This week the birds head down the M1 to take on the Entrance/ Bateau Bay.
As is the case at the moment with our long list of players we have multiple changes as we try and rotate as many players through the team so we all get some game time.
Once again we focus on starting well and we fly out of the blocks thanks to some fine ruck work by Matisse giving our mids first use and get the ball inside fifty quickly making it hard to defend and before long we had had a solid lead going into the first break.
1st Quarter – Cardiff 7 / 3 / 45 to B / Bay 0 / 0 / 0.
The second quarter went much the same as we piled on the pressure and continued to dominate the mid field. With Claudia and Tayla G out this week Matisse and Emma stepped up and took the game on with great success. These girls who normally play as key defenders showed their class with both playing great games. With our mids going great our forwards were lapping it up and Min and our new recruit Hayley both had multiple goals. A good quarter and we go further in front.
Half Time – Cardiff 12 / 6 / 78 B / Bay 0 / 0 / 0
As we start the third quarter with a big lead our intensity dropped off and to B / Bays credit they lifted with seemingly nothing to play for kept us to just 12 points for the quarter. A lesson there for the birds how quickly momentum can swing if you’re not switched on all game.
3rd Quarter – Cardiff 14 / 7 / 91 B / Bay 0 / 1 / 1.
A quick chat at three quarter time about our enthusiasm and the birds lifted and finished the game strong. It was a solid effort all round by our birds who are improving all the time. A great moment on the day was right on full time our most recent debutant, Jodi Rheinberger, marked just inside fifty and with the siren sounding calmly went back nailed the long range shot much to the delight of the birds who exploded into celebration. We ran out big winners in the end and were best served by Emma, Matisse, Min, Hayley, Sophie and Jodi had a great debut.
Cardiff: 18.10 – 118
The Entrance Bateau Bay: 0.1 – 1
Goal Kickers: M. Bailey 6, H. Wright 5, E. Hieke 2, J. Rheinberger 2, T. Wilks, A. Cooksley, A. Cross
Best Players: H. Wright, M. Bailey, T. Wilks, J. Gill, M. Coram-Parker, N. Walker
The boys travelled down to the Entrance taking on Bateau Bay this week.
With the opposition just missing out on finals last year, it was another opportunity for the boys to test themselves against a quality outfit.
The boys started the game strongly, as they have done in all 4 games so far this season, kicking the first 2 goals. Unfortunately, it was all Bateau Bay from there as they piled on goals against a strong breeze. Accountability was one of the key focuses headed into the game and it’s fair to say we let ourselves down in that area. As a result, Bateau Bay we’re able to move the ball swiftly and precisely through the middle of the ground and outnumbering us at the contest. A lovely 50m goal to debutant, Kieran Cowan, provided some inspiration for the Hawks, while another debutant, Angus McGuinness showed his skills up front and was passionate all day with his talk around the ground.
Going into the final quarter the Ressies boys lifted their intensity and desire, coming home strongly. Bateau Bay were held scoreless in the final term, while the Hawks boys were able to pile on 7 unanswered goals. Thanks largely to a monster effort on-ball by Steamer Jones and Wivell up forward finishing with 5 goals. A special mention to Kyie Haley who had his best game for the club in defence.
Just a case of too little too late for the Ressies, as we continue to search for consistent effort throughout 4 quarters of the game.
Cardiff: 10.8 -68
The Entrance Bateau Bay: 12.10 – 82
Goal Kickers: A. Wivell 5, C. Jones 3, A. McGuinness
Best Players: C. Jones, H. O”Neill, A. McGuinness, K. Haley, C. Davies, J. O”Regan
It was a wet old trip to Nelson Bay and our boys were prepared for a soggy game, but the sun broke through just prior to the first bounce and stayed out for the entire game.
Given the rain, the pre-game message was to do the basics better than them and that didn’t change even when the weather did. We are determined to be the best when it comes to the fundamentals of the game because everyone can do them and they are what wins you finals which is what we are always preparing our men for.
With Tom Hawthorne given the role of tagger on ex-Sydney Swan Craig Bird, we challenged a few others to assume unfamiliar roles and rotations and their attitude and commitment to them were to be commended.
Tom himself relished the challenge and kept Bird to just 16 disposals and a couple of lucky goals – one from a 50m penalty and the other from a downfield free kick which arguably shouldn’t have been taken by him – and he deservedly earnt himself the Coach’s and Players’ Player Awards.
We had set a goal to start well and maintain it which has proven to be our strength and also to keep them to below five goals. So, it was heartening that we did that despite some errant foot skills, players playing out of position and losing Simon “Rat” O’Brien to a head knock at the first clearance of the game. This is the third week in a row that we have played virtually the whole game down a man and our resolve has really showed.
First-gamer Tim Keys slotted into the side seamlessly with his bullocking ruckwork and around-the-ground marking a feature. He was also dangerous resting forward kicking himself a goal and stretching their defenders with his height.
Mick Ryan, Jack Lennon and Izaac Hughes were constantly hitting the scoreboard and despite a small lapse in the back half of the third quarter where we allowed the Marlins some easy possessions, we finished the last quarter off strongly holding them to just one behind and could’ve won by more if not for a number of near misses as we peppered the goals ourselves.
Our post-match cans went to skipper Bryce Graetz (pronounced Grates) who marshalled us in defence, Mick Ryan who jagged 5 goals and Keys.
The Ironbark Hill 1% Award went to Dave O’Donnell who has held down his post at fullback with aplomb and no fuss. He has been miserly on the opposition’s best forward each week and is composed with ball in hand.
Our expectations of each other are growing each week and we’re determined to again produce only our best for the entire 2 hours next week against a Gosford outfit who are nipping at our heels on the ladder.
Cardiff: 22.15 – 147
Nelson Bay: 4.7 – 31
Goal Kickers: I. Hughes 6, J. Lennon 5, M. Ryan 4, P. Delaney 3, N. Tomlinson, D. Hoy-Maroney, D. Robson, T. Keys
Best Players: T. Hawthorne, B. Graetz, M. Ryan, T. Keys, M. Vukovich, I. Hughes
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Game Day Photos courtesy of Geoff Robinson