The RSMU Hawks continued its undefeated run, that goes back to the 2015 minor round, with an expected victory over grand final opponents in 2014 and 2015, Eudunda-Robertstown in the North Eastern football competition.
The Hawks kicked 15 goals to four after quarter time at Eudunda Oval, going on to win the contest 18.13 (121) to the Southern Saints 6.4 (40).
Patrick Clark’s purple patch of superb form continued with another best on ground effort, while Justin Schahinger was the dominant big man on the ground and the evergreen Billy Nicholls found the ball at will.
Sam Ball was a strong option all game, Craig Mullins in his milestone 150th senior match kicked six goals to be the primary target in attack, while ex-SANFL league footballer Damian Hynes had a presence, both across half forward and in ruck.
Along with Mullins bag of half a dozen, Jack Connell and Hynes kicked three each, while Dylan Griffiths finished with two majors.
For the Southern Saints, who slumped to their fourth loss, new recruit Jack Wilkins was their best.
Dean Cutting, along with the Reese siblings, Cody and Ryan, had their moments and Todd Mosey also was a strong contributor for the red, black and white.
Hayden Perry was the Saints only multiple goal kicker finishing with two.
Zack Hier said:
“The Saints were good early and moving the ball pretty well.
“They got a few injuries which didn’t help their cause.
“As we upped the tempo they didn’t seem to have the legs to keep going with us.
“From late in the first quarter through the rest of the game we increased our work-rate and the skill level improved.
“It was pleasing to see we didn’t really have a passenger across the squad on Saturday.
‘We look forward to challenge ourselves against a team that is undefeated and most probably the form team of the competition.
“It will be good to have a crack at the new look BSR outfit.
Blyth Snowtown v Min-Man
Kicking for goals, a complete form reversal after the main break, helped Mintaro-Manoora win a thriller at Blyth Oval against the Cats.
They kicked an inaccurate 1.7 in the first half and then kicked 7.1 after the long interval.
The Eagles had two stand outs. Teenager David Willmott kicked five goals for the game as a key forward, including four in a match winning final quarter.
Indigenous talent Steve Rusca produced a command performance as well, kicking the other three goals for Min-Man.
Young Aden Richards was thrown into ruck and gave the Eagles an ascendancy in this area after half time, while playing coach Ryan McDermid is even taking his game to another level as the playing coach.
Josh Sandow should be noted for his effort in reducing the influence of Gareth Ottens, although Blyth-Snowtown’s captain still found his share of the ball.
New recruit, the pacy Ryan Fry, was the Cats’ best, followed by Jack McRae and young ruckman William Pratt.
The reliable Nathan Zweck and Nick Schultz were the next best in navy and white.
Simon McCormack, in his big 300-A grade game, was injured and didn’t even enjoy the pleasure on being on the ground with the final siren sounded, already off to hospital after head clash with McDermid.
While Min-Man only had two players on the goal kickers sheet, the Cats had seven individuals on their list. Finding a serious goal kicking option must be a priority for Blyth-Snowtown coach Nick Ashby.
“The 17-year-old David Willmott kicked four last quarter goals for us, playing a true key forward role.
“One of his marks was Wayne Carey-esque, a big chest mark running the same way as the ball.
“We had a really good first quarter, but couldn’t hit the scoreboard.
“The boys were a bit flat at half time, but we changed it around a bit at this break.
“Aden Richards, just 19, went in to ruck and won a number of clearances.
“Steve Rusca was absolutely dominant, winning 34 possessions and kicked three goals as well.
“We still have a lot of work to do, but this was pretty pleasing.”
BSR v North Clare
The Tigers are four wins from four starts under Liam Whitwell, although they took a while to shake off a persistent North Clare side on the expanses of Brinkworth Oval on Saturday.
BSR were a goal down at half time, just two goals up at lemons, despite having eight more scoring shots to that point, and won the game by a solid 36-point margin in the end.
For the Tigers’ on-ballers Andrew Cousins and Phillip Raymond stood out, while in the key defensive posts Adam MacKenzie and Alexander Morgan were both sturdy.
Both half forward and half back Luke Hayes played his best game since returning to his foundation club, while off his half back flank, Ben Cousins had an influence as well.
The quartet of Sam Heinjus, Tom Wilsdon, Raymond and Sam Martin each kicked a pair of majors.
For the Roosters recruit Matthew Nelson, the hard running Cohen Pettit and “Slammin” Sammy Panoho were their leading lights.
Lachlan Jaeschke continuing his strong season across half back, while the Pearce boys Andrew and Nick had their moments.
North Clare young talents Tyson Francis and Daniel Garrard each kicked two goals.
Liam Whitwell said:
“We slugged it out for the first three quarters before we gained ascendancy in the last.
“We kicked 1.6 in the second term which didn’t help our cause.
“After half time our tackle pressure got better and they didn’t get out the back as often in the second half.
“The rucks were pretty even, but we needed to be defensively more accountable.
“At the stoppages it was a good contest between Pearce and our ruckman, Heinjus and Hennessy.]
South Clare v BBH
BBH Rams coach Boh Wall again delivered the heroics when it counted most, kicking the match winner in his team’s close five-point victory over the South Demons at Clare, to finish their opening month of football with an impressive three wins.
The Rams kicked six goals straight in the opening term, still led by 15 points at the long interval and surged again in the third term.
BBH were amazing accurate, kicked 15.1 (91) to defeat South who had five more scoring shots, 13.8 (86).
Along with Walls effort as playing coach, Lachlan McInnis was outstanding especially in the second half.
Steven Mann did a wonderful job quelling the ball magnet Shan McWaters, while second-year senior player Angus Wiech was noteworthy.
Joey McInnis, the mercurial Marcus Hall, predominately from half back, and Geoffrey Thompson, with his four goals, were impressive for the winners.
Brother-in-laws Wall and Geoffrey Thompson kicked nine of the Rams 15 goals while Joseph McInnis and Jack Rowe each chimed in for a brace.
Along with the brilliance of Brodie Murphy, Matthew Allen a number of intercept marks across half back, repelling many attacks.
Nicholas Owen, playing Dees coach Justin Michael and Kurtis Ward were the other Demons who had an influence.
Both “Adonis” Tim Jenkins and Benjamin Rossi finished with three goals for South, while Shaun McWaters despite being well held kicked two majors.
Boh Wall said:
“That’s two excellent wins in two weeks...and maybe that was the second ‘best win’ of my career as a coach.
“South’s Tim Jenkins had a snap on the run to tie the game up, but we held on to grab two vital points.
“We had a good first quarter, and when Brodie Murphy dragged South back into the contest with his brilliance in the second term.
“It was a courageous win by the group, as we lost Jack Boxer at the 10-minute mark of the game and big Jack Gurney, both to knee injuries.
“Casey Cooper took a driver into the contest as well and we missed Johnny Lynch who tweaked a hammy on Thursday night.
“That further shows the challenges we rose above.”
– Peter Argent