Team Hawkins turned up at Lionel Watts Park looking expectantly at their brand new synthetic fields, but alas, it was not to be, with the Cats playing down on the patchy dirt fields. We were down a number of key personnel, and only able to field 10 men, plus an extra loan player from the Lions.
Coach Roger’s pre-game address emphasised winning the ball, getting it forward and bringing energy to the game. Jacob was Captain and led his team out after the address, all wearing black armbands to celebrate the life of club founder Steve Chisholm.
The boys started off slowly and in the first two quarters did not score a major to the Lions four. In fact the forwards rarely saw the ball in their zone. The game was unusual in that there were no zone markings on the field, and at times the opposition defenders were wandering forward so 22 players were within a kick of the ball.
The half-time address from Coach pushed the point of kicking the ball once the player had broken free of the pack as too many times we were pinged holding the ball after winning it on the ground. The other point was to remind the players of the enjoyment they get from beating their man to the ball. The effort picked up in the third, and scoring in this quarter was closer, but by the last quarter as fatigue took over, effort dropped off and we were scored heavily against.
It was not Team Hawkins finest game, in fact the Lions loan player (thanks Sam!) kicked our only goal. While some of the individual efforts were good in parts, generally we were second to the ball and making simple errors. While better effort could have improved the scoreline, the Lions are a very strong side with a good midfield, and we are yet to beat them over two seasons. Zak broke packs numerous times, Angus was marking nicely in defence, but Harvey’s solid tackling all morning earned him the Defensive Play of the match. Jacob was trying to drag his team forward, tackling up a storm, and stopped a certain goal in the second, and was awarded Best Team Player. Thomas’s strong kick and stoppage in defence was greatly appreciated, and was awarded the Coach’s Hot Chocolate.
Team Hawkins final game before the Gala Day is next Sunday against Leichhardt Cygnets at Steve Chisholm Oval.
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