Seniors - Round 1 vs Collegians - The Black Hawk
12 April 2016
BLACKS OPEN THEIR ACCOUNT IN 2016
The start of a new football season is always filled with equal parts of unanswered questions and optimism. Teams aren’t sure where they will stack up against opposition teams, how their game plans will work and how new players will perform.
The Blacks had answers to some of those questions on Saturday night, after turning in a very impressive performance against Collegians to open their account for 2016.
Having lost a host of talent and experience from the best line-up of 2015, the Blacks had been busy recruiting over the off season to fill the void left by the departures of seasoned campaigners. The new recruits didn’t disappoint in their first outing on the Main.
There wasn’t much separating the two sides early on in the game. Coach Cam Roberts looked to have built a team which will be equipped to run and carry the footy, and that aspect of the game certainly gave Collegians some headaches as the game went on.
It was two goals apiece at the first change. Both sides had some chances to be further ahead on the scoreboard – the Blacks kicking 2.2 and the Lions kicking 2.4. This trend continued throughout the day with both sides finishing with more behinds than they did goals.
While Collegians took a slender lead into the main break as supporters swarmed the Pavvy for the first afternoon tea for the year, the signs were positive from the Blacks. Josh Steadman and Nick Batten were convincingly winning the ruck battle, and the mosquito fleet up forward had looked dangerous when the ball was on the deck.
New recruits Lochie Dornauf and Jake Edwards were very productive, and looked very comfortable with the intensity of the game which was unfolding around them. Brendan Dess, another new face around the club, also held his own in the midfield and looks like the perfect replacement for Tom Napier.
The third quarter saw the Blacks blow the game wide open with a string of goals as they finally found their radar in front of goal. Hugh Curnow was moved forward with good effect as he bagged two goals in quick time, accompanied by goals to Quaile, Bear Robbins and Dornauf (which you can view here).
2015 Cordner Medallist Jordan Quaile showed his usual flashes of brilliance as the game went on, and looks as though he will be spending a lot of time in the midfield this season. He certainly had no issue covering the ground on Saturday and his disposal by foot was a class above.
The Blacks took a 27-point lead into three quarter time, flexing their muscle as they locked the ball in their half for most of the term. The Lions added a couple of their own but missed some opportunities to be closer on the scoreboard, kicking 2.3 for the quarter.
The Blacks added a further three goals in the final term to lock the Lions out of the game and ensure the opening four points on offer for 2016 remained in their keeping. The margin could have blown out further had the Blacks kicked straight, but no one in support of the home side would have been too concerned about that – as long as the win was secured.
The season is of course only one game old but the signs that the Blacks showed on Saturday were positive. Skipper Bede Mahon and Charlie Richardson were strong around the contest, setting up a number of forward thrusts with some hard work at the stoppages.
Angus Drysdale was productive with ball in hand and his organisation of his fellow Blackers was important. Adam Pitt was arguably the best defender on the ground, repelling a number of Collegian advances.
Some more questions will be answered this week with the Blacks taking on Old Trinity on their home patch on Saturday.
1st 2nd 3rd 4th
Uni Blacks 2.2 (14) 3.7 (25) 10.11 (71) 13.17 (95)
Collegians 2.4 (16) 4.7 (31) 6.8 (44) 8.12 (60)
Goals: Robbins 2, Curnow 2, Dornauf 2, Edwards 2, Batten 2, Quaile, Mahon, Drysdale
Best: Quaile, Batten, Curnow, Pitt, Richardson, Mahon
(You can also view some snaps from the weekend here.)