Hovey rapt with youngsters
THE Ovens and Murray’s best young players will hit the ground tomorrow when they tackle Western Region in the under 19 interleague clash at Yarrawonga.
Coached by former Wangaratta Rovers mentor Darren Hovey, the O&M has assembled a strong team with a mix of running players as well as key position types.
“I’m rapt with the squad, it’s the strongest squad we’ve had in the three years I’ve been involved,” Hovey said.
“The guys have been con- sistently playing senior football for their sides.
“It’s really healthy for the competition.”
Albury’s Ben McIntosh will captain the side with Jack Schilg his deputy while Ryan Bruce also provides Hovey with some star quality
Yarrawonga star Matt Casey looms as the side’s ace in the pack given his ability to play key forward or back.
“It’s a good mix but we are taller than the last two years,” Hovey said.
“You look down the spine and we have guys like Logan Hamilton, Matt Casey, Blayke St John if he doesn’t get a game for Bushies and Michael Oats.
“It doesn’t look like we will need to rotate guys around too much because we have picked a pretty positional type side.”
Hovey said he wasn’t sure what to expect from the Western Region side but said focusing on his own group was more important.
.“That’s the safest way to go,” he said.
“We will just be working on what we have as strengths and remind the boys that while most of them have been playing senior football, this is another level above what they are used to.
“They are playing the best kids from another region and those kids are similar in that they have been involved in strong programs and are of similar abilities.”
be joined in the back line by the likes of Jon Spina and Nick Meredith from Lavington as well as potentially Mat Grossman and Michael Bordignon to stamp the elite level defenders at the Ovens and Murray’s disposal.
“I really want to keep my opponent goalless; I think that’s the goal of any defender,” Van Berlo said.
“We have a really solid backline so hopefully I can cut across and help some of them out.
“As a group we want to play well and get the win, and personally, I want to limit my opponent and get my hands on the footy early.”
The Ovens and Murray take on Western Region tomorrow at Yarrawonga with the match starting at 2pm. UNSUNG HERO: Dylan Van Berlo is set to feature heavily for the O&M tomorrow.
READY TO SWOOP: Merriwa Magpies player, Daniel Castle (centre), Scott Grant from Merriwa (left) and Ros Taylor, team manager for the Merriwa Magpies, are all excited for the first carnival of the year.