Tag: tyrell lui

NTFL Men’s Premier League preview: Round 6 – Sambono returns as top four square off

FOUR different venues host each game in Round 6 of the Northern Territory Football League (NTFL) Men’s Premier League, with fixtures between the top four sides headlining what is set to be a cracking weekend of football.

WARATAH (7th, 0-5, 55%) v. TIWI BOMBERS (6th, 2-3, 72%)
Saturday November 9, 2:30pm
Gardens Oval

A bottom three clash opens Round 6 as the winless Waratah hosts Tiwi at Gardens Oval on Saturday afternoon. Despite putting up competitive efforts in most games thus far, including a win which was later revoked, the Warriors are one of two sides languishing without any premiership points after a handful of efforts. Missing key talent and the former-AFL firepower of others, it has been a tough initiation to season 2019/20 for Waratah. But that could all change with a win over the Bombers, who are looking to build a win streak and break into the top five. Much-hyped coming into the season, Tiwi has been a touch lacklustre thus far but still provided two highlights for the year in each of its two wins – beating rivals St Mary’s in a high-scoring thriller and having Cyril Rioli Jnr make his long=awaited return last week.

The Bombers’ hopes of another headline win will be made difficult by Waratah’s likely inclusions, with key players Abe Ankers and Steve Stroobants joining Brodie Carroll and Henry Kerinaiua in the side to give the Warriors plenty of forward drive. The Bombers have not named Rioli after his to-plan debut, but Victorian Charlie Molyneux looks like being a handy replacement in midfield. There are still plenty of stars in the side in any case, with the likes of Adam Tipungwuti, Nathan Djerrkura, and Austin Wonaeamirri providing class on each line. Youngsters Jeffrey Simon and Preyben Tipiloura also keep their spots, giving the Bombers plenty of flair.

It is hard to look past the Bombers on paper, but their unpredictable nature against Waratah’s more consistent base makes this clash one which should be close.

NIGHTCLIFF (1st, 5-0, 185%) v. DARWIN BUFFALOES (4th, 3-2, 169%)
Saturday November 9, 4:00pm
PSC BM Oval

Ladder leader Nightcliff plays host to Darwin at PSC BM Oval on Saturday twilight in the first of two mouth-watering top four bouts. The Tigers’ premiership defence has been near-faultless thus far, notching an impressing 5-0 record having dispatched of each opponent to come their way. While you can only beat who is put in front of you, wins over the bottom two sides coming into this clash does not make for an ideal run-in to such a high stakes game, but more testing wins over finals hopefuls Wanderers and Southern Districts should put Nightcliff in good stead nonetheless. On the other hand, Darwin’s promising start has since hit a couple of road blocks, and the Buffs are lucky to still hold their positive record. Last week’s heartbreaking loss to Southern Districts will be fresh in the memory, with Darwin raring to go as some key players return.

Adam Sambono is the most notable inclusion for Darwin, named at full forward for his first game back after a 12-goal haul in Round 1. With Joe Anderson and Brayden Culhane named in the same forward 50, Darwin all of a sudden looks more like the attacking powerhouse it has been of late. Goalsneak Trent Melville will look to lead Nightcliff’s effort to outgun the Buffs after a four-goal effort last time out, especially with Brodie Filo left unnamed. Kaine Riley has been in good form further afield, with NT stalwart Cam Ilett and VFL-listed James Tsitas others who will be important to the cause.

The Tigers have undeniable class across the field and are the team to beat overall, but do not discount the Buffaloes in this clash given the boosts made to their forward half.

PALMERSTON (8th, 0-5, 51%) v. WANDERERS (5th, 2-2-1, 86%)
Saturday November 9, 5:00pm
Palmerston Oval

Wanderers will look to keep clear of the chasing pack with a win as it travels to face Palmerston on Saturday evening. The Muk Muks are yet to string consecutive wins together, but have shown plenty of promise with their young list and will look to notch a third win against their third bottom-three opponent in Palmerston. On the other hand, the winless Magpies had their hearts broken last week as they gave up a five-goal buffer to lose in a count-back to Tiwi last week. Their slimmest losing margin to that point was 30 points, with heavy losses coming in Rounds 3 and 4 and the gulf in class evident. But last week’s effort will leave the fire burning for Palmerston, and the opportunity to play spoiler awaits.

The Magpies’ spine is bookended by Nigel Lockyer Jnr and Ezekiel Frank, with the pair looking to prop up a side which is set to go in without the class of former-AFL jets Alwyn and Aaron Davey at ground level. The Eagles will have no such worries in that department as ex-Port player Brett Eddy comes into the lineup, surrounded by young excitement machines in Joel Jeffrey, Ronald Fejo, Tyrell Lui and Beau O’Connell in a side slightly short on pure talls.

Waratah’s young talent has gotten them through a couple of real tests thus far, and they will need to be switched on to come out on top in a clash they are expected to win. Palmerston should give it a proper crack though, especially with a bottom two clash just around the corner.

SOUTHERN DISTRICTS (3rd, 3-1-1, 139%) v. ST MARY’S (2nd, 4-1, 131%)
Sunday November 10, 4:00pm
Norbuilt Oval

Arguably the game of the round will be left until last as Southern Districts hosts St Mary’s at Norbuilt Oval in Sunday’s only fixture. The Crocs are rising after four undefeated rounds, scraping home by three points over fellow finals hopeful, Darwin in Round 5. Having only gone down to the 5-0 Nightcliff, this game will give neutrals an idea of whether Southern Districts will be the reigning premier’s nearest challenger. The Saints technically hold that mantle at this stage as they sit in second spot at 4-1, with a surprise loss to Tiwi splitting those wins. This will be St Mary’s third-straight bout against a top five opponent having won comfortably in the last two weeks against solid opposition.

The Crocs’ ability to kick big scores has started to come back into the fray of late, with South Australian Sam Barnett providing a focal point for the likes of Ed Barlow and Dylan McLachlan to hit up from further afield. Add the dangerous Beau Schwarze and Will Farrer to the mix and Southern Districts boasts a strong forward 50 once again this week. But if any side can claim having class on each line, it is St Mary’s, and the Saints have seldom been overwhelmed thus far. Possessing weapons of their own in the form of Raphael Clarke, Jake Long, Nick Yarran, and Nate Paredes, the visitors will bring so much valuable experience to Sunday’s clash.

The Saints have improved out of sight since last year and the Crocs are only just reaching that level again, so expect them to meet somewhere in the middle and provide an entertaining game of football.

NTFL Men’s Premier League preview: Round 4 – Saints and Buffs headline TIO triple-header

FINALS contenders St Mary’s and Darwin are set to provide the sole top five clash in Round 4 of the Northern Territory Football League (NTFL) Men’s Premier League. The game headlines what will be a big day of action at TIO Stadium as a triple-header awaits.

