The UFC kicked off season 2022 with a bang, recording a perfect 7 wins in the first round of the Men’s season.
After a long pre-season, it was great to see the fitness level of all sides come in to play, with the ability to run out the games playing a major factor in the results. The newly formed “Puppy Colts” recorded the sides’ first-ever win, a 63 point victory over Warnbro in the Laurie Keene colts.
In the Dingoes, we saw the first milestone of the year, with Alex ‘Big Al’ White playing his 100th game, racking up 30+ & 4 goals (allegedly).
Next week, the Men’s sides take on North Beach, at home and away while the Women’s sides start their season at home.
University 9.11 def Fremantle CBC 8.10
The University A Grade opened their 2022 campaign with an inspiring come from behind victory against a strong CBC outfit.
Despite some matched gameplay in the opening term, CBC proved too sharp for Uni. They were much more efficient with their use and were outworking us between the arcs. At quarter time CBC had applied heavy scoreboard pressure leading 4.1 to 0.3.
Uni started the 2nd quarter a much more clean and determined unit and despite now being on top in general play, were wasteful in front of goal. CBC continued to make the most of their opportunities i50 and by the halfway mark of the quarter, CBC extended their lead to 6 goals. Despite trailing by a significant margin, confidence remained. Tom Gajewski was first to hit the scoreboard for Uni and with 20 seconds to go before HT debutant Quinn Donaldson played on from some fantastic Brent Evans delivery to kick his first goal in league footy and a much-needed one for Uni. At half time Uni trailed 2.8 to 6.3
The third quarter is where Uni really started to get going. Our midfielders gained control of the game and some excellent ball movement had Uni looking the better of the two sides. CBC still had their share of the footy entering their forward half however some excellent work from our back set repelled the majority of these attacks. University trailed at 3QT by 17 points.
Entering the final term, strong belief remained in the group. The energy was not one of a side that had been trailing all game and down to two players on the bench. This positive mindset showed in the last quarter as Uni wasted no time to make the statement that they were determined to get this result. Cam Wilson kicked an opportunistic goal off hands from a marking contest and moments later one of Uni’s favourites sons Charlie Stapleton, back for his first game in 952 days following consecutive ACL injuries crumbed some of his own work to snap truly and bring the game within a goal (https://www.dartfish.tv/Player?CR=p157443c479202m7039940 79:30 minute mark). University continued their dominance in the final quarter with goals to Jack Durward from a costly CBC 150m penalty and Troy Culloton who proved too strong for his opponent in the goal square. CBC managed to hit back late however with 2 minutes to go and leading by one point, Cam Wilson iced the game with his third goal resulting in a 7 point win to Uni.
Veteran Dwayne Lake turned back the clock with a vintage performance as he continues to keep father time in check and another veteran in Nath Stewart was at his very best picking CBC apart all day. Sam West out of position in the ruck played such an important role for the side with his 360* wrists and follow-up work around the contest. Tim O’Hara resumed his mantle as the best back in the competition and was well supported by fellow tall Jye Harris. In addition to Quinn Donaldson who was very lively up forward our other debutant for the day, 18-year-old Finn Moloney was pivotal in the midfield during Uni’s second-half comeback with his aggression at the contest and breakaway speed from stoppages. Menno Inverarity another colts age player in the league side, was also very impressive with his work rate, run, decision making, and ball use. He continues to improve significantly each week. Would also like to mention Chaz Flint’s determination playing on-ball all game with a broken toe.
It was a great opening weekend for the UFC going 7/7. Neil would have certainly been proud.
Best: Lake, Stewart, Wilson, West, Stapleton, O’Hara, Inverarity, Harris
Goals: 3 Wilson, Lake, Durward, Culloton, Gajewski, Stapleton, Q Donaldson
4 Pines A-Reserves
University 6.8 44 def Fremantle CBC 6.5 41
The Reserves have kicked off the season in the most dramatic way possible with a stunning 3 point victory against Fremantle CBC at MCG 1 on Saturday afternoon. The Reserves were a different-looking side from last year, with a great blend of youth and experience coming into the fold. Colts like Tommy Doggart, Will Kelsall and Crud were inclusions in the side, in addition to the exciting returns of the Donovan brothers and the Macedonian Marvel.
The message from Coach McAuliffe pre-game was for the boys to compete all day given the CBC game plan generally leads to games descending into arm-wrestles. What eventuated over the following 2 hours was exactly that, with no team taking the ascendency at any point.
In the first quarter, the Uni boys came out with toughness around the contest epitomised by Nick Lantzke and Ryan Williamson. Their attack on the footy was second to none, and helped deliver the first goal of the year, kicked by none other than Charlie Mitchell. Charlie steadied one home from the boundary, a cracking finish considering the breeze coming across the ground.
The second quarter was played in a similar fashion to the first with the physicality of the game being very notable. The back line, despite surges from CBC, held firm with Hoppo (skippering the team on the day), Frenchy and Tommy all proving invaluable in defence. The men in yellow held a 1 point lead at the main break.
Into the second half, we felt as though we started to get on top in certain areas of the ground, but just lacked some polish at times. However, the want to be the first to the footy was there, epitomised by Harry Don who has clearly visited the Fountain of Youth over the offseason – Harry’s work rate around the ground and marking was particularly notable. Also of note from this quarter was Will absolutely flushing one from 50 which brought the game level going into the final break.
Going into the last quarter, it felt like we were always on the fringe of breaking the game open, and whilst we had our chances, we never quite took them. Unfortunately for us, CBC took the lead with 3 minutes left and while many other teams could / would have dropped their heads this group did not.
With a siege mentality, the boys continued to move the ball forward without luck. Then with 15 seconds left the ball was kicked long into the forward line into a pack and found the hands of a club legend. Pat Donovan who rucked the entirety of the last quarter, had trained once prior to the game and currently has a 2-month-old at home had the game on his boot. In scenes similar to Max Gawn in Geelong last year, and unlike the Mt Lawley game all those years ago (as was explained to this writer in the aftermath) Pat went back and slotted it to hand the Ressies their first victory in 2022. It was a remarkable kick from the great man who continues to be like a fine wine. Fair to say the handler of Pat Don’s affairs was pleased with the result.
Whilst Pat Don’s kick deserves every accolade and will be recounted for many years to come, it was a true reward for the boy’s efforts throughout the preseason and that game. CBC were the preliminary finalists last year and should indicate to the boys that they can match it with the best teams in the competition whatever the circumstances.
Next week we have another test out at the Taj Mahal facing North Beach (Premiers 4 out of the last 5 years). However, if we bring the type of effort exhibited on Saturday I have no doubt the boys can give it a real crack in a week’s time.
Goals – Quince (2); Chaz, Will, Crud & Pat Don (1)
Votes – Pat Don (5); Willo (4); Harry Don & Tom (3); Flea, Snick & Hoppo (2); Owen, Kirana & Frenchy (1)
Phil Scott Colts
University 16.12 108 def Fremantle CBC
Brewhub C5-Grade Pirates
University 8.11 59 def Fremantle CBC 7.8 50
BDO C5-Reserves Dingoes
University 14.10 your 94 def Fremantle CBC 3.8 26
Brett Jones Colts C-Gulls
University 23.17 155 def Fremantle CBC 2.6 18
Subi Hotel Laurie Keene Colts
University 12.17 def Warnbro 4.2
Crossing Law A-Grade Women Stormers
Steinepreis C4-Grade Women Peacocks