Pigeons lose battle of the birds
The Pigeons were defeated on Saturday by a defiant Magpie team by 16 points, final tally 11.9 75 to 9.5.59.
From the sidelines it appeared the two previous contests against ‘soft’ opposition saw players appear to want the ball given to them rather than displaying a fighting spirit and wanting to win their own ball.
Bad habits like this are hard to change during a game and if players don’t show the self-discipline required future games are going to be a harder challenge all round.
Wangaratta led for the greater part of the game, with the Pigeons battling to stay in touch. Early in the final quarter the Pigeons came within five points but the committed Magpies regrouped, utilised their height advantage in key positions and drew away to a 16 point victory.
Marcus McMillan kicked five of the Pigeon’s total nine being the only dominant player on the day.
Jordan Daniel in his first match back after injuring his collarbone in round one was also excellent in the backline.
The usuals Drew Barnes, Connor Hargreaves, Mark Whiley, Rhys O’Sullivan and Ryan Bruce were consistent and could have walked from the ground being satisfied with their efforts.
With only six rounds to go and games still to play against Albury, Lavington and Wodonga Raiders, the ladder position for Yarrawonga remains entirely in the hands of the playing group.
Let’s hope they maximise their chances and fight hard to ensure a top ladder position leading into the finals.
The AFLVC vs VAFA bye is this coming weekend followed by round 13 at the JC Lowe Oval on July 15 against North Albury.
Chronicle Award: 5 Jordan Daniel, 4 Marcus McMillan, 3 Drew Barnes, 2 Connor Hargreaves, 1 M Whiley.
The boys again came away with the chocolates by defeating the Magpies 7.14 56 to 3.6 24.
Not the dominant display of footy as seen recently, but certainly a committed performance against far better opposition than recent weeks.
A big effort by James Jordon, Matt Casey and Ronan Pritchard to back up after playing in the thirds victory.
Great to see the little ‘Stumpy Guy’ Jarryd Whinray winning plenty of the ball and dominating when counted. Those within the club know the issues that have hampered his career so to see him moving freely was outstanding.
Along with Jarryd, Matt Bourke, Matt Grinter, Xav Kennedy, Jordan Urquhart, Jayden Gallagher, James Elliott and Riley Welsh all put in consistent effort over four quarters.
Goals: M Bourke 2, J Whinray 1, M Casey 1, J Bruce 1, L Congram 1, I Byrne 1.
Best: R Handreck, R Welsh, R Mulquiney, J Gallagher, M Bourke, J Whinray.
The Under 18 Pigeons put in a solid performance to get over the top of the Wangaratta Magpies on Saturday.
The Pigeons got off to a good start with early goals to Matt Casey and Tim Lawrence. Yarrawonga’s on-ballers were on top early with Joe Gorman dominating the ruck taps giving them first use of the ball.
Yarrawonga’s pressure in the forward line was great with only the Magpies quality backline stopping a larger score.
A late goal to Ronan Pritchard saw the boys up by 10 points at the first break.
The second saw Wang lift their intensity, however Yarrawonga’s backline lead by Kayden Sharp and James Jordon made scoring difficult for them.
A single goal by Ronan Pritchard saw the side take a six point lead into the main break.
The third was a very even affair with both sides giving it their all in what was a very physical match.
Poor kicking accuracy cost the boys with only 1.6 kicked for the quarter, Max Tempany using his pace for the only major. This saw the side go in to the last one point down.
The boys however lifted in the last. Joe Gorman’s dominance allowed on-ballers Matt Casey and Ely Smith to clear the ball forward.
Bailey Frauenfelder showed his great skills to put the boys back in front.
Down back, Kayden Sharp continued to rack up intercept marks and frustrate the Magpie forwards. Ronan Pritchard took his tally to four with the next two goals and the side was home.
Yarrawonga 8.12.60 def Wangaratta 6.10.46
One point loss for Pigeon 16s
Fresh from toppling the second-placed Corowa, the Under 16 Pigeons travelled to Wodonga to take on the ladder leader.
The game itself was a fast paced hectic affair which was littered with errors from both the players and officials alike.
Unfortunately for the Pigeons they were not able to take their chances faltering by the slimmest of margins, a solitary point.
Better players included a dependable Riley O’Kane. His early play up forward kept the scoreboard moving.