SOUTHERN DISTRICTS vs. WARATAH
Saturday October 26, 2:30pm
TIO Stadium

Waratah will again look to secure its first official win of the season, but it will prove a tough ask against a Southern Districts side finding its groove. While the Warriors soundly beat Darwin on-field last week, they were stripped of the four points and relegated back down to seventh mid-week after fielding a player not included on the team sheet. The now 0-3 start puts plenty of pressure on the 2018/19 preliminary finalists, with those kinds of deficits hard to overcome as other teams rise. Southern Districts has endured a similarly subdued start to the season, only really clicking into gear last week with a big win over the hapless Palmerston Magpies. Feasting on another winless side will be the goal once again, with some ex-AFL experience set to help out. Former Docker and Sun Michael Barlow joins Ed Barlow on the team sheet, likely to provide for South Australian big-man Sam Barnett up forward. Kicking a winning score should not be an issue for the Crocs, with Barnett’s fellow six-goal hero from last week, Jayden Clarke also named. For Waratah, the player in question last week – Brodie Carroll – slots into the starting 18 to remove all doubt, while Abe Ankers is at the heart of midfield and former Coburg VFL forward Steve Stroobants lines up in a dangerous forwardline. It is hard to look past the Crocs after a great showing last time out, but the Warriors were equally impressive and should make it a good contest.

ST MARY’S vs. DARWIN BUFFALOES
Saturday October 26, 5:00pm
TIO Stadium

The sole top five clash of the round sees Darwin looking to maintain its perfect record against the revitalised St Mary’s side. Both sides should sit at 2-1 after both suffering defeats in Round 3, but Darwin’s unbeaten record was reinstated after Waratah was controversially made to forfeit its win due to an incorrect team sheet. Meanwhile, the Saints recovered from a nine-goal quarter time deficit to sneak ahead of Tiwi last week, but were ultimately outgunned in the thrilling rivalry clash. Both sides look like being contenders when their best 22 is on the park, and should provide plenty of highlights in this clash. The long-awaited return of promising Saints youngster Keiren Parnell headlines the inclusions, with recently delisted St Kilda midfielder David Armitage set to debut. He slots into a forwardline led by fellow former-AFL players Raphael Clarke and Jarrad Waite, who have plenty of goals in them. Goals are not usually hard to come by for Darwin but proved just that last week, and the Buffs may struggle for inspiration again with Joe Anderson and Adam Sambono still absent. A midfield anchored by Patrick Boles is still strong though, and Brayden Culhane is one who has already shown his goalkicking exploits with a bag of six. The Buffs may find it hard again here after a hot opening two rounds, especially against such a strong St Mary’s lineup this week.

WANDERERS vs. TIWI BOMBERS
Saturday October 26, 7:30pm
TIO Stadium

Fifth spot is up for grabs as current holder Wanderers faces sixth-place Tiwi to round out the TIO Stadium triple-header. The Eagles are unlucky not to have two wins on the board after a promising start to the year, instead settling for six points after drawing with Southern Districts. The Bombers find themselves just behind the Muk Muks after opening their account last week in a high-scoring win over traditional rival, St Mary’s. There are big names and excitement machines on each line for Tiwi, with speedy NT Under-16 representative Preyben Tipiloura set to make his highly-anticipated debut. Ex-Cat Nathan Djerrkura looks like slotting back into the side, giving the Bombers’ raft of goalkicking options even more to look forward to in terms of delivery from midfield. For Wanderers, the bookend pairing of Joel and Jordan Jeffrey has been named once again, with the young talents of Ronald Fejo and Tyrell Lui also set to light up TIO Stadium once again. While Wanderers has made inroads early compared to last season’s effort, the Bombers look to be finding that high-scoring rhythm and will be as dangerous as any side when at full strength – as they almost are here.

NIGHTCLIFF vs. PALMERSTON
Sunday October 27, 4:10pm
PSC BM Oval

The winningest does battle with the winless in Sunday’s sole fixture at PSC BM Oval as Nightcliff plays host to Palmerston to see off Round 4. The Tigers have been near-faultless in their premiership defence thus far, recording three relatively comfortable wins to sit pretty in second spot. Amid a complete opposite run of form, Palmerston sits bottom at 0-3, taking it to teams at times over each defeat but hardly looking like prizing a win. This task will be the toughest of the lot, and could spell trouble for the struggling Magpies. Arresting the skid will be made even more difficult with consistent ruckman Matthew Dennis left unnamed, replaced by Broderick Church. Alwyn Davey‘s likely inclusion should steady the lineup, which will be tested by a very strong Tigers outfit. A dynamic spine of Cam Ilett, Joel Budarick and Liam Holt-Fitz forms the base of a fearsome Nightcliff side which has had little trouble scoring of late. It looks like being a one-sided contest on paper, but do not count Palmerston out of making it competitive once again.

Under 16 National Championships: Division 2 wrap

NEW South Wales/Australian Capital Territory (NSW/ACT) replicated Vic Metro’s Division 1 run, going through undefeated over three rounds to claim the Division 2 title. Queensland picked up two wins on home turf to slot into second place, with one of those coming over third-place Tasmania, while Northern Territory was the only side to go through without a win despite showing promise. We recap how each side fared and shed light on some of the better performers throughout the competition.

Northern Territory (0-3)

Results:
Rd 1 – Tasmania 16.13 (109) def. Northern Territory 8.8 (56)
Rd 2 – NSW/ACT 12.10 (82) def. Northern Territory 10.5 (65)
Rd 3 – Queensland 14.9 (93) def. Northern Territory 6.5 (41)

MVP: Brodie Lake (Peel Thunder/Southern Districts)
Most Goals: Mark White (Wanderers), 7

Despite not picking up a win over their three games, there were plenty of highlights and standouts for NT in this year’s carnival. A 53-point loss against Tasmania kicked off the Thunder’s campaign, with leading goal kicker Mark White enjoying his best game for the carnival to boot an equal game-high four goals. He was the Thunder’s only multiple goal kicker on the day, with Antonio James amongst the best in an under-siege defence and eventual MVP Brodie Lake enjoying a solid start. The NT responded in fine fashion against title-holders NSW/ACT in Round 2, pushing the Rams all the way but going down by 17 points. Two goalless terms told the tale of the see-sawing contest, and it was Lake again who impressed with his 26 disposals, seven marks, eight clearances and two goals. Tyrell Lui was also influential from midfield with 18 disposals, nine clearances and a goal, while undersized ruck Ned Stevens battled hard to have 12 disposals, 25 hitouts and a goal. It was a much improved performance from the Thunder, with a tough game against the hosts to come. It proved just that as they went down by 52 points in Aspley, struggling to match up on the Maroon’s array of tall forward options. At ground level, James again accumulated from defence and Ariki Lowe was busy in midfield with 15 disposals, six clearances and seven inside 50s. On the outside, Preyben Tipiloura showed some flash with his two goals, while Jason Baird stood up in a shift to defence with 12 disposals and five rebounds. It was a tough initiation onto the national stage for these NT youngsters, but there is certainly some talent to burn amongst the group.

