Category: South Australia

Clubs evenly represented in South Australian state AFL Academy

SOUTH Australia’s next batch of talent has been identified after 30 of the brightest future stars were named in the 30-player South Australian AFL Academy squad. Glenelg and Woodville-West Torrens have the most representatives with five players named in the academy, while North Adelaide and Sturt had four representatives each. West Adelaide, South Adelaide and Central District have three players each in the academy, while Norwood had two players named. Western Australia club, Subiaco even had a player named, with 2020 draft eligible talent, Taj Schofield relocating to South Australia – following his father, Port Adelaide assistant coach Jarrad Schofield – and making the squad.

Among those included in the squad are bottom-age stars, Will Gould, Cameron Tahey, Dylan Stephens and Daniel Sladojevic, as well as father-son prospects, Trent Burgoyne and Jackson Mead, and 2020 father-son prospect, Luke Edwards. 2018 Kevin Sheehan Medallist, Corey Durdin has also made the academy.

The South Australian AFL Academy will come together for its first camp on November 30-December 4, with players having access to high performance programs, with South Australian Under-18 title-winning coach, Tony Bamford to lead the Academy.

AFL Head of Talent Tristan Salter said it is an exciting time for the country’s best young talent.

“The new approach to the national Academy will ensure more of our most talented players have access to AFL facilities, while receiving the best quality coaching, high performance and wellbeing services in the country,” he said.

“Importantly these players will spend more time in their home state, with year-round first-class support that will enhance their opportunity to perform at an elite level through the NAB AFL Under-18 Championships.

“I congratulate all who have been named in squads today and I look forward to watching their development over the next 12-24 months.”

South Australia

Kaine Baldwin             Glenelg/Westminster College
Trent Burgoyne           Woodville West Torrens/Henley High School
Jamie Coff                   Woodville West Torrens/Salisbury High
Will Day                       West Adelaide/Sacred Heart College
Zachary Dumesny       South Adelaide/Sacred Heart College
Corey Durdin               Central District/Tyndale Christian School
Luke Edwards             Glenelg/Henley High School
Karl Finlay                   North Adelaide/Prince Alfred College
Damon Freitag            South Adelaide/KICE Kingscote Campus
Oliver Grivell               Sturt/Concordia
Will Gould                   Glenelg/Prince Alfred College
Joshua Hart                North Adelaide/University of South Australia
Dyson Hilder               North Adelaide/Blackfriars Primary School
Cooper Horsnell          Glenelg/Henley High School
Jed McEntee               Sturt/Mercedes College
Anzac Lochowiak        Sturt/Rostrevor College
Lachlan McNeil           Woodville West Torrens/Henley High School
Harrison Magor           North Adelaide/St Mark’s College
Jackson Mead             Woodville West Torrens/Henley High School
Jordan O’Brien            Central District/Salisbury High
Kysaiah Pickett           Woodville West Torrens/Prince Alfred College
Taj Schofield               Subiaco/Sorrento Duncraig
Oliver Shaw                Central District/Pedare Christian College
Brady Searle               Glenelg/Brighton High School
Joshua Shute              Sturt/Rostrevor
Jye Sinderberry           West Adelaide/Unley High School
Daniel Sladojevic        South Adelaide /Scotch College
Dylan Stephens          Norwood/St Peter’s College
Cameron Taheny        Norwood/Rostrevor College
Riley Thilthorpe           West Adelaide/Adelaide High School

South Australia weekly wrap: Grand Final fever grips the State

AFTER the recent events in South Australian National Football League (SANFL) the build up to last weeks Grand Final was huge. There was still plenty happening around young talent in SA footy, with future stars on display, plus some 2018 prospects performing on the bug stage

League:

Grand Final

NORTH  5.0  9.4  14.7  19.10 (124)
NORWOOD  3.7  7.11  12.14  15.15 (105)

Goals:

North: A. Barns 4, Woodcock, McInerney, Harvey 3, Hender 2, Young, Ramsey, Sweet, Wilkie.
Norwood: Grigg 6, Phillips, A. Wilson 2, Dawe, Fuller, Smart, Shenton, Bampton.

JACK OATEY MEDAL: Mitch Grigg (Norwood)

CROWD – 40,355 at Adelaide Oval.

After a tumultuous week in SANFL history and the end of the “19th man” saga, the excitement around the Grand Final of Norwood vs. North Adelaide was huge. To say the game was an absolute highlight is an understatement as the it was clearly the best game in SANFL League footy for a long time and quickly took the focus away from the prior week events.

A high-scoring game that ended with North Adelaide claiming the Premiership by 19 points (yes 19) with 34 goals scored for the whole game.

North put a strong four quarter effort together leading at every break and won an historic premiership from fifth position on the ladder. Best performed on the day despite an even spread of contributors were Thomas Schwarz and forwards Keenan Ramsey and Mitch Harvey, who hit the scoreboard. Young speedster Boyd Woodcock continued to shine on the big stage with three first half goals and finished with 15 disposals and two score assists for the Roosters. Meanwhile, fellow U18 talent Conor Rozee was quieter with only nine disposals. Young Roosters backman Mackenzie Slee who was brought into the Grand Final side broke lines from defence and was a standout.

For Norwood it was their top end talent that held them in the game, ex Adelaide Crows Mitch Grigg finished best afield with six goals and 31 disposals playing on the ball. Along with back-to-back Magarey medals Grigg must be eyeing of another crack at AFL spot. Mature ager Matthew Nunn again helped his draft prospects in an all round game for the Redlegs.

