WESTBOURNE Grammar timed its run to the finish like a two-mile horse race, only hitting the front in the final minute to stun Salesian College in Division 2 Boys of the Herald Sun Shield competition. In perfect weather at Sandringham’s Trevor Barker Beach Oval today, Salesian lead throughout the match, answering each Westbourne challenge with a couple of goals of their own, until the final stanza.
The frantic final minutes saw a number of remarkable plays, with the game seemingly over when Salesian forward, Jake Sutton booted his fourth to give his side a 17-point lead midway through the final term. With four minutes remaining, a quick snap on goal put the margin back to less than two majors, and when Westbourne and Western Jets forward, Will Smyth marked and wasted no time to convert a goal from 20m out, the margin was five points with two minutes on the clock.
Entering the final minute, Westbourne’s Alex Zammit got on the end of a bouncing ball and managed to get his boot to it, sending his side into a frenzy. For the first time since early in the opening term, Westbourne had hit the front and lead by a point. Every single player aside from the starting midfielders ran into the Westbourne defence, including the Salesian players to cause even numbers. The only problem, was that no-one was inside the Westbourne forward 50. Remarkably, Westbourne won the clearance through Stefan Costa and with a 70m bomb, he launched the ball for it to bounce end-on-end and trickle through as the desperate Salesian defenders sprinted hard to catch it, to no avail as it bounced through. See the match-winning goal below:
The last play of the day would be Sutton winning a free and converting his fifth major on the siren, but it did little to help the Salesian despair, going down by just a straight kick in the decider. The five goals to two last term had seen Westbourne run over the top of Salesian, having trailed at each break, but winning both the second and third quarters by narrow margins. Salesian always seemed to hold sway, but were never fully in control, and it proved that way when Westbourne made its charge in the dying minutes.
Sutton was easily one of the losing side’s best, along with Pat Doyle who not only provided a leading target up forward, but roamed between midfield and half-forward to pump the ball inside 50. Doyle was awarded his side’s best on ground award, while for Westbourne, there was little doubt that ruckman Will Tattersall was the standout player.
Tattersall was sensational, too tall for his opponents and very mobile, he had his own way in the ruck, and took a number of strong contested marks, some intercept ones, on the wing. He was the man who got the game started for Westbourne early in the game, and along with the likes of Navdeep Singh (two goals), Smyth and Max Paspa, provided some good pressure in attack on the opposition defence. For Salesian, along with Doyle and Sutton, Jackson Cardillo (two goals) and Riley Vernon were impressive.
WESTBOURNE GRAMMAR 11.9 (75) defeated SALESIAN COLLEGE 11.7 (73)
Best on Grounds:
Westbourne: Will Tattersall
Salesian: Pat Doyle