NSW/ACT (3-0)

Results:
Rd 1 – NSW/ACT 10.10 (70) def. Queensland 9.5 (59)
Rd 2 – NSW/ACT 12.10 (82) def. Northern Territory 10.5 (65)
Rd 3 – Tasmania 4.10 (34) def. by NSW/ACT 11.9 (75)

MVP: Kai Watts (GWS Giants Academy/Inner West Magpies)
Most Goals: Euriah Hollard (Lavington/Geelong Grammar), 6

Division 2 title winners NSW/ACT responded beautifully to every question raised by their three opponents, holding firm in their first two games and enjoying a more comfortable win in the last. Round 1 saw them matched up against traditional rivals Queensland, overcoming deficits at quarter and three-quarter time to run over the top of the Maroons with a wind advantage. Austin Ball and Euriah Hollard each kicked two goals with Ball named best for the Rams, while the tall duo of Will Edwards and Patrick Voss also impressed. NT provided a good test for the Rams in Round 2, NSW/ACT’s ability to keep the Thunder goalless in two of the four quarters proved the difference. Voss booted four goals, while zippy ball winner Will Sexton was instrumental with 19 disposals, six marks, five tackles and a goal. His disposal effort was matched by rebounding defender Felix Rogers (eight rebounds) and tall forward Sam Stening (five marks, seven inside 50s, 1.5) as the Rams sailed home strongly. After being tested for three quarters against NT, the Rams stormed out of the blocks against Tasmania in Round 3 with an eight-goal to nil first half. The scoring slowed after the main break and Tasmania managed to put together 14 scoring shots, but the Rams were simply too efficient from forward 50 stoppages and resolute in defence. Joshua Fahey led the disposal count with 24 and 10 rebounds with Matthew McKenzie the only other to break the 20-mark (23 disposals, six marks, nine inside 50s). MVP Kai Watts started well up forward with 13 touches and 1.3, while Stening straightened up for 3.0 from 14 disposals and Toby Alker was again solid in midfield. The strength, versatility, and penetration of NSW/ACT’s midfield movers saw them home in each game, with a team balance also making them the clear-best in Division 2.

Queensland (2-1)

Results:
Rd 1 – NSW/ACT 10.10 (70) def. Queensland 9.5 (59)
Rd 2 – Queensland 9.3 (57) def. Tasmania 4.13 (37)
Rd 3 – Queensland 14.9 (93) def. Northern Territory 6.5 (41)

MVP: Austin Harris (Gold Coast Suns Academy/Palm Beach Currumbin)
Most Goals: Noah McFadyen (Brisbane Lions Academy/Wilston Grange), 14

Round 2 and 3 hosts Queensland went unbeaten at home to finish the carnival with a positive record and in second place. Their only loss came in Round 1 to champions NSW/ACT, going down by 11 points despite holding leads at two of the four intervals. Competition leading goal kicker Noah McFadyen was the only Maroon to find multiple majors with four, while ball-winners Bodhi Uwland, MVP Austin Harris and Finn Brown were also all influential. The Maroons bounced back in Round 2 in a game they hardly looked like losing against Tasmania at Metricon Stadium, getting up by 20 points in the end. Harris was again terrific with 19 disposals, seven marks and three clearances, while diminutive and tough midfielder Daniel Lanthois worked hard for 18 touches, 11 tackles and seven clearances. The tall trio of Will Bella (three goals) Jye Lockett (two), and McFadyen (two) all found multiples and caused headaches in the air, with that factor inevitably becoming a theme. The three went on to have a big say in Queensland’s closing win over the NT, with McFadyen’s strength close to goal overwhelming the NT defence as he helped himself to 8.2 from 14 disposals and seven marks. Lockett also parked inside attacking 50 to boot another two goals, while Lochlan Harrop also claimed two majors from 20 disposals. In a familiar tale, Harris and Lanthois again led the disposal count with 23 and 20 respectively to round out outstanding individual carnivals. A good combination of speed and ball winning ability further afield made the straightforward game-plan of feeding the talls up forward very effective, and it made them hard to stop in front of their vocal home fans.

Tasmania (1-2)

Results:
Rd 1 – Tasmania 16.13 (109) def. Northern Territory 8.8 (56)
Rd 2 – Queensland 9.3 (57) def. Tasmania 4.13 (37)
Rd 3 – Tasmania 4.10 (34) def. by NSW/ACT 11.9 (75)

MVP: Baynen Lowe (North-West Academy/Devonport)
Alan McLean Medal: Sam Banks (Southern Academy/Clarence)
Most Goals: Jonty McIvor (North-West Academy/Wynyard), 5

A big opening round win over Northern Territory ended up being Tasmania’s only victory for the carnival, unable to get that same scoring flow going in scores of 37 and 34 across the next two games. Their start unearthed plenty of promise though, with nine individual goal kickers contributing to the 53-point win. Jonty McIvor led the way with four, followed by Darcy Gardner‘s three and two each from Sam Banks and Zac Morris rounding out the multiple goal kickers. Zippy ball-winner and state MVP Baynen Lowe also made a good start, and was just as good in Tasmania’s Round 2 outing against Queensland. The Devils went down by 20 points in a slog, with Lowe’s 20 disposals, nine marks, eight clearances and one goal second only to Banks’ 21 touches and eight inside 50s. George McLeod also had a good game with 18 disposals and 1.2, with Dominic White (14 disposals, four marks) solid in the back half and Gardner (14 disposals, nine tackles, five clearances) also busy. A big first half from NSW/ACT saw Tasmania go goalless to the main break in Round 3, but it was not for a want of trying as the Devils were punished each time they failed to capitalise of gaining territory. They improved to finish with 4.10, as Lowe (27 disposals, seven tackles, seven clearances), McLeod (23 disposals, 11 marks, 2.1), and Jake Dixon (20 disposals, six marks) again worked tirelessly. But it was Alan McLean medallist Banks who was most influential, thriving in a move to half back to have 25 disposals, 10 marks and a combined nine breaches of each arc. With some undeniable class at the top and hard workers throughout, Tassie just fell short of putting together the pieces across the three matches. Banks is certainly one to watch, and has already broken into the Tasmanian NAB League squad like 2018 draftee, Tarryn Thomas.

Queensland goes unbeaten at home to round out U16 carnival

QUEENSLAND finished its Under 16 Division 2 campaign off on a winning note, beating the Northern Territory by 52 points in a heated contest to go undefeated in their two home legs. Brisbane Lions Academy prospect Noah McFadyen was the star of the day, proving too strong deep inside 50 and finishing clinically to boot eight goals.

The home side was dominant in the opening term, with the tall forward trio of McFadyen, Jye Lockett, and Will Bella causing headaches early on for the smaller NT defence. It was all Queensland after Mark White missed NT’s only chance for the quarter, with McFadyen making no mistake up the other end with a sliding mark and set shot conversion to first trouble the scorers. Lochlan Harrop soccered home from the goalsquare to make it two, with McFadyen adding his second shortly after via a free kick for holding. Lockett made it a four-goal to nil term by putting away one of two kicks earned deep inside 50 with marks over the back, and the signs were looking ominous.