 

Reserves:

Grand Final

NORTH  5.1  9.3  12.6  16.8 (104)
NORWOOD  3.2  5.5  7.5  12.8 (80)

Goals:

North: Agorastos 5, Verity, C. Barns 3, Miller 2, Lower, Szekely, Ryswyk.
Norwood: Edmead 3, Viney, Surman, Hewson 2, Olsson, L. Charlton, Carter.

BOB LEE MEDAL: Jake Schwarz (North Adelaide)

It was certainly North Adelaide’s day with their Reserves side victorious by 24 points in an impressive display.

North’s side appeared to have the blend of experience and youth right for the game with all the ex league experience helping the side to victory alongside some talented younger players. Best for North was Jake Schwarz, along with Leigh Ryswyk and forward Strato Agorastas who finished with five goals.

Norwood suffered injury blows early which didn’t help their cause, but they fought all day and Zac Richards kept finding the footy finishing with 33 disposals.

 

Under 17 SANFL Future Stars

BLUE  2.3  5.8  9.11  11.13 (79)
YELLOW  0.1  1.1  3.1  5.5 (35)

Best:

Blue: K. Pickett, J. McEntee, C. Durdin, J. Sinderberry, H. Weeks.
Yellow: J. O’Brien, L. Edwards, W. Gould, K. Finlay, T. Wilfred, N. Hannagan.

Goals:

Blue: D. Sladojevic 3, K. Pickett, C. Horsnell, J. Westley, C. Taheny, J. Sinderberry, J. Cannizzaro, J. Coff, R. Thilthorpe.
Yellow: M. Riddle 2, C. Park, D. Hilder, W. Gould.

The 2019 South Australian prospects and beyond were on show early on Grand Final day, with a high standard game played by all. It was a great opportunity to see this talent against each other and certainly highlighted some players to watch for 2019. Kysiah Pickett who has had a good year at Eagles was best afield while fellow consistent performers from the season Jed Mcentee and Will Gould continue to impress.

SA under 16 captain Corey Durdin raises his standard in every game he plays, as does Luke Edwards (son of Tyson) with both being earmarked as future stars.

 

SANFL 2018 Powerade Breakthrough Player winner – Jackson Hately

There is no doubt Centrals 2018 crop of players is one of their most exciting bunches in recent years, with a scoop of awards in 2018.

The standout for the year was talent Jackson Hately (2018 draft prospect) who took his game to a new level playing League football consistently all year for the Bulldogs and earning himself the SANFL League Breakthrough player of the year. This award in in its eleventh year looks to recognise the best emerging talent at SANFL League level, who are under 23 and played less than 10 games at start of season.

Hately’s season is one to clearly put him high on the 2018 AFL Draft prospect, with some dominant performances at League level, and he has been an integral part of Centrals winning sides all year. Add to this his strong and consistent 2018 U18 National Championships, this strong midfielder looks ready to go at AFL level.

The full list of weekly nominees can be found here.

Marinoff inspires Jaslynne Smith to follow AFLW dream

South Australian (SA) defender, Jaslynne Smith was drawn to Australian Rules because of the sport’s physical aspect.

“I think I just liked the physicality of the tackling and watching it on TV,” she said. “I’d always really enjoyed kicking with my Dad so I just thought it would be really fun to give it a go.”

She says there’s nobody who articulates the physicality better than Adelaide Crows midfielder, Ebony Marinoff, who is inspiring Smith to achieve her dream of playing AFL Women’s.

“She’s (Marinoff) a gun footballer and she’s pretty much followed the same pathway as us girls,” Smith said. “She’s a really good representation of how the state pathways can develop and potentially you can become an AFLW player.”

Smith’s AFLW dream stemmed from kicking the football around with her Dad. After telling him she wanted to take up the sport competitively, he got right to work and helped his daughter play the sport she loves.

“So I just watched footy on TV as a kid and just always kicked in the backyard with my dad and I guess one day, I literally said to him I want to play,” Smith said. “Then he came home that night after googling some teams and he came home with a team that I could play for. “I’ve been playing for the last four to five years.”

Smith says her friendships have kept her in the game, as well as her enjoyment of the sport.

“I guess it’s just the friends you make,” the South Australian defender said. “Some of the relationships you make with your teammates, they become some of your really good friends. “I guess I still also really enjoy playing. “I want to see how far I can potentially get with my footy.”

Her goal to go as far as she can with Aussie Rules was inspired by the creation of the AFL Women’s competition in 2017. This ignited the hope in Smith to take her football career beyond club level.

“I think since then (AFLW being established), you’ve been told that you’re at the right age and its genuinely in reach,” Smith said. “If you work hard, and continue to develop, I think you can make it that level so I think definitely since the AFL Women’s started, I’ve really wanted to go.”

Smith has already enjoyed matching up against some bigger bodies in the South Australian National Football League (SANFL) Women’s league this year. She admitted that it was challenging at first, but she found her feet very quickly.

“It’s hard at first, it’s hard to get used to but once you’re there, you sort of just get in and under” the 18 year-old said. “I think it’s definitely helped, coming back to Under 18s. “You can bring more of it (physicality) to under 18s because you’ve been around some of the bigger bodies”

Once she got used to the physicality of the SANFL Women’s, Smith got to play in a premiership for her side, South Adelaide, which is one of her favourite football memories.

“That was a really special moment and we all worked really hard throughout the year and in the pre-season, so getting the Grand Final win was something special,” she said.

