Team Hawkins played their first match on Steve Chisholm Oval as an “Away” game against the Leichhardt Cygnets, a team we’d had a mixed bag against last year. We were down a few players and Leichhardt provided our extra two men. Hawkins were also pleasantly surprised to see a familiar face with U13s Ryan Hunter having his first gig as an umpire.
The Cats won the toss and kicked with the wind towards the carpark. From the centre bounce it was clear that the boys had enjoyed their holidays, and it took the first quarter for the team to get into the game. Despite the ball being mainly in the Cats forward half we only registered a handful of minor scores, and the coaches asked the players to raise their energy and keep their concentration up. This was going to be hard for the defenders who to this point had hardly touched the ball.
The Cygnets obviously received the same instruction, as they came out with more fire from the second quarter. Both teams began hitting the scoreboard, but it was the Cats who were dominant, hitting first through Harvey and then two from Hudson, one nicely slotted from the pocket. Our defenders had to work harder too, where the opposition were able to lock the ball forward for periods, but the Cats were dogged at it, and able to keep the Cygnets scoring down. The third quarter saw a nice set shot by Noah, which was set up by some great hard work at the ball by Tommy in the centre, and was probably the play of the match. Shane also scored a confident running goal.
The last quarter saw the Cats get away from their opponents, with Ryan Clancy kicking two, and three almost identical goals to the Cygnets loan player, who definitely wasn’t shy about scoring against his teammates. Similar to the first, the ball was mainly in the Cats forward zone, and remained there till the end of the match. Hands were shaken with the Cygnets, three cheers given for the umpire, and “We are Lane Cove” was sung with gusto.
While not our best effort, it was still a comprehensive win, and good to see that the boys can take on criticism and respond effectively. Tommy clearly impressed the most, with his speed, in taking a number of strong marks, and his continued attack on the ball. He deservedly was awarded Best Team Player. Hudson’s work in any zone, though particularly in the midfield saw him awarded Best Defensive Play.
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