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SKOB Finals Bound, Round 18 Thrillers
From the President
The last few weeks have shown the great and ugly side of Amateur footy.
In the Under 19 Premier against Old Xav's, SKOBBER Harry Crowe had a terrible accident. Both teams kept calm and worked together with their sole purpose in ensuring Harry received professional care (Harry has fully recovered). We were also helped by St Bedes Mentone Tigers trainers when Mick Di Natale suffered a bad knock. Football is a tough game and no one wants to see any player get injured, ignoring a jumper when a club needs help is what I love about this competition.
Then there was the ugly side, following the SBMT game when an incident occurred involving spectators. There is absolutely no need to get fired up to the point of abusing each other, all the other spectators, players and kids see this. Ammo footy must be a safe and welcoming place. This behavior won’t be tolerated by SKOBFC or the VAFA for that matter as I had to explain to them last week. It was made clear to me that this behavior and other areas like inappropriate social media will be strongly dealt with.
On a brighter note....
We have already had a taste of finals football this year with our SKOB Saints and we still have 5 teams to support in what hopefully be a very successful finals campaign for all involved. Our Under 19 Reserves team fell 5 points short but had earned the double chance and will play in a preliminary this weekend. In the Premier Thirds, it's a two horse race with two SKOB teams and two Xav’s teams to battle it out this weekend as curtain raisers. SKOB Gold will play prior to the Seniors on Saturday and SKOB Green to the Reserves on Sunday.
The Reserves are coming home like a steam train, winning its last 8 games whilst Seniors are in with a real chance having finished top after the home and away season.
All roads lead to Trevor Baker Oval this weekend as our Seniors tackle Uni Blues n the second semi final.
To finish off on a social note, last Saturdays lunch saw the 2007 Reserves Premiership team celebrate ten years since its triumph over St Bedes Mentone. It was great to see the boys with coaches John Le Grand & Mick Duggan, with Pete Murray doing an exceptional job as MC. The stories and feats of that side seem to get better and better each year.
Our Grand Final Lunch is going to be huge with the event almost at capacity. Please jump online now to secure your place!
Whilst you are booking for the GF Luncheon you are booking you can get your Jack Douglas Medal tickets for the biggest celebration of the year, at the Glasshouse. It is our 70th year, 9/10 teams in finals, 350 players and all the wonderful people who get us there each week need to be celebrated.
Round 18 Summary
St Kevin's closed out the home and away season with a 20 point win against the Premier B bound Uni Blacks. Blacks will return to Premier B for the first time since their 2012 premiership after they were unable to hold on against the league leaders. They managed to hold off the ladder leaders in the second and maintained a healthy 16-point lead at the half, before SKOB exploded in the third and won the game with six unanswered goals. Stephen Gilham did the bulk of the damage up forward with three goals while Thomas Jok was named Inner FM’s best player after he produced a four-quarter effort. Hugh Curnow was outstanding for the Blacks while Lochie Dornauf and Mitch Carnie booted three goals each. While the Blacks return to Premier B with four wins for the year, SKOB claimed the minor premiership on the back of their 16th win and will face University Blues in next week’s second semi-final.
The Reserves just held off a late charge from the students, hanging on for a one point win whilst Premier Thirds SKOB Gold were on the other end of a one point thriller. Old Xavs finishing off the season on a high with a one point win.
De La Salle proved too good in the 19's in both grades, Premier bowing out and the Premier Reserves to back up next weekend in the Prelim.
Finals footy is here - GO SKOB!
SKOB controls second half to record win
Needing a win to give themselves any chance of avoiding relegation, Blacks took a little while to adjust to the breeze. Long points made the SKOB defenders job easy early in the term, before readjusting and moving the ball across the ground to enter the forward fifty with greater efficiency. A four goal to one quarter saw Black's take a handy lead into the break.
It was SKOB turn with the breeze in the second term, but the Blacks stuck to the task and we able to restrict SKOB to two goals. SKOB's poor conversion didn't help, but heading into the sheds at half time - SKOB were well aware that they needed to lift in the second half.
A rejuvenated SKOB took the field in the second half, the big Russian was moved to the goal square and looked a lot more dangerous, whilst Tom Jok continued from his dominant first half performance. Zach Ginies got the ball rolling with a perfect crumb from a Jamar contest before Jamar was rewarded finally for an infringement and kicked truly from 30m out to bring SKOB within three points. Gilham snapped shortly after and by the 19 minute mark SKOB had hit the front and we were well in control. The defence led by Connor Ross and Will Coates repelled every forward foray from the Blacks.
