Round 13, 2016 – A Grade vs Athelstone
Game day arrived and with blue skies although cool, the boys were looking forward to playing once again at home, Walkerville Oval. We were playing the top side Athelstone, who at this stage of the season had lost only one game. The lead-up to start time was excellent with all up and about knowing that the challenge was before us, we had discussed what was needed to be competitive against a very good side.
Right from the outset the lads were into attack, applying consistent pressure to the opposition to slow their running game down. The quarter was our best start for some time with our attack on the ball and body superb. The scoring was on song and certainly had Athelstone on the back foot for majority of the quarter. Into time on we were holding a three goal lead before Athelstone hit back with three quick goals to hit the front by one point at the siren. Unfortunately we had an injury to Stu Callary, one of our key onballers who would play no further part in the game. At the break the importance of finishing of the quarters was highlighted, as the boys realised that we had let them back into the game by relaxing the pressure that had been so effective up till then. Qtr time scores; WFC 4-1 to Athelstone 4-2
The second quarter got under way and Athelstone were into attack immediately, spreading and running the ball with greater efficiency as our composure started to slip and we began breaking up in areas that we had controlled in the first quarter. They tightened up all over the ground and our boys were finding it hard to move the ball cleanly, with the turnover count growing from our entries into our forward line giving no reward for the hard work pushing the ball forward to enable us to score. Half time score; WFC 4-4 to Athelstone 10-3.
At the half time break the boys were disappointed with the turn around from the first quarter, the message was simply to stick with our pre-game plan which had challenged Athelstone and a lot more effort was required to get back into the game. The third quarter got under way and obviously Athelstone had settled and were into attack straight away. Our boys were finding the lift and pressure from the opposition had increased significantly, creating numerous turnovers from which they attacked the scoreboard. In response we worked hard to try and move the ball forward only to be repelled time and time again. Three quarter time scores; WFC 4-5 to Athelstone 15-8.
The focus for the last quarter for the lads was to slow the impact that Athelstone was having on the scoreboard while increasing our effort and attack on the ball. Once again we moved the ball often into our scoring zone only to have a wayward kick or handball turned over then we were into defend mode straight away. To the opposition’s credit they were hitting their targets by hand or foot regularly, skill level certainly superior to ours. The quarter finally came to an end with Athelstone running out comfortable winners. WFC 5-6 to Athelstone 18-12. While we have shown that we have the game to challenge sides, we must work on improving our skill level, concentration and decision making to be up with the better sides in this division.
Goalkickers: Chris Scholfield 2, Jed Woolford, Cameron Burr, Daniel Slorach 1 each.
Best Players: K Moore, T Allen, R Stacey, T Sinclair, R Madden.