THE Alberton Junior Football League Under 14 side have fallen short of claiming the Gippsland Junior Interleague Championships, losing the grand final by 40 points to Warragul and District Junior Football League at Sale.
The squad competed against the best young footballers in the region last Tuesday and Wednesday, winning four of its five matches for the carnival to claim second place.
The side’s only loss came at the hands of a very strong Warragul and District JFL by only 15 points.
As a result of their second placing on the ladder, the AJFL returned to Sale on Sunday to take on the undefeated Warragul side in the Grand Final.
At the beautiful Sale Football Ground, the opening of the Grand Final was brutal with both sides very hard at the contest.
The AJFL side were throwing everything at their powerful opposition and thoroughly deserved to take a five-point lead into the quarter-time break.
The second quarter was no different to the first with both sides not taking a backward step as AJFL skipper Kelsey Pavlou stamped his class on the contest.
Pavlou was in everything and was rewarded with an outstanding goal late in the quarter to cut Warragul’s lead to just four points at the main break.
The AJFL was gallant in the second half but the bigger-bodied Warragul side made the most of their chances and broke away from a brave AJFL to eventually run away with a 40-point victory.
The squad was coached by Mat Walker and Clint Wilson, with Darren Brown acting as team manager.
Wilson said credit must go to all players that represented the league during the carnival.
“Their effort and passion was first class and all their home clubs should be extremely proud of their achievements over the course of the carnival,” he said.
“A big thanks goes to the families and volunteers that helped make the carnival a huge success.”
The Under 12 Alberton Junior FL Interleague Team won one of its five matches across the two-day carnival.
The side kicked off the carnival with a nail biter against Central Gippsland.
Leading all day, the boys were beaten in the last seconds of play after a big comeback by Central Gippsland.
Up against a formidable Bairnsdale in game two, the team showed great purpose to the ball and while undersized, they put up a great showing and lost.
The last game for day one saw Alberton face Traralgon and District,
From the first bounce the team were up and about, pushing forward and making the most of any scoring opportunities.
The Under 12s recorded a terrific 10-point win to cap off a mixed day of results, and enjoyed a meal with the Under 12 and Under 14 families with over 160 people.
On day two, the first match against Warragul was a tight affair.
Although the scoreboard displayed a clear win to Warragul, Alberton took it right up to them and had much of the play for the second half.
Unfortunately, this couldn’t transfer to the scoreboard and the team went down.
With four competitive games under their belts, Alberton fought out a last-gasp loss to Sale and District in its final match.