Smith has also enjoyed playing in some high-standard Under 18 games for South Australia and the Central Allies. She believes that the standard has increased each year and attributes this to the growth of female football.

“The standard has increased heaps and even just back at clubs and stuff, the amount of participants in the club and amount of teams has just risen so much,” she said. “That’s really helped to develop the standard.”

Under 18s football has also been beneficial for Smith individually, as she went from a utility to a defender.

“I initially didn’t have a position to play in, I sort of just played anywhere,” the Central Allies defender said. “Then in my first year of state with SA, our coach threw me in the back line and I sort of just played there ever since. “I think I’ve just become a bit more experienced as well, playing at a few national championships.”

This year, she and her South Australian teammates combined with the Northern Territory players in the AFL Women’s Under 18 Championships. Smith said that although there was limited time to get to know the players, she enjoyed the experience of playing with them on the Gold Coast.

“When you first come, you have to really bond quickly and you have to really get to know each other to then perform on the field,” she said. “It’s been great getting to know the NT girls.”

Like every young footballer, Smith is eyeing off a career outside of football to keep her options open.

“I think I want to go into the health field, I want to become a physio,” she said. “That would probably be the career of choice but anything sort of in the health field.”

South Australia weekly wrap: 19th man saga dents SANFL finals

TO SAY the last two weeks have been some of the biggest in South Australian National Football League (SANFL) history would be an understatement. The recent events have put SANFL back in the headlines and no doubt a focus also back onto local talent. We recap the last two weeks of games across the SANFL and look closely at key South Australian draft talent in these games.

League – Semi-Finals:

North Adelaide performed a demolition job on Sturt to end the Double Blues season with a 58-point win. It was an all round team performance for the Roosters, with Aidan Tropiano, ex-Crow Keenan Ramsey and Lewis Hender all leading the way. The young talent of the Roosters also shone through with top 10 prospect Connor Rozee playing his best game for the year, finishing with 24 disposals and 10 marks while his Under 18 teammate Boyd Woodcock hit the scoreboard with two goals and three score assists to break into the best as well.

It was a tight tussle for the Eagles and Norwood, but Norwood held on to finish with a 17-point victory. Anthony Wilson and dual Magarey Medalist Mitch Grigg shone for Norwood. For the Eagles, high draft talent Jack Lukosius battled on to finish with one goal and a score assist from 13 disposals and six marks in a tight contested game. His work rate all day was impressive.

 

Preliminary Final

There is no other way to describe this game during and after as unbelievable, and one that will etch itself in SANFL history for so many reasons.

The game was dominated in the first half by the Eagles, who were leading by 29 points at half-time and up to 47 points early into the third quarter. Then North rattled off 13 of the next 14 goals in a stunning comeback. Key players Keenan Ramsey and Lewis Hender again were dominant, but certainly the last quarter from youngster Boyd Woodcock helped his team to victory. Three goals in the last quarter was an incredible spark from the youngster and he put his name in front of the recruiters, performing so well in a preliminary final. He finished with 12 possession, seven tackles and three goals. Fellow Under-18 talent Connor Rozee was a bit quiet early, but again found his form late to take some telling marks and be clean with the ball, including a screamer on the wing when the Eagles were coming. This finals series for Rozee has surely cemented him into the top 10 potential now with consistent and best performances for the year all in cut throat finals.

Eagle Jack Lukosius again finished with one goal from limited opportunities as his Eagles team couldn’t get their hands on the footy in the second half.

 

The 19th Man Saga

It was truly an incredible post match Preliminary Final and aftermath this week for SANFL footy. Despite North’s incredible win, it was found that they had 19 players on the field in the last quarter for 3 minutes 39 seconds. Nothing was addressed during the game, and in the post match raised immediately creating a storm of controversy and debate.

The 19th man rule is archaic and cumbersome, and SANFL officials sent the ruling to the Tribunal to make a decision on the interpretation of the rule. The final result from the Tribunal was to allow the victory to North Adelaide to stand, but a $10,000 fine and removal of four points in 2019 to be imposed.

The debate has raged over the result and arguments on both sides as to how the rule should work. The SANFL rule differs from the AFL rule on the 19th man, which no doubt will now be reviewed and changed to avoid the incident in the future.

Norwood will face off against North Adelaide in this week’s Grand Final. It will be an exciting game as Norwood have dominated all year, and North have reached the Grand Final from fifth position. The game will have plenty of attention after the “19th man saga” but Norwood will start clear favourites.

 

Reserves – Semi- Finals:

Centrals defeated Glenelg in the first semi final by six points in a nail-biter. The class of Centrals stood up with its young Under 18s talent of Jackson Hately, Jez McLennan and Aaron Neitschke leading the way for the Bulldogs all game. For Glenelg it was 17 year-old Brady Searle who shone for the Bays with a three goal and 23 possession game showing he will be one to watch in 2019. Will Gould finished up with six marks in his usual role.

In the other Semi Final, Norwood went down to North in a surprise result by 14 points. Liam Verity lead the way with four goals and forwards Frank Szekely and Oscar Chapman both finished with a goal.

 

Preliminary Final

Norwood managed to hold on to overcome Centrals by seven points, with the Bulldogs coming home strong in the second half. The older experience of Norwood’s team was clear as they survived the last quarter burst from Centrals. Zac Richards helped steer Norwood to victory while the young guns from Central, especially defender McLennan gave their all.