Alex Byrne, Jordyn Studd and Kyle Abikhair competed well through the mid zone with Jordyn’s last stanza goals as good as you will find (but perhaps not quite as good as Tully Woodward’s from the pocket).
Harry Meade’s return to form was welcomed. Whether across half back or in the front half later in the day Harry had some solid numbers and produced some smart plays.
Down deeper back Austin Frauenfelder was outstanding. Not only stopping Wodonga forays forward but also providing strong rebound with numerous intercept marks and run.
However, the load was carried by too few for the majority of the day and while a win against one of the competition’s better sides was only a decision here or there or ball’s bounce here or there, those factors are difficult to control and the need to have a more evenly spread work load and more consistent performances is vital in games that go down to the wire.
The side goes into the last bye needing to make every post a winner going forward, the first being a key match-up against fellow finals contender Wodonga Raiders.
Goals: R. O’Kane 3, J. Studd 2, T. Woodward , N. Pendergast, S. Mickelson, H. Meade.
Best Players: K. Abikhair, R. O’Kane, A. Frauenfelder, H. Meade, J. Studd, A. Byrne.
First loss for 14s
The Yarrawonga Under 14s suffered their first loss of the season in a high standard contest against Wodonga White in round 11 of AWJFL action.
The Bulldogs running power and class proved too much for the gallant Pigeons who were in the game with minutes to play before falling short by 13 points.
The backline was strong all day, brilliantly led by Fletcher Wallden who was superb across the half back line repelling numerous attacks and providing rebound.
Wallden was supported by the ever reliable Harry Nagle and Brendan Ryan who never game their opponents an inch.
Olly Ridley won numerous one on one contests, his marking a real highlight while Sam Hemphill emphasised his importance to the team with a strong display at full back.
Ruckman Jett Smith provided energy all day his work-rate and aerial supremacy a catalyst for the team.
Zac Banch continued his strong season in the midfield and across half back while Zac Fraser provided plenty of drive through the midfield.
Ben Woodburn worked hard up and down the ground finishing with two goals while bottom age running machine Max Mickelson played one of his best games of the season as he ran himself to exhaustion.
Up forward it was Caleb Mitchell who worked hard across the half forward line.
Cam Lefevre provided support with tackle pressure and an important goal in the third quarter.
Austin Willett was a target up forward providing numerous leads and dishing the ball off to teammates in a better position.
Yarrawonga 4.5.29 lost to Wodonga White 5.12.42
Best Players: Fletcher Wallden, Jett Smith, Max Mickelson, Ben Woodburn, Zac Banch, Zac Fraser, Oliver Ridley, Sam Hemphill
Goals: Ben Woodburn 2, Zac Banch 1, Cameron Lefevre 1
Under 12s enjoy big win
For the second time this season the boys took on Wodonga Bulldogs, this time at Martin Park.
In freezing conditions the boys were chock full of confidence from last week’s result and started where they left off.
Free-flowing, fast football had the Pigeons on top early with Mac Pendergast opening the scoring with a goal set up by the classy midfield play led by Xavier Walker, Harry Barker and Mitch Loughnan.
Much improved player Hunter Frauenfelder followed up with a second.
The wide open forward line functioned beautifully with players working hard for each other creating space for one another to run into.
Rudi Vodusek busted through a pack and kicked a goal to continue the Pigeon’s domination.
Ollie Connell worked hard on the flank showing his skills and desire to win the hard ball with great second efforts and tackling pressure.
Lachie Bosch was moved into the midfield after half time and exploded into life, his quick hands and fast running kept the Pigeon’s engine room ticking over.
Darcy Hicks moved forward and was at his bullocking best crashing packs and laying tackles.
After 9 straight points Darcy finally found the big sticks and celebrated in style then backed up with a second.
Jet Peters lifted his work rate at centre half forward and finished a fine game with 3 goals.
A rock solid half back line of Lachie Phillips, Loch Harvey and Jack Bassett dominated their opponents, taking intercept marks at will providing dashing run and carry out of defence.
Setting up play for our hard working forwards.
Another great display of team football saw the boys come away with a much deserved win.
Final Scores Yarrawonga 11.5.71 defeated Wodonga Bulldogs 1.2.8
Goals: Hunter fraunfelder 3, Jet Peters 3, Darcy Hicks 2, Mac Pendergast, Mitch Loughnan, Rudi Vodusek.
