In the first round of the TAC Cup season, the six metro teams faced off with some outstanding performances coupled with some equally disappointing ones. Oakleigh Chargers strangled the life out of the Northern Knights, while eight goals from Blake Hardwick helped Eastern Ranges destroy Western Jets and a dominating first half by the Calder Cannons was too much for the Sandringham Dragons.
Oakleigh Chargers 12.11 (83)
Northern Knights 3.6 (24)
Oakleigh goals: Cuningham (2), H. Thompson (2), Silvagni (2), Larkey (2), Walker, Giles, T. Phillips, Pirrie.
Northern goals: M. Perry, J. Gresham, D. Reinbold.
Oakleigh best: Crocker, McLarty, Pearce , Hooper, Answerth , Thompson
Northern best: Mattingly, Perry, Gresham, Booth, Fiorini, Murphy
The Chargers have started off their season in the best way possible after a comfortable 61 point win over the Knights.
The game started off well balanced as both teams took their time finding the scoreboard, with only two goals kicked in the first quarter. It was after quarter time when the Chargers took control of the match, booting 11 goals to two during the remaining three quarters.
Both Ben Crocker and Sam McLarty looked dangerous for Oakleigh throughout, with the two talls up forward in Harry Thompson and Nick Larkey posing problems for the Knights back six all game, as they both kicked two goals each.
Northern didn’t provide much of a fight after half time, with Jade Gresham the only real standout in a disappointing first round result for Northern.
Oakleigh look to make it two wins from two next week as they host the Eastern Ranges, while Northern will look to bounce back when they take on the Calder Cannons.
BFGN Rising Stars Medal:
5 – Ben Crocker (Oakleigh Chargers)
4 – Sam McLarty (Oakleigh Chargers)
3 – Jade Gresham (Northern Knights)
2 – Hayden Thompson (Oakleigh Chargers)
1 – Fraser Pearce (Oakleigh Chargers)
Eastern Ranges 26.16 (172) defeated Western Jets 8.2 (50)
Eastern goals: Hardwick (8), R. Clarke (3), Cotte (3), Jeffs (2), Maibaum (2), Weideman (2), Parsons (2), Fenton, Lynch, Brolic, Sheridan-Ferrie.
Western goals: Lester (3), Venables (2), Vujanic, Knight, Galley.
Eastern best: Hardwick, Parson, R. Clarke, Brolic, Cotte, Fenton.
Western best: Lester, Volpato, Carter, Venables, Daw.
Eastern Ranges flexed their muscle and showed they are certainly going to be a contender this year, with a mammoth 122-point flogging of the Western Jets.
Blake Hardwick was the star of the show as he booted eight goals, while his partners in crime and AIS members James Parsons and Sam Weideman also wreaked havoc for the Jets defence. Ryan Clarke was the best midfielder, having the ball on a string and kicking three goals in a fantastic day out.
It was a dark day for Western, with very few players who could walk off with their heads held high. Brandon Lester was the best with three goals, but only contributions from Jackson Volpato and Daniel Venables went any way towards resisting the incredible movement of the Eastern Ranges.
Western will be hoping to bounce back against Sandringham next week, while Eastern will take on Oakleigh in a top-two battle early on in the season.
BFGN Rising Stars Medal:
5 – Blake Hardwick (Eastern Ranges)
4 – Ryan Clarke (Eastern Ranges)
3 – James Parsons (Eastern Ranges)
2 – Anthony Brolic (Eastern Ranges)
1 – Aaron Cotte (Eastern Ranges)
Calder Cannons 13.4 (82) defeated Sandringham Dragons 8.7 (55)
Calder goals: Young (2), Flower (2), Kerbatieh (2), Brown, T. Wallis, Wunhym, Tarczon, Peters, Romero, J. James.
Sandringham goals: Matera (2), Rich, Pavlou, Hunt, Wallace, Lok, Wilkinson.
Calder best: Laguda, Wunhym, T. Wallis, Gawthrop, Stillman, Kerbatieh
Sandringham best: Thompson, Lok, Hayres, Pavlou, Garner, Cameron
A strong start to their 2015 campaign allowed Calder Cannons to outmuscle the Sandringham Dragons at RAMS Arena in Craigieburn.
In both their first games of the year, the sides looked to be sizing each other up, but it was Calder that got out of the blocks early, booted six goals to one in a first half that was less than spectacular for the away side.
Sandringham fought back with four goals to two in the third quarter to be within 14 points at the last change, but Calder once again kicked away in the last with five goals to three, to celebrate a 27 point win.
Essendon fans would be excited by the signs shown by potential father-son Tom Wallis, while Zac Wunhym and Hisham Kerbatieh showed why they will be highly sought after at the end of the year.
For Sandringham, Theophilos Thompson and Nicholas Pavlou were the best in a disappointing start to their season. The side will be hoping their better second half will catapult their season this weekend when they play the even-more disappointing Eastern Ranges.
Calder will take on Highgate back at RAMS Arena this weekend to try and make it two wins from as many matches.
BFGN Rising Stars Medal:
5 – Tom Wallis (Calder Cannons)
4 – Zac Wunhym (Calder Cannons)
3 – Hisham Kerbatieh (Calder Cannons)
2 – Nicholas Pavlou (Sandringham Dragons)
1 – Bruno Laguda (Calder Cannons)