It’s fast and furious in the opening minutes of the 2014 Alberton Football Netball League season as players from both sides, Phillip Island and Korumburra-Bena, wanted to get their first hands on the ball. Middle, the Island’s Lochie Cleeland appears to be in the best position to take possession.
PHILLIP Island started the season in the best possible way with a convincing 40-point victory over Korumburra-Bena at Cowes on Saturday.
The Island’s win reversed the result of when the two sides met in last year’s Elimination Final at Alberton West – albeit against a very different KB line-up.
Korumburra-Bena had only six players remaining from last year’s Grand Final side, with 15 new faces coming in to take on the Island.
Following some great battles over previous years, including last season’s final, everyone knew that it was going to be a great match up between the two Bulldog sides.
The two sides were under the guidance of new coaches Brandan Kimber (PI) and Dean Hendrikse (KB).
Both sides had plenty of new faces and it was going to come down to which side could settle in better.
Returning Island forward Ben Van Brummelen opened the scoring up for the Island slotting in a simple goal from the goal square.
It was then a couple of the Island’s new recruits that stretched the Island’s lead, first it was Michael Duiker at the 10 minute mark and then Beau Runnalls three minutes later.
The Island stretched their advantage even further when James and Jack Taylor both scored as the Island out classed their opponents in the first quarter to take a 28-point lead into the first break.
It was some more inaccurate KB kicking that started the quarter and the Island took advantage with another goal to Van Brummelen after just two minutes.
Another Island recruit, Liam Henzen goaled after five minutes to almost shut the visiting Bulldogs side out of the game.
KB fought back by kicking their first major of the afternoon at the six-minute mark, Brent Fitzgerald was showing no signs of a missed season last year and Aran Hayes and James North also fitting into the KB set up in their first games with the club.
The Island’s Runnalls then bagged his second for the day to keep the Island well in front with Josh Docherty and Marcus Wright very active around the ground.
The visitors kicked a late goal to draw the quarter and to pull the Island’s advantage back to 28 points at the long break.
The third quarter was a real arm wrestle between the two teams as the game’s intensity lifted and each side struggled to get the ball into clear space.
Duiker kicked his second to stretch the Island lead, but Korumburra-Bena hit back with two quick goals to keep them in touch.
The Island then stepped things up kicking three unanswered goals to Van Brummelen, Lachie Cleeland and finally former captain Scott Riordan joined the party after a great mark and goal.
The visitors were far from conceding, bagging two goals in as many minutes just before the three quarter time siren to have the difference at 26 points.
Newly elected Island captain Jamie Youle kicked an early goal to squash any chance of a comeback from KB.
The Island finished off the game strongly through goals to Duiker, Marcus Wright and finally Runnalls as they kicked four goals to two in the last quarter and ended the day with a 40-point victory.
Next week the Island head to Inverloch to tackle the Sea-Eagles in another big game while Korumburra-Bena will be hoping for a different result when they host Dalyston under lights.