Zack's back! After a year on the sidelines, Hawks coach Zack Hier returned to playing duties.
Zack's back! After a year on the sidelines, Hawks coach Zack Hier returned to playing duties.

North Eastern football ladder leaders Brinkworth-Spalding Redhill were actually two points down in their clash with the Cats at half time at Snowtown Oval, before kicking seven unanswered goals in the second half to collect a comfortable 46-point victory over their rivals.  

The scoreboard read the Cats 3.5 (23) to 3.3 (21) at half time, but it displayed at the final siren - BSR 10.12 (72) to Blyth Snowtown 3.8 (26).

After being quiet in the first half, Sam Heinjus’ second stanza was outstanding, while half back Ben Cousins gave run and rebound from defence.  

On his wing Mark Shane won plenty of the ball, while defender Daniel Hayes and ruck recruit William Hennessy were other strong contributors.

In his third A grade game this year, young Josh Slade kicked three goals in the second half.

On-baller Jeremy Sargent, who was a more than solid contributor, chimed in with a pair as well.

Blyth Snowtown’s usual suspects, skipper Gareth Ottens and defender Nathan Zweck were the best players in this contest.

Ashley Giles, Luke Ashby and Benjamin Pratt all were significant contributors as well for the hosts.

Young Cats ruckman William Pratt was high competitive, especially in the first half.

The Blyth Snowtown Cats, who only kicked three points in the second half which must concern coach Nicky Ashby, had a trio of individual goal kickers - Ryan Fry, Callen Kennett and Ottens.  

The BSR Tigers were without Alex Morgan, Phil Raymond (suspended for not playing in the Landmark Cup), Lachlan Wilsdon, Dillon Montgomerie and Andrew Cousins for this clash.

BSR coach Liam Whitwell said: 

“We couldn’t get any forward movement happening in the first half, and we certainly didn’t set up well in the first half.

“After half time we got our structures back together and were more organised.

“The Cats were a lot better in this game than they were in round one, giving us a real contest.

“We had a few new players in and a few out, which the will depth of our group as the season progresses.

RSMU v North Clare

The football beast, which is the RSMU Football Club, was unleashed on Saturday against North Clare, who were third on the premiership ladder at the start of the game.

For three and half quarters the Hawks played compelling and uncompromising football, dominating the contest.

North Clare kicked a couple of couple of ‘junk time” goals, to add a little respectability to the end result, where the Hawks won by 15 goals - 21.9 (135) to 6.9 (45).

RSMU was outstanding through the middle of the ground, with Josh Vater and Patrick Clark being superb, driving the ball forward relentlessly.  

Justin Schahinger had the better of the ruck contests with fellow SANFL league experienced big man, North’s Nick Pearce.

From his wing, Benjamin Plueckhahn was constructive while Billy Nicholls had his share of the ‘haggit’. 

In attack with 11 goals between them, leading goal kicker in the competition Craig Mullins (seven) and Damian Hynes (four) finished off the good work up by their team mates up the ground.

Josh Vater also kicked five goals and teenage talent Cooper Behn helped himself to a trice.

North Clare’s best was the composed Sam Panoho in defence, who battled strongly against a torrent of football coming into the Hawks forward line.

Cohen Pettitt and Chris Puiatti found their share of the ball, while Matthew Nelson and Jarrad O'Riley had their moments in a tough day for the Roosters faithful. 

Nicholas Rowe kicked two to the Roosters six goals in the game.

After 12 months on the sideline recovering from an ACL injury, former Mail medallist and SANFL league premiership player Zack Hier returned to NEFL football in this clash.  

RSMU coach Zack Hier said:

“That was the most compete effort for the year, apart for the last 10 minutes when we let a couple of ‘cheepies’ in.

“It was a real four quarter effort, or very close to it. 

“We worked on our defensive pressure and ability to hunt the ball, which made a huge difference in this contest.

“North was certainly a bit down on what we saw in the first round.

“I wouldn’t have wanted to be an opposition midfielder chasing Josh (Vater) and Patrick (Clark) around.

South Clare v Southern Saints

A blistering opening term where South Clare kicked nine straight majors set up the Demons big win against a winless Southern Saints.

South went on the collect victory by 89-points, kicking an accurate 21.7 (133) to Eudunda-Robertstown 6.8 (44).

South Clare’s premier on-baller Brodie Murphy was back to his best, being hard at the footy and winning the greater majority of his one-on-one contest.

Swapping as key targets in attack the Demons’ Daniel Kuhndt and Michael Liebelt were potent.  

The NEFL’s Matthew Allen again had a telling influence on the result, while Ben Pearse was strong with a four-goal haul.

Young Ben Dinning was impressive and kicked two goals, while Liebelt with seven and Kuhndt with six, were match winners with 13 between them.

The Saints leading performer was Jack Wilkins, followed by ruckman Jed Michalk and skipper Kurubyn Floyd.

Both Leigh Kimpton and Craig Hoffmann had their moments as well.

For the Saints Rhys Schirmer and Todd Mosey both kicked two goals.  

South Clare coach Justin Michael said:

“We slammed on five or six in the last half of the opening quarter, kicking with a light breeze towards the Valley’s centre end.

‘We kicked straight which always helps, previously this has been an area that we’ve lets ourselves down.

“Michael (Liebelt) and Daniel (Kuhndt) straighten us up a bit.

“It was a pretty even team performance and we’ve been trying to move the ball a bit quicker.

“It was close to a four quarter performance by our group and the most even effort as a group this year.

“It would nice that carry that confidence into the next couple of games.

Min-Man v BBH

BBH also set up their victory over Mintaro-Manoora with a potent opening term effort, kicking 6.2 to one single point in the first quarter.

It was more even after that with both teams, each kicking six goals for the remainder of the game, with the Rams winning by 40-points, 12.8 (80) to 6.4 (40).

Steven Mann continued his wonderful season with the Rams, and must be leading their best and fairest count at the moment.

Lachlan McInnis, Brent Kirby and the hard working Johnny Lynch all had their share of the ball.

Daniel Mills and Bradley Radford were conspicuous as well.

Above all of them, Rams playing coach Boh Wall was best on ground with a match winning 6.3 as a creative small forward.

Robbie Hall also snaffled a pair of majors as well.

For the Min-Man Eagles Charles Warne was outstanding against the odds. 

Trent Starke, who kicked four of his teams six goals and ex-Demon Sam Heinrich battled manfully, while Steve Rusca and Ashley Winders were the best of the rest.

BBH Rams coach Boh Wall said:

“If I want to get critical, we should have won by another two or three (goals).

“Compared to round one, from a results perspective it was better, as we only won by 10 points in that initial clash.

“After quarter time it was pretty even game, the margin at quarter time was similar to the end results.

“The first quarter was fantastic; we had 18 inside 50s in the first quarter towards the eastern end of the ground.

“We need to get back on track after two losses before the bye and the challenge is now to back it up this week.

“For the second round we need to narrow the gap between or best and worst.

‘We won four matches the entire 2016 season, after two the year before and now have achieved that after eight round this year.

“It’s time to build on that.”