Round 13 and it was a crucial clash as we welcomed Caulfield Grammarians to Princess Park.
After winning 2 of our last 3 games, we went into the match confident with how we were playing.
Although sitting on the bottom of the ladder they had beaten us earlier in the year, so our group was on high alert of what our opposition were capable of.
With James Paul away Brede Seccull led the team and won the toss as we started with the slight breeze in the first quarter. We came out with a great attitude and were getting plenty of the ball in our hands but due to a combination of our ball use to our forwards and some missed shots we were not in front by as much as we should have been. Our backs were very tight on their opponents keeping them to zero goals for the term and we led by 21 points at the first change.
In the second quarter we gave up a couple of soft goals from Free Kicks and 50 Metre Penalties but kicked 4 of our own and went into the main break with a 27-point lead.
Our chat in the rooms was that we needed to keep our contest strong and give our forwards enough opportunities to score. Unfortunately, we were inaccurate kicking 5 behinds for the term and Caulfield kicked 2 goals as they reduced the margin to 18 points. It was important coming into the last term that we remained confident in the footy we can play and that we needed to keep attacking through the middle to give our forwards a chance to score. Pleasingly we banged on 7 goals for the quarter, and we finished with a 27-point victory. Although we were patchy at times, we still did more than enough to secure the 4 points and with Old Melburnians losing we now move into 8th spot and for the moment out of relegation.
Individually Hugo Nosiara was best on ground with his ability to use the ball off half back. Brodie Steele & Duz Seccull were fantastic down back showing how far they have come with their leadership. Unfortunately, we lost 2 of our key backs to injury in Rayner Seccull & Max Sinclair, hopefully they do not miss too much footy. In the middle of the ground Trevo worked hard all day and gave us first use.
At ground level Brede Seccull, Josh Gasparini, James Magner and Sam Loewe got a lot of the footy and put great pressure on their direct opponents. Sam Gilbert played his 2nd game for the club and has not lost the ability to find the football.
Up forward Jack Munro showed great leadership when the game was on the line at the start of the 4th.
Charlie Sinclair worked tirelessly to apply pressure and keep the ball in our forward half.
Corey Connelly & Andreas Stefanakis were dangerous all day and both finished with 3 goals.
A crucial win for our boys and with 5 games to go we are doing everything we can as a group to ensure we are playing in A Grade next year.
Next Saturday we take on Uni Blues at Melbourne University where we have a great record, and we look forward to the challenge.
Thank you for your support.
Go Bloods & See you at the footy.
For full pictorial coverage of the Seniors' match against Grammarians, go to the Gallery
Men's Reserves Match Report
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Old Haileybury 21.07-133
Caulfield Grammarians 07.07-49
Round 13 vs Caulfield Grammarians
Once again, the Magoos found themselves with their back against the wall on Thursday night, and we had to rally to assemble a team. A big shoutout to Jed Woodger, Jake Carey, and Josh Fricke for joining us and lending a hand this week. Your efforts were truly appreciated. Also, a special mention to Jeremy Bourke, who stepped up and occupied the cage to bolster our numbers.
Right from the start, our first quarter set the tone for the game. We dominated the ball at the contest and executed our game plan flawlessly. Joel Constable and Jarrod Hewitt particularly impressed us with their composure and decision-making skills, effectively influencing the direction of the match. As the first quarter concluded, we were thrilled to have a 44-point lead, and the smiles on the boys' faces were a joy to see.
Moving into the second quarter, we found ourselves in an unfamiliar position with a substantial lead. However, a few boys needed a reminder that the game was far from over, and we couldn't afford to become complacent. Caulfield gained more possession during this quarter, but thanks to the solid efforts of Cooper Nolan, Brad Prior, and Jack Hardeman, we defended exceptionally well.
The pivotal premiership quarter arrived, and we managed to keep Caulfield from scoring, a fantastic achievement. Sam Hall-Kahan regained his top form in the middle, and Lochie Eddey showcased his prowess on the wing, covering plenty of ground.