In similar vain to the first term, the Thunder enjoyed early territory but could not quite take full advantage. White’s sharp baulk and shot was marked on the line by James Packer, but Tom King then marked a Preyben Tipiloura shot which fell short to slam home NT’s opening goal from close range. Another two forward forays followed, but Queensland held firm and rebounded well to see McFadyen add his third goal in reply with a mark deep in the 50. The trend continued in uncanny fashion as Brodie Lake hit the post for NT, and Queensland punished the errand shot with another McFadyen goal after marking strongly one-on-one. Again, the next scoring play was a missed snap from NT’s Tyrell Lui, but Daniel Lanthois had no such troubles for the Maroons as he extended the margin further. McFadyen then capped off a big first half with his fifth goal close to the bell, marking on the lead and putting through another elementary set shot goal. The Queenslanders simply looked like scoring with each attack and did exactly that, helping themselves to a 44-point lead at the main break.

The opening exchanges of the third term were even, with much of the play occurring between the arcs and the sides sharing a rushed behind each. That was before Austin Harris broke the deadlock with a goal on the run, and was smashed late after the kick for his troubles. Tipiloura provided the instant reply to back up NT’s physical spirit with his own goal on the fly, and Lake helped them get on top in the term after marking twice inside 50 and converting the second shot. After a long period of stalemate and a few Queensland players looking to get their names on the scoresheet, McFadyen booted his sixth goal with yet another one-on-one mark in the goalsquare and straightforward finish. The margin was 47 points heading into the final change, but NT were putting up a fight. 

Fight was somewhat of a key word as things got a little physical after White hit Lanthois late after he had disposed of the ball, with a tussle breaking out. Having received some chat from the crowd, White streamed in to boot a classy goal on the run and promptly shooshed them in celebration in a cheeky bit of showmanship. The scoring continued as Tipiloura added another in full motion, but Queensland hit back with three goals of their own as they looked to pretty up the scoreboard. One of those came from McFadyen for his seventh major as he read the wind well, going on to finish with eight with a goal just before the final siren.

Harris led all-comers for the Maroons with 23 disposals, nine marks, four breaches of each arc, a goal and plenty of meterage. Lanthois (20 disposals, seven tackles, four clearances, one goal) and Harrop (20 disposals, four marks, two goals) were others to find both the goals and plenty of possession, while Lockett joined McFadyen and Harrop as the only other multiple goal kicker from his 12 disposals and seven marks. For NT, Antonio James was solid down back accumulating 16 disposals, five marks and four rebounds, with Ariki Lowe zippy in the midfield for his 15 disposals, six clearances and seven inside 50s, and Tipiloura arguably catching the eye most with his 11 disposals, five inside 50s and two goals. White was another crafty mover forward and succeeded in a few baulks in his nine-disposal and one-goal game in a low-scoring Thunder effort.

QUEENSLAND 4.3 | 8.5 | 10.9 | 14.9 (93)
NT 0.1 | 1.3 | 3.4 | 6.5 (41)

GOALS:

QLD: N. McFadyen 8, L. Harrop 2, J. Lockett 2, D. Lanthois, A. Harris
NT: P. Tipiloura 2, T. King, B. Lake, M. White, F. Buitenhuis

ADC BEST:

QLD: N. McFadyen, L. Harrop, J. Lockett, D. Lanthois, G. Sanoing
NT: P. Tipiloura, M. White, B. Lake, T. King, A. Lowe   

Scouting Notes: U16 Division 2 – Round 2

NEW South Wales/Australian Capital Territory (NSW/ACT) and Queensland Under 16s both picked up wins under lights at Metricon Stadium on Tuesday, with plenty of stand-out performers from each side. Michael Alvaro cast an eye over the two games, taking opinion-based notes on the outstanding players from all four teams.

NSW/ACT vs. Northern Territory

NSW/ACT:

#1 Austin Ball (Sydney Swans Academy)

The diminutive forward caused headaches inside attacking 50, zipping around the arc and looking dangerous in spurts. Ball enjoyed a strong second term through midfield, coming into the game with a good clearing kick to find Louis Wilson and bursting out of the centre bounces at pace. He had the chance to hit the scoreboard after intercepting a kick-in but couldn’t finish, and missed another chance in the following term after a smart bit of crumbing inside 50. Has the traits to be influential, but couldn’t quite finish the job at all times, finishing with 12 disposals, three marks, two clearances, three inside 50s and 0.2.

#2 Byron Middleton (Sydney Swans Academy)

Busy in-close, Middleton did well to rack up 17 disposals (12 handballs), five tackles and five clearances in a solid outing for the Rams. He looked really clean below his knees, using his low centre on gravity to evade opponents once he had collected the ball and flicking it out to teammates on the run. One of his better moments was a neat kick inside 50 to Joshua Fahey in the second term after finding a bit of space, and he was productive all game.

#3 Will Sexton (GWS GIANTS Academy)

Another from NSW/ACT’s brigade of small and quick midfielders, Sexton was one of his side’s best and most consistent ball winners. He seemed to be everywhere at times, intercepting on defensive wing early on, gathering cleanly and brilliantly turning an opponent further a field shortly after, and winning plenty of ball around the stoppages. A pleasing part of Sexton’s game was his work rate, winning the ball up either end and tackling well to ease pressure on his defence. His bursting pace also came in handy when breaking forward, but Sexton sometimes lacked a touch of penetration by foot. Still a fantastic game with 19 disposals, six marks, five tackles, and a goal which came in the third term.

#4 Jordan Endemann (Sydney Swans Academy)

Endemann was a productive member of the Rams’ forward setup, looking dangerous with his 14 disposals, five marks and three inside 50s. Despite not hitting the scoreboard himself, Endemann was constantly looking to create with his forward movement, zipping around the forward 50 and delivering well short by foot. His sole behind for the game came after marking well out the back but missing the resultant set shot, with that finish product again dearly missed in the final term with another chance. Is quite raw, but had some really nice moments and was close to putting it all together.

#6 Felix Rogers (Sydney Swans Academy)

The rebounding small defender was a dangerous asset moving forward from the back half, possessing line-breaking speed and the willingness to take the game on. Rogers won an equal team-high 19 disposals, but it was his eight rebounds and three inside 50s that truly told the tale of his game – getting on the move with ball in hand and ending with a long kick. He also showed a handy knack for pin-pointing shorter options in the third term, finding Will Sexton well inside 50 to assist his set shot goal. Could also be a handy midfielder with his ability to crumb off hands, but is so valuable in that half-back slot as it is.

#22 Joshua Fahey (GWS GIANTS Academy)

While he ended up winning the ball at both ends, Fahey was initially sighted in defence – entrusted with a couple of early kick-ins and responsible for one of the more bizarre standings of the mark as he performed a crow-pleasing handstand. Fahey’s influence up the other end also came in the second term, with an errand set shot finding its way to Euriah Hollard to gift him a goal. It was a well-rounded display from Fahey between the arc, finishing with 17 disposals, five marks, three inside 50s and four rebound 50s.

#23 Matthew McKenzie (Sydney Swans Academy)

Not overly tall but was one of NSW/ACT’s bigger midfield bodies alongside Kai Watts, providing some good drive as he got on his bike and wheeled through the corridor. McKenzie’s clearing long kicks into space proved valuable, but he also showed good awareness in congestion to not always blaze away – instead handing out to better-placed teammates. The Swans Academy member also hit the scoreboard, converting a set shot in the second term and snapping home from the pocket in the fourth as he shifted into a forward role. He ended up being productive there, finding Sam Stening for a chance on goal and operating in space. He finished with an impactful 16 disposals (13 kicks), five tackles, three clearances, and two goals.

