By Matt Fotia
How do Woori Yallock go about knocking off Narre Warren? Will Warburton Millgrove’s defence stand up against the Pakenham Lions? Plus the big Seville Kinglake double header – who comes out on top?
All this and more in the Weekend Preview below.
Besides a six point loss to Berwick in the season opener it’s been a perfect start to the year for Narre Warren, with the Magpies sitting on top of the ladder.
But this weekend shapes up as their biggest test since that season opener.
The Magpies have had travelled to the Valley on two occasions and come away with comfortable wins on both occasions, but will have taken those victories with a grain of salt seeing as they were against the two bottom sides. This weekend will be different, with Woori Yallock going swimmingly in third spot on the table, despite consistent injuries to members of their playing list.
Woori Yallock will be wary of the Magpies strengths and key players across the ground.
Through the middle the leadership duo of Dylan Quirk and Trent Cody will be one that Jack Cole and his boys would’ve put some time into.
Quirk is a contested bull and will be key to the Magpies winning the stoppages. He might not be the prettiest player to watch but he is crucial. Has been in the Narre Warren best on all but one occasion this season.
Cody on the other hand is much more aesthetically pleasing, with a slightly more metrosexual appeal he shows signs of flashy skills and is one of the better kicks in the competition, with a fair bit of toe to boot. His year has been almost as good as Quirk’s, with five goals and five appearances in the Magpies best.
Down forward Daniel Jackson and veteran Michael Collins have been prominent.
Jackson has 20 goals this season, with a bag of seven against Olinda Ferny Creek in round two the biggest of his hauls. He enjoyed a purple patch for the month following that effort, kicking three goals in the next four Magpies fixtures. Collins has plenty of nous and has been ever-present on the scoresheet this season, kicking two or more goals in every game he’s played.
Woori Yallock have hosted one other South East club this season when Cranbourne came to town in round three, with the Tigers winning a close one by seven points.
WATCH | Check out all the highlights from Woori Yallock Football Netball Club's win over Cranbourne Football Netball Club in the Totally Workwear Berwick& Knoxfield Premier Division.All thanks to Lilydale Smash Repairs
Posted by AFL OUTER EAST 'Community Bank' Football & Netball on Monday, 6 May 2019
On that occasion the Eagles started hot with their uncontested style of play, but Woori Yallock got on top around the coalface after quarter time and got the chocolates, not allowing the Eagles outside ball.
Ruckman Zac Monkhorst was impressive that day and has been good since the Interleague weekend with eight goals in the past fortnight. The Tiger ruckman could play another big role this weekend, with Narre Warren struggling for depth in that department, the athletic yet undersized Lachlan Benson pinch throughout the year so far.
This game could have a fair bit to do with the shape of the final five and better yet, it should be a cracker.
Despite coming off a two goal loss to Narre Warren, Cranbourne will be excited about the prospect of knocking the Olinda Ferny Creek juggernaut this weekend.
Defensive duo Tara Cecil and Tiana Butler would’ve marked this date on their calendar long ago, as they look to take on the fire breathing goal circle of Peri Stewart and Ashlee Howard, however they won’t be able to stop the goals going in on their own.
Cranbourne must stop the ball movement further up the court and to do so they have to limit the effectiveness of Jodi Chandler Medalist Krista Tomlinson in the centres. Stephanie Ryan will most likely go head to head with Tomlinson and at bare minimum needs to create a break even in this position.
Sport isn’t binary, sometimes teams just match up well against others – that’s what Cranbourne will be saying anyway.
In Division One Warburton Millgrove travel out to Pakenham to take on the Lions, with both sides looking to take advantage of Monbulk’s lost to Doveton last weekend and jump into the top three on the table.
Pakenham are the lowest scorers other than bottom side Emerald in the Division and have built their season around their strong defensive structure, which currently has them as the best defence outside of the top two sides.
The Burras on the other hand have a slightly more attacking focus with both regular goalers, Bianca Daniels and Kirralee Liuyf, having shot over 100 goals thus far this season.
