ROUND 1 RESULTS
Claremont v New Norfolk night game
Claremont 15.12 (102) d New Norfolk 9.8 (62)
CLAREMONT showed on Saturday night that it has improved immensely from last season with a comprehensive display thrashing of last year’s premier, New Norfolk, by 40 points in a blistering display under nights at their Abbotsfield Park home ground.
Whilst it may have been sweet revenge for last year’s grand final loss to the powerful New Norfolk outfit, the Magpies must now be confident they have recruited well and covered their weaknesses of last season and that will give them confidence to attempt to go all the way in the 2014 season.
With a strong home crowd behind them, the Magpies started full of fire and took the early advantage in the first term and had control for the first 20 minutes until, as good sides do, New Norfolk fought back to trail by just a goal at the first change. The next two quarters became a real one-on-one contest throughout the game as both sides applied plenty of pressure and looked like they were in for a close finish to the game.
Claremont looked to be the fitter side and finished the game full of running in the last quarter with a barnstorming finish and fully deserved the big win over a gallant New Norfolk which appeared to run out of steam and should be nearing peak fitness in the next couple of weeks.
A very happy Magpie coach Kim Excel told the Mercury that the indications of a first win were positive, but added “...we won this round last year and all we have done is win round one this year. We have still got another 17 rounds to go." Excell also said: “it will be bloody interesting when we head to New Norfolk in round 10”.
Excell was really proud of the finish. “We were able to do it because 22 guys applied themselves for the full four quarters and we got over the line”. Defeated New Norfolk coach Jon Murray admitted that Claremont was the far better side of the day. “I think we were a little bit physically under-done with fitness and they got the jump on us. We pegged them back in the second quarter which was fantastic. In the second half we started to get heavy legs ... we made mistakes and they capitalised”.
Claremont centre-half-forward Jake Gillie had a night out kicking five goals while big ruckman Simon Spencer was the dominant big man on the ground and gave his players first use of the ball. New Eagle skipper Mark Horne was superb all night and led from the front in the midfield and new recruit Caden Wilson kicked two goals and battled hard all day against two opponents.
Claremont 6.2 6.5 9.9 15.12 (102)
New Norfolk 1.3 5.5 7.6 9.8 (62)
GOALS - Claremont: J. Gillie 5, D. Hunt 3, N. Brown 3, T. Arnold, A. Bennett, A. Arnold, T. Kelly. New Norfolk: C. Wilson 2, A. Tonks 2, R. Belcher, B. Booth, M. Thompson, Z. Gardam, J. McCulloch.
BEST - Claremont: S. Spencer, T. Butterworth, J. Grant, J. Gillie, N. Matthews, P. Bedford. New Norfolk: S. Hall, M. Horne, S. Bonnitcha, R. Heron, J. Papera, A. Tonks.
CLAREMONT 17.15 (117) d NEW NORFOLK 4.7 (31)
GOALS - Claremont: W. Booth 5, B. Nightingale 3, J. Taylor 2, R. Martin 2, W. Byers 2, N. Burdon, A. Triffitt, M. Bird. New Norfolk: B. Coppleman Z. Graham, L. Horne, K. Cashion.
BEST - Claremont: W. Byers, B. Nightingale, W. Booth, S. Bennett, M. Bird, S. Woods. New Norfolk: Z. Graham, L. Horne, J. Kelly, J. King, L. Menzie, K. Cashion.
NEW NORFOLK 10.7 (67) d CLAREMONT 9.8 (62)
GOALS - New Norfolk: J. Banks-Smith 3, J. Foster 2, H. Bielleman 2, J. Eiszele, B. Ransley, T. Purdon. Claremont: T. Goodsell 4, M. Baker, A. Kaye, D. Harrison, D. Cassidy, C. Connors.
BEST - New Norfolk: B. King, R. Wakefield, K. Walker, J. Foster, J. Whitford-Marriott, T. Gillies. Claremont: J. Brown, R. Alforte, A. Kaye, N. Saville, C. Jetson, J. Gadd.
OTHER GAMES (seniors)
Lindisfarne 20.15 (135) d Hobart 5.12 (42)
LINDISFARNE started the season in fine form with an away win over newcomers Hobart by 93 points in a dominant display, however it was hard to gauge whether the Two Blues were that powerful or whether Hobart look to be in for a long season after being remitted back into the SFL.
Sorell 16.11 (107) d Cygnet 12.4 (76)
IN the clash of two teams that had lost several key players from last season, both teams played a good fast brand of football and it appeared a fitter Sorell finished the stronger team and defeated Cygnet by 31 points in a great win away from home.
Dodges Ferry 14.7 (93) defeated Huonville 12.13 (85)
DODGES Ferry started the season under new coach Brad Curran with a courageous six point win away from home against Huonville, which will give the side a lot of confidence coming into the season with a new bunch of players joining to the club.
East Coast Bombers 19.10 (124) defeated Brighton 9.10 (64)
THE East Coast Bombers opened their season with a road trip down to Brighton and they certainly looked to have improved with a polished display against the Robins, eventually winning by 60 points in a great confidence booster to start their season.