Bentick and Caven play key roles in VAFA win

31 March 2014

Adam Bentick as skipper and midfield force and Tom Caven living up to his nickname "Rock" in the backline, were key contributors in the VAFA's big runaway 46pt win over the powerful Eastern League.

he battle for the no1 mantle in suburban football was an old fashioned arm wrestle with only a slender 5pt lead to the VAFA at 3qtr time. but the VAFA's superior running power and class split the game apart with 7 goals to none in the final stanza. Simon Lethlean reminded his players at half time that the EFL teams play on grounds much smaller than Visy Park and that the VAFA side, would have more in the tank than their rivals at the end.
VAFA coach Simon Lethlean mentioned Cherry Road - where the majority of the EFL's squad and their coach ply their trade for Balwyn - in his half time address to the VAFA, reminding the players that "we are fitter than them, we play on bigger grounds, use our run, use our class". 
Whilst the VAFA failed to kick a goal in the opening quarter they were by no means out of the contest as the EFL butchered the ball going inside 50. It was a sign of things to come. The performances of Tom Caven (St Bernard's), Jack Townley (University Blues) and Will Tardiff (Collegians) in thwarting the EFL attacks were magnified by their willingness to take the game on and run the ball out of defence. 
The skipper Adam Bentick (St Bernard's) was well held early, but he, along with Simon Hogan (University Blacks) and Chris Waller (Old Xaverians) worked their way into the match and started to win the clearances and plenty of the ball too. 
Lach McQueen-Miscamble (Old Carey) was awarded the Best VAFA Player Award from the EFL coaching panel and Tom Paule was awarded the Spirit of the Big V Award from the VAFA panel. 
In the earlier matches the Northern Football League defeated the Essendon Distrrict FL by 37 points whilst Western Region FL beat the Southern FL by 36 points. 
All in all it was a magnificent performance from the VAFA. The Eastern Football League were very confident coming into this game and their supporters openly declared they would rightfully be the number one competition at the conclusion of the day. However this was far from the case and their attention will now be on a third/fourth play off the next time the AFL Victoria Metro Championships take place. 
With three wins from three matches against the EFL in the past six years and winning the past two matches against AFL Victoria Country and AFL Sydney the VAFA continued a proud tradition. The VAFA's strong representative program and indeed the fantastic history of the Big V proved to everyone what most Amateur people know. The VAFA is the number one community football competition in Victoria, if not Australia. 
Final Score: 
VAFA: 0.1, 3.3, 5.8, 12.8.(80)
EFL: 2.1, 2.1, 5.3, 5.4.(34)
VAFA Goals: Goss 5, Ambrose 3, Paule 2, Handley 2. EFL Goals: : L. Barker 2, D. King , L. Williams , S. Tregear 
VAFA Best: Ambrose, Paule, Goss, Mahon, Roach, Tardiff. EFL Best: S. Taylor, T. Gilchrist, S. Tregear, S. Kemperman, J. Chirgwin, L. Barker
VAFA Best Player: Murphy Ambrose (Old Xaverians)
Spirit of the Big V: Tom Paule (Old Meburnians)
EFL Best VAFA Player: Lachlan McQueen-Miscamble (Old Carey)

Patrick Crabb