The MPJFL U16’s have kicked a goal after the final siren to defeat the AFL New Zealand Academy Level 2 side by 6 points at QBE Stadium.
In what was a thrilling end to end game, both sides put on a terrific show for the big crowd on hand.
Daniel McCarthy and Doug McJorrow got the home side off to a great start in the first quarter as McCarthy kicked 2 superb goals and McJorrow 1. They had a total of 8 shots on goal but were unable to kick straight and pushing 5 of those shots through for behinds.
Their defence were also fired up only letting in a single goal and the Level 2 side found themselves leading by 15 points at the first change.
The visitors hit back in the second quarter keeping New Zealand scoreless and managing 2 goal to level up the scores at the main break.
In the third quarter, Campbell Cleal and Ryan Awatere both slotted goals for the home side as they increased the margin back up to two goals.
Trailing by 11 points and kicking with the wind in the final term, MPJFL held the ball in their own 50 for the majority for of the quarter but were inaccurate in front of goal. They kicked 5 points before converting later in the game to draw level. The NZ defence were trying their hardest to rebound the ball out of their own 50 to get momentum down the field but a mark to the visitors with seconds left on the clock meant that they had a shot to steal victory after the siren and they did just so kicking a goal to take the win and the series.
Caleb Macpherson had a strong game for the level 2 side along with James Scott, Xavier Bryham and Luke De Roo.
AFL New Zealand would like to thank Andrew Souter, Paul Lonsdale and Bec Mantell along with their team from Mornington Peninsula Junior Football League for making this trip possible and giving their side an opportunity to experience something special in playing International footy.
NZ Academy Level 2: Daniel McCarthy 2, Bom Verkade 1, Campbell Cleal 1, Ryan Awatere 1, Doug McJorrow 1
Mornington Peninsula U16’s: Mitchell Bell 2, Zac Cordinia 1, Tate Dennis, Brenton Thwaites 1, Ethan Park 1
Best on Ground Awards:
NZ Academy Level 2: Caleb Macpherson and Xavier Bryham
Mornington Peninsula U16’s: Cooper Bryan and Ethan Park