A wet lead into last Saturday’s game against Mango at Kindra Park, with a few days of drizzle and cold maintaining a heavy footy ground. Game day started a bit better than expected, but it pretty soon became obvious that the forecast top of 9 degrees was perhaps optimistic and with an ordinary chilly breeze out of the south west, most spectators were in their cars or enjoyed the warmer (outdoor gas heaters) dry conditions under the all-weather shed at the northern end of the ground. Overall the crowd was decent considering the conditions and plenty of revellers enjoyed pre dinner drinks during the afternoon for the evening 125 Year celebrations.
Well done to all the award winners. We don’t have to always win footy pretty and we’ll take three from three against Mango any week. The girls had one good result on the court as well, with A-Res saluting proudly and backing up pretty decently into the evening too.
Next Game: Round 13 v Turvey Park at Maher Oval on Saturday 20 July.
It’s fair to say the build up to this game was a little different. Lots of media over a two week period in conjunction with the 125 Years celebrations, plenty of banter on players with their pictures in the paper, the awesome privilege to wear replica jumpers recognising the Hoppers 1959 Premiership team and up against a team desperate to not lose touch with the ladder leaders. Distractions don’t happen every game, but they will happen when the finals come around and the boys will take a lot from the experience of this past week or so to prepare better later in the year.
Front Row (L-R): Jerry Maslin, Ryan Allen, Max Hillier, BJ Glyde, Joe Redfern, Lach Crawford, Jake Barrett, Luke Redfern, Nick Pleming.
The Hoppers were a bit slow out of the blocks, being beaten to the footy regularly and just caught on the back foot a bit to trail by about a kick at the first break. A quarter time reminder of what sets us apart from other clubs was the tonic to kick start our scoring and from that point the boys pretty much kept their head in front all day. Although the game never reached any great heights, partly due to the heavy conditions and even some freezing rain after half time, the Hoppers contested brilliantly defensively at times and this attitude ensured that Mango’s opportunities were few.
For the Hoppers, Nick Pleming picked up the first award and deserved recognition for some great consistent form on-ball and especially around the stoppage. The tougher and more physical the game, the more Nick stands out, and every player knows the in and under he provides in the middle of the contest. Zach ‘The Fist’ Bradley was again a massive contributor at centre half back and picked up the second award, destroying a stack of optimistic forward pushes from Mango with a perfectly timed thump of the footy, often sending the pill flying 20 plus metres to the boundary or his team’s advantage. BJ Glyde, meanwhile, continued his excellent form and picked up the third award, landing two important first half goals, but again providing consistent pressure across the ground and shutting down several release options for the opposition through his defensive reads.
Other notables included Max Hillier who enjoyed a bit more outside run on the wing and ran himself mad all game and Jake Barrett who again was in absolutely everything for the entire contest.
Hoppers 10-8-68 defeated Mangoplah CUE 7-7-49
Goal Kickers: B. Glyde 2, J. Maddox 2, J. Barrett 2, M. McGowan 2, M. Hillier, J. Redfern
Notable Mentions: M. Hillier, B. Glyde, J. Barrett, Z. Bradley, J. Maddox, M. McGowan
Award Winners: Nick Pleming (Commercial Club), Zach Bradley & BJ Glyde (Bottom Pub)
The Magoos effort was outstanding. Down seven players on the previous week due to injuries and trips away, plus a stack out with longer term issues, the boys could have been excused for thinking it was a bit miserable and tough. But they didn’t. They chose to grind and scrap in the conditions and find any means possible to get the footy forward, and it wasn’t until the final term that they managed to put some distance on the opposition. The win sees the boys two games clear in third spot on the ladder, knowing they have a couple of real tough hit outs ahead of them, but also knowing they are well placed to get two cracks come September.
TJ Owens picked up the first award for withstanding a slog fest through the ruck and across the ground, the big bloke working tirelessly in both directions and giving his men plenty of first use of the footy. Tom Carr picked up the second award as recognition for work rate on a tough day, while Sam Robinson was busy on-ball and between the arcs to pick up the third award. Meanwhile Timmy Garrett landed three majors, while Lach Owens and Ryan Chamberlain also had good days.
Hoppers7-11-53 defeated Mangoplah CUE 3-7-25
Goal Kickers: T. Garrett 3, T. Carr, B. Baker, S. Robinson, R. Maslin
Notable Mentions: T. Owens, T. Carr, L. Owens, H. Leary, S. Robinson, R. Chamberlain
Award Winners: TJ Owens (Jaguar), Tom Carr (Jet Ski), Sam Robinson (Steak Knives)
A three peat for the young Hoppers as they embraced the early chill and set the tone for the day for the men in green. Overall it was an awesome effort given three U15s, who turned up to do boundary umpiring, threw on their gear to help the boys on the field. It was never pretty, but it was definitely spirited and while the conditions weren’t conducive to open play and fast ball movement, no one could doubt the tenacity of the boys in being hell bent on making sure they got the win. After shooting out to a five goal lead by quarter time, that never looked in doubt.
Abdul Umar picked up the first award for a typically busy effort around and forward of the footy all game, while youngster Sam Neale, one of the U15s boys who turned up to do boundary, finished up a star on the day, picking up the second award for a great effort for four quarters. Jake Manley picked up the third award not just for his fantastic four goal effort, but a high pressure all round game that could’ve landed him four more.
This week it’s Turvey Park and the best U17 side in the comp. The boys are down on a few troops due to injuries and need to hang tough these next few weeks. That they’re three games clear in fifth spot gives them a bit of breathing space, but it doesn’t mean they’ll rest, and the boys know they have a great opportunity to see where they’re at over on Maher Oval next week.
Hoppers 7-13-55 defeated Mangoplah CUE 4-3-27
Goal Kickers: J. Manley 4, C. Burns, H. Wakefield, M. Stibbard
Notable Mentions: A. Umar, S. Neale, J. Manley, D. Wells, M. Stibbard, D. Mackay
Award Winners: Abdul Umar, Sam Neale, Jake Manley
A sensational win and a few losses for the Hopperettes.
Hoppers 30 defeated by MCUE 41
Claudia Barton and Lauren Barton - both worked tirelessly at the defensive end of the court. Both girls made their opponents work very hard to get closer to the goal posts and made it a real challenge for them to score.
Hoppers 25 defeated MCUE 22
Sensational win by the girls. Everyone stepped up and was accountable for the terrific battle that took place on the court.
Tayla Robinson - dynamic defensive skills and ability restricted many points scored by MCUE.
Jordan Robinson - equally as dynamic in defence as her sister. Jordan was instrumental in taking many rebounds and moving the ball out of the MCU goal circle and down the court to the Hoppers end.
Hoppers 31 defeated by MCUE 33
All of B Grade were worthy of awards for such a tremendous game and effort right to the end. Unlucky to go down.
Hoppers 22 defeated by MCUE 27
Flynn Buttifant was the star- taking on every ball in the centre court to feed beautifully to the shooters in the circle.
Hoppers 14 defeated by MCUE 22
Claire Allen - dynamic defence for first half and controlling centre court in second half.
Ruby Vonarx - back after ankle injury and didn't MCU know about it with her totally dominating the centre court in the first half and then some sharp shooting in the circle in the second half.