Match Report: Norwood FC vs Sturt FC
The Redlegs have played out a thrilling draw against the Double Blues in the final round of the SANFL Maccas League on Saturday afternoon.
Sam Baulderstone had a chance after the siren to win the game for Norwood, however his set shot stayed right forcing both sides to share a point.
The match itself was a dead rubber in terms of movement on the SANFL League Ladder, however a win would give either side confidence heading into the first week of the finals.
Norwood were without plenty of forward personnel, in particular speedsters Ed Smart, Kristian Roocke and Anthony Wilson.
Sturt, started the match full of confidence as Josh Dodd handed the Double Blues the perfect start kicking truly from 35 metres out.
Norwood replied a couple of minutes later, as Mitch Grigg split the middle from 40 metres directly in front. The opening term was tightly contested as both sides only managed two goals each for the quarter.
The Redlegs started the second term well, as Norwood’s quick transition from defence to attack resulted in Harry Viney kicking his first for the game from 20 metres.
Sturt’s class began to show soon after as prolific ball winners in Zane Kirkwood and James Battersby were able to set up many attacks allowing dangerous forward Josh Hone to hit the scoreboard.
The majority of the third term was dominated by the Double Blues, as forward Kory Beard kicked three in a row stretching Sturts’s lead to 18-points. Norwood, however continued to mound pressure adding to their tally late in the quarter through goals from Viney and Brad McKenzie.
In the final term Norwood held a 12-point lead as Brady Dawe continued to impress up forward kicking two goals for the term. Sturt, were not to be denied though as Sam Colquhuon was gifted a freekick 30 metres out. Colquhuon managed to kick the goal with ease, making it a nail biting last five minutes.
Both sides were playing out the match although it was a grandfinal, however Webber was gifted a freekick following a high tackle kicking the ball to ruckman Sam Baluderstone. Baulderstone’s effort wasn’t enough as both sides shared the points 76 a piece.
Following his sides draw, Norwood head coach Jarrod Cotton praised his sides character paying particular attention to the overall performance against a very good football side in Sturt.
“It was positive in the fact that we got back to playing some stronger footy,” said Cotton.
“Obviously, the last two weeks have been disappointing but I thought our ball movement, team care and tackle pressure wasn’t perfect but was a lot better also.
“But overall, I thought that the performance gave us a little bit more confidence leading into the finals series by starting to play like we have for the majority of the season.
Cotton also heaped praise on some of his youngsters who took their opportunity with a couple of senior players out of the side.
“I thought Olsson, Viney, Bartlett and Bower all took their opportunity,” said Cotton.
“We rested a couple of players, however I thought their effort was really pleasing so they’ll definitely all put their hand up for selection this week.
“But obviously we will look at the match ups during the week in terms of who’s available and ultimately make a decision come Thursday.”
Norwood FC: 2.3 5.4 8.7 11.10 (76)
Sturt FC: 2.1 4.8 8.11 10.16 (76)
Goalkickers: Dawe 2, Grigg 2 McKenzie 2, Viney 2, Fuller, Panos, Webber.
Best: Grigg, Forster, Panos, McKenzie, Shenton, Baulderstone, Jefferies.
NFC Media Writer