#24 Kai Watts (GWS GIANTS Academy)

Along with Matthew McKenzie, Watts was a terrific mover of the ball forward and also managed to hit the scoreboard. Watts was first sighted inside 50 when he marked deep from a short Jordan Endemann set shot and converted his opening goal, while later popping up to get on the end of another errand shot to crumb and snap truly in the third term. He won the first clearance of the final quarter on the move and another similar one shortly after, showing a quick first five steps and nice long kick. Watts ended with 16 disposals (14 kicks), six inside 50s and two goals in an important role through the midfield-forward rotation.

#25 Sam Stening (GWS GIANTS Academy)

The bookend quarters of Stening’s game were as good as anyones, proving an influential and flexible part of the NSW/ACT forward structure. Stening made a nice start with his beautiful kick to find Patrick Voss inside 50 and provide the resultant goal, while popping up again in the same term to show off his strong hands. His final quarter was the true standout though, again showing his sticky hands on the lead from centre half-forward and proving strong one-on-one. While he managed to boot his only goal of the game with a dribbler to seal the win late on, Stening could have finished with an incredible stat-line had he buried multiple other chances. He put a low shot on the run wide, hit the post with a later snap and missed from very close range with a snare off hands – finishing with 1.5 from his 19 disposals, five marks and seven inside 50s.

#26 Patrick Voss (GWS GIANTS Academy)

Voss started like a house on fire, booting all of his game-high four goals in the first half. Playing like a slender key forward at 190cm and 79kg, Voss positioned and led well inside attacking 50 to benefit fully from good delivery. He slotted a set shot for his first major in the opening term and played on quickly to snap his second shortly after. He made a good read to take a strong chest mark inside 50 in the following term and boot his third goal, later barrelling through traffic in the goalsquare to slam home a fourth in almost identical fashion to how his first two goals came. While Voss could not find the goals after that, he still had a couple of tough chances and looked a threat inside the dangerous Rams forward 50.

Northern Territory:

#5 Ariki Lowe (Federals)

The zippy midfielder matched up well on NSW/ACT’s smaller movers, but more importantly found a good amount of his own ball. He proved dangerous around the stoppages, keeping on the move and setting NT forward when he managed to claim possession. After missing a snap earlier in the second term, Lowe quickly made amends with a better finish in similar fashion, going on to impact around the ball. Finished with 13 disposals, four tackles, two clearances and 1.2.

#11 Mark White (Wanderers)

One who didn’t win mountains of possessions but made them count with his work forward of centre. White applied good pressure early but was a little shaky himself with tacklers oncoming, gaining confidence with a nice one-on-one mark inside 50 and set shot goal. The Wanderers product was dangerous from then, on, dinking a clever checkside to Jamie Jones to set up his goal to finish an influential first term. White went on to have fewer highlights as the game wore on, but popped up with a smart bit of play in the third quarter – knowing he could not make the distance after falling short with a couple of shots from around 45 metres, and taking on the man on the mark to finish well from closer in. Looks a crafty type forward of centre and had some nice moments.

#14 Riley Stone (Palmerston)

Was a good accumulator on the wing with his outside movement and ability to penetrate both arcs. Went about his business with little fuss but influenced the play between the 50s, finishing with 16 disposals, three marks, three tackles, two inside 50s and three rebound 50s in an well-rounded outing.

#16 Antonio James (Darwin)

The nuggety defender was as solid as anyone down back, doing the defensive things well while also providing some valuable attack from the defensive 50. While he seemed to attract the ball, James also worked hard to make the play from defence – making a terrific spoil, laying hard tackles and kicking well down the line to clear the area. Laid another important tackle in the final term to prevent a Patrick Voss shot, and was importantly one of the NT’s best in their two scoreless quarters.

#17 Jaden Watts (Palmerston)

A dynamic yet light-on mover, Watts made a profound impact going forward. He started off working up the ground to provide a link into attacking 50, and added a bonus goal in the first term with a shrewd steal and finish on the move. While he was important on the attack, Watts also did well to follow up his work, and laid an impressive tackle in the second term after spilling the initial marking attempt. Went on to get reward for his tackling in the following quarter, and was rewarded for his overall effort with a goal later in the same term with a set shot goal after the siren. Has a good amount of spring and does some nice things going both ways, bringing some spark to the game.

#24 Jason Baird (Palmerston)

Baird made a fantastic start in the forward half, leading up well into the corridor to mark, sending a beautiful kick inside 50 to assist Jamie Jones’ goal and just falling short with his own set shot attempt in a solid opening term. His ability to find space was uncanny and he worked well in it, later moving into the midfield to impact the stoppages with his constant movement and create via a willingness to deliver inboard from wide areas. Gets in dangerous areas and influences the play, ending up with 16 disposals (14 kicks), five marks, two clearances and six inside 50s.

#28 Brody Lake (Peel Thunder/Southern Districts)

The Southern Districts midfielder was far and away NT’s best throughout the game, collecting a game-high 26 disposals, seven marks, five tackles, eight clearances, four inside 50s and two goals in an incredible outing. He built into the game beautifully, using his height to get up well in marking contests and holding firm in one-on-one contests, all the while accumulating possessions. Lake really came to life in the second half though, bursting from stoppages to earn clearances while also kicking two quality goals in the third term. The first came after shrugging off his opponent and snapping truly, with the next coming off the back of a strong pack mark against two opponents as NT mounted a come-back. He went on to continually have a say in the game with his possessions, and was a real standout.

#30 Tyrell Lui (Wanderers)

Lui started well in the midfield, breaking away with an early clearance and showing a good mix of strength and evasion in those situations. He went on to win a wealth of clearances (game-high nine), and had the same kind of impact around the ground despite sending a long-range set shot sprayed out on the full. Still, had 18 important disposals from midfield and produced seven inside 50s with his long balls out of congestion. Also managed to find the goals in the third term to cap off a solid game.

Tasmania vs. Queensland:

Tasmania:

#2 Baynen Lowe (Devonport)

Did all of the hard stuff through midfield in a very well rounded game, ending with 20 disposals, nine tackles, eight clearances, and four inside 50s. He looked lively in bursts with his speed from the contest, latching onto the ball quickly at stoppages to have an influence there. Lowe was one who had a few very good chances to put pressure on Queensland via the scoreboard, but only managed the one goal. He had an early checkside shot miss after marking a wayward Sam Sherriff shot inside 50, missed another set shot in the second term, but eventually made amends for both with a snap in the final quarter to cap off his game.

#3 Darcy Gardner (Clarence)

Another smaller player with good breaking speed, Gardner showed it off early with a nice passage through traffic which he ended with a kick. Did well to get back and win the ball around defensive wing to clear the danger and push forward with more long balls forward, and had the chance to hit the scoreboard late in the game with a fortunate in-the-back free kick which he couldn’t quite put away. Had a solid 14 disposals, nine tackles and five clearances.

