Coming off our first win and a bye week – the group was energized by the prospect of our form turning into the green. Aided by the fact we had all our squad available for the first time since Round four – the competition for spots was hot on the track – and as such drove us to improve as individuals and as a collective. With our first game all year with no debutants, the side was experienced and settled – with only a few role changes being made to some senior players.
We arrived at Unley with a real task on our hands against an albeit struggling Sturt side – who had just as much to prove as we did. The first term played out in a similar vein to the previous week’s game against Central Districts – with us opening our scoring ledger quite freely, but equally allowing the same for our opposition.
Simple skill and decision-making errors with our brand and key performance indicators made the game more of a shootout than we desired. We were able to stem the flow in the middle terms, getting more clear leads at times, but then allowing successive goals to minimize our strong positions – a key we still need work on.
Fortunately, we were able to finish the game strongly in the final term, really peppering the goal front and running over the opposition – if only for some inconsistent finishing in front of the goals – we could have seen a far more pleasing score line. What was once again incredibly pleasing for us was that while we had numerous goal kickers and higher possession getters, the number of genuine role players doing what they needed to saw us play the way we desired – with the load being carried by the many rather than the few. A great indicator was while we had the top six ranked players on the ground, more importantly we only had four of the bottom 16 ranked players – very few passengers.
With our full-strength side currently having a 4-2 record, we are keen to see this balanced outcome become more consistent for the remainder of the season. We head down to South Adelaide once again this week, in what has become a second home for us this season (3rd time visiting). We are determined to show better versions of ourselves against the Panthers as while we are 0-3 against them this season, we know we did far more to lose those games than what was done to beat us. We play just after the Reserves and look forward to seeing our actions make amends for our slow start to the season.
NORWOOD: 4.2 8.3 10.6 13.11 (89)
STURT: 3.3 5.5 8.7 9.9 (63)
GOALS: Belperio 3, Capurso 2, Murley 2, Blacker 2, Hyde, Dnistriansky, Ianniello
BEST: Cooper Murley, Ben Belperio, Bailey Gal, Jack Ianniello, Matthew Dnistriansky, Jayden Gale.