Finals berth for Pigeons
In a game that was closer than the score line would indicate, the Yarrawonga Youth Girls team went down to Lavington Panthers in the last game of the home and away season.
Despite losing the game 2.3.15 to 5.8.38, the gallant Pigeons fought hard all day, but were unable to convert on the scoreboard.
As the girls ran onto the field sporting white arm bands in support of the fight against domestic violence, they were no doubt remembering that this was the same place they had opened their season.
While they were unable to come away with the same result, the improvement in each and every member of the team was evident to those watching.
No longer was this a group of girls thrown together and taught to kick and handball.
This was now a team, with skills they only imagined 12 weeks ago and a sense of unity that that made sure they backed each other up.
A credit to the coaching skills of Scott, Ross, Haley and Dave as these girls far exceeded anyone’s expectations for their first season.
Ella Burns and Molly Kennedy were this week’s goal scorers with the hard work and tackling of Tayla Sampson, Illa Crawford, Erica Montgomery, Amy Nunn and Juliette Peace a highlight.
That being said, every girl on the field made a contribution on the day and should be proud of themselves and their team.
The new kids on the block, the Pigeons were only expected to win one or two games but came out of the blocks firing, winning six of their first seven games and holding top spot on the ladder for a number of weeks.
They finished in third place on Sunday with seven wins at the end of the home and away season and have earned themselves a well-deserved place in the finals.
Hoppers down Tigers
Rennie have gone into a week’s break with a comfortable 14 goal win over Katamatite at Katty.
The Hoppers set the standard early with a 7 goal to 3 first term.
O’Bryan, reinvented as a nippy half forward flanker, kicked three early goals complementing the gutsy defence of Brooks who put his body on the line and Russell and Beams who were the dominant midfielders.
Term 2 tightened up as spotfires were lit around the ground and it was tackling machine Robinson in the backline, Beams again working inside 50 and Bayles getting a couple of goals that made the difference.
Rennie kicked 6 early goals in term 3 to break the game wide open as Fountain and Russell provided multiple forward entries and Ednie was impassable at half back.
The sting had been drained from the game in the last term but Rennie was able to extend their lead by another 3 goals to win by 84.
O’Bryan with 4 and Oughton and Bayles with 3 were the leading scorers.
Awards: Luke Ednie and Gareth Oughton.
The reserves kept their opponent goalless winning by 99 points.
Big AJ had a career moment in his 24th game of footy kicking not only his first but also second goal. He was well supported by Jack Mac on ball and at half back, Clayebird in his second game in 3 years beginning to blow the cobwebs out and Tiger Dykes with 4 goals.
It was a full team effort as Keegs and Hammer were solid and Joe Ferguson showed he did not leave all his form on the operating table.
Awards: Bi Rite Electrical - AJ Southern, Yarrawonga Hotel - Claye Runnalls, ClubMulwala - Jackson McErvale-Busch, Yarrawonga Mulwala Golf Resort - Tim Dykes, Cellarbrations Yarrawonga - Ben Fitzpatrick.
The thirds showed poor attitude leads to poor execution and were downed by 20 points.
Katty deserved their win as they maintained their effort and focus throughout were able to grab an early lead then maintain it.
The backline was well led by Nick Soutter, Hugh and Donno were solid but an effort of average proportion. Late major shoulder injury to Beavis compounded the day.
Awards: Murray Valley Rural Supplies - Hugh Levesque, Intersport Wingates - Fletcher Donovan, AXT Plumbing - Jack Kennedy, Redback Waste - Nick Soutter, Arnold Hall Family - Will Bott, Judd’s Yarrawonga - Tom Kennedy.
The smallest Hoppers had a solid if unspectacular 51 point win.
Excellent terms 1 and 3 were the catalysts with the backline getting a solid workout giving Phillips and Shaw a chance to show their skills.
Tom and Ben Kennedy kicked 5 goals between them with Oscar Elliott being the match standout as well as the continued evolution of Charlotte D who has found goalkicking to her liking and the big show Sammy B who just loves to snag a goal.
Awards: I & P Ferguson - Oscar Elliott, Kennedy Builders - Cooper Lonergan, STF Engineering - Ben Kennedy, Murray Valley Electrical - Charlotte Donovan, Belmores Accounting - Luke Phillips, Rennie Catering Committee- James Shaw, Lake Mulwala Bakery - Sam Bigger.
Week off this week then at home to Tungamah on July 15. Go Hoppers.