Midway Metals Semi Finals Review –
Narre v. Berwick (Seniors); v. Beaconsfield (Reserves); v. Gembrook Cockatoo (Under 18)
Last Saturday Narre’s Ones and Twos played in Second Semi-Finals at Pakenham. Our Under 18s went to Doveton to face Gembrook Cockatoo in a cut-throat First Semi.
Seniors – Our Ones were up and about early. We controlled play for significant periods in the first half, matching Berwick for pace and possession through the middle of the ground. And our defence was holding up well when challenged. Tommy Miller and Josh Tonna were dominating on their wings, Richo was getting plenty of the action and Trent Cody was in everything. But our forward work was poor, wasting opportunities to build a significant lead. Despite our hard work and great team play, we were just two goals up at the break when we deserved to be five or six up given the scoring opportunities we’d created.
Our halftime mission was to put the negatives behind us and capitalise on what appeared to be a great opportunity to beat Berwick at their own game. But after the break the game took on a different complexion. Berwick lifted a gear and Narre’s competitiveness around the ground seemed to dissipate. Players who had dominated their opponents in the early going were taken out of the play by relentless Berwick pressure and we could find just 2 goals to Berwick’s 10 in the second half.
Trent Cody and Jacko were our only multiple goal-scorers with 2 each. Cody, ColMac, Jack Toner and Jacko ranked among our best but we had too few four-quarter contributors able to run the game out to its conclusion. Now we take the hard route via a cut-throat Prelim final against Beaconsfield next Saturday at Healesville for a chance for another crack.
Reserves – Narre’s Reserves romped into a place at the Big Dance in two weeks, with a resounding win over Beaconsfield. The first half was tight and competitive as we took a two goal lead into the long break and playing with an air of confidence. We were using the ball well; big Kyle Potter was imposing himself on the contest and we looked to have plenty of run in our young legs to finish the job off.
And that’s what we did. We finished off with a seven goal to zero second half as we moved the ball fluently into our forward half and found 10 individual goalkickers, which would present a challenge for any opposition’s defence. Dowlo at full forward was our only multiple goalkicker with 2.
Clayton Taylor was outstanding and may have put his board magnet back in the sights of the Senior team selectors. And our talls ruled the packs – Connor Wilkins, Jack Flannery, Matt Lee and Westy joining Pottsy in our best, while every other Narre player wore our stripes with distinction to take us into the grand final in two weeks.
Under 18s – The Under 18s took on Gembrook-Cockatoo at Doveton in a sudden-death First Semi. Our first challenge perhaps to ensure our poor finishes in previous weeks hadn’t dented our confidence too much. With several personnel changes due to Stingrays players coming back to our ranks, our recent outings suggested we weren’t quite ready for the extra pressure of finals footy. But we got off to a good start – saw off our opponent’s best challenge in the second term then drew away for a convincing and confidence boosting 11-goal win.
Riley Siwes and Tommy Russell were up and about sharing seven goals through creative forward pressure; Bailey Mayworm continued his excellent late-season form; Will Howe gave us height and mobility going forward and Declan Brown took the game on and brought his teammates around him into the game. Now we get to have another crack at Beaconsfield for the right to play off against Berwick in the Granny. There’s not too much between these three sides when they play their best footy so our young group are definitely still a live chance.
Next week we encourage you to travel to Healesville to support our boys in the Under 18s and Seniors and see if we can achieve a full book for Grand Final Day at Pakenham the following Friday (Public Holiday).