#5 George McLeod (North Hobart)

Is quite light-on, so enjoyed some of the space he was afforded to receive on the outside of stoppages and send Tasmania into attack with six inside 50 entries. That outside recieving proved damaging as McLeod got on the end of a handball and slammed home a nice goal on the run. McLeod was also given another chance to find the goals on the back of a later 50-metre penalty, but could only boot the ball into the post. Much of his game consisted of getting the ball in space and kicking long, finishing with 18 disposals (14 kicks) and 1.2.

#9 Sam Sherriff (Launceston)

Sherriff popped up early with a strong mark deep inside 50 from a long ball in but sprayed the resultant shot, going on to get another opportunity in the same term as one who positioned well in attack in the opening stages. He made up for two earlier missed with a fantastic chase down tackle and goal in the following term, going on to find a good amount of possession around the ground to finish with 12 disposals, three marks and a goal.

#10 Samuel Banks (Clarence)

Caught the eye straight off the bat with a booming kick forward off the back of the first centre bounce, and continued on in similar fashion throughout the day to have a team-high 21 disposals (19 kicks) and eight inside 50s. He also hit the ground running straight after half time with a streaming clearance and long kick forward, which was a part of his game that featured most prominently. Put in a solid shift and possesses qualities which are easy on the eye.

#16 Dominic White (North Hobart)

Was a really calm and reliable figure down back, first coming into the game with a mark on the last line to show good positioning. With his helmet clipped on, White was solid in the air and efficient with his short kicking game out of defence, clearing danger with no frills fuss. Did not have massive numbers with 14 disposals and four marks, but hardly put a foot wrong with his touches.

#21 Zac Morris (East Launceston/Launceston)

Morris was one who warmed into the game slowly, but had a really influential fourth quarter and seemed to be everywhere. Earlier, he first appeared with a good couple of pressure acts and tackles in the second term, earning a free kick for one of them. He came back into the game late on with his leads up to half-forward and strong hands to mark on two occasions, getting on the end of some good service by presenting in the right areas. Had the chance to trouble the scorers after intercepting a kick-in but fell short with the shot, finishing with 14 disposals, four marks, six tackles, and three inside 50s in a hard-working display.

Queensland:

#3 Daniel Lanthois (Brisbane Lions Academy)

Was a strong inside ball winner throughout the match, digging in at the stoppages with some tough work going both ways. Lanthois well around the ground for 18 disposals, 11 tackles, seven clearances and four inside 50s. His clearance work and ability to prize the ball out despite his frame was effective, and he even showed a good bit of poise to lower his eyes early on and hit up a teammate laterally. Lanthois’ game was one of accumulation, and he proved to be as consistent as anyone across the ground while pitching in with solid tackling work.

#6 Austin Harris (Gold Coast Suns Academy)

Led well with team-highs in disposals (19) and marks (seven), working hard around the ground to provide good run and produce lateral short kicks. His use from the corridor was particularly noticeable, but like Lanthois, Harris was one who just seemed to be everywhere with his accumulative possessions and put in a really hard-working shift for the Maroons.

#24 Ethan Kerr (Brisbane Lions Academy)

Kerr first popped up with a long rebounding kick from a kick-in, and it truly set the tone for his 18 disposal, five mark and six rebound 50 effort. The Lions Academy member proved to be a calm user of the ball, often opting for long kicks to clear his lines and potential danger. It was a relatively all-round performance from Kerr, and he should be a solid contributor coming into Round 3.

#25 Bodhi Uwland (Gold Coast Suns Academy)

Another who ran well through the midfield, Uwland was a strong figure in the engine room as a point of difference to the wealth of fleet footed runners going around. He was a big ball winner around the contest, applying big tackles, standing up in them, and trying to pry his way through the congestion. His standout moment came in the final term with a courageous mark with opponents in his eyeline, which broke up an early Tasmanian push. Uwland finished with a serviceable 14 disposals, three marks, four tackles and six inside 50s.

#28 Jye Lockett (Gold Coast Suns Academy)

Lockett was one of a few big bodies for Queensland in the forward half, but made plays of a smaller unit with some work in the first term. He kicked Queensland’s first goal of the game with a snap and missed another shortly after, with not much to do until he popped up again in the third term with his second goal to finish a nice passage of play from the Maroons. Finished as a danger up forward, and had 12 disposals, three marks and two goals across the day.

#32 Noah McFadyen (Brisbane Lions Academy)

Another McFadyen to come through the Lions Academy program, Noah has been a useful forward target for Queensland as a strong unit inside 50. First caught attention with his opening goal from a set shot in the second term, making it two in quick succession with a quick snap to give Queensland some breathing space. While he didn’t have a big game numbers-wise, but had some nice moments and read the play well with his leads up to half forward.

#37 Will Bella (Gold Coast Suns Academy)

Would have to be one of the biggest 16-year-olds to have gone through the carnival at 194cm and 100kg, and while he used his frame well throughout, proved to be more than just a brute. Kicked his first of three goals with a long-range set shot in the second term, benefitted from a down-field free kick in the following term to convert from a tight angle, and booting his third after a holding free kick in the final term. Bella led up and marked well to add to his clinical conversion rate, having a bigger impact than his 10-disposal game would suggest.

Rams charge home for hard earned win

IT was a perfect day for footy despite slightly slippery conditions at Metricon Stadium for Round 2 of the AFL Under 16 Division 2 Championships, with NSW/ACT Rams taking on Northern Territory (NT) Thunder in the first match of the day. With no wind but a clear scoring end it seemed always set to be a close contest, and beside a second quarter struggle from NT the match produced just that. A two goals to nil final quarter saw NSW/ACT come out on top by 17 points, with the final score not reflective of the closeness of the game.

A good defensive game early from both sides saw some good contested intercept marks in the back 50, with both teams producing a lot of turnover ball as they settled into the game. NSW/ACT’s Sam Stening set up the first goal of the match with a beautiful passage of play to Patrick Voss for his first of four, following up shortly with his second before NT got a goal on the board. However NSW/ACT’s great start did not last for long, with NT fighting back before the break with three goals on the trot to come into the second leading by one point.

The second quarter saw NSW/ACT run away with it as NT lost all the momentum gained toward the end of the first. The Rams produced some stellar defensive work through the midfield to stop the ball from getting anywhere near NT’s 50, while Voss continued to be a solid option inside 50 as he found plenty of space to put two more on the board. Five straight goals to the Rams saw them take a convincing 15 point lead into the second half, with NT only getting the one behind on the board in a frustrating display. With both sides piling on the defensive pressure it was NSW/ACT’s back six who got the job done in the second, both delaying movement inside 50 and producing some solid intercept marks to deny any movement inside 50 for the NT.

A huge 10-goal term came to fruition in the third, seeing NT show some fight and mounting an impressive comeback, more willing to take risks if it meant getting goals on the board. NT dominated with seven goals for the term, finding their form and piling on the pressure across the field. They showed some better intent driving the ball down, cleanly finding options inside 50 where earlier they sprayed the ball at every opportunity. Jaden Watts took a great running mark with moments left in the quarter to kick a goal after the siren and get within a point coming into the final term.