Jason Salopek was next to hit the scoreboard after a great centering kick from Gilham to Jok which led to an easy finish from Jase. Callum Matheson aka Stevie J kicked another on his back in the goal square and then Gilham snapped a ripper from the boundary to see SKOB 21 points up.
SKOB were well on top and despite a late burst from Blacks, they were never really troubled in the final 30 minutes. SKOB's six goal third term was enough for Shannon Grant's men to record win number 16 and finish the home and away season on a high.
Final Scores: SKOB 12.15.87 def Uni Blacks 10.7.67
Goal Kickers: S. Gilham 3, C. Matheson 2, Z. Ginies 2, S. Salopek, M. Jamar, T. Cunningham, J. Wallis, J. Salopek
Best Players: C. Ross, C. Matheson, J. Wallis, S. Critchley, G. Gleeson, S. Salopek
Around the grounds in Premier B - Uni Blues snatch double chance, Sharks attack in Bayside Derby
A goal in the last two minutes from Tim Geappen helped University Blues to a thrilling four-point victory over De La Salle, securing second spot on the ladder and the double chance. Leading by 10 points at the last break, Geappen kicked the third of his four goals to extend the lead to 15 points, before De La piled on three in a row prior to Geappen’s heroics in the 27th minute. The Blues will now meet SKOB in the second semi, while De La face Collegians in the elimination final.
Beaumaris completed their season with a comprehensive 34-point victory over St Bedes/Mentone Tigers in the return Bayside Derby at Brindisi St Oval. The Sharks will now return to Premier B on the back of three wins from their past five games.
After a disastrous start to the year and a recent battle with relegation, Old Trinity finished with their third consecutive victory after they defeated Old Melburnians by six points at Daley Oval. Despite kicking an inaccurate 5.19, the T’s proved too strong in the second half of the low-scoring affair, kicking 27-16. The loss means OMs finish in sixth spot while the T’s claim seventh.
Six goals from Matt Handley helped Old Xaverians to a Round 18 victory, defeating Collegians by 57 points at Toorak Park and sending the Lions into finals without the double chance. The Lions will now face De La in next week’s elimination final, while the Xavs end their year in fifth spot.
Second Semi Final PreviewNick Armistead (VAFA.com)
In their Round 1 victory over the Blues, SKOB proved too strong for a rusty Blues outfit and ran out 40-point winners at TH King Oval. One of the main reasons for SKOB’s improved performance in 2017 has been their elite defensive pressure on the ball carrier and it was showcased in its entirety during their Round 1 victory as they gave the Blues midfield little-to-no time when distributing by hand or foot. Since, however, the Blues have hit their straps and returned serve with a comprehensive 44-point win in Round 16. They held SKOB to just 15 scoring shots – their equal-lowest total this year – with Jeremy Taylor and Ross Young proving the match-winners.
Current Form: St Kevin’s (WWLWW) vs University Blues (DWWWW)
St Kevin’s has been the number one ranked team for most of the year, sitting on top of the ladder 13 out of a possible 18 rounds. In the second half of the season, SKOB has averaged 113.6ppg; including, scores of 189 (vs SBMT), 162 (vs Beaumaris), 133 (vs Trinity) and 131 (vs Collegians).
University Blues boast the highest success rate of all sides in the second half of the season, winning nine of their past 10 games. The sole outlier from their three-month tear was a tie against Collegians and, as stated, they proved too strong for SKOB in Round 16. While their offence has been the main source of improvement in 2017, the Blues have maintained a strong defensive presence and average just 64.9 points against throughout the back half of the season.
Players to Watch: Thomas Jok (SKOB) and Kieran Harper (Blues)
Jok has been a revelation for SKOB since making the move from Dandenong Stingrays’ TAC Cup side during the off-season, culminating in a standout performance for the Big V senior side during their record-breaking win over AFL Victoria Country in July. The Spirit of the Big V recipient has controlled the back half/wing all year and uses his elite athleticism to run rings around his direct opponents on the regular and launch offensive assaults into the SKOB forward half. Jok has proved he is made for the big stage so this weekend should be no different when he runs out against the Blues.
Harper hasn’t suited up for the Blues since he was handed a three-week suspension for tripping following a six-goal haul in their 31-point win over St Bedes/Mentone Tigers in Round 15. Harper returns this weekend and he’s primed to explode on the big stage and add to his 42 goals from 13 games. Having already kicked four goals or more on five occasions this year, expect the former Roo to put SKOB’s defensive prowess to the ultimate test.