 

Grand Final

It is the Norwood vs North Adelaide double now with both teams competing on Grand Final Day in Reserves and League in what will be a cracking game. North defeated Norwood only two weeks ago, but Norwood will also start favourite in this game with their experienced line up

 

Under 18s:

Preliminary Final

The clash between Norwood and South was a cracker with South securing victory by five points. The key playmakers for South in Luke Bogle (31 disposals, 10 clearances) Tom Sparrow (25 disposals, 11 tackles) and forward Daniel Sladojevic (three goals) helped their team achieve the win. Norwood’s young talent of 2019 prospects Cameron Taheny and Dylan Stephens tried hard to get their team over the line. Stephens has found plenty of the ball in the finals and finished with a game high 35 disposals to add to his 28 last week.

 

Grand Final

Having been the two best sides all year, the Eagles took on South in an epic Grand Final, with the Eagles clinching a victory by five points. The Eagles had been favourite all year to take the title, but South certainly showed they were up for the challenge in high quality game.

There was plenty of talent on show in this game and Eagle Jackson Mead (son of Darren) shone in this game finishing with four goals and 21 disposals to finish with the Alan Stewart best afield medal. Key playmakers in Kai Pudney (32 disposals) and Jarrod Miller (17 disposals) were among the best for the Eagles all day. South’s Sparrow never gave in and had another outstanding game with 12 clearances and 25 disposals while forward Jake Tarca jagged four goals. Hayden Sampson and Bogle again made impressive contributions for the Panthers despite the narrow loss.

 

Award Winners :

Some key award winners announced over the past few weeks from the young talent include:

SANFL U18 Season MVP – Aaron Nietschke (Centrals)

SANFL U18 Best & Fairest (McCallum Tomkins)  – Kai Pudney (Eagles)

College Football Premier League (Gosse Medal) – Darcy LeCornu (Sacred Heart)

South Australia weekly wrap: SANFL finals get underway

THIS week saw the commencement of the first week of South Australian National Football League (SANFL) finals. We review the notable performances of the SA draft talent, including those invited to combines.

League:

Playing in the Eagles’ 21-point win over Sturt, Jack Lukosius was dominant in the first half when given some space by his opponents and hurt them by hitting up marks across the wing and half forward, then lacing out his teammates with his kicks. And if he couldn’t grab it, he caused a contest. Finished with 18 disposals, including seven marks.

For Sturt, mature-ager Shane McAdam kicked two goals from his 11 possessions, as well as a couple of crucial contested marks.

North Adelaide defeated South by 20 points in the Elimination Final, and for the Roosters mature-ager Cal Wilkie was again solid across half-back with his intercept marking and rebound. Wilkie finished with 19 disposals including eight marks. Connor Rozee was also effective playing between the arcs with his 15 disposals and looked most effective helping the rebound from defence. Boyd Woodcock playing up forward had the nine disposals and was always looking to find space and apply pressure.

For South, Nathan Kreuger started well with a mark and first goal of the day and always looked dangerous, finishing with nine disposals.

Reserves:

Centrals defeated West by 25 points in the Elimination Final. Jackson Hately for Centrals playing as a midfield/forward was in the best with his 27 disposals, eight clearances, seven tackles and two goals.  However it was his work inside getting his hands on the footy at the clearance and dishing to teammates which was impressive, as well as then being able to slide forward and hit the scoreboard. Teammate and defender Jez McLennan was also solid with his 18 disposals and seven marks. And again it was his composure in getting the footy in the back half and using it well, combined with rebound run which was impressive. Aaron Nietschke with 22 disposals including a goal was solid all day and played an outside role with some poise.

In a game of two halves, North triumphed by 10 points over Glenelg after being down by 25 points at half-time. For the Roosters, forward Oscar Chapman (backing up from his five goals and 10 marks from last week) worked just as hard for his nine disposals including six marks and showed desperation in applying forward pressure.

For Glenelg, small forward Declan Carmody was in the best with his 11 disposals, two goals and eight marks, and it was his contested marking which was a real highlight. Midfielder Tobin Cox was also good with his 22 disposals, seven tackles, seven clearances and one goal, working hard around the ground all day, even after being crunched backing into a marking contest just before half time. Finn Betterman had 13 disposals and was solid, particularly in the first half, getting things done with a minimum of fuss.

U18s:

In the elimination final, Norwood defeated North Adelaide by 37 points. Norwood’s high possession game was reflected in a number of performances. Under 17 talent, Dylan Stephens was best with his 28 disposals, nine marks, 11 inside 50s and four goals. Winger Jacob Kennerley was prolific with 39 disposals including 14 marks and seven clearances and also managed a goal to also be in the bests. Kade Chandler joined him with his 22 disposals, seven clearances and one goal coupled with his fierce attack on the ball. Isaac Saywell with 27 disposals was effective for the Redlegs and was named in the bests. Jacob Collins had 21 disposals and Ben Jarvis had 13 disposals whilst also pinch-hitting in the ruck and finished with one goal.

The Eagles defeated South by seven points in thriller coming from 19 points down midway through the last quarter. Bottom-agers Jackson Mead and Kozzie Pickett were best, with Mead having 22 disposals and two goals, and Pickett with his 16 disposals and when thrown in the middle in the last quarter sparked the comeback. Kai Pudney also had 25 disposals playing through the middle.

