The Magpies take on the competition benchmark and ladder leader, Morningside on Sunday at the Nest in what will prove a crucial match for a team that has shown plenty of talent, but also gone missing at times this year. Coach Quentin Johnson will be looking for consistent effort, and hopefully some consistency in availability in coming weeks as the regularity of changes to this team so far in 2016, have certainly been a factor in the results to date.
Coming into the side this week is plenty of youth and talent, via inclusions such as Luke De Nys, Charlie Pershouse, Sam Copland and Will Fletcher, while Jake Heard and Jake Farrell will be better for their run last week after returning from injury.
Another big inclusion is also Brodie Easton after a very solid showing in the Seniors last week, he will be looking to keep his name in the mix for senior selection by maintaining his excellent reserves form from season 2016 so far.
The Panthers lineup is known for their slick ball movement, and run from defence and the Magpies will need to be on their game across the park with their tackling and pressure on the ball carrier. Blake McClennan, Jake Heard and Will Johnson in particular will be looking to prevent easy rebounds for the Panthers and lock the ball in the forward 50 by covering the spread.
In Hockley, Copland and Pershouse the Magpies boast a range of marking targets with different skillsets, and provided the midfield battle is not lost - should provide headaches in the air for Morningside down back.
In defence, the experienced spine of Sean McEvoy and Gabe McKinnon is well supported by talented up and coming youth in De Nys, Mazerolle and Farrell as well as the more experienced Jae Humphrey in the pocket.
The starting on-ball division of Gibb, Workman, Easton and Devlin will be looking to get on top early and work hard through the middle. With plenty of rotations available who can go through the center of the ground, the midfield brigade should get through a power of work as a collective group to push the ball forward and keep it there.
Get down to the nest on Sunday at 11am to see a classic reserves battle, blending experience with youth in what should be an entertaining battle.
Reserves vs Panthers
B: Humphrey - McEvoy - Mazerolle
HB: De Nys - McKinnon - Farrell
C: Green - Devlin - Pukallus
HF: Copland - Pershouse - Heard
F: Johnson - Hockley - McClennan
Foll: Gibb - Workman - Easton
Int: Donovan - Fletcher - Hubbert - Walker