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Port Melbourne v Northern Bullants - 26th Mar
Excellent match summary over at the Bullants site: [quote]The Northern Bullants played their last practice match on Saturday at TEAC Oval, and were humbled by a more cohesive Port Melbourne unit. Bathed in sunshine, and with no breeze to speak of, you could not have asked for a more perfect day for footy at the picturesque suburban ground. The opening quarter was competitive early with Grima and Sansbury giving Port a good start. Troy Longmuir and Brett Johnson soon levelled the equation for the Bullants. Corey McKernan then entered the picture with two goals for Port and looked as though he would be the thorn in the Bullants’ side. Not helping, was an injury to Adam Hartlett who landed awkwardly after taking a mark. He was reduced to watching from the boundary, aided by crutches. Peter Dean, who assumed the main coaching role for the day said, “Hartlett pinched a cartilage”. Further goals to Port’s Shane Harvey and Justin Perkins to finish the quarter, meant the Bullants had it all before them. The second term was a struggle with Port adding only one goal for the term through Hamish McIntosh. Port’s defence, however, was like a brick-wall, rebounding every Bullants attack. When the ball did get inside forward 50, the Bullants were caught short of players as Troy Longmuir found himself battling against three bigger opponents at one stage. All that changed though, as the Bullants made a late charge in red time with goals to Longmuir, Setanta O’hAilpin and Glen Bowyer, making the half time deficit only eight points. What transpired in the third quarter was devastating for the Bullants. Port shifted into top gear and slammed on eight unanswered goals, including a spectacular boundary line shot from Shane Harvey. Brett Johnson put through the Bullants only goal for the term, and that was immediately responded by a Justin Perkins goal for Port. Coach Peter Dean explained, “It was a bit of a catch 22 situation”, in regards to the Bullants ploy of pushing players up the ground to create attacking moves, only for Port to rebound easily and catch them out down back. Glen Bowyer was the only standout for the Bullants. Starting on a wing, Bowyer then pushed back as a sweeper in defence and saved the Bullants from more harm. Peter Dean said, “He (Bowyer) did that (sweeping role) without even being told”. The Bullants outscored Port, eight goals to five in the last term, to clean up some of the damage on the scoreboard. Chris Bryan was shifted into the goalsquare to provide a strong marking target, and he responded with three goals. Corey McKernan, who was rarely sighted in the third term, was rested by Port for the entire last quarter. The highlight of the term, and probably the match, was a boundary line gem from the Bullants’ Ross Young, which pierced through the goals like an arrow. Bullants coach Peter Dean, summed up the day’s events, “We allowed Port to dictate the flow of play, and we didn’t man up.” Despite the loss, Peter Dean remained philosophical, explaining that his team actually played well, giving special mention to Justin Crow, who battled hard all day at full back; “He’s a good kid,” said Dean. The strength that was evident amongst the Port Melbourne players, was their closeness. “Port have a rotational policy, with twelve Port and ten North players each week, which makes them a tight unit, they know each other well,” Peter Dean said. The loss may be a blessing in disguise for the Bullants after such a solid pre-season. They can now re-group and focus on round 1 against ‘reigning premier’ Sandringham. Final Scores: Port Melbourne 21.10.136 def Northern Bullants 14.10.94[/quote]
Edited by: admin on 28/12/2008 - 02:16