On a cold windy Saturday where it was a pleasure to partake of the culinary delights and ample refreshments of the Norwood Corporate Box, we watched our boys kick into the wind to the Mullum Rd end in the first quarter. It took us until the 7 minute mark to break our duck, Fingers marking at half-forward and kicking quickly across his body to Pearso who had streamed forward to mark and convert from 20m out. Rej was next on the board after Brayden Mead drew players to him as he headed goalward before pulling his kick cleverly to the top of the goalsquare. Mead was provider again moments later with a quick pass in board to Gouldy who made no mistake. Bayswater enjoyed a brief period of dominance with 3 of the next 4 goals, with Krousser’s hit up to Leroy 30m out for his 1st and our 4th our only joy. 20 minutes in Mead, enjoying a productive first quarter, centred to Leroy who was pushed in the contest, the resulting free being paid as advantage to Fingers who waltzed into an open goal. Fingers was soon to double his tally after a delightful passage of play from full-back. Kemps kick in found Gysberts who dished to Lochie, who found Rej and then Zak Carroll. With Bayswater over-committed to the high press Zak’s long kick found Fingers out the back marking just inside 50, turning, running his measure and sneaking it inside the right post for our 6th goal in a ‘play-of-the-day’ contender. At QT we held a healthy advantage 6.2 – 3.3
The 2nd quarter was dominated from the outset by Leroy, who marked strongly the first kick of the quarter from Lochie and converted from 40m. The next 10 minutes were pretty scrappy before we changed gears, Matt Jessop starting the run with a neat conversion from 40m after clever chip passes from Gys and Lochie in the build-up. Gouldy found Zak at true centre half forward for our next goal as we were finding acres of space in our forward line. From the next centre bounce Skave and Gouldy combined for a clearance to Mead, whose wide chip was marked by Leroy outside 50m right next to the boundary. Using the breeze beautifully Leroy scored full points with a quality drop punt. Writter squared to CHF moments later where the big bloke read the flight best and marked it at its highest point. Another neat drop punt later it was his 4th and our 11th and he wasn’t done yet, Rej kicking long to full-forward where Leroy’s marking dominance again came to the fore. His 4th for the quarter and our 12th for the day saw us take a commanding 50 point lead to the long change, 12.5 – 4.3.
The 3rd quarter was a more even affair, we scored 4 goals to 3, with the main talking point being a yellow-card for Leroy from a tackling contest early on which certainly limited his chances of increasing his goal tally. Skave marked on 50 and with the aid of a 25m penalty scored our first for the quarter, albeit with a remarkable ‘double-pump’ on his ball drop when kicking the goal. Only Skave…… At the 12m mark a long kick forward from Ben Trend after a release handball from the skipper saw Pearso mark unattended 50m from goal. He put on the afterburners, took a bounce and slammed it through from the top of the square to the delight of the Nrowood faithful. Writter to Gys to Jessop to Shinners was our next passage, Shinners dumped after the mark and being taken to the goalline for a certain goal. Our last goal for the quarter came via Rej after an excellent left foot pass from Blair Hudson found Jessop whose chip was marked on the lead by Rej. His conversion from 35m was unerring. At 3/4T we led by 53 points 16.6 – 7.7.
With the game well and truly over it was celebration time in the last quarter and Skave started proceedings with a long drop punt from 45m after a good spot up from Pearso. Back on the field having served his penance, Leroy took advantage of a free paid for minimal contact from his opponent to score his 6th from close range. Bayswater’s dirty day was underlined 14 minutes in when they went ill-advisedly back across goal where Zak Carroll intercepted and goalled from 30m. At the 20 minute mark Pearso squared to CHF where Skave flew for the spectacular, and must have been somewhat surprised to come to ground empty handed only to see the ball safely in the hands of Matty Jessop. His subsequent goal would surely have been discussed with Skave later that evening. Leroy missed a sitter which annoyed members of the corporate box no end before Zak completed the scoring for the day with a long snap from 40m.
Final scores Norwood 21.11.137(Leroy 6, Zak 3, Rej 2, Fingers 2, Pearso 2, Skave 2, Jessop 2, Shinners 1, Gould 1) def. Bayswater 9.8.62.
In a very even performance on the day Leroy narrowly earnt the BOG honours for his 6 goals, but he was well supported by many players including Gysberts Gould Quinlivan Pearson and Mead, along with a host of others. For a change the backman took it easy with the ball spending long periods in our forward line.
Next week we take on Vermont in a game which is virtually our Grand Final. We’ve never won at Vermont and its long overdue time that we did. In other good news the development team continued to solidify their place in the top 5 with a comfortable 6 goal win. The U19s return from a 3-week bye to face top of the table Vermont. They should be fresh!