MAN first walked on the moon and the Vietnam War was still raging when Kilcunda-Bass defeated the powerhouse team of the Bass Valley Wonthaggi District Football League, Inverloch-Kongwak, at Wonthaggi in September 1969.
It was an eventful year and so was the 1969 grand final with IK playing a tough brand of footy and taking the challenge right up to Killy-Bass, especially in the third quarter and again in the last, when they got to within a kick.
Last Saturday, 11 of the original 20 Killy-Bass heroes of ‘69 came back for a 50-year reunion, much to the delight of captain-coach Terry Tate.
What does Terry remember about the victory and the era.
“I came to the club as coach in 1966. We finished 4th that year and in 1967 but finished 5th in 1968. We won it in 1969, were runners-up in 1970 and finished 4th in 1971.
“In the 1969 grand final we played Inverloch-Kongwak who were a very good team with players like Les Caughey, Ray Beaton, Mocca Parker and plenty of other good players.
“We led narrowly for most of the day and they came back at us in the third quarter (but inaccurate with 3.5 to 2.0) and in the last quarter (closing to within four points at one stage), but we went on to win by three or four goals in the end.
“Charlie Grummisch was the key for us. He had to nullify Ray Beaton in the ruck and he played superbly. Wayne Churchill up forward and Butch West on a half forward flank were both good, Dave Brown in the centre and Bobby Smith at centre half forward.
“It’s great to get back together with everyone.
“A lot of blokes who’ve played footy all their lives have never won a grand final and I was fortunate enough to be in three winning teams (Coragulac near Colac, Kilcunda-Bass and Wonthaggi Rovers).”
Tate also played league football for Geelong (2) and South Melbourne (9) immediately prior to taking the coaching job at Killy-Bass. He roved against Peter Loughran in the grand final and the papers said they broke even on the day.
Charlie Grummisch, still a fit-looking 6’2” and close to his playing weight of 85kg was also there and although he laments getting injured in the lead up to Hawthorn’s 1971 premiership, he cherishes his only premiership with Killy-Bass.
“The most complete feeling anyone can ever have is to win a premiership in a footy team. It’s something I’ll always have with me,” he said last Saturday.
Still over the moon about ’69 premiership