HOT START THE DIFFERENCE FOR LAKERS
By SAM RICHARDS
Bone crunching tackles, courageous back with the flight marking and red-hot scoring bursts– Round 11 of the 2019 TIV Under 18’s competition had it all – despite conditions that would’ve suggested otherwise.
In the round’s showcase game, third-place Caroline Springs went into their clash against fifth-placed Yarraville Seddon, full of confidence with the game being played at home where the Lakers carried a perfect 5-0 record this season.
After an eventful opening few minutes, the home side would continue this impressive streak, registering a five-goal to nil first quarter on their way to a 102-point victory over the Eagles.
Zachary Pritchard put in an eye-catching display for Yarraville in just his second game this season, but ultimately his Eagles were no match in the impressive all-round display from the rising Lakers.
Xavier Cameron Viola and Blake Taylor’s ball use created frequent surges forward, while the Lakers’ goalkicking was evenly spread between Steven Crisapulli (3 goals), Jordan Roesler (3 goals), Shareef Arara (2 goals) and Oscar Gordon (2 goals).
Caroline’s ninth win was their third greatest margin of victory this season, keeping the Lakers firmly entrenched in the battle for top spot with Altona.
Meanwhile the Sunshine Kangaroos were brought back to earth following their stirring 60-point win last week, going down to the third placed Hoppers Crossing 1 by 120-points.
Ezzat Haddara led the charge (5 goals) kicking his 23rd goal of the season, while Nathan Koutsogiannis and Callum Buckingham featured prominently in a game which broke open after a tight first quarter.
Point Cook claimed their first win since round 7 with an 18.8. (104) to 3.7. (25), 79-point victory over Hoppers Crossing 2.
Kicking the first 16 goals of the match, the Bulldogs were represented strongly by forwards Jackson Watt (5 goals) and Mitchell Waugh (5 goals) with the dynamic duo contributing 10 goals.
Spotswood responded in empathic fashion to their round 10 loss, kicking 30 goals for the first time this season on their way to a resounding 161-point victory over Werribee Centrals.
After a strong first quarter, Spotswood would kick 24 of their 30 goals over the final three quarters, with Jacob Oakes (5 goals), James Cardwell (5 goals), Mateo Gutierrez (4 goals), Cameron Rains (4 goals) and Bailey Sheedy (4 goals) leading the charge.
Ladder leaders the Altona Vikings continued their rich vein of form, claiming their ninth win of the season in style, with a round high 157-point win over St Albans.
The Vikings’ Silver Yousif kicked a round-high 8 goals to extend his streak of four or more goals to four consecutive games, while Altona’s phenomenal defence claimed it second goal shutout for the season.
Awaiting the first placed Vikings is a home clash against premiership rivals the Caroline Spring Lakers next Saturday in a round 12 blockbuster.
In the final game of the round, second placed Werribee Districts 1 defeated the Flemington Juniors 14.6 (90) to 0.0 (0), with Luke Fava and Darcy Phillips (4 goals) performing strongly.