Match report: Round 7

Round 7 of the season seen the La Trobe University under 19’s play on a day which draws the biggest crowds of the year for the La Trobe Football Club. It was ‘family & friends day’, an event which brings plenty of spectators to watch all the home sides play. Many onlookers throughout the day were from parents, who had travelled in from the country for surprise visits. The 19’s kicked off the big day of festivities, followed by the reserves, seniors, then finishing up with the women’s side. The under 19’s were facing a very fit and roaring to go St Bedes/Mentone Tigers AFC, who, just like the hosts, were searching for their second win for the season. The Tigers were able to walk away from La Trobe University oval with the four points, winning the game 11.8 – 74 to 5.9 – 39.

With the two sides lining up against each other at the early start of 9:20am, there was always going to be one key factor early on in the game, the morning dew that had formed across the ground. This had made gathering the loose ball and overhead marking incredible difficult. Despite the wet conditions and the heavy Sherrin, St Bedes/Mentone were able to capitalize on La Trobe’s poor use of the footy, kicking the first five goals of the game. It wasn’t until halfway through the second term, that the hosts were able to kick their first major of the day. Heading into the main break, La Trobe trailed St Bedes/Mentone by 31 points. Once again, the home side found themselves in a position that they were all too familiar with already this year.

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As the second half was underway the wind had quickly picked up, ultimately, favouring the pavilion end of the ground. St Bedes/Mentone used the wind to help set up a structure which allowed them to have total control of the play, opting to leave their loose players in defence, they had more numbers when La Trobe looked to attack, enabling them to rebound back inside their forward fifty. Heading into the last quarter La Trobe’s coach, Theo, asked simply that his troops give their 100%, to help gain some pride in front of the large crowd. The Tigers kicked the first two goals of the last quarter into the breeze, however, pressure from La Trobe around the ground definitely lifted, as they kicked the last three goals of the game, finishing up 35 points behind at the final siren.

As the two sides shook hands and departed the ground, a depleted silence fell on the struggling home team. Frustration filled the locker room, as the reality of their sixth straight loss sunk in. La Trobe’s coach quietly asked his players, that they evaluate their performance from the last two hours, over the next couple of days. He was pleased with his sides ability to not give in, for their “100% effort in that last quarter”. The better players for La Trobe were winger Tyler Costa and midfielder/forward Daniel Skaer. Looking onto next week, the under 19’s face rival club, Old Paradians AFC, in what should be a thrilling contest, after their round 4 encounter saw Old Paradians win by less than a goal.

By Aydin Payne

Match Report: Round 6

Round 6 of the 2016 season for the Latrobe University Under 19’s, held huge ramifications if they were unable to grab their second win of the year. Unfortunately, the young side are staring at a record of 1-5, after their 5th consecutive loss on Saturday morning. The 19’s played away from home, down at Glen Waverly against Mazenod OCFC, who were sitting comfortably in third spot on the ladder leading into the game. The ‘Trobers’ knew they had a big test in front of them, however, were unable to secure the 4 points going down by 20 points, 9.15 – 69 to 6.13 – 49.

There were plenty of unwell faces in the Latrobe University change room, prior to the bounce of the ball on Saturday. Majority of the team resides on the Glenn college, which had their annual college ball on Thursday night during the week. Forced to endure a game of footy with suffering immune systems, the team rallied together after finding themselves 38 points down at quarter time and without a goal to their name. Thanks to a rev up from respected coach Theo, the team were able to bounce back in the second term, using the favourable blustery wind they kicked four goals, to Mazenod’s two points, to trail by 12 points at the long break. Latrobe’s coach was pleased with his players at halftime for the way they responded, fighting their way back into the contest. The second half begun with Mazenod controlling most of the play, although Latrobe was helped by playing two loose men in their defense. The third quarter got heated with number 17 for Mazenod being red carded and sent off for striking. The hosts kicked one goal and eight points in the third term with the wind, enabling Latrobe the chance to grasp a win, as they trailed by 25 points at the last break. The last quarter played primarily down in Latrobe’s forward half, however, tired legs and sore bodies meant that a comeback would not be successful for the visitors.

After the game, heading into Latrobe’s rooms, you could sense a depleted side had just given their all. Theo mentioned how he was proud of the way his side was able to “rally together and give 100 per cent” even though most were not match fit. He congratulated them for the way they played on and challenged the contest with their attack. Speaking with the coach after the game, he was pleased with back flanker, Josh Hay, for his rebounding kicks into the forward line and also for his intercept marks in defense. Around the grounds, both senior sides enjoyed huge wins over their opposition, Parkside, both sides are traveling along nicely. Looking onto next week, the ‘Trobers’ host St Bedes/Mentone AFC in the morning of their family & friends day, followed by all three Latrobe sides, the reserves, seniors and women’s side. Hope to see you all there and supporting the mighty ‘Trobers’.

