April 7, 2018, 2:00 pm
At halftime on a beautiful Melbourne autumn afternoon, it was looking like being a real baptism of fire for a new look Brunswick senior men’s team – with no less than 11 new players – up against an experienced Oakleigh outfit at WA Scammell Reserve, before they dug deep to run the game out strongly in the second half, displaying a number of encouraging signs for the season ahead.
Both teams traded goals early in the opening term, but a pattern soon emerged whereby the NOBs’ forward entries were intercepted by Krushers’ tall backs who initiated a series of counterattacks straight down the corridor to the imposing Aaron Cloke and a mosquito fleet who snagged a number of goals over-the-back. By the end of the first half, the young and inexperienced NOBs’ defence was under siege, having conceded 27 scoring shots.
The third quarter saw new teammates starting to click and some real talent emerge. A dominant period led to four goals straight and a closing of the gap, before the Krushers steadied and replied with some late majors, to make it seven goals to six for the term. Forwards Jed Carey and Chris Gavaghan were strong in the air and good in front of the sticks. New vice-captain Nick Burgin also started to work into the game, giving a glimpse of his class.
Even more pleasing was the final term, when the hard work put in over pre-season showed as we clearly won the quarter. It was tremendous to see big Adam Bevanda, who was clearly our best over four quarters, going as strong at the end as he was at the first bounce, as was his partner-in-crime James Schmidt.
So well did we finish off, you were left with the impression our young team will take a lot of improvement out of the game, with some experienced players to return for our first home game against Preston Bullants next Saturday.
It promises to be a ripper day at Gillon Oval, starting with our Under 19s’ first game after a 10-year hiatus at 9.20am. See you there!
W.A. Scammell Reserve
Guest Road, Oakleigh