As the final quarter unfolded, the elusive first win finally materialized. We flipped the board and got a few of the Backman up in unchartered territory having a run through the middle of leading up forward. Ben Oakes impressed with an outstanding performance, bagging 6 goals. It was truly a fantastic team effort, with everyone stepping up their game. Although we could only allocate votes to 6 players, it felt like any of the team could have deserved recognition.
In the upcoming weeks, we'll have some players returning from Europe, which will be a welcome addition. But for now, let's relish being on the winners' list. A big thanks to all the boys who persevered during the challenging weeks and encouraged their mates to come down – your efforts were undoubtedly worth it.
Ben Oakes (6), Joel Constable (3), Jarrod Hewitt (3), Tom McPhee (2), George Aivatoglou (2), Jack Hardeman, Stuart Connolly, Cooper Nolan, Ben O’Leary, Jeremy Bourke
Joel Constable, Sam Hall-Kahan, Jarrod Hewitt, Jack Hardeman, Cooper Nolan, Ben Oakes
Women's Match Report
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Old Haileybury 06.06-42
Old Camberwell Grammarians 4.11-35
It was all about Grace Vanderwaal as the Hearts celebrated her 260th game of senior football in our round 13 match against Old Camberwell. This is Gracie’s 2nd year with the Hearts after coming across from the Stkilda Sharks and her 260th game milestone was acknowledged after some of the girls contacted her old club to check in about how many games she had played with them. It was only then that it was realised that her 250th had been missed.
This was a super important game as the Hearts looked to keep their finals hopes alive. Getting off to a good start was important and Ella Gown did just that as she slotted the first goal of the day. Camberwell responded with a goal of their own to go into the first break with a slender 2 point lead. This one was going to be an arm wrestle.
Unfortunately, both of our rucks in Holly and Chelsea came off injured in the second term which led to some urgent positional changes. Peta was moved into the ruck and did an outstanding job both with her tap work but also her influence around the ground. Eloise continued her outstanding form and with the assistance of Junior and Ella our mids were linking up well. The Hearts went into the main break with a 2 point lead.
The second half was very even and after Rach left the field with a dislocated finger early in the third, the Hearts were down to no rotations. It was a great team effort to still hold a slender 4 point lead at ¾ time.
Camberwell hit the front in the last term but our girls simply would not lie down. Serene had been lively up forward all day and slotted her third major for the day. Soon after, Gracie took herself from the back pocket into our forward line and won a free kick and also received a 25m penalty. As cool as ice, and in a very memorable milestone game, she slotted the goal from 40m to seal the victory. The Hearts held off late challenges from Old Camberwell to hold on and win by 7 points in a true team effort.
Go Hearts !
Under 19's Match Report
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Old Haileybury 09.11-65
Uni Blacks 6.09-45
The U/19’s game against Uni Blacks was massive. OHAFC (4th) vs Uni Blacks (5th) on the same points separated by percentage so this was the proverbial 8-point game. We started the game full of running kicking 5 goals to nil in the first quarter. It was after that that things started to go amiss. With only 20 players, we lost 2 in the second term to concussion, so down on rotations and on a heavy track our boys need to dig deep. Uni Blacks kicked 3 goals to 1 in the second term and 2 goals to 1 in the third to be within striking distance kicking to the scoring end in the last. At 3 quarter time we spoke about effort at the contest and managing ball security, slowing the play down and creating as many stoppages as we could. The players discipline to follow the game plan and the heart shown to get to every contest when they were out on their feet is a real testament to their desire to win and was extremely courageous. This is one we could have been forgiven for losing. Jack Tuffley’s effort to stay on the ground when he was injured was amazing and our Captains (Gus Bonwick) effort to suit up in the last quarter when we were down to 17 men was great leadership, his near specky and ground ball follow up led to the sealer against the run of play and a huge exhale from the coaching staff.
This was our best win of the year and now sets us on the path of playing finals footy with a game and percentage clear in 4th spot. Well done guys.