Coaches Report – Round 1

1st Grade

The Hawks of 2019 opened our account with a character-building win first up against a Killarney Vale side that just wouldn’t go away.

There was a good feeling pre-game with club legend Liam Gibson and stalwart Regan Bowe celebrating their 300th and 100th games respectively, followed by three jumper presentations for newcomers Jared Campbell, Pat Delaney and Tom Hawthorne, who was presented with his by big brother Scott in a heartfelt family moment.

Pre-game and in-game conditions were tricky and challenging but I couldn’t fault our positivity. A 4-goal wind favouring one end and occasionally sweeping across the ground wreaked havoc with foot skills although we seemed to manage it better than the Bombers in the first quarter with some pinpoint short kicking and four goals to one with the wind.

The second quarter was a different story with our intensity around the footy lagging, enabling them to dish out the back by hand and set up numerous forward thrusts with the wind which our defenders, led by intercept king Jared Campbell, were able to thwart for most of the quarter until red time when they kicked two goals to draw level at the main break.

Our ruthlessness and work rate just wasn’t there in the second quarter and assistant player-coach Adam Clarke let us know about it in no uncertain terms. It spurred us on to come out firing with the wind and we conjured seven scoring shots to one to lead by a vulnerable 16 points at three-quarter time.

The lessons learned from our disappointing second quarter were reiterated by the coaches at the last break – with another rev-up from Clarkey – and the playing group adapted accordingly which was one of the most pleasing aspects of the day, proving their ability to learn quickly and not only follow instructions, but have faith in them. With Killarney Vale’s numbers setting up behind the contest again, our half-backs began to generate some run from behind the footy which allowed our half-forwards to lead at the ball-carrier and make their defenders accountable. However our only goal for the quarter came from a 50-metre penalty which says a lot about the wind, and despite our work rate improving emphatically on our second quarter effort, we were probably lucky to get away with a win given Killarney Vale missed a couple of shots late in the game.

First-gamer Jared Campbell picked up the Players’ Player Award and was probably the difference reading the play like a dirty magazine with intercept after intercept and clean inside 50 rebounds by foot. Skipper Bryce Graetz again led by actions in a typically workmanlike display in the clinches, 300-gamer Liam Gibson kept creating out of defence in the face of immense pressure earning himself the Duke Hotel Voucher and Zander Cross gave us a hard edge up forward when we needed it most chipping in with an invaluable goal from a fantastic mark and taking out the Ironbark Hill Award.

We now can’t wait to get out onto the turf of the new nest at Cameron Park next Saturday against Maitland and continue on from this weekend’s valuable lesson in work rate and defensive pressure.



Lady Hawks

Well hello everyone and welcome to the first report from the Lady Hawks for 2019!
After a long pre season, we finally get to play our first game of footy. The birds traveled to the new Central Coast Sporting Complex to take on the Wallsend / West Newcastle Swans.

The birds were right up for their first game and despite some gritty defense from our opponents, the birds were first to hit the scoreboard through an Arizona Cross goal. We have been working hard on our game and trying to be more creative rather than just kicking long all the time. Our hand passing was proving to be a real feature of our game and the Swans were having trouble with our ball movement and by quarter time we jumped out to a 5 / 5 / 35 to 0 / 0 / 0 lead.
The second quarter would go much the same as the first as the Cardiff midfield really started to dominate with our rucks Claudia and Taylah G giving our mids first use time and again. Our forwards were busy also with so many inside 50’s and were well organised which led to an even share of goal kickers. We go to main break leading 11 / 6 / 72 to 0 / 2 / 2 .

We now had the momentum in the third and despite some fierce defense by the Swans who never gave up, we still scored freely. No doubt about it the third quarter gave us a team highlight to remember as our captain kicked truly to ram home her first ever goal. Congratulations Shez!

The birds rolled through the last quarter ok and to the swans, credit kicked two goals to finish off a tough day. The birds ran out winners 17 / 13 / 115 to 2 / 5 / 17.
On a day where everyone contributed fairly evenly we were well served by players player Arizona Cross , Shez ! Taylah Wilks , Minerva Bailey , and Taylah G , Claudia and Abbey C stood out.

Congratulations to all our players playing their first game on a day when club legend Liam “Gibbo” Gibson played his 300 th game for Cardiff.
See you all at our first home game next week!

Cooks and Shez