It was a tough tight contest early in the last, with neither team letting up on the pressure with the closeness of the score hanging in the balance. A NSW/ACT goal to start the final term gave the Rams some of the confidence they needed to hold onto the lead, creating difficulty for NT across the board by contesting every ball and not letting NT take any clean marks down the ground.

For the winning side, Felix Rogers (eight rebounds), Will Sexton and Stening came away with an equal leading 19 disposals, while Stening will be rueing missed opportunities with one goal and five behinds from seven inside 50s. Kai Watts, Euriah Hollard and Matthew McKenzie kicked two apiece, joining Voss as multiple goalkickers for the Rams. For Thunder, Brodie Lake was the clear go-to on field with 26 disposals, eight clearances and two goals, closely followed by Tyrell Lui (18 disposals, nine clearances, seven inside 50s, one goal) and Ned Stevens (25 hitouts, one goal).

NSW/ACT 2.0 | 7.3 | 10.4 | 12.10 (82)
NT 3.1 | 3.2 | 10.3 | 10.5 (65)

GOALS

NSW/ACT: P. Voss 4, M. McKenzie, K. Watts, E. Hollard 2, S. Stening, W. Sexton
NT: B. Lake, J. Watts, M. White 2, J. Jones, N. Stevens, A. Lowe, T. Lui

ADC BEST

NSW/ACT: F. Rogers, W. Sexton, K. Watts, M. McKenzie, P. Voss
NT: B. Lake, T. Lui, J. Baird, J. Watts, M. White

Weekend previews: NTFL – Round 4

WITH only one undefeated team remaining and one side still looking for a win, Round 4 in the Northern Territory Football League (NTFL) could well herald some interesting contests.

TIWI BOMBERS v. NIGHTCLIFF

Round 4 – Saturday October 27, 2pm

Tiwi Oval

Tiwi Bombers will be looking to break its season duck when it faces Nightcliff at Tiwi Oval in the Round 4 opener. It will be no mean feat though, with the Bombers having to back up a tight loss to the reigning premiers with a strong showing against a strong Nightcliff side that will be breathing fire. The Tigers let a four-goal lead slip to Waratah in Round 3, handing them an improbable first defeat which they will be looking to rectify.

The Bombers’ winless run has not come without promise thus far, with two respectable losses and experienced heads seeing them through. The likes of Adam Tipungwuti, ex-Dee Austin Wonnaeamirri and Jason Puruntatameri will look to stand up once again in this game, while key man Dionysuis Munkara will have to continue his goalscoring form if the Bombers are to put up a big enough score. The forward threat of the Tigers is irresistible though, so you can expect the likes of Trent Melville, Mathew Bricknell, and Liam Holt-Fitz to trouble the scorers plenty if the Tigers get on top. Meanwhile, Kaine Riley, Jess Budarick, and TAC Cup graduate James Tsitas should prove to be key factors in the battle further up the ground.

There is certainly plenty on the line for both sides, and it will take a special performance from Tiwi to topple the Tigers if they can roar again.

 

WARATAH v. WANDERERS

Round 4 – Saturday October 27, 5pm

TIO Stadium

Waratah will be hoping to strengthen their position in the finals race with a win over Wanderers, who are coming off two-straight losses having only beat the bottom side. The Warriors had an outstanding victory last time out as they toppled the Tigers in an impressive last-quarter comeback, making it two consecutive wins after a shock loss to Palmerston in Round 1.

Waratah’s Lachlan Collihole will look to continue his consistent goalscoring form having bagged eight in his three games, with Raven Jollife and Cameron Barrett others who could follow suit and help the Warriors gain ascendency. For Wanderers, look for Marlon Motlop to provide some spark up forward alongside Patrick Fairhead, with exciting youngsters Joel Jeffrey and Tyrell Lui also showing glimpses of form.

There’s two ways of looking at this contest – the first being that it poises the bottom two finals sides against each other, and the second being that it pits the weakest top four side against the strongest bottom four side. Either way, it looks like it could be a tight tussle on paper and should play a key role in shaping the last couple of finals spots.

 

ST MARYS v. DARWIN BUFFALOES

Round 4 – Saturday October 27, 7:30pm

TIO Stadium

In the second game of Saturday night’s TIO Stadium double-header, St Marys will seek to continue its momentum when they tussle with the tough Darwin Buffaloes outfit. The Buffaloes are back to their best after dropping their opening game to the surging reigning premiers, holding the best percentage in the league thus far from second spot. The Saints possess an opposite form line, but have shown glimpses of promise across their three games which eventually culminated in a win and jump to sixth place.

The stacked Buffaloes lineup features stars on each line, with a particularly dangerous forward half. The likes of Christopher Williams and Adam Sambono hit the scoreboard well last week, while Jarrod Stokes has found himself in the best two of three times with a pair of two-goal hauls and 16 year-old prodigy Malcolm Rosas has been exciting. Unlike Darwin, St Marys has been far from prolific in from of goal, but will be confident of quelling their opposition’s forward threat with the AFL experience of Raphael Clarke down back. Anthony Wilson was best-on in his first game for the year last week, and the likes of Nathaniel Parades and Ben Taylor will hope to make a similar impact given their solid form.

While scoring power is the obvious difference between the sides here, competitiveness is not lost on the mighty St Marys side, so expect them to put up a good fight against the Buffaloes.

 

SOUTHERN DISTRICTS v. PALMERSTON MAGPIES

Round 4 – Sunday October 28, 4pm

Norbuilt Oval

Sunday’s only fixture pits the irresistible force that is Southern Districts against second-bottom Palmerston Magpies. The Crocs have accounted for each of the three sides they’ve faced to remain as the only undefeated side for the year, but it hasn’t come without challenge. On the other hand, Palmerston face another tough ask having comfortably lost consecutive games to Darwin and Nightcliff after their stirring Round 1 win.

The key men for the Crocs include the likes of Bradley Vallance, who has two bags of three goals, fellow goalkicker William Farrer, and Samuel Smith. They will also hope to welcome ex-Bomber Leroy Jetta back to the fold. For the Magpies, Matthew Dennis will have to stand tall once again if they are to stand any chance, with Clarence Baird and Rodney Baird sure to provide assistance. Former AFL star Alwyn Davey will also hope to nab a goal or two alongside Ezekiel Frank.

It’s hard to ignore Southern Districts’ form, and the Magpies have slumped recently, but there is enough talent in their side to suggest they can put up a fight against the mighty Crocs.

Weekend wash-up: NTFL – Round 3

ROUND 3 of the Northern Territory Football League (NTFL) Men’s Premier League saw the competition’s best stamp their authority against persistent opponents, while one side managed a massive come from behind upset on Sunday.

SOUTHERN DISTRICTS 13.13 (91)
TIWI BOMBERS 10.7 (67)

GOALS:

Southern Districts: W. Farrer 3, B. Vallance 3, C. McAdam 3, D. McLachlan 2, B. Rusca, S. Thorne.
Tiwi: R. Tungatalum 2, D. Munkara 2, A. Wonaeamirri 2, A. Tipungwuti 2, H. Puruntatameri, D. Anderson.

