Metro powers home to claim Division 1 title

A 12-GOAL second half against Western Australia (WA) helped Vic Metro claim the Under 16 Division 1 National Championships title, powering to a 67-point win in perfect conditions at the GABBA.

Oakleigh key forward Alex Lukic was dominant with five goals, while classy Eastern midfielder Tyler Sonsie booted four and won plenty of the ball.

It was WA who made the brighter start under the Brisbane sun, booting the first two goal of the game through Rhett Bazzo and a quality Judd McVee snap, but their lead soon disappeared as Metro began to penetrate their solid half-back set-up. Sonsie snuck home Metro’s first goal after marking deep inside 50, and Blake Howes was the beneficiary of Josh Sinn’s searing ball into the 50 to make it two. It was Zac Taylor who played a key hand in putting the Victorians in front – zipping through traffic to find space to snap on home, and handing off to Lukic shortly after to give them a nine-point lead at the first break.

The Black Ducks made the perfect start to the second term as McVee streamed inside 50 to claim his second major, but Jack Rossimel provided a quick reply after intercepting a Blake Morris kick across goal. The goal-for-goal trend continued as Kade Dittmar converted a tough chance from 40-metres out on the boundary, but Saverio Marafioti snapped the streak with his goal on the run to level the scores. It was at that point that Metro began to gain the ascendancy in territory, but couldn’t quite find their way to goal as WA stood firm, right until Sonsie snapped truly once again to give Metro their one-goal lead at the main break.

After Tyreece Leiu found the first goal of the third term for Metro, WA looked to be mounting a comeback as goals from Jake Littleton and Richard Farmer got them back to within one point. That was not quite to be the case though, as Lukic broke the game open with three-consecutive goals on the back of some good work close to goal and easy finishes as he opened up the angles. Youseph Dib snapped home to extend the Metro lead, but a late Richard Bartlett major from a WA forward stoppage gave them a sniff heading into the final break at 17 points down, with Farmer adding the handy point.

That behind wasn’t put to use though as Metro ran away with the game early in the final term, with Lukic adding a fifth after Morris spilt an eye-catching spekkie attempt and Sonise a third and fourth with some shrewd work close to home. The surge continued with majors to Taylor, Henry Brown, Howes and Jake Soligo as Metro enjoyed a host of scoring shots and coasted to victory.

Dib was Metro’s leading ball winner with 20 disposals and four clearances, while Sonsie had 20 touches and four clearances to go with his 4.3, and Eastern teammate Soligo gather 19 disposals and finished with one goal. Taylor and Howes were others to impress with their work inside forward 50, ending with two goals apiece.

For WA, Max Chipper led all-comers with his 23 disposals, five marks and four inside 50s, while Bartlett was in the thick of it with 23 touches, seven clearances and a goal, and Morris did his best to stand up down back with 16 disposals, four marks and seven rebound 50s. Littleton was another to win a good amount of ball (18 disposals), while McVee was arguably their best player in the first half, finishing with 16 disposals, seven clearances and two goals.

WESTERN AUSTRALIA 2.3 | 5.5 | 8.7 | 8.7 (55)
VICTORIA METRO 4.0 | 6.5 | 11.6 | 18.14 (122)

GOALS:

WA: J. McVee 2, R. Bazzo, K. Dittmar, S. Marafioti, J. Littleton, R. Farmer, R. Bartlett
VM: A. Lukic 5, T. Sonsie 4, Z. Taylor 2, B. Howes 2, H. Brown, Y. Dib, J. Soligo, J. Rossimel, T. Leiu

ADC BEST:

WA: J. McVee, B. Morris, R. Bartlett, R. Bazzo, M. Chipper
VM: T. Sonsie, A. Lukic, Z. Taylor, Y. Dib, J. Sinn

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