Showing some dash through the centre is Phillip Island’s Will Van Diemen but he later reinjured his shoulder and is in doubt for the remainder of the final series. m523514
PHILLIP Island could not have been more impressive in completely dismantling Inverloch-Kongwak at Stony Creek last Sunday afternoon and shape as a serious threat to Kilcunda-Bass’ hopes of a record-breaking fourth premiership.
The two Western Port neighbours will now do battle at Inverloch this Saturday after the Panthers were beaten in a thrilling contest against Dalyston, and they will not have liked what they saw as the Island ran riot from the first bounce in Sunday’s First Semi Final against IK.
They put on seven goals to Inverloch-Kongwak’s two in the first quarter with IK’s playmaker Dylan Clark unable to get anywhere near the ball at centre half forward, partly due to the efforts of his shadow for the day, Shane Taylor, but also as a result of the Island’s dominance at the stoppages and up forward.
The Island’s on-ballers were all getting plenty of it from the outset including Youle, Kimber, Van Diemen, Duiker and James Taylor, and up forward they found lots of options.
Riordan led out strongly and marked before kicking the opener and minutes later, James Taylor benefitted by a dubious free kick and made no mistake.
He was back in the middle to win the next centre break but fortunately IK’s defenders rebounded this time and Lucas McMillan got them underway with a nice goal after a contested mark.
But it was an aberration with Phillip Island in complete control; Youle, Henzen and Kimber cleared the ball forward and in quick succession they had goals to Van Zanen and Wright on the run.
A bouncing shot by Tim Lonsdale was a welcome goal for IK but three more from Phillip Island and the game was shot by quarter time; Riordan, Jack Taylor and Van Diemen with a fine snap, the scorers.
Dylan Clark got his first touch late in the term and should probably have been moved on to the ball and into the action sooner.
Not content with their impressive efforts, the Island banged on a further seven goals to IK’s one in the second quarter and the league could easily have introduced a ‘mercy rule’ as there was no way back from an 11-goal deficit at half time.
The Island were dominant front to back; Riordan and Runnalls up forward, Van Diemen, Duiker, James Taylor, Kimber and Price on the ball and Cleeland, Wright, Cole, Edwards and Van Brummlen around the ground.
Shane Taylor was following IK’s Dylan Clark everywhere and was also having an impact with the ball himself.
At one stage in the second quarter, there was an all-in ‘push and shove’ in the centre, allegedly as a result of an altercation involving IK’s playing coach Ben Soumilas but it didn’t upset the Island who continued on.
Brendan Kimber suffered from a clash of heads at one stage in the term, but dusted himself off and affected a tackle at the next stoppage which resulted in a goal to the Island’s Cole. They could do no wrong.
Stung into action by their poor first half, IK was first out of the centre after the restart but a set shot by Lucas McMillan went wide after a nice build up involving Rankin, Wyatt and Clark.
The Island’s defenders were being tested for the first time and Youle, James Taylor, Shane Taylor and others were among those to respond.
They actually got the first goal of the second half, following good play by Riordan, Price and Runnalls and it was time to stop keeping count – they were 12 goals clear.
Joining the party up forward was Van Brummlen and the Island were almost 100 points up at the last change.
Such was Phillip Island’s dominance that it was hard to find a good player for IK; Tim Lonsdale did some good work in defence, McMillan up forward, Dylan Clark was getting into it, as was Louie Rankin, Chris Terlich and Andrew Seccull on the ball and a couple of others but the Island had plenty of winners.
The final quarter was five goals to three with Phillip Island running out most impressive 109-point winners.
Their only downside from the game was the reoccurrence of shoulder injury to Will Van Diemen, who was buried by an IK tackler partway through the match after making an excellent contribution on the ball.
If the Island can reproduce that form, it will be a Phillip Island versus Dalyston Grand Final and we’ll have a new-look premier in 2014.
Final scores: Phillip Island 24.15.159 def IK 7.8.50.