Their defence relies pretty heavily on Natalia Petrucev, who from all reports will miss the next few weeks after this one.
Warburton Millgrove have the firepower to put up a winning score, so if Petrucev and co can keep a hold of the Lions’ Kyra Esler and Mia Palmer, the Burras should have Pakenham’s measure, and their spot back in the top three.
The past three weeks have been impressive for Emerald with the Bombers giving Monbulk a tiny fright early on, before kickstarting their year with a win over Warburton Millgrove and giving premiership aspirant Doveton a run for their money away from home.
The Bombers will be rueing their third quarter against the Doves, where they allowed the hosts to pile on seven goals to three, which was enough to see them ease to victory.
Jake Pedder has kicked eight goals in the last two games to double his season tally, whilst Kieren Burns and Jarrod Donders have also been lively down forward, with Burns booting five goals in the Bombers win over the Burras. Joshua Rich and Nic Jansen have also been imposing over this period.
Their opponents Officer have also had an upturn in form over the last three weeks with their best win their latest one over Mount Evelyn, after they did enough to knock off Belgrave in round five.
The Roos have a few players returning to their previous home this weekend with Brent Moloney, who has 12 goals for the season – Officer’s second best, and Michael Dompietro who found form against Mount Evelyn last time out, after missing a few weeks with injury, ready to take on the Bombers.
It’s an important game for both sides, with Emerald looking to keep their finals hopes alive, whilst Officer will be looking to draw level on points with Doveton and Mount Evelyn and continue their mini revival.
Kinglake have their second massive test in as many weeks as they travel out to Seville this weekend desperate to prove they’re the real deal in 2019.
WATCH | Get in the mood for some Monday Afternoon Footy by checking out all the highlights from The Yarra Junction Eagles big win over Kinglake on Saturday.All thanks to Lilydale Smash Repairs.#AFLOEDIV2
Posted by AFL OUTER EAST 'Community Bank' Football & Netball on Sunday, 9 June 2019
The Lakers just couldn’t keep up with Yarra Junction’s manic midfield, but did show signs of what they can do throughout the game, especially the dynamic of how Andrew Fairchild and Chris Horman like to operate.
At all times one of the two key Kinglake forwards pushes high up the ground to give the Lakers defenders a get out of jail kick, whilst the other is isolated deep inside fifty. They both took advantage of this at stages on the weekend.
Defensively the trio of Butterworth, Hannah and Saddington performed well, especially aerially, for most of the match especially when you consider how often the ball was coming in their direction.
They’ll have to be on their game in the air again this weekend as they take on a forward line that could possibly host Josh Fraser, Josh Neal, Nathan O’Keefe and Patrick Ratray, with Dylan Broadway and Cory Glass sniffing around on the ground.
Seville are yet to put that forward six on the park together this season, but it’s a scary thought.
For the Blues they’ll want to replicate the midfield dominance that Yarra Junction showed last weekend. If Gareth Fraser, Bryce Penwill and the rest can get first use of the ball it could be another tough day for the Lakers, who will want to control the ball. As we saw last weekend, the quicker the game gets, the worse it is for Kinglake.
On the netball court it’s an interesting match up. The two sides played each other on four occasions last season, with Kinglake winning three of the four encounters, with the two biggest margins coming in the Qualifying and Preliminary Finals (16 and 17 points).
Seville couldn’t score more than 37 goals against the Lakers last season, but have added some firepower with goal shooter Jackie Cullimore crossing over from Wandin. Cullimore has settled in well for the Blues with 181 goals from her five games this season at an average of 36.2 goals per game.
The Blues are statistically a better side than the Lakers this season, but as eluded to above, the Lakers seem to have the wood on the Blues in recent times. Kinglake have been scratchy so far this season but have done enough to win the games they should.
This could end up being a battle of the new recruits with Cullimore going up against Kinglake’s Billie Cvijetic (195 goals @ 32.5 per game), with the winner looking best placed to challenge the run away freight train that is Yea.