A week is a long time in football and today’s ‘Leafy Suburb Cup’ between Lane Cove and St Ives at Acron Oval was widely anticipated.
After some unfortunate last minute changes to the team, the Cats won the toss and kicked with a slight breeze that would have made golfers smile all over Sydney as they stood on a short par 5.
Jordie joined Captain Clifford, Hamish, Jake and Anish in the middle and wasted no time to get busy. And busy was exactly how Jack Phillips played. A goal in the first few seconds signaled he was on song and this energy remained all day. Charlie Owens also batted well above his height at center half forward and presented at every contest with the energy and commitment he can be proud of.
The second quarter was relentless for our defenders. The ball was coming in fast and despite the pressure of the midfield, St Ives held the momentum. Damon channeled his inner Tom Stewart and floated across the back half with class. Henry and partners in crime, Charlie and Bhayva, gave plenty also. Despite this, St Ives put the score on the board and we were fighting a battle at we headed into the long break.
The third term was an arm wrestle. A battle for the ages. The defenders remained tough and debutant Will Bailey made Josh Daicos’ debut look average. Ethan C arrived with speed and spread fear to the opposition much like Charlie Cameron does at Brisbane. Jake continued to fill the gaps better than Selleys and also gather possessions much like Sammy Walsh. Hamish became the clearance expert, Christian Petracca comes to mind, and with this we were back with a sniff.
The most satisfying part of the day was the endeavour and passion that the boys maintained until late in the game. Nearly three goals down, most teams would fold but not our cats. With an array of fast half forwards, we brought the ball to the attacking side of the ground and caused havoc for the St Ives defenders. The midfielders won possession and Jagger, Jack Clegg, Ed C ran fast and held their feet better than an Aussie relay team (too soon??). They kicked it long and fast to an open forward line as a result we were turning this game on its head. Henry and Damon continued to repel St Ives forays forward and it all came down to the last few minutes. Another late major for the cats and the magicians were asking themselves whether this is a trick that they could incorporate into their next show.
With less than a minute to go, the passion remained and the boys endeavour was brighter than a solar powered torch in the desert! We brought the ball to the open side of the ground and Charlie Clifford (aka Ed Langdon) streamed down the wing, one bounce, and a big bomb to the forward line. Unfortunately though, there was no rabbit in this Acron Oval hat.
St Ives played well and deserved their win today. We learnt that four quarters of football is required and that using our strengths in open play, makes us far more ‘scary’ for the opposition.
We move to the final round and look forward to a four quarter performance.
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