For South, midfielder Tom Sparrow was at his best with 27 disposals (21 kicks), seven clearances and 10 ferocious tackles. Lively small forward Jake Tarca with three goals (and seven frees against) was also named in the bests, whilst Hayden Sampson had 16 disposals mostly contested seven clearances, but looked sore. Tate Coleman had 22 disposals including a goal and six tackles. U17 forward Daniel Sladojevic was also named in the bests with his three goals and eight marks (five of which were contested).

This weekend’s games:

League: Norwood v Eagles, Sturt v North

Reserves: Norwood v North, Glenelg v Centrals

U18s: South v Norwood, Eagles Bye

Salisbury claims 2018 SAWFL premiership

AN inspirational fourth-quarter surge from Salisbury has resulted in a come-from-behind grand final win in the South Australian Women’s Football League (SAWFL).

Salisbury’s Nicole Baker was named best-on-ground for her side after kicking a blinder of a goal in the last quarter to complement her high work ethic throughout the day. South Australia Under 18 forward, Katelyn Rosenzweig was one of the heroes inside 50 with two fourth-quarter majors to give her side an 18 point victory on the big stage.

Congestion was the flavour of the game in the first couple of minutes with both teams displaying aggressive tackling and not giving an inch away. Adelaide University was the first side to hit the scoreboard when Taylor McKay opened up the game with some good tapwork, which created Adelaide University’s first inside 50. She was able to punch the ball to the ground and roved her own footy, which allowed Adele Gibson to deliver a high kick to the square. Jo Hill was then able to read the ball well in the goal square when she crumbed the footy and kicked the first goal of the day.

Madisyn Freeman got involved for Salisbury when she got a clearance out of a stoppage in the centre of the ground and delivered a nice kick inside 50 to Jayme-Lee Sonneman on the lead. Freeman had a brilliant first quarter, taking a strong mark and creating good run and carry with the footy.

The Blacks’ solid defence made it difficult for their opponents to score a goal, with plenty of numbers on the goal line. Salisbury was then gifted with a chance to register its first major when Brittany Perry received a 25 metre penalty for a simple scoring shot. Unfortunately, she missed, giving the Magpies their third behind.

Katelyn Rosenzweig looked likely to give her side its first major when she took a great contested pack mark, but on a difficult angle, her kick went across the face. This was a blessing in disguise, as Demi Sonneman picked up the ball from a boundary throw-in and banged it through while being brought down, giving Salisbury its first major of the day.

At the other end of the ground, Andie Zbierski performed a great run-down tackle on Stephanie Walker when she was streaming inside 50, continuing to give Salisbury the momentum early in the game. However, Walker was stretchered off after that tackle, leaving Adelaide University a player down before the end of the first quarter.

In the last minute of the game, Jo Hill took a great one-on-one contested mark inside 50 to give the Blacks a five-point lead at quarter time. She also registered her second major of the quarter, scoring all of her side’s goals in the first term.

The scoring dried up in the second quarter, with each team only managing one behind. The Blacks struggled to get the ball out of their back half but at the same time, Salisbury couldn’t punish them, despite some continual hard work by Madisyn Freeman at the stoppages.

She was a ball magnet across the ground, taking a good intercept mark and doing everything she could to clear the ball out of congestion. Jo Hill also continued to display her marking prowess when she took a great juggling mark on centre-wing to give Adelaide University the chance to go forward.

Another highlight came when Adelaide University’s Cassandra Tsoumbris sold some candy on the boundary line, but it wasn’t enough as the ball was locked in Salisbury’s forward half for most of the term. Despite this, the Magpies went into the second half with a five-point deficit.

The high-pressure football continued in the third term with strong tackling and stoppage football dominating play. Adelaide University got the breakthrough in the 11th minute of the quarter when Kelly Baltrop took it out of the ruck and gave off a quick handball to Elisabeth Davison, who was able to bend it around the corner and break the scoring drought. The major gave the Blacks a nine-point lead after they scored their first goal since the first quarter.

Shortly after, Paige Allan provided a highlight for the struggling Magpies when she performed a great run-down tackle to win back possession and give her side an opportunity to respond to Adelaide University’s pressure. But it didn’t take long for the Blacks to get the ball back, with South Australia Under 18 captain, Esther Boles firing a shot at goal which just drifted to the right, extending the Blacks’ lead to 12 points. A late behind from Magpie, Shannon Murphy reduced Adelaide University’s lead to 11 points at three quarter time, with the game well and truly not over.

The Magpies started the fourth quarter with intent, with Brittany Perry booting the ball inside 50, giving Kasia Culhane a huge chance to give her side the upper hand in the last term. On the run, she panicked and missed the goal, giving Adelaide University the opportunity to rebound and keep the momentum.

Not long after, one of the Magpies’ prominent players, Nicole Baker delivered a long kick towards their forward half, allowing Sophie Hoyle to turn away from her opponent and burst inside 50. Before she blazed away, she spotted up Katelyn Rosenzweig, who took another great contested mark to give her a second shot on goal.

This time, her angle was much easier, as she received a 25 metre penalty and made no mistake from straight in front, reducing her side’s deficit to four points. Salisbury then took the lead for the first time in the game, courtesy of another combined effort from Rosenzweig and Hoyle. This time the roles were reversed, as Rosenzweig picked the ball up cleanly off the ground and gave off a rapid handball to Hoyle in the goal square, who kicked truly to give Salisbury the momentum.

It didn’t take long for Salisbury to extend its lead, as Monique Hollick’s kick towards goal was kept in by her teammates on the goal line, despite the ball flying across the face. This gave Nicole Baker the chance to display her footy smarts when she kicked an inside-out goal from the goal square to extend her side’s lead to nine points halfway through the last term.

