Caulfield 3.2 6.6 8.7 9.10 (64)
Oakleigh Districts 2.0 4.2 4.7 6.12 (48)
Goals: Bruce Kain 3, Tim Kennedy 2, Jordan Roberts 2, Tom Stait, Colin Trigellis-Smith
Best: Adam Ballard, Matt Coughlan, Jordan Roberts, Anthony O’Shea, Luke Ceislak, Bruce Kain, Kristian Tribuiani
What a phenomenal performance boys! This has got to be one of the best wins the club has had in years! Few superlatives do it justice.
The ladder leaders Oakleigh Districts came to Koornang Park thinking we would be a push over and stretch its unbeaten run to five matches. But things didn’t go according to their script and the Bears put in a herculean effort to upset the highly-fancied visitors by 16 points.
Our intensity and commitment at the contest was evident from the outset and as a result Colin Trigellis-Smith and Jordan Roberts put us on the board early. This intensity and commitment, combined with ferocious tackling, put enormous pressure on the Oakleigh ball carriers and forced them to make mistakes. This became a feature throughout the day.
The third term saw the backline assert their dominance. Anthony O’Shea was tremendous, with his opponent hardly touching the ball, while Luke Ceislak provided drive out of defence. We repelled many of Oakleigh’s forward 50 entries, but the shots at goal they did have were rushed and sprayed, such was the pressure the Bears applied.
The final quarter the boys tried desperately to hold on to the lead as Oakleigh booted the opening two goals. But in the final minutes when Bruce Kain slotted his third goal, we knew it was the final nail in Oakleigh’s coffin. The sound of the final siren was met with pure jubilation, both on the ground and in the grandstand.
Adam Ballard was best afield and by a considerable margin. He was super in the ruck, feeding the ball down the midfielders’ throats time and again. If that wasn’t enough, he worked his arse off and did some tremendous work around the ground. It is doubtful you will see a more dominant display by a ruckman in a game of footy anywhere. Players like Jason Twirdy, Tom Siegert and Tom Heagney found themselves beneficiaries of Ballard’s silver service.
Kudos must also go to Matt Coughlan. As a midfielder, he didn’t win 40-odd touches a-la Dane Swan, but his performance was just as vital. Set a tagging role on Oakleigh’s key play maker, he did a sterling job and completely nullified his influence. In addition, he picked up a few handy disposals to complete a solid afternoon’s work.
Roberts and Trigellis-Smith competed hard all day up forward, despite the delivery to them, on occasion, being less than perfect. Kristian Tribuiani was recalled to the senior line-up and brought with him a physicality and intensity at the footy that was unmatched by all in black and white.
This win was not about one standout performance, but 22 outstanding contributions. Each player stuck to the structures, executed their role, sacrificed and worked for each other and ultimately contributed to the victory. This was not just a pleasing result, but a performance that every single person associated with the Caulfield Bears Football Club is extremely proud of.
If this win has taught us anything, it is that this playing group has got what it takes to not only match it with the best in the competition, but has the potential to be very successful.
Caulfield 0.1 1.5 2.8 3.9 (27)
Oakleigh Districts 3.6 9.7 12.9 17.13 (115)
Goals: Ryan McEvoy 2, Scott Hunter
Best: Jesse Martin, Rohan Wright, Allan Clarke, Ryan McEvoy, Brett Phillips, Luke Kosmanis, Matt Clifford
Last week the boys were behind the eight-ball with only 15 blokes running out to face Skye. However, they fought hard and were competitive, despite not being able to trouble the scorers. If we could replicate that same intensity and endeavour, we were confident of putting in a solid performance against Oakleigh District on a warm and sunny Saturday afternoon at the Bear Cave.
Unfortunately that didn’t eventuate, with the reserves suffering another big loss. Though despite the hammering the scoreboard suggests this was another game that should have been closer than it ultimately turned out to be.
Oakleigh Districts proved to be too strong out of the middle all day, and from the get go it was one-way traffic out of the centre. The first term saw the boys struggle to keep possession of the footy, and consequently forward 50 entries were limited. However, they turned the game into a scrappy affair and, with the backline again resolute, restricted Oakleigh to just three goals for the term.
The second quarter saw the boys find possession of the ball more often and passes began to hit targets. We registered our first goal of the day through Scott Hunter, who was impeded in a marking contest at the top of the square. Despite making the goal umpire work hard with a wobbly punt off the boot, he converted the free kick from point blank range for his first goal for the club. We perhaps should have had another one or two more majors, but we missed some chances in front of the sticks.
We squandered a couple more chances early in the second half; however, we continued to get the footy into our forward line. Despite missing a few of these opportunities, the mercurial Ryan McEvoy proved to be a real livewire up forward for most of the day. And it was in the second half his radar started working and his kicking boot began to fire, slotting two majors.
However, the boys began to tire in the final stanza and Oakleigh blew out the final margin in junk time.
With his powerful hands and booming kick, Jesse Martin has become a very valuable asset to the side in both attack and defence. He was best on ground again, this time doing his best work in the back half. Allan Clarke and Brett Phillips were also terrific rebounding out of the backline. Luke Kosmanis provided a handy target inside the arc, despite limited opportunities, competing hard and clucking a few strong marks. Rohan Wright and Matt Clifford also battled hard all day and were solid contributors.