Three good wins on the road for the Eagles

ONCE again, New Norfolk’s three men’s football teams were on the road last Saturday, while the women’s team had another bye. The Eagle Colts travelled to Pontville Oval to play Sorell, which is yet to win a game this season. New Norfolk needed to win, after some heavy losses to the undefeated Southern Storm in recent weeks.

It was a pleasure to view the new complex at Pontville Oval. The new change rooms and clubhouse facilities are first class and are by far the best in the SFL and would be better than most TSL facilities. Congratulations to the Brighton Football Club on this fine achievement.

The Reserves and Seniors travelled to Abbotsfield Park to play Claremont in games that shaped to be percentage boosters for both sides. As expected, the Reserves continued their winning streak with a massive 197-point victory following an impressive 28-point victory over Cygnet a fortnight ago. They are now looking well-placed to build towards finals football.

The Senior side was looking to get back on the winners list and improve its percentage against an undermanned Claremont after the competition bye the previous weekend. The final score was a comfortable 234-point victory to the Eagles. Credit must be given to Claremont for the way it fought the game out. It tried hard all day and was rewarded for its efforts with the first goal in the last few weeks. This season has been hard for Claremont, but it is on the right track and will be much better placed next season.

New Norfolk’s three men’s teams have another bye this week to prepare for the rest of the season and hopefully build towards finals. The following week (July 3) will see the men’s teams at home for a big day of football against Hobart. Our Seniors will be striving to retain the much-loved Trevor Leo Cup.

This Saturday the New Norfolk women play South East Suns Grey at Boyer Oval. The game starts at 2.30pm and it would be great to see our supporters there to cheer the girls on as they continue to strive for more victories.

CHRIS LOVELL

MATCH REPORTS
Senior Report – Wayne Walker
: Big Eagle full forward Jack Crossin had a day out on his former home ground of Abbotsfield Park on a sunny Saturday afternoon last weekend, booting 11 goals for the match. He slotted in five goals in an outstanding first quarter as the Eagles ran over a struggling Claremont Magpies outfit. The final margin was a massive 234-point win, with the Eagles regaining fifth spot on the SFL ladder and gaining valuable percentage points.

The Magpies are having a tough season with no wins on the board and were no match for the Eagles who had clear winners all over ground and too many marking targets on the forward line. The visitors were too strong around the contested ball and in the air with Crossin, Tyler Ford and Ben Lovell taking numerous marks throughout the four quarters and converting on the scoreboard. The Eagles slammed on nine goals in the first term and kept the home side scoreless with ruckman Ashley Burgess in control at the centre bounces. The on-ball unit of Jamie Sokolski, Josh Hills, Jake and Jye Bearman, and Nathan Eiszele were on top of the opposition when rotating on and off the ball. The Eagles also welcomed back reliable back-man Rhys Heald and utility Jacob Daley who were both returning from injury. The Eagles had a commanding lead at quarter time (9.6.60 to 0.0.0)

The Magpies’ second quarter was their best for the entire game, with their only major coming via James Gambell, who snapped from 30 metres out. They followed with many forward entries but lacked composure to finish off their work from up-field. New Norfolk struggled at stages of the second quarter as the Magpies flooded the Eagle forward line and too many Eagle players were entering their own forward fifty, which stopped the flow-on play that was evident in the first term. Talented onballer Jye Bearman kick started the Eagles by scoring three goals for the quarter along with another two majors from Crossin. By the end of the term the visitors had piled on another nine goals to lead by 111 points (18.11.119 to the Magpies 1.2.8)

Even though the Eagles had a match winning lead at the main break, coach Josh Clifford was quick to remind his side that they wandered from their more structured style of play that was displayed in the first term. He encouraged them to get back to playing “Eagles footy”. Clifford led the way in the third term sharking the ball deep in the forward line with some great snaps and strong tackles booting four goals. Jack Crossin was leading well from full forward taking strong overhead marks and snagged four majors as the Eagles added another nine goals for the quarter to extend their lead to 178 points at the three-quarter time break.

The Eagles continued to clean up in the last quarter with vice-captain Josh Farrow in unknown territory moving from his usual half back position to go forward and boot a major. Ben Lovell was marking strongly up forward and kicked 2 goals for the term. Mobile Tyler Ford was also marking strongly overhead and added another three for the visitors to give them a massive 234-point win. Unfortunately for the Magpies it has been a frustrating season and continues to be a long hard road for the club. Apart from a few 50 metre penalties, they kept at the task and their time will come again in the future. Magpie captain Jake Williams led from the front and battled hard all day along with Kaleb Murtagh-Rogers and the busy Reegan Alforte.

For the Eagles it was a game you would expect them to win, and they now enter a bye for the next round. Coach Josh Clifford plans to pump up the training sessions over the next two weeks for their all-important clash against the Hobart Tigers at the big Boyer Oval on July 3. This promises to be a huge game with both sides needing to win to remain in the finals race. New Norfolk has blooded some youngsters this year in Brock Triffett, Tyron Bailey, Will Banks and Jack Stevenson (long term injury). All have acquitted themselves well to senior footy and continue to learn and improve along the way. They also have veteran forward Caden Wilson, Tim Butterworth and Brayden Chaplin to return from injury after the bye. There are players in the Reserve side, who are sitting third on the ladder, also pushing hard for senior selection. Supporters have a lot to look forward to with crucial games ahead, which will help shape the final five as several teams are locked together on the ladder.

