Steam Train Rockets Into GF!

12 September 2011

What another big 'weekend at Bernies'... Except for the Ressies stumbling at the last hurdle it was a near perfect weekend in less than perfect conditions.

19s Take The Flag! .. Seniors Storm Into Grand Final .. Ressies Miss Their Chance

What another big 'weekend at Bernies' .. Except for the Ressies stumbling at the last hurdle it was a near perfect weekend in less than perfect conditions. Once again the Seniors produced a barnstorming finish to enter our first Grand Final since 2004 and Damo's boys capped of their sensational season by gutsing out a huge Grand Final victory on Sunday.

Seniors: Bernards Steam Train Rolls Through St Kevins And Into The Big One!

St Bernards pressure was evident from the start but St Kevins opened up well with the aide of a strong breeze and while the wind appeared to be worth 4 – 5 goals there was some nervousness amongst a few supporters as St Kevins with a late goal stretched the lead to 25 point lead at the first break.

No nervousness however from the coaches .. Chris Tankard and Nick Smith quarter time message was clear .. "Keep to our structures, back our plan and we will wear them down" It took a while to get our momentum up but despite being a man short for 15 minutes St Bernards started to up the ante and with three late goals for the term took a slender 3 point lead at the main break.

While scores were close the crowd could sense St Bernards were about to threaten. Chock full of confidence in their ability to out run their opponents St Bernards, as they have done to all finals contenders in the last month, took the tempo up another cog. It was clear midway through the third term that Bernards brutal tackling and hard running was taking its toll on St Kevins and when Jake Forder snapped Bernards second goal into the wind while holding St Kevins to a solitary six pointer the cracks were opening.

Starting with a 5 point lead and with the wind at their backs St Bernards opened the final quarter at a blistering pace peppering the goals for three straight behinds before ramming on three quick goals. It was all Bernards with 11 sots on goal to 3 and with 5.6 to 1.2 St Bernards stormed home again to run out 33 point winners.

St Bernards2.27.79.714.13 (97)
St Kevins 9.10 (64)

Our Best: Team Effort

Next Saturday all roads lead to Sportscover Arena where St Bernards face off against Caulfield in our first Grand Final appearance since 2004

Reserves: Hoers Catch Ressies 'Blowin In The Wind'

What a disappointing result .. the game was in our grasp at three quarter time with a 5 point lead and most supporters thought we might just have a bit more run than Ivanhoe across the expanses of Elsternwick Park .. but it wasn't to be. The boys struggled to come to grips with the conditions for most of the day and in the final quarter Ivanhoe took their chances to pinch the game back by a measly 5 points.

Micky Sullivan tried his heart out as did Nathan Thomas down back and Paddy Gamwell continued his fantastic form of the past six or more weeks to put in a sterling performance and show that he is very much a player of the future. Joey Indomenico backed up his fine performance in the 2nd semi after returning from injury and like Paddy showed he has plenty of senior footy to come. Josh Smith capped off a strong year where he has played 11 senior games and some top Reserves footy in his second season back from a long break.

The old warhorse Micky Stapleton was another to shine in an otherwise disappointing result. Mick and Captain Ben Hogan announced their retirements after the game. Both boys are immensely popular figures around the Snakepit and will no doubt be involved in some capacity next year and beyond.

Commiserations to Coach Mounty, his Assistants Tait Wilkinson and Andrew Smith and the boys. It's a pity the Ressies aren't through to join the Seniors next Saturday but they'll all be there to cheer home the 1s as they have done all year!

Under 19s: You Beauty! .. Bernards Boys 'Never Give In'

As football director Paul Garth said on Thursday night Damien Sullivan and Ray King have done a fantastic job on priority No. 1 for U19 coaches, ie developing players for senior footy. With no less than twelve U19 boys making their debut at senior level Damien and Ray have certainly ticked that box brilliantly but once we get to finals we want to win and these boys just keep finding a way!

Faced with the daunting prospect of defeating the unbeaten Werribee in the final round of the regular season the boys not only caused the rd 18 upset but repeated the performance in both finals games to cap of their sensational season with a gutsy Grand Final victory on Sunday.

St Bernards opened up at lightning speed with James Weir, Matt Borzillo, Keiran Farrell and Hayden Carlin well on top in the midfield. Dan Riley was racking up the stats and Isaac Madden, Plugga Sullivan and Captain Brad Cooper continually repelled Werribee's forward thrusts.

St Bernards took their opportunities with the breeze to scoot away to a handy lead at the first break but it was the second quarter that placed one hand on the cup when the boys fought tooth and nail against the wind to hold the Tigers to a solitary goal and keep a handy lead at the main break with Keiren Farrel putting in a masterful display as sweeper in defence.

Harry Overman worked his magic off the back flank while Jack Wheeler, Matt Sargent, Jack Gay and James Bennie hit every contest like men possessed! Peter Le Nory, David Wall and Sammy Jones were working hard up forward while Jack saundry and Luke Scerri put their bodies on the line at every contest.

As good as St Bernards were in the 2nd term, Werribee are a class side and fought back to match our effort in the third quarter holding us to 1 goal and adding one against the gale to keep their chances alive heading into the final quarter for the season.

It was nail biting stuff as Werribee continually pushed forward and with a goal at the 12 minute mark it was a nine point diff and 'game on' Werribee sprayed a few more shots at goal and were looking dangerous but as they have done all season the St Bernards boys simply would not concede .. the break through came with a goal against the wind and the crowd roared as St Bernards looked to have the flag in its grasp.

Sammy Jones chimed in for a couple of species to quell any further Tigers attacks and James Weir sealed his medal for BOG with some terrific final quarter efforts to cap off his super day and as the siren sounded it was St Bernards by 12 points!

Congrats to coach Damien Sullivan, assistant coach Ray King, Team Manager Ian Le Noury, runner and boxing coach Kevin Jones, Trainer Tim Raffle, the 19s support staff and of course to the boys themselves!

We hope the flag will perk up young Nick Shultz who was sorely missed from the side but in the thoughts of all at the club .. and of course it's the clippers for you Zac!

Well done boys on a wonderful effort .. we look forward to seeing everyone out at the Seniors Grand Final clash next Saturday and adding another cup to 2001

2011 Under 19 Premiers St Bernards

2011 Under 19 Premiers St Bernards

St Bernards 5.9 (39) defeated Werribee 3.9 (27)
B Wheeler, Sullivan, Sargent
HB Madden, Cooper (C), Overman
C Riley, Borzillo, Bennie
HF Le Noury, Wall, Scerri
F Gay, Jones, Saundry
Ruck Weir
R/Rov Farrell
Rov Carland

I/C Lynch, Rose, Graham, Sullivan, Bye, Feehan Emerg: Connelly

Paul Garth