BEST:

Southern Districts: D. Staunton, S. Smith, C. Gallio, D. McLachlan, C. McAdam, S. Rusca
Tiwi: D. Munkara, J. Puruntatameri, T. Tambling, A. Darcy, M. Cooper

Southern Districts continued its winning ways with a hard-fought 24-point win over Tiwi Bombers in Saturday’s round opener at TIO Stadium. The Bombers were no pushovers, proving pesky as they hung in there and went close to matching it with the reigning premiers in each interval.

Despite managing one more scoring shot in the first term, the Bombers found themselves behind to the Crocs’ 3.1 at the first break. While Southern Districts suffered a dose of the same inefficiency in the following quarter, they matched Tiwi’s three goals to extend their lead to 14 points heading into half-time. The steady lead-building continued after the break too, with the Crocs again booting 3.5, and then another four goals in the final term to graft out the eventual 24-point margin that got them over the line.

Dean Staunton was judged the winners’ best in his standout performance for the year, while Charles McAdam, Brad Vallance, and Will Farrer each booted three goals in a solid collective performance forward of centre. Dylan McLachlan was their only other multiple goal kicker with two, also managing a spot in the bests. For Tiwi, Dionysuis Munkara claimed his second-straight best-on honour with another two goals, while ex-Dee Austin Wonaeamirri, Ross Tungatalum and Adam Tipungwuti each matched his goal haul.

The win sees the Crocs stand alone atop of the ladder as the only remaining undefeated team, with Tiwi showing opposite form as the only winless side.

 

WANDERERS 7.6 (48)
ST MARYS 8.13 (61)

GOALS:

Wanderers: P. Fairhead 2, M. Motlop 2, J. Walsh, G. Turner, T. Lui
St Marys: M. Liddy 4, B. Taylor 2, S. Rioli, M. Wilkinson 

BEST:

Wanderers: N/A
St Marys: A. Wilson, S. Rioli, B. Taylor, N. Paredes, T. Davies, C. Parris

St Marys snared its first win of the season with a see-sawing 13 point win over Wanderers, putting a slight dampener on Eagles legend Jarred Erlandson’s 150th game celebrations. The Saints were wasteful early in tough conditions, finding the wrong side of the goalposts seven times in the opening term. Meanwhile, Wanderers claimed their only opportunity for the quarter, but still found themselves behind at the first break by the slimmest of margins.

The second term saw the Eagles continue their efficiency in front of goal, with three goals helping them to a four-point lead. The Saints fared better too, with two of their own majors crucially keeping them in touch as the downpour failed to cease. The gap between the sides narrowed into the third as St Marys put on three goals to their opponent’s two to this time find themselves down by a solitary point. It was in the final quarter where the Saints tore the game apart though, with another three goals giving them an unassailable lead, despite a late consolation goal from the Eagles.

Anthony Wilson claimed best afield honours in his first game for the year for St Marys, while Mathias Liddy was also crucial to the win with his four goals making up half of his side’s haul. Ben Taylor was a key feature too with two goals of his own and an appearance in the bests. For Wanderers, Patrick Fairhead was and option up forward and managed to claim two first-half goals, while Marlon Motlop matched his efforts in the second half to give the Eagles a sniff. Gibson Turner also hit the scoreboard and conjured an assist, while youngster Tyrell Lui fared well.

Despite the loss, Wanderers hold onto its finals spot in fifth, with St Marys now matching its one-win tally and sitting just below them.

 

PALMERSTON MAGPIES 5.8 (38)
DARWIN BUFFALOES 13.9 (87)

GOALS:

Palmerston: I. Milera 2, L. Harrison, K. Brown, R. Dhamarrandji
Darwin: C. Williams 4, A. Sambono 3, J. Stokes 2, I. Palmer 2, B. Stokes, C. Atkinson

BEST:

Palmerston: R. Baird, M. Dennis, S. Talbot, N. Deans, I. Milera, C. Baird
Darwin: C. Williams, J. Stokes, A. Sambono, J. Anderson, D. Hancock, C. Stokes

Darwin Buffaloes notched their second consecutive win, with nine second-half goals helping them account for Palmerston Magpies by 49 points. It was a steady start from the Buffaloes, booting two goals while keeping the Magpies goalless in the opening term. Palmerston hit back in the following quarter though, managing one more score for the interval than their opponents with 2.4 to narrow the lead to 10 points at the main break. The third was another even quarter, but Darwin showed signs of pulling away with their four goals giving them a handy 15-point buffer heading around the final turn. Those signs came to fruition as last year’s runners up showed their class to close out the game with five goals while keeping the Magpies scoreless.

Christopher Williams booted four goals for the winners to be named their best, with young star Adam Sambono slotting three, while Jarrod Stokes and Ishmael Palmer rounded out the multiple goalkickers with two each. Rodney Baird was judged Palmerston’s best, with ruckman Matthew Dennis backing up his good early-season form and Ian Milera claiming two goals to also feature in the bests.

Palmerston’s win in Round 1 sees them escape the unwanted bottom position, but they do hold the competition’s worst percentage with 58.42. Darwin, on the other hand have the best with 166.43, helping them sit second as the best team with two wins to their name.

 

WARATAH 14.9 (93)
NIGHTCLIFF 13.7 (85)

GOALS:

Waratah: L. Collihole 2, C. Barrett 2, T. Mosquito 2, J. Smith 2, R. Jolliffe, B. Rayson, B. Carroll, M. O’Donnell, R. Bulluss, T. Toma
Nightcliff: M. Bricknell 4, T. Melville 3, L. Holt-Fitz 2, W. Derksen 2, J. Budarick, F. James 

BEST:

Waratah: N/A
Nightcliff: S. Deery, K. Kossack, J. Tsitas, W. Derksen, K. Riley

In arguably the game of the round, Waratah handed Nightcliff their first loss of the season with a rousing come from behind effort seeing them seal an eight point victory. The contest began as an arm-wrestle with Nightcliff bettering the Warriors’ 4.1 by a single point at the first break. The run of the game then headed all in the Tigers’ direction, as they slotted six straight goals to Waratah’s two to hold a 20 point lead at the half. The third quarter saw the sides share 6.2 evenly as the margin remained the same and the result looked destined to go Nightcliff’s way. Incredibly, the Warriors piled on six goals while keeping their opponents goalless to storm home to a memorable win in front of their home crowd.

The Warriors had four players kick two goals each to make up their 10 individual goalkickers, with the likes of Timothy Mosquito and Lachlan Collihole hitting the scoreboard, while Raven Jollife also did so to continue his good form. The goal-spread was a little less even on the Tigers’ side, with Mathew Bricknell backing up a three-goal haul with four majors, while the dangerous Trent Melville booted three and Wade Derksen managed two. James Tsitas was damaging from midfield, while Simon Deery was named his side’s best.

Despite the loss, Nightcliff maintain their spot above the Warriors in third, with both sides holding two wins to sit nicely in the finals spots.