Southern Riverina news
Fourths storm into grand final
The sun came out at the weekend and shone on a big day for the Tocumwal Football Netball Club.
Tocumwal hosted the day, and its own fourths and reserves footballers took to the field.
Thank you to all supporters who were there to support the players, and a huge thank you to all volunteers who helped throughout the day.
After a close semi-final win the previous week, the Tocumwal reserves came up against the Strathmerton Bulldogs on Sunday.
Strathy finished the season in second place with only two losses for the year.
With the preliminary final being played at home, and with coach Kenny Chellew playing his 100th reserves game, there was plenty for the boys to be excited about.
A few necessary changes were made to the side during the week, with experienced forwards Scott Baldwin and Greg Whelan unavailable due to injury.
This was offset against some very handy inclusions with Jack Clarke, Tim Arklay and Alex Saraikin all putting their hand up to play.
After watching the under-14s play great footy to book a spot in the grand final, the reserves started slowly in the first quarter.
The Bulldogs jumped out of the blocks to kick two quick goals.
Strathmerton managed to spread the ball well in the opening term by chipping sideways and delivering accurately into their forward line, putting the Bloods defence under real pressure.
Although managing one goal in the term, the Bloods went into quarter time down three goals to one but believed they had some improvement left in them.
After the first break, the Bloods did manage to make some inroads by turning the game and forcing it to be played on their terms.
Without the skill level and big bodies of the Bulldogs, the Bloods battled hard to win the contested footy and play the boundary lines, and it paid off.
The ball was played in the Bloods’ half for a fair portion of the rest of the game, and the Bulldogs’ ability to score slowed down.
Through the midfield work of Kenny Chellew, Corey Parish, Liam Colston, Jesse Colston and Alex Saraikin, the footy was hotly contested and the Bulldogs found it hard to break free and generate run through the middle.
Will Grinter and Matt Petersen were fantastic at half back and managed to repel a lot of forward attacks.
Despite a great effort by the Bloods, a few skill errors caused turnovers that allowed the Bulldogs to break free.
They were able to score two goals in the third term and three goals in the last, which was enough to see them win by 20 points.
With emotion running high after the game, the boys were able to hold their heads high in a gallant effort and now get behind the fourths in the grand final.
Final score: Tocumwal 6.6 (42) def by Strathmerton 9.8 (62).
Goals: Adam Scott, 1; Tim Arklay; Liam Colston; Jesse Colston; Paul Quick.
Best: Kenny Chellew, Corey Parish, Will Grinter, Jack Gowty, Tim Arklay, Adam Scott.
The Tocumwal fourths have made it through to the final dance.
Strathy put up a great fight and showed us what we needed to do in finals footy to get through.
It felt that we were faced with some great challenges and that forced us to make a lot of changes to the team to overcome them.
All credit must go to the boys that took the field last Sunday when we were pushed into playing in different positions. Every person took on the challenge and excelled.
It has been a pleasure to watch these boys grow from the start of the year and learn more about their own abilities both physically and mentally.
If you believe you will receive.
We are faced with our biggest challenge yet in the grand final, with the Deni Rovers playing a great game against the undefeated, top of the table Tungamah to win a well-earned spot in the grand final.
Our strength is our belief that if we play our best football on the day, we can beat anyone. Let’s bring our best footy and enjoy the day. Final score: Tocumwal 8.6 (54) def Strathmerton 2.2 (14).
Goals: Logan White, 2; Harrison Wilson, 2; Chace Brunskill, 2; Liam Sutton; Cody Palmer.
Best: Liam Sutton, Chace Brunskill, Logan White, Cooper Mangion, Cody Palmer.
Dates to remember:
Junior Vote Count and Presentation Night - Friday, September 16, 6.30pm.
Senior Vote Count and Presentation Night - Saturday, September 17, 6.30pm.