Rosenzweig then kicked her second major of the day on the back of another brilliant contested mark. She read the high kick inside 50 perfectly and marked just outside the goal square straight in front, allowing her to increase the Magpies’ lead to 16 points with six minutes remaining in the game.

Adelaide University had no answers to Salisbury’s reinvigorated pressure, with the ball being locked in the Magpies’ forward half for the quarter. After two late behinds from Salisbury, the margin was extended to 18 points, and with Adelaide University unable to score in the last quarter, it gave the Magpies a monumental victory at Aldi Arena.

 

ADELAIDE UNIVERSITY 2.2 | 2.3 | 3.4 | 3.4 (22) 

SALISBURY 1.3 | 1.4 | 1.5 | 5.10 (40) 

GOALS: 

Adelaide University: J. Hill 2, E. Davison

Salisbury: K. Rosenzweig 2, N. Baker, D. Sonneman, S. Hoyle

BEST: 

Adelaide University: R. Peate, N. Collie, J. Hill, E. Tromans , M. Van Riel, E. O”Dea

Salisbury: N. Baker, M. Freeman, A. Zbierski, B. Perry, A. Woodland, S. Hoyle

 

 

Straight into state; Madison Bennett’s incredible transition into football

JUST last year, Madison Bennett gave up a promising career in soccer and discovered her passion for Australian Rules football.

She saw a link for the South Australia Under 18 trials and tried out, having never played competitive football before. Not only had she never played competitive football before, but Bennett was not even aware that there was a women’s Australian Rules league. Since she found out, she has discovered a passion for a new sport that does not look like it will die down anytime soon.

“I didn’t realise there was a women’s league at all so as soon as I found out there was a women’s league, I knew footy was my passion and I went straight to it,” Bennett said. “I did love soccer, I played in the state team. “But I don’t know, as soon as I started playing footy, I just found that passion was a lot bigger because I’ve always had a passion for sport and football was a great environment. “It’s an uncommon sport for girls so I think the passion for it is huge and I like that.”

In her first year of playing football, Bennett was successful in making the South Australian and Central Allies Under 18 sides, and played her first football game in one of the most daunting environments imaginable.

“My first ever state game was pretty much my first game,” the 19 year-old said. “It was straight into it with a very wide talent so I’ve come a long way since then. “I knew it was a state team and that had a lot of competition and talent around me so I took that on board and I just did what I could.”

Bennett also plays for South Adelaide in the South Australia National Football League (SANFL) Women’s competition and Christies Beach in the South Australian Women’s Football League (SAWFL). While playing in these leagues, the 19 year-old believed she has improved and benefitted from the experience and advice from other players.

“I feel like playing SANFLW was a good opportunity because it’s that next step higher than local level,” Bennett said. “I really enjoyed playing against the older women and getting a lot of feedback from them and improving. “I think I improved in my kicking, like if you watch my first ever state game from a SANFLW game now, I think there’s a big improvement there so I got to learn off the girls and I’m really fortunate to get the opportunity to do it.”

Before, Bennett represented her state in soccer, having played since she was a teenager. She has been awarded a Player of the Tournament award before at a tournament in Sydney, but now has her sights set on achieving new heights in Australian Rules.

“As an individual, I would love to get drafted,” Bennett said. “Ever since I’ve started playing footy, it has been my goal. “I have looked up to the Adelaide Crows and seeing them and all the other teams, I’ve watched their games and it’d be an amazing feeling to represent one of those teams one day. “I’m not sure when that time will come but hopefully in my coming years, I’ll be able to play for one of those AFLW teams.”

In order to achieve this goal, Bennett has been keeping a close eye on some of the star players of the AFL Women’s competition.

Erin Phillips does stand out really for me,” the 19 year-old said. “Chelsea Randall, even though I don’t play her position, her aggression towards the ball has really driven me to have more aggression to tackle the player and to keep going. “Daisy Pearce, because she’s quite small and I’m really small, I look up to her and go if she can do it, I can do it too.”

South Australia weekly wrap: Big names shine in school champs

ALL eyes this week were on the huge Schools Championship clash with big draft names on show. Across the South Australian National Football League (SANFL) levels, young talent continued to make key contributions to their sides. As the minor rounds wind down for some clubs, the finals for others will be a great opportunity for elite talent to show what they can do under pressure and on a bigger stage. 

South Australian Schools Knockout Championship – Prince Alfred College vs. Henley High School

By: David Chapman

In a repeat of last year’s final, the two teams came together after similar pathways. Prince Alfred College (PAC) finished top of the College Footy competition and that gave them the path straight to the final. Henley defeated Rostrevor (second in College footy) in the preliminary final after winning the Public Schools number one ranking.

In a slight surprise, Henley started Jack Lukosius at centre-half back, and with PAC’s Will Gould in the backline as well, we missed out on the match up of two Under 18 All Australians. However it was Lukosius that had more of the impact, repelling PAC attacks at will and running off his player to create an extra into attack.  His highlight was probably the run off half-back along the wing in the second quarter and then a 50m bullet pass to Izak Rankine that would not have gotten three metres off the ground, such was its perfection. In a tough and entertaining match at half time Henley had scored three goals to PAC’s one. 

