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Under 9s Round 2 Mayne Vs Everton Gold

Beautiful clear and calm conditions greeted both teams for the Rnd 2 clash at Oxenham Park between Mayne and Everton Gold. Unfortunately Everton found themselves a player down for the day and Mayne graciously offered one of their players to ensure an even contest. Once these formalities were out of the way, Captain Hudson Cruse proudly led the team out through the banner to a rousing roar from the home crowd for the first bounce.

The 1st qtr got under way and Everton’s defence was immediately under pressure from Mayne’s particularly large bodied forward line of Harrison, Alistair, Lachie and Harry. Coach Tony Luxford was obviously looking to break the game early and not since the Japanese surrender on the decks of the USS Battleship Missouri had a vanquished foe been faced with so many big guns. Mayne were peppering the goals but proving wasteful initially kicking 3 behinds before Harrison took a great mark directly in front and then converted for Mayne’s first goal of the day. From the corresponding bounce Everton managed to get the ball into their forward line but Mayne’s defence quickly transferred the ball back into attack and from this entry Harry was able to snap a quick goal. The remainder of the quarter saw Mayne’s forward pressure relentless and this was no better illustrated than by a great smoother from Harrison.

The 2nd qtr saw a much more even contest with Everton now brushing aside any ill effects of the early start time and there were no doubt that this was now a real slug fest. Like the ‘Thrilla in Manila’ this was two heavy weights standing toe to toe, going blow for blow. Mayne’s centre of Henry, Zavier, Blair and Jack were all on the ground more than a cleaners mop as they looked to contain their Everton counterparts and feed the ball to the hungry Mayne forwards. Both teams struggled to convert possession to scoreboard pressure during this period with no majors being registered. Hudson was particularly impressive in defence sweeping up a number of Everton’s entries into their forward line. The siren finally sounded with players from all teams being greeted to an appreciative round of applause as they made their way for a well-earned orange.

The 3rd qtr started in much the same vain as the 2nd finished with both teams neither asking for nor giving no quarter. Mayne’s defence was under pressure early and Everton finally goaled when Alistair playing for them was first to respond to a loose ball in the goal square. Mayne were not to be outdone however and quickly produced the two best plays of the day. The first was a slick piece of team work from the centre when from a ball up Lachie tapped the ball down to Harry who quickly gathered and with blinding speed hand passed to a charging Charlie who then speared a beautiful low trajectory kick right onto the chest of Hudson who then went back and converted. The other was a piece of individual brilliance where Xavier who playing forward gathered on the far left wing and in congestion snapped a curving kick that went through the big sticks and a major contender for goal of the year.

The 4th qtr commenced with Everton again pressuring Mayne’s defence. This pressure however was quickly absorbed and Mayne where soon attacking which resulted in a clinical goal to Archie. From the next centre bounce an Everton player gathered and looked to speed towards goal before Lucas was on him quicker than a rabid dog on a 10 day old carcass, laying a great ball and all tackle. This resulted in Mayne regathering possession and the team quickly went on attack resulting in a goal to Charlie. Both Kai and Finlay appeared to follow Lucas’s lead, laying some great tackles during this period ensuring that Everton couldn’t present any late goal scoring opportunities. The final stages of the quarter were predominantly played in Mayne’s forward half as the boys continued to threaten to score before the final siren rang out.

After some cheers for both the umpire and the opposition, the ground trembled with a stirring rendition of the ‘Yellow and Black’. Player awards were presented to Hudson and Harrison for some great individual performances and special mention to all the boys you volunteered for Everton during the game.  A great team performance on the day which was only made better when Carlton sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to the Pies later in the afternoon……..al