By Aydin Payne

Match Report: Round 4 vs. Oakleigh AFC

The stakes were high leading into the round 4 matchup for the under 19’s on the weekend. Sitting 5th on the ladder with a record of 1-2, and on a two game losing streak, the under’s couldn’t afford to drop a third straight game. Their opponents were the boys from Oakleigh AFC. Unfortunately for the Trober’s they went down by 30 points, 14.11, 95 to 10.5, 65. The early game was played in blustery conditions with the wind playing a large role in both sides ability to score. In the first quarter, Oakleigh displayed their dashing run through the middle resulting in six straight goals to Latrobe’s two goals. The onslaught flowed over into the second term, with the hosts piling on a further five goals to the visitors single goal, to have the margin reach 50 points at the long break, 70 – 50.

Latrobe seemed unable to deliver a penetrating kick inside their forward fifty to their tall targets. Assistant coach of Latrobe, ‘JD’, emphasised during the break the want to get the footy, to be able to commit to the contest. After regrouping and focusing on winning the next contest after the interval the third quarter was underway. Latrobe looked a completely different team after the break, they were able to link up and use their run and carry. Latrobe managed to kick six unanswered goals in the third quarter to bridge the gap to 20 points at 3qt. However the chase didn’t seem to last, with Oakleigh able to hold off to eventually win by 30 points.

Latrobe’s coach Theo, mentioned after the game that his sides inability to “switch on and get focused” before the game as a major reason for his sides loss. Theo spoke about areas to improve after the game: “This is the second week in a row that we’ve struggled in the first half, and somehow come out of the long break and play unreal footy, it’s a mentality thing, it’s all in the boys head before the game. We will work on this before next weeks crucial game against Parkside.” He also gave credit to midfielder Daniel Stizza, who was able to gather the contested ball and break the game open with his slick kicking skills. Forward Sam Williams continued his hot form, with another 5 goals, which takes his season tally to 12. Looking at results around the ground and the seniors had a loss to Glen Eira AFC at home, losing 12.5 77 to 15.17 107. On a brighter note the reserves were able to walk away with a win, winning 9.9 63 to 8.1 49. Looking onto next week for all teams, the under’s play Parkside Football Club Friday night at home, and the senior sides play away to Swinburne University. Good luck to everyone playing.

By Aydin Payne

Match Report: La Trobe University vs. De La Salle

The second round of the season saw Latrobe University host the boys from De La Salle, a prestigious college down in the suburb of Malvern. The 9:20am game being played before the senior sides, turned out to be one that the under 19’s boys would rather have again. In what was a dominant display from De La Salle, the ‘Trobers’ went down by 44 points, 11.10 76 to 5.2 32. They now sit in 4th position on the ladder.

The first quarter showcased a determined Latrobe side willing to gather the contested ball, playing the game on their terms. Small utility Tommy Hunt, was able to get in and under the contest as well as break through his tackles and feed the ball out to Ned Tansey who helped set up multiple first quarter goals. The end of the first quarter saw Latrobe leading three goals straight, 18 to 9. During the second quarter De La Salle managed to break the shackles kicking four goals to Latrobe’s one point. After the long break, De La Salle continued onwards with them kicking all four goals of the third quarter. The last quarter saw Latrobe gain their composure back and applied the pressure that was lacking in the previous two quarters.

The hosts lost their run and carry during the middle of the game, which appeared to break down at the half forward line; allowing too many loose numbers to rebound the ball back into their defensive 50. Their coach, Theo, stated that a poor second and third quarter were the reason they couldn’t find the win. “The boys lacked intensity, we chased for those two quarters, because we weren’t ready to do the hard running and help out.” Looking onto next week and what areas the team needs improvement on, Theo emphasised that the players, “need to stop, look at their options, not to get tunnel vision because we play our best footy when we look to open up and switch the ball.”

The better players on the day went to Abe Lewis, who tirelessly defended and gave the side much needed composure down back. Tyler Joseph stood out with his aggression on the ball. Jack Philip tried his hardest down forward but always seemed to be outnumbered at the contest and Aydin Payne ended up kicking three goals for the hosts. The senior sides managed to get their first win of the season against Elsternwick AFC, with the reserves winning 21.16, 142 to 2.1, 13. The seniors also won comfortably with a 107-point win, 21.11, 137 to 4.6, 30. Well done to the senior boys. Hopefully the under 19’s can bounce back next week, and the seniors can continue on their winning ways. Go Trobers!

By Aydin Payne

Preseason Training at La Trobe University

It’s that time of the year again. Footy’s back and roaring into action. It’s that time for you to remember to pick your weekly footy tips for your local tipping competition, and to dust off those colours of your favourite side again. However, for some, this time of the year brings a sigh of relief after a heavy workload, which is every footballer’s nightmare: pre-season training. You bust your guts for months before the opening round even begins to be the fittest, strongest side in the competition. At Latrobe University (the side I will be calling home for the next 6 months of the year), pre season training had a different scenario to hundreds of other clubs in Victoria. Our under 19’s side first begun training in our first week of school this semester, compared to the senior group which had begun at the end of last year. The point for this was many of our team members didn’t begin living in Melbourne until only February; which has given us an incredible task of trying to gel as a team in the space of 6 weeks.