Rankine’s touches were effective and he was always dangerous, and while the PAC defenders did well to quell his usual magic, the class of his disposals was telling. Jackson Mead was also a real threat up forward and Henley captain Beau Nunan was again instrumental in and around the packs and in the second half in particular showed real on field leadership. Henley’s Will Schreiber was hard at the footy and contest all game and a valued contributor to the winners. Yet ultimately it was the depth of the Henley squad which outshone PAC and saw them with the 6.10 (46) to 2.9 (21) victory.

For PAC, it was the two Under 17s in Karl Findlay and Kozzie Pickett that were best. Finlay playing centre-half back took a number of contested intercepts marks, and his disposal by foot was excellent. He would have to be in consideration for higher honours next year.  Meanwhile Pickett was creative flying high at marks and duking opponents, almost impossible to tackle and when he was closed on, was able to stiff arm his opponent and then offload.  Also scary was his ability to hit the contest and the opponent and this was on show with a couple of his bumps that shook the grandstand. Captain Tom Sparrow tried hard all night to drag his team back into the contest, but needed a bit more assistance through the middle. Will Gould went forward in the second half but PAC couldn’t get the ball in often enough, and they didn’t grab their chances in front of the goals either missing many set shots on goal.

Last year we saw 2017 draftees Zac Bailey (Brisbane) and Jackson Edwards (Crows) play in this game.  There were a few more from the game that should see their named called out in November.

Jack Lukosius ended up with the Colin Steinert Medal for best on ground and Henley celebrated for the first time in 38 years

SANFL wrap

By: Jamie Morgan

League

A bit quieter week at League level, with only a handful of top-end talent taking the field. Connor Rozee again hit the scoreboard with one goal and 14 disposals for North in their narrow loss to League Leader, Norwood. Izak Rankine clocked up 16 disposals in the Bloods’ loss to Sturt, while big man Hugo Munn again booted a goal for the Double Blues playing key position, along with three contested marks.

The young Centrals trio of Jackson Hately, Jez McLennan and Aaron Nietschke were all solid contributors in their team’s win over Port Adelaide Magpies. Hately was very impressive finishing with two goals and helping steady his team in the last quarter.

At South in their one goal win over the Eagles, forward and overager Nathan Krueger’s season continued well with another three goals and five marks.

Reserves

Sturt showed real guts in their two point victory over West Adelaide, once again the form and improvement in Casey Voss (son of Michael) is something that has to attract interest. His best on ground performance for the Blues was done with 20 possessions at 85% efficiency, combing for seven clearances and 14 tackles along with Tom Lewis.

Panthers Hayden Sampson was again a contributor finishing with one goal and 17 disposals to be in the best.

Under 18

Sturt defeated West Adelaide and again key midfielder Jed McEntee was dominant for the Double Blues in a strong inside performance. West Adelaide pair William Gutsche and Jye Sinderberry continue to be key contributors for the Bloods and both have shown great improvement over the year.

South over ran Glenelg by 15 points in a tight game. Strong performances came from South and ex Sacred Heart Collegian Tate Lovering again leading the way, along with forwards Damon Freitag and Daniel Sladojevic. Glenelg leader Finn Betterman was hard in the contest showed with eight clearances and Henley High’s Tex Dowdell finished with a game high 26 disposals.

The Eagles overcame Centrals by 12 points, and it was a case of huge disposal numbers for Kai Pudney (42 disposals) and Jackson Mead (31 disposals) that helped their team over the line

Norwood rolled out their best team with a huge 76-point win over North. With a host of their top end talent back it was an easy victory for the Redlegs with Jacob Collins and Jacob Kennerly really damaging and key mid Kade Chandler best with three goals from 22 disposals.

The last round of U18 footy occurs this week with three teams all vying for finals spots, so it will be an interesting end to the season. All school football is now complete for most schools and SANFL clubs will get the majority of their College talent back for the finals series.

Two years of footy enough for Rachelle Martin to blossom

HAILING from the Yorke Peninsula, which is about two hours from Adelaide, Rachelle Martin moved to the City of Churches for university.

Little did she know, she would start playing Australian Rules and begin what has been a successful career so far. Despite being a 19 year-old, Martin was selected to represent the Central Allies in the AFL Women’s Under 18 Championships. She said she really enjoyed the camaraderie in the side and felt honoured to be selected to represent her state for the first time.

“I didn’t think I would make state because it’s Under 18s and I’m 19 so to be selected, it was a good feeling,” Martin said. “We didn’t spend much time together before the games but especially that second game, I think we tidied a lot of stuff up and we were supporting each other way more so it was really fun even though we lost, it was good to be around the girls.”

The Central Allies combined the best Under 18 South Australian and Northern Territory (NT) talent, and Martin admits that while it was interesting to play with the NT girls, she was able to bond with them straight away.

“A few of the SA girls did NT before so they did the Allies before,” the 19 year-old said. “You could see there was that bond there and it was easier to make friends because you had those connections. “It was interesting but it was good getting to know the girls. “I’ve heard those names before and now getting to see them play was really cool and knowing the academy players.”

In terms of her personal game, Martin believes she improved as the tournament went on, and noted the strengths and weaknesses of her playing style.

“My first game wasn’t the best I thought, but the second game, I thought I did better so it was alright,” she said. “I think my inside game’s not too bad. “I think I need to work on my fitness. “It probably lets me down a bit but it’s something to work on.”

This is not a bad weakness considering Martin did not play competitive football during her childhood.

“I never did footy when I was younger so I did tennis and soccer,” she said. “I (also) did calisthenics, netball, basketball; yeah I did a fair few sports.”

