Narrow loss for young Pigeons
Playing on the wide open spaces of Birallee Park in Wodonga, the young Under 12 Pigeons battled hard against the Raiders in perfect conditions.
Both teams were evenly matched providing a great contest.
With both sides not giving an inch the game became a battle of wills.
Loch Phillips was magnificent a centre half back dominating his opponent in the air and at ground level.
Jacob Prestage was fearless at the contest putting his head over the football winning crucial contests giving himself opportunities to hit the scoreboard.
Darcy Hicks playing deep in defence was rock solid, taking several timely intercept marks and turning defence into attack using his foot skills hitting targets at will.
Nathan Weir playing off half back provided run and carry and looked dangerous with ball in hand.
Tom Ryan used his strength to advantage crashing packs and creating spillages deep in the forward line, a fickle bounce robbed him of his first goal.
An unbelievably courageous mark taken by Beau Cummins running back with the flight of the ball sparked the boys into life in the last quarter.
Playing the best quarter of football they have played all year, the boys out ran, out tackled and out worked the raiders dominating all over the ground.
Xavier Walker kicked a goal, which gave the team real belief they could pull off a great come from behind victory.
With the ball camped for the entire quarter in the Pigeon’s 50 metre area the boys peppered the goals from every angle but fell short at the final siren.
In a game that got away the boys will learn plenty from this and will be certain to bounce back next week.
Awards: Loch Phillips, Tom Ryan, Nathan Weir, Beau Cummins, Darby Pendergast.
Under 16s mid-game lapse costly
On the wide expanses of the Wodonga Raiders home deck the young Pigeons started well with Riley O’Kane and Jordyn Studd in everything on Sunday.
Nick Gorman as an underage ruckmen was competing in the middle showing the benefits his ruck work during the week and down back and across the wing Josh Spain was trying hard.
However, it was all a little too short lived with the Raiders gaining the ascendancy in the second quarter and first half of the third.
If not for poor goal kicking the Pigeons would have been out of the game.
To the side’s credit they lifted during the third quarter and took some momentum into the final stanza where they played some of their best football for the season.
The increased pressure saw the opposition error count increase with a number of turnover possessions.
Along with increased pressure came some extra voice and defensive acts with Jackson Meade, Henry Lonergan and Tom Hicks particularly strong and selfless throughout the day.
However, despite the late charge and getting within nearly a kick, the Pigeons fell short.
Football is a game that requires four full quarters of effort. Bits and spurts do not win games of football.
Goals: R. O'Kane 3, M. Hemphill 3, A. Lovel, J. Studd, T. Adkins, S. Trewin.
Best Players: J. Spain , J. Meade, T. Hicks, N. Gorman, S. Mickelson, R. O'Kane.
Girls fight back but fall short
On a beautiful day for football, the Yarrawonga Pigeon girls travelled to Whorouly to try and turn their recent poor form around against the Alpine Lions.
The girls began well, with fierce tackling and running football allowing the girls to go into the quarter time break two goals up.
Molly Burke was sensational in the ruck and onballers Thompson, Gissing and Jones worked tirelessly to give forwards Robilliard and Houghton plenty of chances, while Molly Kennedy held the back line together and offered plenty of drive.
Olivia Elliott, playing her best half of football for the year, was posing plenty of problems for the Lion defence at centre half forward and the girls went into half time holding a 12 point break.
That was when things went pear-shaped.
With no bench due to some late withdrawals, the midfielders were given a rest around the ground and the Pigeons lost their drive.
Players refused to man up and to the Lion girls’ credit, they took full advantage.
Three unanswered goals gave a one goal lead to the Lions going into the final term.
In what the coach described as the worst quarter of football that had seen from the girls all season, it was obvious that somebody needed to take control of the game.
In her best performance of the year, Elise Freeman stood up and inspired her team to a wonderful last quarter.
Gut running and tireless second efforts rubbed off on her team mates as she showed what she is capable of.
Unfortunately, the last quarter dominance by the Pigeons was not translated to scores on the board and the Lions ran out eight point winners.
It is evident to those who witnessed the match that the girls are on their way back.
Rediscovered effort and attitude adjustments will see them hit top form just in time for the finals.
Score: Alpine Lions 5.5.35 defeated Yarrawonga Pigeons 4.3. 27
Best: Thompson, Burke, Freeman, Kennedy, Elliott