AJ Mithen catches up with Senior Coach Paul Satterley
It was another tough game for another close win and a vital win at that, with De La Salle getting over Old Trinity by five points after trailing by 22 at half time.
That win, combined with Old Melburnians downing Xavs in a huge upset at Toorak Park, has the Dees six points clear of fifth and with their destiny well and truly in their own hands.
It’s no surprise that Senior Coach Paul Satterley was pleased with how the weekend panned out.
“We got out of jail, but we fought our way through a predicament. I know Trinity only have three wins but the fact 18 of their 22 played in the 2016 grand final shows that the talent is there.”
“They really came at us, they played good footy. As much as we were down, it was a result of their pressure and how well they played and it just took us a while to get our game going,” Satterley said.
This week marks step one of a challenging three week stretch to end the season where De La faces two of the top three sides. It’s a trip to Albert Park and the second placed Collegians, with the Dees taking the round seven contest between the clubs by 25 points.
“I can’t recall any big blowouts against Collegians. They’ve always been pretty close, regardless of ladder position at the time,” Satterley said. “It’s always a tough contest.”
“They go in as favourites, we go in as the underdog and that’s as it should be – we’re well below them on the ladder. But I think it’s going to be something like eleven degrees and raining, so we’re expecting a really combative day again.”
The group’s resilience has been key to De La holding their position, grinding out tough wins and ramping up their intensity when it matters most (The Dees have won or drawn nine of 15 last quarters this year).
Satterley has been impressed with his team’s ability to fight through duress but as always, he knows there’s areas that need to improve.
“I feel like there’s a real harder edge to this group,” he said. “We’ve been able to work our way through games where we haven’t played particularly well because our game is built on ‘one percent effort’.”
“The scope for us though is for our ball use to be cleaner. In terms of effort and applying pressure we’re as good as anyone, it’s how we use the ball when we have it ourselves we need to get right.”
“We’ve found a way, our last four wins have been less than ten points. But we don’t do it easily – I’m getting greyer and greyer every week!”
De La Salle v Collegians is at Harry Trott oval this Saturday at 2pm.