New Norfolk football senior game report

Eagles fade out after strong start against Sorell

| IT was a case of lost opportunity for the New Norfolk Eagles on a cool but sunny Saturday afternoon at Boyer Oval against Sorell, going down by 33 points after having control of the contest at half-time with an 11-point lead. Sorell won the game in the third term, scoring six goals to the Eagles’ two which gave the visitors momentum and enabled them to take the game away from the Eagles for the win.  SEE THE PHOTO GALLERY HERE

A big inclusion for the Eagles was the return of Baker Smith (son of former coach Matthew Smith). High-flying forward Tyler Ford and Hayden Moss returned from injury and Mitch Ford was called up from the reserves for his first senior game. The Eagles also welcomed fly-in player Sam Dowden from South Australia (brother-in-law of Hayden Moss).

Eagle veteran Corey Ransley started with ruck duties against Sorell big man Nick Thornbury. New Norfolk onballers Jake Harris, Rowan Thomason and Jake Bearman lined up against Sorell’s Adrian Butterworth, Oliver Holdsworth and Kobe Bennett in the centre square. The home side had Ben Lovell, Tyron Bailey and Tyler Ford in attack for
targets up forward.

Sorell’s giant ruckman/forward Connor Berry kicked the first goal for the visitors, but the Eagles fired back with a great goal in heavy traffic from Tyler Ford squeezing it through the big sticks for the Eagles’ first. New Norfolk won the next centre clearance with the fast-running Jye Bearman passing to Bailey who marked and goaled. Big Eagle Ransley grabbed the Sherrin from the next centre contest and launched a big torpedo from the centre square which found Bailey who snapped a clever goal from the forward pocket to give the Eagles an 11-point lead.

Sorell answered through Jacob Smith moments later and another from Shane Henderson which gave the visitors a one-point lead and after a few minor scores later in the term both sides drew level. Quarter-time scores: New Norfolk 3.2 (20) to Sorell 3.2 (20).

New Norfolk looked like the better side in the second term led by Smith who was dominating around the ground. Ransley in the ruck was paving the way for Jye Bearman and Josh Clifford to give the Eagles many forward entries. The speedy Jye Bearman hit Rowan Thomason on the chest. Thomason goaled and the high-flying Tyler Ford booted another major which gave the Eagles an 11-point lead at the main break: New Norfolk 5.4 (34) to Sorell 3.5 (23).

Sorell lifted its work rate after half-time and looked more potent when in attack, with Jacob Smith and Jacob Sawford converting goals. The Eagles hit back with Tyron Bailey applying a great tackle close to goal as the footy spilled from the pack and goal-sneak Hay kicked truly. Bailey featured once again from the next centre clearance,
passing to Tyler Ford who flicked out a quick handpass to Clifford for another New Norfolk goal as the scores were all tied up at 48 points apiece at the 17-minute mark of the quarter. The visitors rallied and added another two quick goals to take a 13-point lead into three quarter time: Sorell 9.7 (61) to New Norfolk 7.6 (48).

The Sorell Eagles had a more run in their legs in the last term, finding space on the big Boyer Oval as they controlled the footy with more short passing to position and taking a greater number of marks which led to three last-quarter goals to go on and record the win. The New Norfolk Eagles struggled to get possession in the dying stages of the match.

It was great to see Baker Smith return for a short stint in the red, white, and black and he certainly made a difference to the playing group as he worked tirelessly over four quarters, and big Corey Ransley played a great game. Hayden Burns did some great defensive work on the backline along with Jordan Eiszele who had an important role on Sorell’s key forwards. Tyler Benson showed his skill and pace on the wing as a very important link man for the Eagles.

The Eagles will be eyeing off a potential second win for the season over the struggling Claremont Magpies this Saturday at Boyer but beware Eagles the Magpies will be out to renew the old rivalry that has existed for over a decade, in the effort to retain the Mulga Clayton Cup.

Final Scores
Sorell 12.9 (81) d New Norfolk
7.6 (48).
Best – New Norfolk: B. Smith, C. Ransley, H. Burns, J. Eiszele, J. Bearman, T. Benson; Sorell: J. Smith, J. Campbell, B. Kingston, A. Butterworth, L. Butterworth, O. Holdsworth.
Goals – New Norfolk: T. Bailey 2, T. Ford 2, J. Clifford, R. Thomason, M. Hay; Sorell: J. Smith 5, J. Sawford 3, S. Henderson, K. Bennett, T. Bennett, C. Berry.

New Norfolk and Derwent Valley News is a sponsor of the New Norfolk District Football Club.

See more Derwent Valley and Central Highlands news online and read our print edition every second Friday.

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