LAST year’s wooden spooners have started the year on a high, recording an 18-point win to lead the Northern Territory Football League (NTFL) Men’s Premier League. The Magpies saw off the challenge of the Waratah Warriors following a four goals to zero first term. In other results, the Wanders staged a remarkable comeback after quarter time to down the Tiwi Bombers by 19 points, while Nightcliff knocked off St Marys by 10 points and Southern Districts repeated their narrow win in last year’s decider with a six-point victory over Darwin Buffaloes.
PALMERSTON 4.4 | 5.6 | 9.8 | 9.15 (69)
WARATAH 0.2 | 3.5 | 6.8 | 7.9 (51)
A fast start to Palmerston saw last year’s cellar dwellers overcome Waratah by three goals. The Magpies booted four goals to zero in the opening term, before Waratah cut the deficit to 13 points at the main break. Palmerston booted four goals to three in the third term to extend the margin back out to 18 points, before missing out on the chance to extend it further in the final stanza with seven behinds. The Warriors booted 1.1 in the last term to break even, but it was not enough to turn the tables on the Magpies. Kyle Emery was the star of the show up forward, booting four goals, including three in the first half, while Brock Orval booted two and was named among the best for the Warriors. Matthew Dennis and Aaron Davey were prominent for the Magpies throughout the four quarters, while Orval and Justin Beugelaar were named the best for Waratah.
Palmerston: K. Emery 4, L. Dhurrkay, A. Lonergan, S. Talbot, N. Collins, S. Autio.
Waratah: B. Orval 2, Z. Westerberg, J. Hatcher, L. Collihole, S. Godden, C. Barrett.
Palmerston: M. Dennis, A. Davey, K. Emery, S. Talbot, R. Baird
Waratah: J. Beugelaar, B. Orval, B. Carroll, S. Weddell, S. Godden
WANDERERS 3.2 | 7.7 | 13.11 | 16.16 (112)
TIWI BOMBERS 6.4 | 7.8 | 11.8 | 14.9 (93)
Wanderers have coming from a quarter time deficit to post a 19-point win over Tiwi Bombers in a high-scoring game. The match saw 30 goals kicked, only 14 less than the other three games combined. After the first term, the Eagles booted 13 goals to eight, including a six-goal third term to record the solid victory, applying plenty of scoreboard pressure with 32 scoring shots to 23. There were no shortage of goal kickers for the Wanderers with Beau O’Connell booting four goals, while Patrick Fairhead and Liam Patrick booted three apiece. For Tiwi Bombers, they shared the goals around with 10 individual goal kickers for their 14 goals. Alastair Darcy was named the Bombers’ best, while Jason Puruntatameri was also impressive. Adam Tipungwuti booting two majors and was also named among the best for the losing side. Eagles captain, Braedon McLean was terrific leading the side, while he named defender, Doug Mansell as a young gun to look out for this season along with O’Connell.
Wanderers: B. O’Connell 4, P. Fairhead 3, L. Patrick 3, J. Jeffrey 2, S. Bates 2, B. McLean, J. Priest.
Tiwi Bombers: D. Munkara 2, A. Tipungwuti 2, J. Best 2, J. Munkara 2, K. Apuatimi, A. Wonaeamirri, R. Tungatalum, N. Pangiraminni, M. Dunn, K. Kantilla.
Wanderers: B. O’Connell,B. McLean, D. Mansell, L. Patrick, P. Fairhead
Tiwi Bombers: A. Darcy, J. Puruntatameri, P. Heenan, M. Dunn, H. Puruntatameri, A. Tipungwuti
ST MARYS 0.1 | 1.2 | 5.4 | 5.6 (36)
NIGHTCLIFF 1.2 | 1.6 | 4.7 | 6.10 (46)
In a tight, low-scoring contest, Nightcliff recorded a come-from-behind victory against St Marys. The Tigers booted the only goal of the first term, and led by four points at the main break. The third term opened up with seven of the game’s 11 goals kicked in the quarter, with St Marys regaining the lead by three points to set up a thrilling final term. Nightcliff booted the only two goals of the last term – courtesy of Trent Melville – to run over the top of the Saints on their way to a 10-point victory. It was the fifth consecutive time the Tigers had got the better of the Saints, sparking plenty of celebrations with six debutants in the team. The young St Marys side did well to almost snatch it, with five individual goal kickers for the game, and the experienced Raphael Clarke leading the way throughout the match. For Nightcliff, they had the three goal kickers with two majors each, with Melville, top-age Liam Holt-Fitz and Jonathan Peris all booting two majors. Kaine Riley and Jess Budarick were voted the team’s best in the victory.
St Marys: M. Liddy, K. Smith Thompson, T. Saunders, R. Smith, K. Delahunty.
Nightcliff: J. Peris 2, T. Melville 2, L. Holt-Fitz 2.
St Marys: R. Clarke, T. Saunders, T. Davies, K. Delahunty, K. Smith-Thompson
Nightcliff: K. Riley, J. Budarick, J. Miles, J. Peris, P. Wills, C. Ilett
SOUTHERN DISTRICTS 1.1 | 4.7 | 7.8 | 9.11 (65)
DARWIN BUFFALOES 3.3 | 5.5 | 5.5 | 8.11 (59)
In the final game of the round, last year’s grand finalists battled it out, with the match living up to pre-game expectations. Southern Districts trailed at quarter time and half-time, with the Buffaloes starting strong early. A scoreless third term for the Buffaloes saw the Crocs regain the momentum with a 3.1 term and lead by 15 points at the final change. Darwin charged home with a three goals to two final quarter, but six behinds proved devastating for the Buffaloes, falling six points short in another heartbreaking loss to the Crocs. A late goal to Brad Vallance – his third of the game proved to be the sealer for the winners. The victory was the tenth from eleven games for the Crocs against the Buffaloes. Vallance was the major goal kicker on the night, while William Farrer booted two in the win. Lionel Ogden and Sam Smith were named the best in the Crocs’ win, while teenage sensation, Malcolm Rosas was terrific for the Buffaloes, booting a goal and looking dangerous throughout the match. Kevin Maroney and Jarrod Stokes (two goals) were also impressive for Darwin in defeat.
Southern Districts: B. Vallance 3, W. Farrer 2, L. Dale, C. McAdam, R. O”Brien, S. Smith.
Darwin: J. Stokes 2, M. Campbell, M. Rosas, J. Clarke, J. Clark, C. Williams, I. Palmer.
Southern Districts: L. Ogden, S. Smith, R. O”Brien, D. Wehrung, B. Vallance, L. Dale
Darwin: M. Rosas, K. Maroney, J. Stokes, K. Williams, B. Stokes, T. Miles