Despite not playing any competitive football, Martin and her sister had to entertain her brother, who was the only boy in the family.

“My brother played footy when he was younger and he’s the only boy so me and my sister were always forced to kick the footy with him whenever he wanted,” she said.

She also tasted Australian Rules at school, but could not play in the Yorke Peninsula at the time.

“We did a few nine-a-side games at school and from there, I just wanted to play footy, so I had to wait until I moved to Adelaide,” Martin said.

Since she has moved to Adelaide, Martin has played in both the South Australian National Football League (SANFL) Statewide Super Women’s League for West Adelaide and in the South Australian Women’s Football League (SAWFL) for Fitzroy.

During her time at West Adelaide, the 19 year-old played 10 games and was named in the best in each game. Her side finished fourth on the ladder. In her time at Fitzroy in the SAWFL, Martin played seven games, was named in the best twice and kicked six goals. She admits during this time, she found it hard to balance her studies with her football, but she managed it as best she could.

“I’m doing accounting (at university),” Martin said. “It was pretty difficult with SANFL and state as well. “Having more football, it was hard to balance that but I got through it.”

Now that she has experienced representing her state and playing in two elite state leagues, Martin admits she is thinking about her AFLW prospects.

“I wouldn’t mind AFLW,” she said. “I’m not sure if I get picked up this year. “I think in the future it would be a good opportunity. “I would strive for it.”

Boles dared to dream, then followed her passion

IT began as a dare from her uncle, but it did not take long for Esther Boles to fall in love with football.

At first, it was the ability to “pummel” others into the ground, but then the AFL Women’s took shape and so many footballers she had grown up watching and playing alongside in South Australia were suddenly on television. For the South Australian captain, the AFL Women’s Under 18s Championships were a long way from her home town, but a realisation that all the hard work had paid off.

“I’m originally from Port Augusta, so country town about 500km from Adelaide,” Boles said. “My uncle just actually dared me to go to a training once and then went to one training and then the coach actually asked me to come back, and ever since then I’ve been playing, so I was 12 with the boys. “I originally played a bit of netball as most country girls do. “But I always found I was being told I was being too aggressive where this (football) was something you could pummel people into the ground, that was the aim of the game.”

Boles has carried that intensity at the ball carrier throughout her career, and thrives on the contested work. While she said she hoped to improve her decision making, she was glad how her skills had come along, thanks to those early experiences.

“I think tackling pressure is one of my strengths, but I think doing it with the boys right from a young age has helped with skills,” Boles said. “It’s a big part now. “The skills are never all that clean, but growing up and doing it with the boys has really helped and made it one of my strengths.”

The South Australian leader said the rise of women’s football through the AFL Women’s had effectively placed a carrot in front of all aspiring footballers and everyone was now doing everything in their power to achieve the dream of playing at the elite level.

“I think that it’s just so exciting,” Boles said. “I think playing for Morphettville Park back in Adelaide where 14 of those girls are now on TV and are now on little cards, and little kids know their name. “They just went from people who were just nobodies to people who are now somebodies. “It happened so quickly and it’s so exciting. “It drives all of us girls, it’s right in front of us and we know that it can happen with a bit of hard work.”

Committing to football was never easy work for Boles, who in her early years, took a 17-hour return bus trip just to play the game she loved. Now boarding in Adelaide – and she has since she was 15 – it is much easier to commit to training and games without the long distances. Boles said the belief that young girls could play AFL if they had the right mindset was huge for the junior players in South Australia.

“I think it just shows that it’s real,” Boles said. “I think that’s the biggest thing. “It’s proof right in front of our eyes, it’s right there ready to grab it, you’ve just got to put the hard yards in.”

Boles has certainly put the hard yards in, and the South Australian selectors agreed. They named her as captain for the AFL Women’s Under 18 Championships, something she found a little strange at first, but has thrived on the responsibility.

“I’ve really liked it (captaincy),” Boles said. “I think it’s been a pretty big journey. “I’ve been in this team since I was 14, so I’ve gone from being the little kid that everyone yelled at, to being all of a sudden the kid that was yelling at them. “It was really good. “The SANFL has really helped with growing up and it’s been a pretty good ride to be on.”

South Australia teamed up with Northern Territory to form the Central Allies for series two of the championships, something that added an extra dimension into the mix for Boles and her teammates.

“I think it’s been actually really hard, a lot harder than I thought,” Boles admitted. “I think when we got here it was a little bit exciting. “Hitting the ground running on Monday, we all got caught by surprise. “Those other teams have all been training together, they’ve got game plans. “We had nothing. “We just had a structure we’d learnt two hours before, we were chucked in the deep end. “But it meant players were able to shine and be able to show character, who could stand up in that sort of circumstance.”

Boles’ passion for football is obvious. So much so, she wants to remain involved in any way she can, studying hard to ensure she has options once she finishes school.

“(I’m) pretty big into school,” she said. “I hit the books pretty hard because obviously female football isn’t something you can rest on. “It’s not enough money, so I think a big thing for me is just sport in general. “I love anything sport, anything to do with sport, umpiring. “Anything, just the club, everything about it.”

One thing is for sure, as long as football is around, Esther Boles will not be too far away.

“I’ve thought a lot about that (career) this carnival,” Boles said. “Whether the draft comes off successful or not, but a big thing for me is I don’t care if I’m picked up or not picked up, I want to be involved in some way and become a coach, a line coach, a mentor, something. “I think it’s an exciting space to work in.”