North too slippery
Friday, 27th May, 2016
By Tyler Hannigan
On a cold, wet night at the Jubilee Oval, Broken Hill’s next generation of AFL stars braved the shocking conditions to put on a couple of entertaining games of football.
In game one, North took down West in convincing fashion, running out 42-point winners.
North kicked off proceedings with the first goal of the game to Riley Crampton, but West hit back quickly with Jayden Sutton slotting one through.
The contest early was hard but the skills were holding up despite the slippery conditions. But when the rain started to come down heavier late in the first, it became a real slog.
North skipper Josh Jones kicked a late goal to put the Bulldogs in the lead by seven points at the first break.
Three goals to North U/18 star Ethan Slater and one to State rep Isaac Cumming had put the game firmly in North’s control going into half-time as West were kept scoreless for the term.
A slight scare went through the North coaching staff (both under 18 and A-grade) as Ethan Slater came off the ground midway through the quarter, looking to have suffered a chest/throat knock in a tackling contest. He was attended to by trainers and was given the all clear to return after a short spell.
While West managed two goals in the third, they were unable to eat into North’s lead as the Dogs managed two of their own to keep a 34-point lead going into the last change.
West’s night went from bad to worse as Jarred Nicholls had to be stretchered from the ground late in the term with a dislocated ankle.
“His injury was really disappointing because he’d been our best player up until that point,” said Robins’ coach Jordan Tonkin, “but hopefully he’ll be back in two or three weeks.”
The rain might have eased early in the last but West were never going to be able to pull this one back in the sloppy conditions where marks and clean pick-ups were as rare as a Kevin Bartlett handball.
Josh Jones’ third goal put the game beyond doubt and while West hit back with a Cassidy Evans goal, Jack Picton goaled late to put the margin out to 42 points.
For West, Jayden Sutton was named as their best while Sage Hocking and Cassidy Evans backed up their goals with some great efforts all over the ground.
North’s best was Ethan Slater whose A-grade exposure has him looking a step above this level and it shone through on Wednesday night as he bagged four goals as well as getting a host of touches around the ground.
Nash Mitchell was at his consistent best in tough conditions while Josh Jones’ three goals saw him included in the Bulldogs’ best.
West Goalkickers: J. Sutton, C. Evans, S. Hocking, J. Trengove.
Best Players: J. Sutton, S. Hocking, C. Evans, J. Nicholls, A. Donnelly, P. Attard.
North Goalkickers: E. Slater 4, J. Jones 3, R. Crampton, J. Picton, I. Cumming.
Best Players: E. Slater, N. Mitchell, A. Galea, J. Jones, B. Elliott, T. Hicks.