The Mitcham Junior Football Club was involved in Round 12 action over the weekend and below are the coaches match reports from all games….

Under 8 Black – Coach Peter Ajani

Mitcham Black played a very strong North Ringwood Black. The captains for the week were Noah and Charlie and both were asked to lead the team with their voice and bring other team members into the play. Both boys played really strong games with both kicking goals and getting plenty of the footy. The feature of this game was the number of fantastic centre clearances from both sides, resulting in running plays and scoring for both teams. It really was an entertaining fast paced game to watch. With several of our best players away, Mitcham played as a complete team with all players contributing to a solid performance. I really was very impressed that we were continually first to the ball.  The Mitcham Medals this week went to Nay  and Gabriel. Nay has shown genuine improvement for the past 4 or 5 weeks and this week he continued to get the ball and really did play some great football. Gabriel has so much potential it’s frightening and today he pulled it all together with great clearances from the middle, nice kicks and a superb running goal. Great game boys! The Panelen’s Healthy Nut Bar and Cafe Ice Cream Sundae Award went to William, Gus, Jesse and Aiden. All boys tried their hardest to win the ball and create a contest. The EFL encouragement award went to Liam who followed the coaches’ instructions and stayed at full back in the goal square. The Mitcham Encouragement awards went to Steve and Marcus who played great games. Steve had a great game, winning lots of contested footy and kicking his best on the run goal. Marcus continued to win contested footy. Great games boys!  Mitcham Hot Dog and Drink Awards went to Tong and Marco. Tong just continued to attack the footy and Marco also played a terrific game, always creating a contest. Overall, this was a great game with contributions from all the boys. It is great to see all the boys improving.

Under 8 Yellow – Coach Josh McConnell

Mitcham Yellow played Heathmont in what was a very evenly matched game. Both teams had a fair share of the ball with great ball movement.  Today our Captains were Henry Thomson and Harrison Fearnley. Both boys played really great games, having many touches from the middle of the ground. Henry moved to the back line and defended in brilliant fashion and Harry went forward to provide a tall marking option for the team. Today we took our game to a new level, continuing with the improvement of recent weeks. The run and handball we see now has created more space for the boys to get effective kicks into space. We saw on many occasions James Wilson getting into space kicking beautiful long kicks and Mason taking many great marks in front and behind the pack. In defence we were manning up very well throughout the game and on most occasion attacking the ball with vigor. Noah Quinlan played a great running game at halfback and then the wing, creating many opportunities for himself but also bringing his teammates in with great handballing while on the ground. The first Encouragement Medal was awarded to Angus Butler today. He has been playing great football over the last few games and today was no different. Angus took many nice marks in both the forward line and backline and provided effective handballing to his teammates. The second Encouragement Medal was awarded to Harrison Fearnley. Harrison led from the front today right from the outset when he provided first use of the ball to his teammates. In the forward line he had many tough contests taking a mark or bringing the ball to ground and feeding it to his fellow forwards for a shot on goal. The first Mitcham Encouragement award today went to Ashton Smith for his efforts creating opportunities for his teammates and his ability to run into space. A couple goals topped off a good day for Ashton. The second Mitcham Encouragement Award went to Mason Porter for playing a brilliant game up forward and then in defence. His ability to read the play always puts him in great position to take a high flying mark. These hard fought marks created many goal opportunities for Mason and the rest of the team. The Panelen’s Healthy Nut Bar and Café award this week went to Will Serong for his great work up forward all day kicking 3 goals and many score assists. When moved into the centre he attacked the ball gaining many clearances and starting the drive into the forward line. Dylan Spencer-Yates played one of his best games of the season. His hard work in the centre of the ground today, when playing in the ruck, and then for a his work at CHF getting in front and presenting as a tall target to aim at has been a big improvement for him. Dylan also snared himself a goal from a fine snap and was awarded the Panelen’s Healthy Nut Bar and Café award. Charlie Martin was awarded the Croc’s award this week for his run and support around the ball with some great handballing in the last quarter that stopped the opposition attack. Finally I would like to thank Mark Butler for Coaching the boys last week while I was sipping on a “few cocktails”. From all reports the boys did exceptionally well and had huge fun under Marks guidance. Thanks also to Simon Serong for standing in for Steve Darmody in the Team Managers Position. Steve does a huge amount of work each week and from what I hear Simon did a fantastic job filling this role. Next week we take on Kilsyth Red at 9am for the second last game of the season. See you at training on Wednesday.  Go Tigers!


