Coaches Corner 2018 – Finals Edition – presented by Schiavello

Reserves Finals report presented by East Malvern Community Bank

Our Reserves fought gallantly, leading at every change in their first semi-final against Collegians. However they couldn’t hang on, as the Lions stormed home with a five-goal last term, equalling their score the previous three quarters, to clinch a 22-point victory.

Congratulations to coach Archie Whiting and all of the support crew and players in the Reserves for their unwavering support of the 2018 footy program and the senior side throughout the season, and indeed for making the finals themselves. We look forward to another great year next year.

Thirds Finals report presented by Triple Play Sportswear

For the first time in recent memory the conditions were perfect at Elsternwick Park, with no rain nor a breath of wind to speak of. Prior to the game, you could sense the boys were ready to finish the job that we started back in April.

The first quarter was exactly what you would expect for the opening of a grand final, it was frantic all over the ground with clean touches hard to come by. Neither team registered a goal. We thought the game would open up in the second term and it did, as we traded goals with Beauy before Shane Griffin kicked a monster goal and Nic Fyfield and Danny Melissinos kicked two quick majors to open up a 13-point lead going into the half time break.

At half-time, we stressed the importance of the opening 15 minutes of the third quarter, where often Grand Finals are won or lost. After those integral 15 minutes had passed, things were looking like a repeat of the Second Semi-Final, as the Sharks ran over the top of us all over the ground, kicking three on the trot to open up a 6-point lead. To our credit, we dug in and wrestled back momentum and maintained the margin at the final break.

As a huge crowd of De La faithful surrounded the team for the final huddle of the year, the message from a very nervous coach was simple: don’t leave anything out there. We weren’t to come off the field in 25 minutes having not put it all on the line to win the game. As the Sharks kicked the first goal of the last quarter, our bench was bereft of fit players and it looked like the script had been written.

What followed was the best 20 minutes of determined footy I’ve seen. This group refused to lie down. As we lifted all over the ground and started to surge forward, Frank Pickett kicked a goal to bring the margin back to three points, and Mark Collins followed suit to wrestle back the lead. Sefton McGraw slotted home an absolute beauty to give as a two-goal lead with five minutes to go. Beaumaris had two more forward entries which we dealt with, and the ball landed in Nic Fyfield’s capable hands to kick the sealer.

After two Grand Final losses in a row, we had finally finished the job. Thanks to all the supporters who made their way down on Sunday, it was great to have a few hundred-people cheering us home. Thanks to all the players & volunteers for an outstanding season. The coach couldn’t wipe the smile off his face on Sunday.

Best Players: D. Melissinos, N Fyfield, B Hill, P Burnell, M Collins, S Griffin

DLS 8.12.60 def Beaumaris 6.5.41

U19 BLUE Finals report presented by Woodards Oakleigh & Woodards Bentleigh

Having finished top of the table, we arrived at the finals series in good form. Through what had been a tough year, we earned our right for a double-chance and a real crack at the ultimate success.

Week One of the finals we took on second-placed Old Scotch. Unfortunately for us, we were on the back foot from the get go. They set the tone with the pressure around the ball and their slick ball movement going forward was really hard to control. Unfortunately, we were unable to match them all day and suffered a heavy defeat. Best players: Cotchett, Deane-Johns, Day.

The following week we were looking to make amends as we faced off against Old Xavs in a Preliminary Final. We had a positive week on the training track, made a couple of changes and were looking forward to bouncing back.

Unfortunately, Old Xavs jumped us at the start, and were 5 goals up at quarter time. Things didn’t get any better, as we were comprehensively outplayed and the opposition deserved the win.

For what was a pleasing home and away year, it ended in horrible fashion, as we delivered our two most disappointing performances of the season in the finals. As was said after the game, we are not satisfied with how it finished, we won’t hide away from the disappointing result. We will assess and learn from it, and ensure we come back bigger, stronger and more determined next year.

