Match Reports Round Two

24 April 2017

Media Director Joe Pignataro must read Match Reports

Round 2 gave the Snowdogs their first chance to put their skills on display in front of their home fans for 2017.

A perfect day for football on a weekend in which most clubs across all competition commemorate the ANZACS and connotations with war are mentioned in the pre-game address.

Reserves coach Craig Connelly refused to be drawn into using comparisons between war and football but asked for a “complete team effort” before running out for the opening quarter against Parkdale.

Nick Burgin the elected skipper for the day along with Luke Madden as his vice-captain. St Bernards dominated the opening quarter of play unable to capitalise on the scoreboard going into the first break 1.3.9 to 0.1.1

There was plenty of positives with just minor tweaking needed at quarter time, that was the messaging from the playing group to each, however it didn’t pan out that way during the second term with Parkdale getting the ascendancy and at half time it was all square at 3.3.21 a piece. There was a lot of angst, disappointment and finger pointing going on that Craig Connelly mentioned was simply “not on” in the reserves side this year.

The questions that were put to the playing group at half time paid dividends with answers in the first 12 minutes of the 3rd quarter with the boys managing to kick 3 goals to put 20 points between them and the Vultures, Jacob Forder in his first game for 2017 got on top in the ruck, George Garth, Tom Madden and Daniel Riley lifted their intensity through the midfield to get first hands on the ball. Luke Di Lizio flew for everything and the marks constantly stuck. Before dropping away just before the 3 quarter time break. St Bernards led by 20 points but it wasn’t over yet.

For much of the last quarter the ball was camped at St Bernards end of the ground only managing behind after behind. It quickly went down Parkdale’s end and they pushed the Snowdogs all the way in the final quarter ramming home 5 goals with the wind at one stage getting to within a goal. Chris Spinella in his first game for St Bernards in a few years managed to kick truly and the scrappy contest ended with St Bernards holding out the Vultures by 9 points.

Speaking after the game, Craig Connelly said “The game was won in 1 quarter of reasonable football (the 3rd) by a team that played very poorly for the first half and found the will to work together and register a hard fought victory.”

The next opportunity for 4 points will be against Old Carey next Saturday away at Carey Sports Complex at 11.40am. “Hopefully the playing group takes the modest momentum of our improved second half effort into a big game against a strong Carey outfit next week” Connelly said.

St Bernards 8.12.60 def. Parkdale 8.3.51
Goals: C.Spinella 3, P.Romano 2, W.Considine 2, D.Riley 1
Best: D.Riley, L.Madden, T.Madden, W.Considine, E.Connelly, L.Di Lizio

“We started the game in outstanding fashion, Chris Hughes got the centre bounce clearance and hit a beautiful inside 50 kick to Jack Mac on a back 45 lead and he converted. Our first goal within 10 seconds”

That was the opening line from Mark “Bomber” Riley when asked to recap St Bernards 78 point win over Parkdale yesterday. The next line … “The following 59 minutes and 50 seconds were absolutely dreadful. We overused the ball with dinky handballs that took us nowhere, we missed open targets, we dropped chest marks, we had 8 out on the fulls and missed a couple of easy goals”

If you’ve just seen the final score and heard Jack Mac finished with 9 goals you won’t believe what you’re reading.
In similar style to the reserves the St Bernards seniors had much of the play in the opening half of football however were unable to shake off the nagging Vultures. “Thank heavens for Adam Bentick’s first half, he single handedly kept us in the match” At half time St Bernards 4.8.32 led Parkdale 3.8.26

During that half time break the coaching staff called on team leaders to take a leaf out of Bench’s book and get on board, the message was simplified to the group and to the players credit they responded and took charge in a strong third quarter with 9 goals to 2 setting up a 47 point buffer at the final break. Jack Mac was marking everything in sight, Tom Caven set up his defence very well and the running machine of St Bernards got on top.

In the 3 quarter time huddle Bomber Riley implored his team and encouraged the boys these are the games in which you “put the foot on the throat of the opposition” and bury them into the ground. As well as encouraging blokes like Edyn Sibbald to keep going for his marks, the Hughes brothers to keep running the lines, everyone to enjoy the opportunity to play on a significant day in the clubs history. The home fans got louder and louder behind the goals at every opportunity and a 6 goal to 1 last quarter put the margin out to 13 goals. “We have done a very big pre-season and our overall fitness is a massive strength and advantage.”

The day may have been slightly soured with an injury to Shaun Clarke, at this stage unsure of the severity or length of period out of the game.

St Bernards travel to take on a winless Carey at their home ground next weekend at 2pm.
St Bernards 19.11.125 def. Parkdale 6.11.47
Goals: J.McNamara 9, C.Vague 2, A.McLeod E Sibbald 2,J.Shine, M.Caven, H.Rocke, Z.O'Halloran, A.Bentick

Best: A.Bentick, J.McNamara, H.Rocke, T.Caven, C.Riley, E.Sibbald

Joe Pignataro