Under 9 – Coach Brad Aujard

The side was switched on early today with the team showing why we were lightning premiers, however the Waverley Blues fought back making for a nail biter of a finish. Ryan O proved why he is one of the leaders of the team by kicking 3 goals in the first quarter, his silky skills shone when running off the forward flank, earning him the choccies. Jack took home the medal today as he proved he could be a worthy half forward, marking strongly and kicking the ball a long way with his right boot. Today however was a chance for Christian to show all of us just how far he has come as an important player in our team, putting his body on the line ensuring the opposition team didn’t get the ball and if they did he took it away from them. That’s why he got the canteen voucher today. Well done today boys but one quarter doesn’t make a game. See you at 4.15 on Friday for a game plan session.


Under 10 – Coach Carlo Fanfulla

Our Under 10 boys travelled to Miller Park to take on Boronia and the weather was a lot kinder to us than the last time we played at this ground. We were an undermanned side today as only sixteen of our players were available. Our leaders today, Jok Chol and Charlie Bamford both did outstanding jobs.  Jok started in the ruck in the first half then played in the forward line for the second half.  He put on a great display of tackling in one on one contests.  Charlie Bamford stood out as a genuine leader on the field, being vocal towards his teammates and guiding into positions of where the ball was going.  This was certainly a voice that was needed today as our boys struggled to find their feet in the first half. Hudson Goulding’s sheer presence and class made our Tigers all walk taller as the engine in our midfield slotted a well deserved goal in the second quarter. Luke Marriner was outstanding in clearing the ball out from the centre and doing a great job winning plenty of marking contests. It’s great having Xavier Harpur in our team as he brings great strength to our forward line with his accurate kicking. I am very proud of how our boy’s stood up today, always playing within the rules and playing the game the way it should be played.  Well-done Tigers!


Under 11 – Coach Jason Philactides

WOW!  What a start to the game!  I'm on the look out for another footy clip to show the boys!  Maybe I need one for each break :-)   For the first time this year we led at the first break and this was purely because the boys wanted the ball and were in first every time.  The first quarter saw us have 4 shots on goal kicking 1.3-9.  The 4 shots were all kickable goals but unfortunately only Dan T was able to slot one through the big sticks.  Nonetheless we led by 7 points at quarter time and the boys were up and about!  Unfortunately in the 2nd quarter we allowed all our hard work to be undone within a few minutes and before we knew it, The Basin were 3-4 goals up.  At half time I gave the boys a stern talking to and it seemed to work, the boys came out with fire in the belly and like the first quarter we dominated play kicking 2 goals, 1 each to Luca and Denzell.  4 goals down at 3-quarter time would require a fight back, particularly against a strong breeze.  As it turned out The Basin kicked a couple of last quarter goals to put the game out of reach, but the boys fought very hard to the end.  I am very proud of the boys and in particular the way they played today.  There is no doubt they are improving every week and deserve a win.  Luca had an awesome game giving his team lots of run and kicking a very important goal in the 3rd quarter.  Luca was also very physical winning a lot of his own footy by getting in and under with no fear.  Well-done Luca great game.  Boothy also had a good game.  A lot of Boothy's hard work goes un-noticed however I do see the little bumps he gives and handballs he often gives out to a player in a better position.  Nice game Boothy.  Nathan also had a great game today giving us a lot of drive through his run and carry that we've become accustomed to seeing every week.  Nathan has worked incredibly hard on his fitness and tackling this year and it seems to be paying off with playing consistently well.  Well-done Nathan.  Awards: Luca, Boothy, & Nathan. Goal Kickers: Dan T, Luca & Denzell.  Have a great week boys!

