Results - Round 1
The opening round of the 2014 season was one of mixed fortunes for the Blues, with the League side going down after leading at three-quarter time, the Reserves and Thirds having impressive first up wins and the Colts having a day to forget.
The League boys were keen to celebrate Ryan Atkinson's 100th game in style, with the inclusions of big men Brandon Ellis and Rick Wallis. However, they got off to a slow start, kicking just 1 goal and trailing by 20 points at the first change. The Blues started to turn things around in a tight 2nd term, kicking 2 goals to 1 to trim the deficit to 13 points at the main break.
The boys came out swinging after the long interval, booting 3 goals to 1 in the 3rd quarter, turning a 13 point deficit into a 1 point lead at the final change.
However, it wasn't to be for the Blues. Collegians rallied after three quarter time with 4 quick goals to snuff out any momentum the Blues had built, before going on to win by 30 points.
Ellis returned with 3 goals, while David Myors bagged 2. Ian Watts and Daniel Hug were among the best on ground, while David Philp was workmanlike down back.
Goals: Ellis 3, Myors 2, Gotti, Ingersole.
Best: D. Hug, Atkinson, Philp, M. Hug, Watts.
The seconds got their 2014 campaign off to a winning start with a 36-point victory over Collegians. Much like the League side, the Reserves got off to a slow start to trail by 5 points at quarter time.
The Blues hit their straps in the second term, kicking 5 goals to 1 to lead by 19 points at the main break.
The sides traded a goal each in the third, with the Blues turning for home with a 21 point advantage, before the Blues turned on the afterburners to win by 6 goals and give Kane Lombardo his first win as a coach.
The "retired" Todd Grace fished his foort boots out of the rubbish bin and kicked 5 goals in his comebakc game, while undersized Centre Half Forward, Damian Chandler (rich words coming from his vertically challenged coach) kicked 2.
Goals: Grace 5, Chandler 2, Murray, Lagana, Nicholas, Trent.
Best: M. Burvill, Chandler, A. Burvill.
The Colts boys got their premiership defence off to a shaky start, succumbing to Collegians by 91 points.
The Blues were able to run with Collegians, but were undone by some basic skill errors, which cost them dearly. Collegians were able to hold the Blues goalless in the first term and scoreless in the final quarterm while extending their lead at each break.
Ayden Doohan led the way on the scoreboard with 2 majors, while Matt Steacy and Mark Windsor were among the best.
Goals: Doohan 2, Pobjoy.
Best: Matt Steacy, Windsor, Henderson, Harris.
The Thirds team were impressive in their first hit out of the season, beating Noranda by 22 points out on the Junior oval.
A tight tussle in the first term saw the teams head for the huddles with the scores level, before the Blues pulled ahead by 10 points at the main break.
That margin was extended to 17 points at the last break with a 2 goal to 1 term, however those goals proved to be the last of the game. Willetton dominated the final quarter, but failed to register a single major in the final 20 minutes, kicking 7 behinds to 2 to run out 22 point winners.
Power forwards Jeremy Bruse and Simon Lawson led the charge up forward, kicking 3 and 2 goals respectively. Newly anointed captain Brad Hill provided plenty of drive from half back, while Jake Jensen and Andrew Lange were impressive in their first games for the club.
On the injury front, Luke Thatcher was withdrawn pre match with a hamstring complaint, Michael Gotti received a stray elbow to the nose in the third quarter but was able to play on, while the returning Andrew Thompson is in doubt for the Thirds round 2 clash with Coolbinia West Perth after being on the receiving end of a viscious Sam Newman-style bitch slap while helping captain Hill out of a behind the play incident.
Goals: Bruse 3, Lawson 2, Jensen, J. Perhavec, Parker.
Best: Kyle, Hill, Gotti.