With the dust settled on De La Salle’s first week finals exit, Senior Coach Paul Satterley looks back at season 2017.

De La Salle’s 2017 Premier Division season is over after the Dees gave back a big early lead against Collegians in the elimination final.

It’s the second time this season Collegians were able to peg back De La after the Blue and Gold shot out of the gates. After taking some time to review the loss, Senior Coach Paul Satterley is now looking to 2018 and what his club can achieve.

“We had a bit of a strange day, the game was delayed for some time but we were able to manage that and get off to a flyer,” he said. “We had all the momentum and even kicked the first goal of the second quarter but it was not doing the basics well, the one percenters when you’ve got the footy, making the right decisions.”

“We let ourselves down. As much as they were really good and combative and found a way to get back in, we contributed to giving up the good lead that we had.”

The Dees haven’t won a final since 2012 and the elimination final loss was the second time in three seasons the seniors exited the finals in week one (De La Salle didn’t play finals in 2016).

Satterley and his team have spoken about what needs to happen for the Dees to take the next step.

“We’ve got to grow up a bit as a club – we just can’t accept that we make a final and we’re out in the first week,” he says. “If we all pat each other on the back and just ignore it and move on just thinking we’ll get better, we’re kidding ourselves.”

“There’s a strong desire for our club to win a premiership. So without embarrassing or belittling anyone, the review was more about if we found ourselves in this position again, could we do this thing better or that thing better and maybe we don’t give up a six goal lead.”

Satterley is confident his squad understands that while their best can be good enough, their ability to play to that level consistently is what must improve in 2018.

“The players embraced it pretty well. As long as we leave thinking that we’re not far off, but we have to tidy up a few little things in our game.”

“We were just a little off it but not far away and that was the message to the players – there’s six other clubs who would love to be in our position, we did make the finals after a tough year and we were just a little bit off.”

There’s no doubt that De La have a great mix of quality and potential on their list. 2017 was a season of tight, hard fought contests against keen opposition which should serve the team well going forward – but results against the top sides need to improve.
“At the end of the day, the stats say we only won one game against the top three sides out of seven,” Satterley says. “So whilst there were a lot of close results, we couldn’t quite get the job done.”

“There’s still improvement in our group and a lot to look forward to. We’ve gotten better every year… But we’re still not where we want to be.”