With twelve NEAFL listed players pulling on the SUANFC jersey in Sydney AFL Premier Division, including last year’s Sydney Swans AFL Grand Finalist, Xavier Richards, this was always going to be a tough contest for the young UNSW/ES Bulldogs team.
Despite the having the majority of their Swans’ Academy players available for the hit-out, the Bulldogs youthful exuberance was no contest for the Students disciplined footy, going down by 54 points when the final siren sounded.
The pre-game loss of Jerry Vunitabua was also a noticeable contribution to the Dogs first loss of the season, with Ben Hyndes a late inclusion to make his Premier Division debut.
This confusion leaked into the Bulldogs’ first quarter as they conceded five goals and struggled with consistent pressure on their 50. However, they saved some face with a late goal as they trailed the University’s 31 (5.1) with 9 (1.3) at the end of the quarter.
Pollock said that the first quarter put the team “behind the eight ball” from the start and put an emphasis on any mistakes made.
“All of a sudden your mistakes look a lot worse when you’re behind on the scoreboard,” he said.
Despite this, the Bulldogs came out hard in the second and reversed the pressure onto the University of Sydney but failed to capitalise on the University’s mistakes. This led to two breakaway goals for the University as the Bulldogs only managed to add one to their total. Finishing the quarter on 17 (2.5) to 44 (7.2).
The third quarter was defined by the Bulldogs’ mistakes as they struggled to create clean disposals and mark the ball. This created unrelenting pressure on their goals which the University used to widen the margin to 47 points. The quarter finished with the University of Sydney on 67 (10.7) points to the Bulldogs’ 20 (2.8).
The final quarter didn’t bring any relief for the Dogs’ supporters. The University of Sydney held onto most of the possession and squirrelled away four more goals to ensure the result. However, a late burst from the Bulldogs’ resulted in three goals and brought some respectability to the end scoreline. The game ended in the University’s favour, 94 (14.10) to 40 (5.10).
Bulldogs co-captain, Jack McAnespie, said that the team had no excuses for their performance and that they now had to look forward to the Pennant Hills game next week.
“It was a tough game out there,” McAnespie said. “Not making any excuses but they’ve got a lot of good players.”
“They got the jump on us certainly so we just have to go back to the drawing board and make sure next time we come out we have a heap of aggression.”
Co-captain, Jeremy Daniher, also commended the effort of their fill-in player, Hyndes.
“[Hyndes] went really well for playing eight quarters in a row,” Daniher said. “He slotted in, played his role and did everything that was asked of him.”
|UNSW Eastern Suburbs Bulldogs||1.3-9||2.5-17||2.8-20||5.10-40|
UNSW / EASTERN SUBURBS BULLDOGS
Goal Kickers: M. Lower 2, R. Farrelly, D. Cordell, B. Norton
Best Players: T. Banuelos, J. Hardman, B. Hyndes, J. Bell, J. McAnespie
Goal Kickers: X. Richards 4, T. Barrett 3, W. Stratford 3, A. Clarke 2, M. Krochmal, M. Vicic
Best Players: M. Fogarty, K. Murphy, J. Irving, A. Sierakowski, N. Bertino, N. Bowen