There’s a saying in the NFL that “on any given Sunday any team can beat another team” and unfortunately for SKOB Seniors this was true as they were upended by Uni Blacks on Sunday at University Oval. The tightness of the competition in Premier has long been evident and SKOB would not have entered Sunday’s contest expecting anything less than a tough outing from a highly competitive side. However having solidified themselves in the top 4 with a win last week, SKOB would have been hoping to keep that 2 game buffer going a little longer having started as the pundits’ favourites on Sunday. There were 5 changes to last week’s team and Captain Sam Critchley was missing, but this meant opportunities were there for others to step up. Two lads from the Under 19’s came in to make their debut on the main stage – Oli Gill and Tom Feehan being rewarded for recent good form and showing they were ready to test themselves at the higher level. Both managed to kick a goal each on debut which was a great highlight for them.
Just as they had a few weeks back when they played Uni Blues at the same ground, SKOB found goal scoring a difficult task. A net score of 53 was once again registered by SKOB – last time it was 7.11, this time 6.17 – and they would be left to rue the wayward shooting in front of the big sticks. Against the Blues it was a 3 point loss and on Sunday it was 7 points, which left all with a sense of great frustration that crucial premiership points were given up at the Uni ground, and has meant that the margin for error from here to season’s end is even finer than it was previously.
Deepest darkest July with the ground rated a heavy 10 meant SKOB found the going tough all day. In fairness, despite a late fightback, which was also eerily similar to the Uni Blues game of a few weeks ago, SKOB would have stolen a game where the home side dominated for most parts. Jack Holden sidestepped an opponent and slotted a great goal on the run at the 27 minute mark to put SKOB within 7 points but in spite of launching an assault on the goals in the last 4 minutes, couldn’t make any further ground on the scoreboard with Uni Blacks taking the points when the final siren sounded. Better players for SKOB were: Josh Wallis, Jack Holden, Josh Tynan, Cal Matheson, Rob Larcher, and Bill Coates
The match was preceded by a smoking ceremony with both teams wearing special strips to acknowledge the start of NAIDOC week – as did the Women’s teams on the Saturday.
Earlier on, Coach Clough had a few nervous moments as his Reserve’s team needed to come from behind to snatch a win by 2 points over a very gallant Uni Blacks team. Like their Senior brethren, SKOB found it hard to split the middle and a return of only 1.6 to three quarter time (having been held scoreless in the third term) would have had the coaching staff very concerned, however they managed to find a couple of goals in the last quarter and that was enough to get them home by a very tight margin. Angus McQuie was again very good for the Ressies as were Pat Croagh, Liam O'Neill, Ethan Bowden, Chris Gleeson, and Michael Di Natale. Like the Seniors they have a massive clash away to Old Brighton in the next round – the result of which will have a major impact on their finals chances.
Our Academy team had a week off for the bye.
Saints Golden run continues
On Saturday the Saints Gold were on the main stage, as hosts Melbourne Uni took the Saturday 2pm timeslot on Uni Oval to celebrate the beginning of NAIDOC week. Wearing their special kit for the game and playing with great spirit, the Saints Gold got going early before the heavy conditions took a toll and the game became a bit more of a slog. Both teams only managed a goal each after the opening term, but SKOB were able to hold out their Uni opponents and go on to record a tough victory. Sarah Betts and Bree Doyle were standouts for the Saints whilst sharpshooter Catherine Stanton continues to be the difference up forward with the ability to hit the scoreboard multiple times. Also good were Zara Guss, Charity Russell and Dalia Edward. The Saints Blue were not able to repeat their giant killing performance from last week and went down to the MUGARS in the early game. The last couple of weeks have presented new challengers for the coaching staff as holidays and injuries have thrown the numbers around somewhat. Despite this, the Blues gave a good shout and battled well until the final bell with Alex Bland, Charlotte Murray, Caroline Straford, Steph Taylor, Charlie Lupson and Pip Stephenson performing best. The Saints Green machine had to forfeit this week. Thanks to Phil Betts for his photos from the games.
Under 19s keep on keeping on
Our Under 19 Premier team have also had a few players unavailable due to holidays – plus pushing players up into the seniors – so they were very happy to make it win number 10 in a row at TH King as they were the only team to play host this weekend. Starting well, they took a handsome lead into half time and by the final change were well in command with Xavier Duke, Roshan Fernandes, Nick Dynan (3 goals), George Delimitrou, Harry Kirkwood and Will Blyth all putting in strong performances. The young SKOBs now have a couple of weeks off to help cope with the impact of holidays on availability before taking on St. Bedes under Friday night lights on July 21. With thanks to Sarah Withers and James Andriske for the photos taken at the match. Our Div 4’s had a bye and many of the boys pushed up to play in Div 2. Unfortunately they encountered a very strong outfit from Old Camberwell who were simply too strong for the boys from SKOB. The 19’s will enjoy a few weeks off before returning in late July.
The Under 19 Premiers defeated Uni Blues at TH King
Action from the Div 2 game at Old Camberwell