Scouting notes: TAC Cup Preliminary Finals

Max Lynch

The Sandringham Dragons will meet the Murray Bushrangers in the TAC Cup Grand Final next Sunday from 11.05am at Etihad Stadium.


Sandringham Dragons 10.10 (70) defeated Geelong Falcons 7.6 (48) by 22-points.

Matt Balmer’s scouting notes:

Geelong Falcons:

#6 Sam Simpson– Geelong could have a gem here. Simpson hasn’t had a lot talked about him, but he’s a very smart footballer. He has the chance to go Father/Son to Geelong if they nominate and match the bid for him. He’s very lively around the contest, running around in his long socks. Had 14 disposals but might begin to get some more talk at club land.

#10 Mitch Diamond– Played mostly behind the ball, kicking the ball out from full back. He had 25 disposals and eight tackles as one of the best for the Falcons.

#28 Paddy Dowling– 21 disposals and two goals for the left footer. Dowling can play in multiple positions, but looked at his best playing as a high half forward. He did attend a few centre bounces, but I like him better on the outside.

#42 Cassidy Parish– With his brother watching on, I’m sure most of the AFL club recruiters had an eye on the bottom ager. With slick back hair and bright red boots there were plenty of passages where he streamed through the middle of the ground. Parish had 22 disposals and eight clearances, often electing to take the ball out of a stoppages looking for a loose player by hand.

#50 Sean Darcy– Was on fire in the first half, but slowed down a bit once Sandy worked themselves back into the day. He dominated in the ruck with 35 hitouts, but struggled when Sandy attempted to go third man up around the ground against him. Will attend the National Combine and clubs will be looking eagerly at his testing results.

Sandringham Dragons:

#4 Will Setterfield– Suffered a shoulder injury early in the 2nd quarter and that was his day done. Believe he went off the hospital and the Dragons weren’t too confident he’ll play again this season.

#5 Andrew McGrath– A huge last quarter of 14 disposals was one of the reasons Sandy are into the Grand Final. He finished with 32 disposals, eight tackles and nine clearances in another dominant display. Hit most of his targets, but played more on the outside than on the inside compared with last weekend. Could he challenge for the No.1 pick? Might be sweating on a report for a sling tackle in the 3rd term.

#7 Corey Lyons– Another solid finals performance collecting 21 disposals. His kicking was again under 50%, but his I was impressive at 3QT with his vocal work willing his teammates over the line.

#8 Tim Taranto– Another huge game for Taranto and he’s well and truly pushing himself into the top handful or so of picks. He has the ability to go and play tall inside 50 and is a tough match up either forward or on the ball. 23 disposals (17 contested) and four goals.

#10 Jack Scrimshaw– Started like a house on fire, but slowed down after quarter time. His left foot was superb playing in the back half. Might need to move further up the ground next week if Setterfield misses the contest.

#13 Oliver Florent– Easily Florent’s best game for a while. Had plenty of spark and was involved right throughout the day. He also laid seven tackles, however he does have the ability to flash in and out of the game with two touches in two passages, before not being seen for 20 minutes.



Murray Bushrangers 15.12 (102) defeated Oakleigh Chargers 8.10 (58) by 44-points. 

Peter Williams’ scouting notes:

Murray Bushrangers:

#7 Will Brodie – Was uncharacteristically quiet today, and while he does not rack up the numbers other potential top five picks do, the uncompromising inside midfielder is usually more consistent. Worked into the game more in the second half, starting with the first goal of the third term from a stoppage. Hard to keep the bull down and will be crucial in winning the hard ball next week.

#13 Lachlan Tiziani – Having a sensational season, in particularly the second half, kicking another swag of goals today. Kicked three goals in three minutes in the second term to help the Bushrangers get some breathing space and run away with the game. Finished with six goals and just looked so good in the air. Huge vertical leap and great goal sense, an over-ager who is likely to make it onto an AFL club’s list.

#20 Zach Sproule – Played an important role as a rebounding defender who is far more mobile than his 196cm would suggest. He can take the ball in flight and not lose stride, running away from the 50 and sending the ball forward. Might be an underrated tall in the draft who will likely cost GWS a pretty penny if he performs well next week. One to watch in the grand final.

#22 Harry Morrison – Reliable defender who plays like a quarterback, peeling off his opponent, positioning himself well and intercepting the ball on the last line of defence. A good kick, Morrison provides run and a link-up player who while a little small, plays taller than his standing at 182cm. Was particularly impressive when he moved up to the wing and sat a kick behind play, rebounding the ball back inside 50 or forward of centre.

#25 Ryan Garthwaite – Another rebounding defender who reads the ball really well. Can sometimes trail his opponent on the lead and is not as strong as other key defenders, but often will outsmart his opponent, reading the ball drop perfectly. Most awkward kicking style you will ever see, but is more effective than others and can clear the danger zone with ease.

#40 Todd Marshall – Really impressive game from the big man. Playing as a lead-up key forward, Marshall finished the game with seven marks and one goal. Not only did he make numerous leads and look strong overhead, but he was quick to dispose of it and keep the game moving for the Bushrangers. Laid a great tackle on Lachlan Walker in the fourth quarter who was streaming down the wing. The first round pick is no longer GWS-bound, and is on the open market with no doubt plenty of suitors likely to be impressed from his strong game today.

Oakleigh Chargers:

#6 Campbell Lane – Found plenty of the football once again and tried hard across the four quarters. Worked well on the inside, but kicking can let him down. Finished with 24 disposals, six marks and five tackles getting it done at both ends. Did not stand out particularly, but can hold his head high in a disappointing team performance.

#8 Toby Wooller – Bottom-age prospect who is continuing to show plenty. A really good mark of the football, he let himself down with his set shots. Continues to develop strongly and gets plenty of space with his leads and expect him to come back stronger next year. One to watch in 2017.

#21 Lachlan Walker – Typical workman like performance by Walker. Is not the cleanest or classiest player out there, but just wills himself to contests and does everything right. Not elite in any one category, but a really consistent player who covers ground well and was consistent by foot today.

#24 Dion Johnstone – An enigma up forward, Johnstone is an interesting prospect. From North Warrnambool boarding at Scotch, he is dangerous inside 50 and finished the game with a couple of goals including a fantastic effort from a tight angle. Johnstone is a one-touch player and while he needs to work on his consistency, will be one with plenty of scope for future development.

#28 Josh Daicos – A quiet performance from Daicos with nine disposals. Picked up a little in the last with a nice goal assist, but missed to the right with a set shot he would normally nail. Plenty of class though and rarely wastes a disposal.

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