New Norfolk 36.26 (242)
Claremont 1.2 (8)
Best – New Norfolk:
J. Crossin, Jye Bearman, J. Sokolski, J. Farrow, A. Burgess, J. Clifford; Claremont: J. Williams, K. Murtagh-Rogers, T. Cooper, M. McPherson, R. Hanley, R. Alforte.
Goals – New Norfolk: J. Crossin 11, J. Clifford 5, B. Lovell 4, T. Ford 4, Jye Bearman 3, J. Sokolski 2, Jake Bearman, N. Eiszele, R. Heron, B. Triffett, J. Farrow, A. Burgess, Josh Hills; Claremont: J. Gambell.

Reserves Report – Wayne Walker: The Eagle Reserves had a huge 197-point win last Saturday while keeping the Claremont Magpies scoreless. They dominated possession all around the ground and had the luxury of two key forwards in Clint Curtain, who booted 14 goals with three in each of the first three quarters and five in the final term, and big Corey Ransley who bagged five from half-forward. Curtain showed his experience when leading for the footy, by using his body in the marking contests and was also dangerous at ground level. He had many opponents over the four quarters in what was a great display of forward play from a seasoned veteran of the game. Curtain was given great supply by the Eagle on-ballers, with Torne Tangata once again leading the way. He continues to build on his great season along with Tyson Eiszele who is also racking up many possessions. Ruckman Michael Murray looks to be in good touch and is working well with Corey Ransley sharing centre bounce duties. The versatile Tyler Purdon has had a solid season and continues his great form.

Reserves coach Bryan Chaplin and assistant Bradley Chaplin were especially pleased with the Eagles second half as they finished off the game with plenty of run and teamwork. The Eagles were missing two of their key back-men in Luke Browning and Nathan Ford but were well served by Brett Hodge, who is working into some good form, and the hard-working Jaidyn Fisher-Cooley. The team sang the club song with plenty of gusto after the win and look like they are starting to believe that they are well in the hunt for season 2021. They sit two games clear in third position on the ladder and only one game off the top two teams. They are looking forward to some important games ahead. The squad now have a chance to build on their fitness and skills on the training track as they shape up to the Hobart Tigers on July 3 who sit in fourth spot on the ladder.

New Norfolk 30.17 (197)
Claremont 0.0 (0)
Best – New Norfolk:
T. Tangata, T. Eiszele, T. Purdon, C. Curtain, B. Hodge, M. Murray; Claremont: J. Davie, J. Kleeman, S. Malone, J. Mann, J. Malone, J. Dixon.
Goals – New Norfolk: C. Curtain 14, C. Ransley 5, B. Wardlaw 4, T. Tangata 2, T. Purdon 2, T. Eiszele, T. Heron, K. Walker.

Colts Report – Chris Lovell: The New Norfolk Colts travelled to Pontville Oval to try to get their season back on track against Sorell after a bye and two hard matches against the undefeated Southern Storm. The game started in overcast and wet conditions, due to the consistent rain in the previous few days. The young Eagles began well and could have put the game beyond Sorell with 6 scoring shots to one in the first quarter. In the tricky conditions the Eagles managed three goals and three3 behinds to one goal to hold a narrow 15-point lead at quarter time.

The second quarter belonged to the young Eagles as they combined well to pile on five straight goals to Sorell’s single goal and two2 behinds, to hold a commanding lead of 37 points at half time. After the half-time break, the weather started to improve, and play continued in sunny conditions. As the ground began to dry out, the young Eagles began to show superior skills to control the game and continue to score at will, piling on three goals and two behinds, while holding Sorell scoreless. The final quarter saw the Eagles continue their dominance. While they peppered the goals, they could only manage one goal and five behinds, but their strong defence held Sorell to two points. In fact, the defence played so well in the second half that they kept Sorell to only two points.

It was a great four quarter team effort by the boys. They improved in every quarter and by the end of the game were combining well and displaying some slick passages of play. It would be an injustice to pick out individual players as every player contributed to a great team effort. Over the last few weeks, the Colts have rotated some under 16 boys through the team with outstanding results. All have contributed well and will gain a lot of confidence and experience from playing at a higher level. The inclusion of these boys next season, with the retention of our current group of players should see a strong Colts team next year. I am sure Coach Paul Clark is looking forward to the rest of this season and next season as there is no doubt the boys will continue to improve. It is hard to see Sothern Storm being beaten this season, but our Colts will certainly be much stronger next year.

New Norfolk 12.10 (82)
Sorell 2.4 (16)

Best – New Norfolk: B. Scanlon, M. Hay, C. Knight, J. Miller, J. Triffett, T. Lovell; Sorell: S. Cate, J. O’Brien, B. Balsley, R. Byrne, J. Byrne, M. O’Brien.
Goals – New Norfolk: J. Miller 5, B. Scanlon 3, T. Zabel 2, J. George 2; Sorell: S. Cate, G. Seward.

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