BY TATE SPITERI
MYRTLEFORD P-12 College has claimed the first McKee Rigoni Cup since 2007 after an entertaining 11.6.72 to 5.5.35 win over Marian College on Friday.
The match - named after former AFL players Steve McKee and Guy Rigoni who grew up in Porepunkah and Myrtleford respectively and attended the Marian College and Myrtleford P12 - returned after an 11-year hiatus after students from both schools pushed to play the match again.
The boys from Myrtleford P-12 got off to a fast start booting four of the first five goals as experienced senior footballer Will Quirk and ruckman Charlie Crisp dominated in the centre.
Marian College captain Bernie Ruaro took a contested mark and booted a long goal to cut the margin back to 11 points late in the first half but a Declan Bren major soon cancelled it out as the public school went to half time 18 points ahead.
After the break talented soccer player Jack Milford ignited the P-12 team with a great running goal and his Murray United teammate Azia Feltrin also kicked a major - a soccered effort from the pocket.
Jack Woodall, who missed the football season with a shoulder injury, was a beneficiary of the game being scheduled later in the year, playing a starring role on the wing for Myrtleford P12.
The pacey basketballer kicked an uplifting goal on the run and was flocked by teammates as the game despite only being early in the second half seemed won.
Dom Bedendo then extended the margin out to 38 points with a skilful snap as P-12 threatened to make it an ugly score line.
To the credit of the Marina College players they fought back and stayed in the contest right until the end in what was a hotly contested game played in front of a healthy number of fellow students and staff.
Ruaro was Marian’s best with two goals.
FRIENDSHIPS ASIDE: (left) Myrtleford under 16 teammates Will McKerral (Marian College) and Charlie Crisp (P12) were on opposite sides in Friday’s match.