The Southern Saints and Northern Suns have secured their biggest victories to date during Round 3 of the 2017 AFL New Zealand Premiership in Albany on Sunday. The Saints were victors by 101 points over the Western Crows while in the last match of the day, the Northern Suns stormed to a 123 point win over the Central Giants.
Southern Saints vs Western Crows:
The Southern Saints claimed a huge win over their old rivals, the Western Crows on Sunday, producing a 101 point victory to remain unbeaten in this years competition.
The contest between both sides was tight all throughout the first quarter with the Saints leading by 10 points at quarter time. Stand in Saints Captain Sam McKenzie was playing his part in the midfield while Te Kopa Tipene-Thomas was equally as good for the Crows.
After the quarter time break, 2016 AFL New Zealand Premiership Best and Fairest Winner Brandon Sucu (Best on Ground) teamed up with his older brother Andriu in the backline to hold the Crows to only 3 points for the rest of the game. Their leadership and understanding of the game gives them a leading edge in the competition and will be front runners to earn a spot in the upcoming NZ campaign squads.
Saints Ruckman and former NZ Beach Volleyball representative Tyler Paull showed he has what it takes with a solid performance all game as he delivered quality taps to the Saints midfielders.
Saints forward Jordan Thompson finished the day with 5 goals and young development player Clayton Walters showed his potential in the game of AFL after kicking four goals up front for the Saints. His speed and attack around the footy showed that he can go a long way in the sport with continual development.
This is the Saints first victory over the Crows in the competitions history as the Crows dominated all three meetings between the two sides back in 2016.
Southern Saints: Jordan Thompson 5, Clayton Walters 4, Tom Bekkers 3, Sam McKenzie 2, Carlos Donnell-Brown 1, Troy Brown 1.
Western Crows: Steph Tabaillou 1.
Player of the match awards:
Southern Saints: Brandon Sucu
Western Crows: Nick Bailey
Northern Suns vs Central Giants:
The Northern Suns shone at QBE Stadium on Sunday to record a big 123 point win over the Central Giants in what was a very hot and humid afternoon.
It was all one way traffic from the first bounce as the Suns piled on four goals in the first quarter. Tim Stokes (Best on Ground) and Misilifi Faimalo were dominating the centre clearances for the Suns.
In such hot conditions, it was hard for the Giants to turn the game around as the Suns were full of confidence. Their determination for the footy showed why they are the real deal this season.
Canterbury forward Brad Mavor continues to impress for the Suns. He showed composure around the contest and chipped in with a goal in the second quarter. Jordan Drinkall added to his goal kicking tally by kicking six goals for the Suns with overseas player Michael Gregson kicking three.
Suns Head coach Dave Abetz was happy with the win but knows there are still a lot of improvements that he can get out of his side. “A fantastic win for the team on the weekend and most importantly we won playing the style of football that we set out to play.”
For the Giants, Max Hicks once again played well with a Best on Ground performance along with Captain David Rattenbury, who is giving it his all each week for his side.
Northern Suns: Jordan Drinkall 6, Michael Gregson 3, Tim Stokes 2, James Kusel 2, Pete Rogers 2, Jono Ilaua 1, Jackson Rolleston 1, Liam Beattie 1, Brad Mavor 1, Mitch Ryan 1, Josh Allen 1, Will Dickinson 1.
Central Giants: Max Hicks 1, Stephen Parton 1.
Player of the match awards:
Northern Suns: Tim Stokes
Central Giants: Max Hicks
Round 4 of the AFL New Zealand Premiership is on Sunday the 5th of March at QBE Stadium and will feature the Northern Suns and Westerns Crows at 11.30am followed by the in form Southern Saints side taking on the Central Giants at 1.45pm.