By Dan Kelly, originally posted to neafl.com.au
Sydney University have kickstarted their 2019 campaign with a comprehensive victory over Aspley in their Round 1 matchup in Blacktown today.
Despite Aspley carrying in much of the early hype following on from their 2018 form, the new-look Students were simply too good for the Hornets in the 15.17 (107) to 9.6 (60) victory.
Sydney University coach Tom Morrison said it was a pleasing start to 2019 in a game where the Students debuted nine new players.
“We were pretty confident we were going to give a good account of ourselves, but you don’t know ntil Round 1,” he told neafl.com.au.
“I was just rapt with how well the boys stuck to the game plan and the pressure they applied.
“In the periods of the game where Aspley did have control and kicked a few goals and looked like they were coming, I thought the group stepped up and showed really good resilience which I am very proud of.”
The pace was set in the first quarter with Sydney University getting out to a 21-point lead at quarter time before kicking on in the second to make it a 34-point deficit at half-time.
A lot was made of Sydney University’s vibrant, young list coming into the 2019 season and they did not double bluff with a compelling display of attacking, running football in the first half setting the tempo for the victory.
Tristan Davies and Josh Stern led the Students with five and four goals respectively while off-season acquisition Jake Veale was prolific in the midfield with 31 disposals, including 12 at the end of the first quarter.
Aspley slowly built into the game, winning the inside 50 count in the third and kicking the first two goals of the fourth quarter, however the hot start from Sydney Uni was simply too hard to chase.
Ben Warren was solid for the Hornets, mopping up a lot of football in the first half down back.
Both Billy Murphy and Jono Freeman looked potent when presented with the chance and scored three goals each, with the usual suspects of James Ives and Matthew Payne also prominent in the loss.
Both sides will regather their thoughts before playing at home next week. Sydney University taking on NT Thunder in Blacktown with Aspley facing fellow Queensland heavyweights Southport at Voxson Oval.
NEAFL ROUND 1
Sydney University vs Aspley Hornets at Blacktown
SYDNEY UNI 4.4 7.8 10.14 15.17 (107)
ASPLEY 1.1 2.3 5.6 9.6 (60)
GOALS – Sydney University: T Davies 5 J Stern 4 N Coxall S Tagliabue J Dimery L Stevenson A Lucy E Cole. Aspley: W Murphy 3 J Freeman 3 L Mason B Warren C Stackelberg.
BEST – Sydney University: J Veale T Davies B Stewart J Reinhard L Kilpatrick. Aspley: J Arnold J Ives G Grose J Hayden W Wolbers.