WOODEND MASTERS | May 25 Review

Woodend-Hesket v Sunshine Heights
May 25, 2019
Gilbert Gordon Oval, Woodend.
|Daron Jacks|
It was the first taste of winter when Sunshine Heights braved the trip up the Calder to take on the Hawks in a twilight clash,
And in the absence of change rooms it was a marquee event (and portable showers). With the old blokes going on after the seniors there was a sense of urgency – we had to piss off as the marquees weren’t big enough for all of us.
Three of our fellas helped to fill the undermanned Dragons with Franko heading over with Bocca, who had sworn off playing again until 2045, and Closey who found himself in ruck duties for the opposition.
As soon as our fill-in umpire Mad Dog (who had a solid pre-game preparation between officiating the ressies and ours) had started the game, the rain fell making sure we chased a bar of soap around for the next four quarters. And it explained some of the fumbling and sprayed kicks that were to follow.
In the absence of our big man Chewy at full forward Razor moved the magnets and it was logical that Bushy held down the spearhead’s position and Jax in the pocket.
Eggy rucked superbly and cleared the ball with Raccs the ever reliable workhorse in the middle.
An early clearance saw Jax take a strong contested mark and duly burn Koliba, who was screaming for the pass running into the pocket with an opponent in hot pursuit. It’s Masters footy and if you mark near the goals ya take a shot! Take the glory.
In this case the glory of the mark evaporated with an easy shot on goal spraying wide and out on the full. An injured Showbags and sidekick Gary Millane and a chorus of others delighted in the shocker and howls of laughter and mocking could be heard from the social rooms. (Mental note if you stuff up it’s better up the scoreboard end away from the hecklers). A tool nomination was chalked up.
This was soon erased with Jax taking a hospital handpass off Pete Wood, back for his first game of the season, and showing composure, evaded opponents and slotted a “Blight-like goal”. They said it. Not me. An over-the-top goal celebration followed.
Lairising is encouraged at this level!
Conditions were getting slippier and the ball spent more time skidding along the deck as aged men scrambled of possession or to keep feet, but the Mitchell brothers (Al and Jim) were in the thick of it taking on opponents to drive the ball back into the forward line.
The Hawks entered the first break with two goals to Sunshine’s one behind.
The Dragons defence was bolstered by Bocca and Franko who saw and took every opportunity to crunch teammates. The second quarter saw the Hawks with the help of Kohney and Raccs bomb the ball into the forward line but a strong defence and slippery balls saw some awful scrapping for possession.
McBride continued to battle with Bocca, but the Lazarus of the masters footy delivered some bone-crunching tackles on Pete. McBride eventually broke clear to kick a sausage, but he worked hard to nail one.
Bushy was handed a golden opportunity when the ball bounced over his opponent’s head landed in his lap and ran a full 2m to kick a 50m goal … two steps back from the goal line. The ball almost went through the netball hoop too!
Tool nomination #3 was chalked up.
Latecomer Rhysy, who had not been seen in the changeroom or warm up began bobbing up with runs out of half back and opted to just burn his opponent to get amongst it… seemed to work as he did get a few touches and set up goals.
Halftime saw McBride put the successful nomination in for the Tool with what is known as “doing a Koliba!” after JK won it in the Bendigo game. Some people just can’t hold on.
Kohney began the third quarter at full forward and presented a strong target. While only snaring one goal for the game, he was bringing the ball to ground and opened the way for our boys to extend our lead.
Sunshine battled to score and as the ball kept finding its way out of bounds, throw-ins were frequent with Closey doing a strong job keeping our rucks honest.
Chasing a bar of soap takes its toll and aging bodies began to slow and fumble. In the last quarter Sunshine managed to grab two late goals, but the game was away from them. Raccs not content with getting the ball near our bench and booting it out of bounds once, he gave it a second crack on the rebound.
By the final siren the Hawks had won by 31 points. Overall it was a fun game in a good Masters spirit with plenty of laughs had.
These games just don’t happen without help and a special thanks to Razor for coaching, Johnny Gawthrop for helping out as runner, the kids for running out the water and helping with the goal umpiring and throw-ins, Deano and Scotty for strapping and trainers duties, and to Showbags and Candace for getting the food ready for the post-game feast.
We now have a month off before the Spirit of Masters Carnival at Mooroopna on Saturday, June 29. Plenty of time to mend and prepare for the second half of the season, but training continues as normal – rain, hail or shine!
Woodend-Hesket : 7.11 (53)
Sunshine Heights: 3.4 (22)
Goals: Jacks, Koliba, Bush, Raco, Kohne, McBride, Mitchell.
Best: Molenaar, Nuttall, Connell, Mitchell.
Tool: McBride



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