Round nine of the Auckland AFL took place over the weekend and the Howick Hornets have defeated the Manurewa Raiders to notch their third win of the season while the North Shore Tigers have scored a 28 point win over the University Blues. Out west at Parrs Park, the Waitakere Magpies have swooped on the Mt Roskill Saints to run out big winners by 88 points.
Waitakere Magpies vs Mt Roskill Saints
12th December, 2.00pm, Parrs Park, Oratia.
The Waitakere Magpies have put the Mt Roskill Saints to the sword at Parrs Park with a thumping 88 point win on Sunday afternoon.
In the first quarter, the Magpies mixed it up when key defender Josh Copeland was thrust into the midfield and didn’t disappoint. Multiple possessions and great evasion skills made him hard to tackle as Waitakere won a number of centre clearances.
The Saints were hungry early on as Tristan Burnett was at his best in the midfield but didn’t have the support from his team mates.
Carlos Donnell-Brown was strong in the midfield and was delivering quality football into the forward line but inaccuracy in the Mapgies forward line kept the scores close going into the half.
Forward Dusan Hakaria had a solid game and provided two assists to New Zealand representative David Rattenbury who banged in two goals from outside 50 while recently retained Southern Saints squad member Nico Donnell-Brown played his part down back for the Magpies in the final term, keeping them scoreless.
The Magpies come up against a University side in the final round of the Auckland AFL and could be meeting them for the second time in as many weeks in the Semi Finals on November 26th.
“Our biggest test to date will be this weekend against University, they are hitting their straps but if we can keep playing the way we are playing, I am confident we can win the match and have confidence heading into the finals.” Waitakere Captain Shane Leat.
Manurewa Raiders vs Howick Hornets
12th December, 2.00pm, Mountfort Park, Manurewa.
It was only a three goal margin the last time these sides met back in round 3 earlier in the season and Manurewa came out firing on their home turf at Mountfort Park.
A nervous first quarter and inaccuracy in front of goal meant that it was a low scoring affair early on.
Raiders midfielders Joel Brown and Vandyn Hartman were working hard early on and the game was turning into a very physical affair across the ground with both teams scrambling on the loose ball.
The Hornets started to dominate the play early in the second quarter as midfielders Andy Cook, Kevin Crowe, Ben Biggelaar and Ryan White were working well together to get the centre clearances.
As he has been all season, Logan Kinnear proved a pivotal role on the wing being the link between the forwards and back and able to run more with the larger ground.
All game, Howick’s half backline controlled the defence with the likes of Brodyn Bevan, Josh McMahon, Jonah Tau working hard to quash the Manurewa attack and apply constant pressure on the taller and bigger Manurewa Forward line.
The Hornets held a fifteen point lead heading into the final term and with fitness and fresh legs on their side, Howick were able to shift the ball around the ground quickly. The Hornets put together some great phases with Daniel Bushett’s vision to play laterally meant the Hornets could switch up the play and move the ball across the ground up the ope side.
Howick closed out the match with a four goal victory and are still in with a chance to make the finals if they can topple the North Shore Tigers next week at home.
First year Hornets players Sean Brownlie and Dylan Campbell played extremely well and were named among the best for Howick.
“It took us a while for our team to get into the game and when we did it was our accuracy that let us down. We will work on our kicking accuracy to convert those points into goals.” Howick skipper Ryan White.
University Blues vs North Shore Tigers
12th December, 2.00pm, Colin Maiden Park, Glen Innes.
The North Shore Tigers pummeled the University Blues by 77 points back in round 3 and University we were out to atone from their poor showing – and for 3 quarters they not only did that, but matched and on occasion out played the top of the table Tigers.
The game ebbed and flowed back and forth in the first half with both teams trading goals throughout.
New Zealand International Cup superstar Ben Hick returned to the footy field after a three month lay off due to illness and injury and played a key role for the Blues.
Tigers ruckman Ty Smith had a strong game while young Jake Tucker was the Tigers best on ground following his best game of the season. Tucker is an emerging talent in the AAFL community and at such a young age, he will be one to watch in the future.
University stalwart David Cory-Toussaint was making things hard for the Tigers forward line as he was solid in defence for the Blues.
University found themselves two goals up heading into the final quarter and had the game in their sights. A missed goal opportunity hitting the post early in the fourth quarter could have seen the Blues pull away, but the Tigers showed why they are the team to beat in 2017 and took advantage of tiring legs to come back strong and grab a 28 point win.
“It was a vastly improved performance from us and another step forward in our season, showing not only can we play our best footy but can do so against the best in the competition. All Positives out of the game for us.” University Head Coach Chris Mundell.
Story – AAFL