Sydney Uni kicked off their 2017 season with a hard fought 15.14 (104) to 10.12 (72) victory over the Southport Sharks on the Gold Coast in Round One.
The Students got off to a slow start, and found themselves down by 13 at the main break. But whatever was discussed at halftime, must have clicked, as they came out firing in the third quarter. Once momentum picked up, they seized every opportunity to go ahead and didn’t look back, piling on 68 points in the second half.
Despite the win, Coach Tom Morrison lamented the inability of his team to get going early and addressed this with the group. However he also credited the players’ efforts in the second half to turn the game around.
“We were beaten early, which is something that we have spoken about and will look to rectify.”
“To the boys credit we were very good for a large majority of quarter 3 and 4 with improved ball movement, defensive pressure and work ethic.
“The players showed great resilience and maturity to remedy these areas and turn the game around into an important first up win.”
Sydney Uni’s gutsy second half effort stemmed from the pressure placed on the opposition by the back line from the outset of the game.
“It was a fairly even team effort with the backline performing really well across the full 4 quarters to intercept the oppositions offence and create valuable offence of our own from our defensive half of the ground,” Coach Morrison said.
Sporting twelve debutants, the mixture of young talent combined with the experience of their more established players proved valuable as the match progressed.
Experienced half forward, “Damien Bonney was influential with his pressure in defence and creativity in offence. “
The young NDS kid also stepped up with, “Cooper, McFadden, Baron-Hay, Wilson and Hebron all prominent in key roles across all areas of the ground.”
“Recruit Zac O’Brien was really effective even though he was dealing with a tight tag from the opposition. Matt Rawlinson had a solid performance and Lewis Stevenson was both damaging and selfless in his first game as captain for the Club” Coach Morrison added.
The Students will look to build on their first round efforts and take their impressive second half form into Round Two.
Sydney Uni look to take on the UWS Giants at Blacktown International Sports Park on Sat 8 April at 4:30pm.
Livestats for the match can be found here: http://neafl.com.au/fixturesresults/
SYDNEY UNI 4.3 5.6 9.10 15.14 (104)
SOUTHPORT 6.2 7.7 8.7 10.12 (72)
Sydney University: Derickx 3, Bonney 3, Richards 2, Stevenson 2. McFadden 2, Potter 2, Hiscox
Southport: Filewood 3, Fowler 2, Clements 2, Johnson 2, Shepheard
Sydney University: McFadden, Cooper, O’Brien, Barton, Hebron, Bonney
Southport: Thurlow, Keras, Erickson, Croad, Tape