at quarter time.
In fact the Giants played a solid first half of football with big man Michael Cooke and midfielders Bailey Patterson and Brock Dorling get ting their hands on the ball early.
A goal to Giants debutant Will Little was a highlight for the day. Will is the cousin of Aaron Hillberg and is a big prospect for the Giants going forward.
But after the long break the Goon took full control of the game with new recruits Sam Blackwood, Daniel Battaglin and Troy McDermott all getting involved. The third quarter saw the Goon add five goals to one to extend their lead to 30 points at the final change.
Giants coach Ben McGee urged his players to dig deep and find something in the final quarter, however it appeared the Goon were just a little more polished adding another six unanswered goals in the last.
“I’m pleased with our improvement so far. Even though they got a run on we didn’t let the dam walls break.”
“Fifteen tackles that quarter shows our pressure and intensity around the contest. which is a great sign.”
McDermott finished with four goals in a top performance by the new Goon recruit while Trent Armour claimed best on ground honours.
Despite the late blow out, the Giants will take some positives out’of the game with a strong nrst half performance something to work on.
The work of the defensive group; John Ayama, Sam Edwards, Martin Snooks and Joshua Hill was brilliant, never giving up at any stage.
With the likes’ of Aaron Hillberg, Matt Edwards and Chris Urie to still come into the side at some point in the coming weeks. the Giants will look to bounce back against Kilcunda-Bass in a night game this Saturday, while Nar Nar Goon travel to Garfield to take on the stars.South Gippsland Sentinel Times
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