Final Score: The Basin 10.11.71 d Mitcham 3.5.23


Under 12 – Coach Mark Ross

The U12's ventured out to Rowville to play Lysterfield away for the third time this season. Ground conditions were a bit wet and slippery on the wings and goal squares but overall a good winters day to play footy. School holidays saw us without a bench with a number a boys away. A slight breeze favoured the Tigers in the first quarter but we only managed to kick one goal, thanks to Callum. In second quarter against the breeze we played much better team football to score 2 goals, one to Harry and one to Sam B. We moved the ball with more purpose looking for teammates on the lead, which was great to see. Again in the third we did not use the breeze to our advantage and failed to kick a major. The last quarter saw both teams kick a single goal, a good snap from Lachie sealing the win for the Tigers. As the season gets towards its conclusion we are coming up against desperate teams trying to make the finals therefore it's very important a rise to these challenges and continue to work on improving our game. I thought we were down a little on our desire to win the ball today. Some special mentions to Tyler who played on the ball all day as was "in and under" always putting his body over the ball.  Pat, across the half back line was also very good.  He loves playing against Lysterfield. The midfield of Joel, Ethan, Jamie and Sam B. worked hard all game. The forward line is just starting to understand about moving up the ground to make position for that next kick, we still need to work on this but we are getting better at reading the ball coming out of the backline. Another challenge next round against Wantirna South who defeated the second placed South Croydon this round. Remember free dress training on Tuesday, wear something bright, colourful or a theme, still wear footy boots, mouth guards and let's keep "Enjoying the Contest". Go Tigers.


Final Score:  Mitcham 4.8.32 d Lysterfield 2.2 14


Under 13 – Coach Shane Dickson

What a difference a week makes in football.  I thought we would be well primed for this game after last week’s great effort, but it was just not the same attack on the ball today. We were not hard enough at the ball, played behind most of the game and did not contest as well as we could have. There where some good bits of play throughout the game with some good hard running with the ball by only a couple of players. Michael and Bailey worked tirelessly all game, and tried to help the boys to lift, but we need more than just a couple of players to lift in order the get consistent results. After seeing what the boys could do last week, I truly believe that they can all do this consistently. The boys need to believe in themselves in order for this to happen. See you at training! Go Tigers!

Final Score: Bornia 10.12.72 d Mitcham 4.3.27

Goals: Luke H 1, Corey 1, Michael 1, Sam 1

Awards: Bailey, Michael, Riley


Under 15 – Coach Cam Horsey

Today we travelled down the highway to Kimberley reserve to take on Chirnside Park. This game was a crucial one for us to stay on the top of the ladder as we have 4 other teams knocking on the door to take it away from us. We spoke to the group prior to the game about the importance of getting off to a good start and I gave Nayls the big task at full forward to give us a big target up forward. Nayls didn’t let us down with three early goals, giving us the start we wanted. Tails was giving our mids the first use of the ball and we looked to have the game on our terms. The whole team was working well across all areas of the ground and we were hoping this control would stay with us for the rest of the game. Going into the second quarter we had the wind and the coaches gave the message to continue to attack and play disciplined footy when the ball isn’t in their area. The message didn’t seem to get across to the group as we started to give undisciplined frees, miss targets, forgot to man up and generally letting Chirnside lead us to the ball. We didn’t really get hurt on the scoreboard as Chirny basically flooded or forward line all game, but we allowed them to dictate the style of play to how they wanted. We can’t let teams in after completely controlling the first quarter. The game stayed that way for about another 30 minutes, we still continued to push forward although our delivery was a bit scrappy and we still dropped simple marks. We need to be more aware of our man when games start getting away from us and don’t wait for someone else to kick start us back into the game. The last quarter I put it to the group to take the responsibility on themselves to find out who would lift the team. JP responded brilliantly getting his hands on the ball a half a dozen times within a couple of minutes. Spiros and Hoppo also responded, one working at the bottom of the packs with desperation and the other kicking 3 goals from long range after working hard in heavy traffic to get himself into the right spots. We still came away with the win and it is great to beat Chirnside who have been our arch rivals for a long time now. We still hold onto top spot and teams are desperate to knock us off. We will re-group this week and iron out any kink’s that exposed us a bit today.  We will take on Vermont next week with a completely fresh approach. A win is a win boys and you did Mitcham proud today. Let’s continue this run home to the finals  and hold onto top spot.  Well done today boys!!!!!  Lets load up again for next week.

Final Score: Mitcham 9.8.62 d Chirnside Park 2.6.18


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