A TARRYN Thomas-inspired Tasmanian side has toppled the Sydney Swans Academy to officially claim the Under 18 Academy Series title. With one round remaining Tasmania sits on top of the table undefeated, and with a head-to-head differential the tiebreaker between teams, the victory over the Swans means the boys from the Apple Isle cannot be dismounted from the title. Meanwhile Brisbane Lions Academy flogged GWS GIANTS Academy, and Gold Coast Academy had an equally sizeable win over Northern Territory.
In the game down in Hobart, Tasmania had no shortage of goal scoring threats, with 12 individual goal kickers contributing to the 32-point victory over Sydney. The Mariners booted six goals to one in the opening term and never looked back from there, as the expected tight tussle occurred after quarter time. The sides traded blows for 23 goals, as Tasmania booted 12 majors to Sydney’s 11 to run out comfortable victors.
Thomas was the star of the show again and must have North Melbourne fans licking their lips in anticipation for the exciting star with clean ball use and X-factor to burn. Another Thomas – Thomas Mundy was the key architect up forward, booting three goals and was named in the best as the over-ager continues his strong form at the carnival. Jared Dakin and Nick Baker were also named among Tasmania’s best on the day.
For Sydney, Nick Blakey booted three goals, but was relatively held compared to his dominant combined 12 goals in his opening two games in the series, with half-forward Josh Stern named in the best, as was Luke Parkes and Sam Thorne.
Tasmania 6.2 9.3 14.3 18.5 (113)
Sydney 1.2 5.5 8.7 12.9 (81)
Tasmania: Mundy 3, Dakin 2, Rubock 2, McGuinness 2, Thomas 2, Jones, Mansell, Jackson, Turner, Donnelly, Burrows-Cheng, O’Neill
Sydney: Blakey 3, Barling 2, Stewart 2, Parker 2, Stern, Thorne, Loone
Tasmania: Thomas, Dakin, Jackson, Baker, Mundy, Jones
Sydney: Stern, Parks, Thorne, Rayner, Blakey, Brewer
Brisbane Lions Academy had a huge win over GWS GIANTS Academy, placing them third overall on the table for the Series thus far. The Lions held the GIANTS goalless in the opening three terms and capped off the performance with a five goals to one final quarter to win by a huge 88 points.
Tom Ansell, a 197cm, 112kg Coolaroo product was too strong for his opponents, booting three goals, while fellow tall Kobe Tozer was one of three players to finish the game with two majors. Keidean Coleman was named the Lions best playing in defence, while Toara Marango, Connor McFadyen (two goals) and Tom Matthews were impressive for the winners.
For GWS, it was a tough day at the office but bottom-age midfielder Thomas Green was the clear standout for the GIANTS, notching up a team-high 28 disposals in the defeat, while Kieran Briggs, bottom-ager Matthew McGrory and over-ager Riley Budd were also solid on the day.
Brisbane Academy 4.2 6.8 9.11 14.16 (100)
GWS Academy 0.2 0.3 0.4 1.6 (12)
Brisbane Academy: Ansell 3, McFadyen 2, Tomkinson 2, Tozer 2, Currie, Franks, Kennedy, Marsh, Townson
GWS Academy: McGrory
Brisbane Academy: Coleman, Marango, McFadyen, Matthews, Franks, Marsh
GWS Academy: Green, Briggs, McGrory, Budd
GOLD Coast Academy ensured Northern Territory’s winless streak at the Under 18 Academy Series extended another week, with the Suns putting on a clinical performance on their way to a 89-point belting. The Suns piled on 12 goals to three after half-time, including a seven goals to zero second term to effectively kill the contest and pick up their second consecutive win.
Father-son prospect Bailey Scott was best on ground in the huge victory, no doubt attracting plenty of attention from the multiple clubs with ties to the talented top-ager. Up forward, 194cm top-ager Caleb Graham put on a show, piling on six goals to outscore the Thunder, while bottom-age small forward Josh Gore also slammed home five majors for both to be named in the best. Others who stood out for the Suns included bottom-agers Connor Budarick and Ashton Crossley, showing the talent that will be there for the Suns next year.
For Northern Territory, Stephen Cumming booted a goal and was one of four individual goal kickers, while Beau Schwarze, Rodney Baird and Liam Holt-Fitz were three players who could hold their heads high on a disappointing day for the home side.
Northern Territory 0.2 1.3 1.3 4.3 (27)
Gold Coast Academy 4.4 6.4 13.6 18.8 (116)
Northern Territory: Box, S Cumming, Simon, Valastro
Gold Coast Academy: Graham 6, Gore 5, Lowah 2, Baru, Buckland, Budarick, Greenwool, Scott
Northern Territory: Schwarze, Baird, Holt-Fitz
Gold Coast Academy: Scott, Budarick, Crossley, Graham, Gore