Bushrangers’ U14s kick into big time
GRAND final week is here – and all in the Beechworth community are behind the Bushrangers’ under 14 Australian football side which goes head-to-head with Thurgoona this weekend at Sandy Creek oval. Anything is possible. Saturday’s match has been two weeks in the making, with the Bushrangers defeating Barnawartha two weeks ago to progress to grand final.
Thurgoona defeated Barnawartha by two points in a thriller 6.1 to 6.3 with the Bulldogs keeping the Tigers goalless in the fourth quarter.
Beechworth finished the season as minor premiers, undefeated and won their first final to progress to Saturday’s match, while Thurgoona finished third with a 13-5 winloss record and have played three extra matches than Beechworth in the past month.
The Bushrangers will take confidence into this game having defeated Thurgoona in both of their clashes this season.
Beechworth won the first match in round six by five points, and the second encounter by 24 points in round 12.
The Bushrangers will also have the advantage up forward with their top three goal kickers Liam Stephens (47 goals), Liam McLaughlin (37 goals) and Angus Pronk (34 goals) easily outscoring Thurgoona’s Elijah Farrah (27), Will Pargeter (19) and Riley Holland (18).
Bushrangers coach Bill McLaughlin said his side has no sign of nerves.
“It is just another game for them it truly is,” McLaughlin said.
“The finals have really brought the best out of the group, training standards have risen, and it has been great to see, but most importantly they are enjoying it.”
McLaughlin said he is confident in his team.
“I am confident in the fact that if they give their best effort they won’t fail,” he said.
“It all comes down to team work, if we play as a team, talk and support each other, take pride in our disposal and make the most of our opportunities I know we will be in with a chance.
“We all went over to watch the preliminary final and all the kids are aware of who they will be playing on; hopefully they picked up on how to beat their opponents as well.” The Tallangatta and District Football Netball League will hold their grand finals at Sandy Creek Oval on Saturday, September 9.
The under 14s will begin at 8.50am, the under 17s will be contested between Tallangatta and Yackandandah at 10.30am, the reserves will begin at 12.30pm between Yackandandah and Thurgoona while the senior match will be fought out between Thurgoona and Kiewa Sandy Creek from 2.30pm.
ALL SET: (From left) Team Manager Rob Sinclair, coach Bill McLaughlin and assistant coach Dale Walker (far right) with the under 14 Beechworth Bushrangers ahead of the grand final this Saturday.