Round 8 of the Auckland AFL is in the books and the University Blues have piled on the points against the North Shore Tigers to demolish the reigning premiers by 11 goals at Colin Maiden Oval.
The Waitakere Magpies have secured their spot in the finals with a percentage boosting win over the Manurewa Raiders while over at War Memorial Park, the Mt Roskill Saints celebrated ladies day in style with a 51 point victory over Howick.
Mt Roskill Saints vs Howick Hornets
28th October, War Memorial Park, Mt Roskill.
Mt Roskill were celebrating Ladies day at the club and the sideline was packed Mum’s, Sisters and partners all enjoying the wonderful platter and great game.
The Saints started with a hiss and a roar moving the ball quickly from contests through Tristan Burnett, Will Dickinson and Matt Kemp, but a lack of composure in the forward 50 meant that Roskill weren’t able to make the most of it from repeat forward entries.
Howick then managed to settle and showed why the most improved side this year, moving the ball well through the middle of the ground and getting parity through the middle of the ground
In the second quarter Mt Roskill were able to get some ascendancy, converting the chances they created.
Out of the backline Alastair Maisey, Lachie Stewart and Hamish MacKay were able to start the ball movement going wide to wingers Logan Selvadurai and Matt Kemp or high half-forwards Antony D’Aloisio and Jessie Baty who then moved the ball back through the middle of the ground allowing key targets Samuel McKenzie, Mitch Smith and James McKenzie to move into space.
Mitch Smith particuarly was strong overhead and would quickly turn, hitting up a leading James McKenzie
Josh McKenzie’s physicality and fitness through the middle of the ground wasn’t letting the strong Howick midfielders use their size to overpower the Roskill midfield.
The third term belonged to Howick. Mt Roskill seemed to lose focus and Howick played well switching the ball into the middle of the ground with great accuracy and finding space to outplay the home side for the quarter.
Unhappy with their third quarter, Mt Roskill wanted to show more of the style of football they played in the second quarter. They stepped up and sorted their defensive transition out, meaning that they were able to continue playing fast, with less risk. Mitch Smith and James McKenzie again made the most of ball coming into thick and fast into the forward line.
“It was a great day for the club and showcased some of the great off-field moves we have made. So a big thanks to those involved in helping set up the day, getting the sideline and platters set up.
On the field we showed through patches how dangerous we can be when we move the ball fast. Howick keep improving every time we play them, and they caught us on the hop a few times which really drove home the need to tighten up some of our transition from offence to defence.” Saints Captain Sam McKenzie.
Mt Roskill: Josh McKenzie, Tristan Burnett, Matt Kemp, Michael Boyce.
University Blues vs North Shore Tigers
28th October, Colin Maiden Park, Glen Innes.
The North Shore Tigers journeyed to Colin Maiden Park looking to regain some momentum on a rather sluggish season to date.
It was a two goal victory to the Blues when they last met back in round four.
Still battling with a number of key injuries, the reigning Premiers were keen to put the pressure on the ladder leaders.
The opening quarter was a tight affair with some great defensive pressure from the Tigers backline helping to keep the score board close. Midfielders, Connor McWilliams & Rhys Pegoraro were making an impact as they make a return to full fitness.
University struggled early with their skill execution, this allowed North Shore to wrestle into the game. In the second quarter we started to get ourselves into the game more by winning more early ball, this allowed us to get into our groove and kick a few goals ahead.
Midway through the second quarter, the defending premiers seemed to lose their way as University started controlling the game by winning early ball which allowed to to get into their groove. The Tigers were losing the one-on-one contests and started to show signs of frustration which in turn resulted in goals for University.
This was the trend for the rest of the match despite valiant efforts from Adam Patterson, Nathan Spoonley across the forward line being supported by Dominic Parkes-Dolan and Josh Cunliffe who were trying to spark the Tigers players in to life.
University’s defence held the Tigers scoreless in the third quarter as the home side asserted their dominance.
The Tigers were finding it difficult to get their hands on the footy and when they did, the pressure applied by the Blues resulted in quick turnovers.
The ladder leaders ran away with a convincing 63 point win leaving the Tigers with plenty of work and thinking to do in the lead up to finals.
“It is always a tough ask to take on the reigning premiers but a great result for us to get both wins for the regular season. Overall it was a great performance and a great way to kick off our run to the finals.” Blues Head Coach Chris Mundell.
“Definitely not a day to remember for the Tigers. We started well then completely dropped off. We continue to battle with injuries but we cant use that as an excuse for the performance today. We’ve got some issues to work on during the week but we are keen and confident that we can get things together in the lead up to finals.” Tigers Head Coach Fraser Stevens.
University: Chris Haden, Brad Ingram, Harison Manks, Stephen Parton.
North Shore: Connor McWilliams, Rhys Pegoraro, Adam Patterson, Nathan Spoonley.
Manurewa Raiders vs Waitakere Magpies
28th October, Mountfort Park, Manurewa.
Coming of an impressive win against Howick in round 7, the Waitakere Magpies were looking to continue their strong form and build towards finals footy and it was all one way traffic for the majority of the game.
In the unfamiliar position of full forward, Magpies stalwart Dan Moyle started the game strong kicking the first two goals of the game.
Luke Dunning also had a great start to the game taking control in the midfield and winning multiple possessions before being rewarded with a goal. Also in the unfamiliar position or Ruck Rover, Andrew Johnston had a good performance on the ground.
Defender Nico Donnell-Brown returned to the side after two weeks on the sideline and was back to his best, winning the contest and delivering some go forward ball from the back, linking well up field with wingers, Nick Bailey and Shane Leat.
Tou Dodds, Stevie Johnson and Brandon Phillips were all playing their role for the Raiders and had strong games.
Magpies rookie Matt Keyse had the task of marking premier forward Alex Fakatoumafi and managed to keep the dominant player scoreless for the game.
Magpies Captain Shane Leat along with Nick Bailey and Xaviar McCluskey made a number of clear runs down the wing to deliver strong into the forward lines to set up Dan McGregor (3) Ben Hutton (5) and Zac King (3) in front of goal.
Fadi Alias and Jerome Goodhue had strong performances to put their hands up as the push for finals spot.
With two games left in the season for Manurewa, it is hoped that they can produce some good footy to finish the season strong.
“In the absence from key players each week we have been able to fill the positions and guys are stepping up big time. We have been building nicely and look for a good preparation this week as it will be the biggest test for us to date this weekend when we take on University. Im excited!!!” Magpies Captain Shane Leat.
Waitakere: Matt Keyse, Luke Dunning, Ben Hutton, Xavier McCluskey.
Manurewa: Tou Dodds, Stevie Johnson, Brandon Phillips, Taison Werahiko.
Story – AAFL.co.nz