Thanks to everyone for their support throughout the year. A special thanks to team manager Tom Roberts for his outstanding efforts all year!

COLTS Grand Final match report presented by McLardy McShane Insurance

By Stefan Taranto

At the conclusion of the regular season, the Colts were sitting second on the ladder. We faced Aquinas in our first final in Ringwood. After three quarters of quality footy and trailing by goal, we fell asleep in the last quarter and lost by 6 goals.

Desperate for our chance to play in the Grand Final, we regrouped and travelled to Box Hill to play Parade. In slippery conditions, we were able to grind out the game against a bigger, stronger opponent to secure a 15-point victory. After capitulating after three quarters last week, it was extremely pleasing to see our four-quarter effort get rewarded.

We travelled to Bundoora for the Grand Final. We came out firing, kicking an early couple of goals before Aquinas wrestled back some control of the game. We were ahead by 2 goals at half time, but felt we were playing much better footy. The first 5 minutes of the third quarter started out with so much promise. We had three shots on goal early, but failed to convert. Aquinas proceeded to kick 8 unanswered goals in the next 15 minutes which ultimately sealed their victory.

Congratulations to all Colts boys on an outstanding first season at the club. A massive thank you to all those involved in the U19 program that helped our boys improve and enjoy their time at the club throughout the year (Rob Joyce, Stephen Canning, Sauce Hyland, Mayo Harrington, Whispers Ingram, Crime McDonald, Magnets O’Callaghan).
Expect us to be back challenging a premiership next year.

PS. Luke Astone got involved in a fight during the Grand Final, which was no surprise to anyone.

DINO’S (DLS Over 35s) Grand Final match report, presented by Malvern Auto Tech

DINO’S DELIVER BACK TO BACK GLORY

By Peter Harrison

The Malvern Auto Tech Dino’s have returned to the promised land and delivered a 27-point victory over a gallant Peninsula Raiders at Casey Fields for back-to-back premierships.

In a game that was affected by a sweeping wind that went across the ground, we led from start to finish and were never really headed at any stage. In the biggest game of the year we delivered what could only be described as a trademark performance, a consistent four-quarter effort by 24 players whose attention and effort towards the defensive side of the game rendered us unbeatable.

The back six of Corin, Marks, Mackintosh, Liascos, Knight & Leigh Harrison were impenetrable all day and things only got worse for Peninsula when Troy Castricum went back in the last quarter and a half, to put to an end to any forays by the opposition.

The midfield was again lead from the front by two-time premiership skipper Jason Philactides, who despite a persistent tag never wavered from his job and constantly provided the drive needed. Tom Moloney & Justin Costello were both magnificent across the day and rightful both now can call themselves premiership players after waiting many years to get the ultimate reward. Iggy, Farms JB, Hairy and Merv Shannon provided plenty of energy and run in a game where midfield dominance was vital.

In the forward line there were a number of wonderful efforts in particular by Chicken Palmer, Steve Ryan, Mark Liddell & Chris Mercuri. At no stage did Peninsula ever look particularly comfortable in defence, nor were they able to establish any rebound. The unselfishness of the players in the front half of the ground is something all other team envy about the Dino.

It would be remiss of me not to mention the efforts and enthusiasm of Hesse, Seletto, O’Hara & Chapps who all played a role in the win.

A special shout out to Adrian Richardson & Wadds who made all the decisive moves from the bench and made the astute moves as needed.

To the unlucky Dino’s players who missed out playing on the day, a premiership is rarely won without tears and I thank each and everyone of you for your efforts and commitment to the group.

The club is very lucky to have such a wonderful group of players, and in turn the players are lucky to play at such a great club. This has been the most challenging year for the Dino’s and unquestionably the players pushed themselves harder than ever before, and the end result was well worth all the effort.

To win back-to-back premierships is something all of the players will never forget. Cheers Cheers for the Dino’s. A Dino’s team that would only ever settle for victory! Roooaaar!

Dino’s 6.9. 45 def. Peninsula 1.12 18

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