The first night of training at any new club is a strange night. I’ve already done it once before and knew leading in that I would be having a very awkward hour and a half out on the track. However this wasn’t the case, the Latrobe boys went around and introduced themselves, and made me feel very welcomed to the club. I loved every part of my first night at my new home. The training drills for the first month were taken by the senior coach, Alan Ezard, a two-time premiership winning player for Essendon during the 80’s. Having someone who has played at the elite level take you through training is very rewarding for your progress in skills and the way you conduct yourself as a person. It wasn’t until the last week before the season began that our Under 19’s coach, Theo, owner of Latrobe Uni’s very own ‘Charlies’ in the Agora handled training. Theo has emphasised on the need for all of us boys to stay tight as a group, due to us all being kids from the country. He wants to see all of us enjoy our year and develop friendships and create memories lasting a lifetime. Theo is taking on our father figure, and so far he’s helping us bond together in an incredible way. Our Assistant coach, John, or better known around the club as ‘JD’, uses his knowledge of the game to help maintain our focus, and give us other alternatives in how we play the game. He’s also a bit of a joker, so he balances the role of teacher and friend really well.

It’s Friday the 8th of April and we begin our quest for the ultimate prize tomorrow down against St Johns at Dandenong’s Thomas Carroll Reserve. There’s something about the start of a new season that just makes you get goose bumps, whether that be the smell of deep heat being applied to tight muscles, or the banter that echoes throughout the change rooms. One thing is for certain: footy’s back.

By Aydin Payne

Match Report: La Trobe University vs St. Johns

The opening round of the season for Latrobe University Football Club was played over the weekend. The Under 19’s played away to St. Johns down in Dandenong at Thomas Carroll Reserve for an afternoon match up to kick start their season. The ‘Trobers’ won 15.7 97 to St Johns 5.9 39, in what was a solid contest with both teams playing quick free flowing footy. Latrobe University lead from the get go, kicking the first four majors of the game, with St. Johns only able to hit the score line late in the first term.

The second quarter was played mostly on St. Johns terms, with number 21 G.Ennis getting plenty of the footy but their inability to kick straight hurt them as they trailed Latrobe by 22 at the long break. The third quarter consisted with both teams able to pile on the goals, with seven kicked between the two sides. Leading by 26 at the last change, Latrobe were quick to bury the hatch with five last quarter goals to St. Johns one behind. Jack Philip was instrumental for the away side setting the tone for the match early on with his attack on the footy. Sam Williams also played a helping hand booting four majors from full forward.

The best on ground honours though went to small utility Tyler Costa. Playing across the forward flank and rotating into the middle, Costa gathered plenty of disposals, however, it was his toughness and tackling ability, which earned him first best from the coach, Theo. “Tyler’s ability to get in and under the pack and win the ball, along with his tackling demeanour was outstanding today,” Latrobe’s coach said post game. He also went on to congratulate his team for the way they handled themselves in the last quarter, knowing that if St. Johns gained the tiniest bit of momentum it would’ve been a tough ask for his troops.

Looking at around the grounds, the results for the senior Latrobe sides were not as successful as their younger counterparts. Playing against Hawthorn AFC, the reserves went down by 147 points, 173 – 26. The seniors also going down by 42 points, 112 – 71. Looking on to next week, we see a triple-header at home with the 19’s starting at 9:20am, reserves at 11:40am and the seniors at 2:00pm. Hopefully next week brings success to all three sides. Go Trobers!

By Aydin Payne

Intercampus Footy: Bundoora defeats Bendigo/Albury-Wodonga

On Sunday the 20th of March, it was the battle of the Latrobe University campuses at the Latrobe University (Bundoora) football ground. In hot conditions Bundoora campus went up against their fellow campuses of Bendigo and Albury-Wodonga. The day consisted of two games of football: the girls footy at 12pm and the boys at 2pm.

The girls’ game was a cracking contest with Bundoora able to get the victory. The Boys game was a battle for bragging rights. Coming off a huge loss last year they were determined to make amends against a much better prepared country campus team. However, showing some pure grit and determination, the Bundoora boys got over the line in what was an emphatic win.

There was a stark contrast between the two opposing sides during the warm up before the game. The Bundoora boys (including myself) were very sloppy and unsettled during the quick warm up. The country campus team were the complete opposite. However, Bundoora were able to get the quick jumpstart on their opposition.

The first half was swinging like a pendulum with the score changing every few minutes, but Bundoora were able to keep their noses in front. They were able to move the ball more freely by linking up with their handballs in the third quarter. This was followed by almost double the inside 50 entries to Bendigo/Albury-Wodonga, which opened up Bundoora’s lead to over 3 goals at the last break.

Looking as though they were running away with the game, Bundoora was found 6 points up with just under 2 minutes remaining with the country side now with all the momentum. It wasn’t until a goal by the eventual man of the match, Bryce Schoullar, after the final siren sealed the win for Bundoora.

There were plenty of deflated faces for the opposition after the game as the unlikely victors were awarded their medals. The win capped off a double victory for the hosts on what was a day enjoyed by many.

By Aydin Payne