Woodsmen overrun by Eagles to drop to 2nd spot on % at halfway mark
The ladder leading Woodsmen sunk to a 2 point loss against Zillmere in a tough loss on Friday night in Kiran Verma’s 150th game. Having controlled the match for a majority of the play, they fell in a heap to give up 3 quick goals in the final 10 minutes to give up a 17 point lead. In hindsight, failing to convert their momentum throughout the 2nd and 3rd quarters after a 5 goal opening term was the real killer – but to fold in the final 10 minutes was hugely disappointing.
Given the last 4 outings vs Zillmere have now resulted in 2, 5, 1 and 3 point losses – the boys certainly should have known they wouldn’t lie down, but instead there was a sense of ‘job done’ well before the siren sounded.
It was a bright opening in the opening quarter after Zillmere were able to kick the opening goal from the first centre bounce inside 30 seconds, the Woodsmen then banged home 5 consecutive goals in a commanding 15 minute period, with Jason Evans up and about with 3 first quarter goals. For the opening goal, Roderick was able to find Hockley who took a quality contested mark before kicking long to Evans who outmuscled his opponent and kicked truly from 50m. Hockley was then able to convert his own set shot soon after before Evans managed to snap one over his shoulder and convert another tight set shot after some beautiful leadup work was finished with a spearing pass to his chest from Chris Davis and the Woodies were up and about.
Unfortunately some ill-discipline (apparently?) then resulted in 2 late 50m penalties to Zillmere to close the ¼ time margin to 15 points, a disappointing scoreline given Zillmere entered their forward 50 just twice prior to the late 50m penalties.
The 2nd quarter was more of an arm wrestle as Zillmere broke even around the clinches as the game was largely played between the 2 arches with just the 1 goal each and minimal scoring opportunities, but the half time margin was cut to just 12 points. It was again a bright opening to the 2nd half, with Will Lloyd and Chris Judson in particular getting on top in the middle of the ground with some quality clean exits from stoppages to set up 2 mercurial goals to Shayne Baldwyn. Sadly some more simple set shot were missed and the Woodies again failed to convert a period of dominance to a match winning lead with a 16 point lead and the final change.
The opening of the final quarter started with a flurry, with Zillmere getting repeat forward 50 entries for the first time in the match and applying plenty of pressure around the footy with multiple run down tackles to create turnovers. Meanwhile the Woodies scoring opportunities were starting to dry up, and failure to convert was an issue with a couple of shots out on the full and a simple missed shot. Once again, 2 more mystery 50m penalties created 1 goal and further forward momentum for Zillmere and the margin was 9 points with just 6 minutes on the clock. The Woodies were then left without a ruckman due to dislocated fingers for a brief period, leading to confusion at the centre bounce and 2 quick centre clearances and 2 quick goals to put the back to back premiers in front for the first time since the 2nd minute of the game. The Woodsmen responded, pushed the ball forward from the final centre bounce but the potential match winner sailed agonisingly wide to cut the margin to 2 points before the siren sounded on a disappointing loss.
While it was just the 2nd loss of the season, it was disappointing only for the result as the effort of the players couldn’t be questioned. Giving up 4 goals (half the opposition goals) from 50m penalties in hindsight was a killer blow, and while 3 of the 4 were questionable at best – the players must learn to maintain discipline and play the umpires whistle. (Apologies to Mika, if the umpire calls play on, it may not actually mean play on!)
Woodsmen 5.3 – 33 | 6.4 – 40 | 8.6 – 54 | 8.8 – 56
Zillmere 3.0 – 18 | 4.4 – 28 | 5.8 – 38 | 8.10 – 58
Best: Lloyd, Judson, Ness, La Burniy, Hocking, Roderick
Goals: Evans 3, Hockley 3, Baldwyn 2