Bulldogs storm home
Monday, 2nd May, 2011
A barnstorming final quarter effort saw North overpower South to win by 28 points at the Jubilee Oval on Saturday.
At three quarter time it was anything but comfortable for North who were trailing South by 5 points.
It was during the final break that Bulldog coach David Ruddock gave his players an old fashioned spray, demanding his players lift, and lift they did.
The versatile Jedd Watson was moved into the ruck where he proceeded to give the star studded mid-field of Kelly, Howard, Johnston and Ashley Bates first look at the leather, while Tobias Hack, who had been moved forward, provided the finishing touches with 3 last quarter goals.
Another telling move Ruddock made was to send Jake Napier to centre half back on Ty Corey after the Roos' centre half forward had been dominating his position. The more robust and close checking of Napier allowed North to at least partially close down the dangerous Corey.
"I thought Jake did an OK job on Corey," Ruddock said post match. "I did consider Matt Dempster but we wanted to leave him on the flank where he was giving us plenty of rebound."
The match had started in ideal Autumn conditions with Bill Dolan in the playing coach role for South with Robert Hickey away at a wedding (not THE wedding). South lost Dunn out of their squad while North replaced Beavan and Oldsen with 40 year old Jason Harwood and first gamer Ryan Lehman.
The line-ups were interesting as Garrick was assigned a tagging role on Dolan, Watson was on a wing opposed to Pettitt, Howard was at full forward for North, Napier was in the ruck up against Holmes, Corey and Schorn had the key forward posts for South, their opponents were Clare and Fenton.
The Bulldogs kicked to the Essential Energy end and in no time had 2 goals on the board, both to the elusive Michael Mason who looks a dangerous player, Stephens answered for South before a Davin Bates snap gave North a handy 9 point lead at the first break.
The Roos were unlucky as Schorn had a couple of chances to goal but missed, the Bulldogs were getting great drive from their wingmen in Watson and Burton, across half back Dempster was sensational as was Bird and Vlatko for South.
Quarter time: North 3.2 (20) South 1.5 (11)
When Howard marked strongly and kicked an early second quarter goal for North it was the Bulldogs out by 15 points. The Roos rallied as Corey marked strongly and goaled which was followed up by a great snap from the classy Dustin Stephens.
The Bulldogs' coaching panel were forced to move Fenton onto Corey as the South forward was fast becoming the best player on the ground.
The Bulldogs extended their lead when Hack wandered into the forward lines and after some strong play from Billings, the half back flanker marked and goaled.
Half time: North 5.4 (34) South 3.6 (24)
During the long break acting South Coach Billy Dolan made some telling moves and implored his team to dig a bit deeper.
The Roos emerged from the sheds a different team. Judd was given a tagging job on Wes Burton and Purcell was picking up Kelly and Howard as they rotated through the centre square.
North also made some moves with Clare going to centre half forward and Borlace to full back.
The Roos' level of intensity at the ball and the player with the ball was more noticeable and it was a surprise when North goaled first after some very strong and courageous play from Pryor who attacked the ball. Brett Johnston was the recipient of his teammates' endeavours and he put the Bulldogs out to a 16 point lead.
From this point on it was all South. Ty Corey took two strong marks and goaled with both shots while Schorn who had kicked a lot of points took a great mark and calmly booted his first major for the day.
The Roos were up and running, the returning Alan Mackiewicz played his best quarter of football in 2 years, acting skipper Marcus O'Brien was electrifying, Arlen Bird marked and rebounded strongly as did Vlatko, while Judd and Purcell were doing their jobs.
Three Quarter time: South 6.9 (45) North 6.4 (40)
The final 30 minutes belonged to the Bulldogs as they managed to get on top of their opponents mainly through the advent of a very strong mid field group of players.
The best player on the ground though was North backman Matt Dempster, his rebound and attack on the ball was second to none. He was the inaugural winner of the Richard Sandow Medal for his performance.
The medal is named after former Broken Hill soldier Richard Sandow who was killed in Vietnam in 1967.
The Roos had plenty of contributors but I thought Corey was their best.
Final Score: North 12.7 (79) defeated South 7.9 (51)
North - Matt Dempster (BOG), Jedd Watson, Jayden Kelly, Matt Garrick, Brett Johnston, Ashley Bates, Tobias Hack, Michael Mason, Jake Napier.
South - Ty Corey, Arlen Bird, Mick Vlatko, Allan Mackiewicz, Marcus O'Brien, Wes Judd.
North - Tobias Hack 4, Michael Mason 3, Codie Howard 1, Ashley Bates 1, Blake Clare 1, Davin Bates 1, Brett Johnston 1.
South - Ty Corey 3, Cody Schorn 2, Dustin Stephens 2.