Well what a weekend of Footy! It seemed the AFL mirrored the NFL in a lot of cases, close finishes everywhere, heartbreak and jubilation – that’s what makes this game of ours so great.

But let’s start on Saturday and send out a big Congrats to our Rooster girls who represented the NFL in the under 15 2017 AFL Victoria Metro Junior Championships Division 1 Grand Final, Beating the YJFL girls 6.4.40 to 4.6.30.
Well done to our girls Ashleigh Snow who was also awarded the best on ground medal, Maeve Chaplin, Abigail Bennett, Jaydah Hope & Tallia Pulcino Who all represented the Roosters with Pride, well done girls. This was the first Grand Final win for an NFL Rep side ever! A great achievement by all involved.

Sticking with Saturday and the first of our thrillers took place at Heidelberg were a see sawing encounter had our Roosters in front in the dying moments, only for the Tigers to snatch victory with a late goal with just seconds remaining to break the hearts of the faithful on hand. The reserves did give us some joy on the day with a solid victory, while our under 19’s got to sleep in as the most financial club in the NFL, don’t see fit to field an under 19’s team – but that’s a different discussion.

Back to Sunday and our Thrillers in Manilla or just the NFL. The under 12’s headed to Epping and after a slow start that allowed Epping to build a sizable lead, our boys and girls stormed back into contention with a late rally that fell agonisingly short by 3 points when the dreaded siren sounded.

At Home the under 15’s took on Eltham and in another classic the boys fought back from an early 4 goal deficit to be just a point behind at half time. In an epic second half, Eltham held sway by a point deep into the last quarter. Having gone down in heartbreaking circumstances last week it looked like another devastating result was on the cards but in the last minute that never say die Rooster spirt saw a goal for the ages sail through the big sticks and Victory was secured. What a great way to celebrate 100 games for Lucas Granata and a fantastic reward for these boys who have showed great fight all year in a tough division.

The high rolling Senior Women’s team on the look-out for an 8th straight win took on Darebin in a 2nd vs 3rd Blockbuster at Bill Lawry oval, and this one didn’t fail to deliver. With never more than a kick in it all day, a desperate final quarter of stout defence and breathtaking attack saw the ball zip from end to end. At the final siren it was a relatively comfortable 6 point win. Well done ladies on another outstanding performance.

The last of our Close encounters of the third kind or was that fourth or fifth was played out at Research with the under 17’s on the road and looking to overturn a 12 point home loss from earlier in the year. In another tight tussle, a slow start was over-come and the boys held sway by 13 points at the last break. What ensured was a frantic last quarter as everything but the kitchen sink, was thrown at our boys. With the margin down to 3 points in the dying stages, there were heroics all over the ground as the boys withstood the tidal wave of Research attacks to record an inspirational victory against a quality opponent.

If you have any breath left after that, we’ll continue with the not so blood pressure raising encounters starting with our youngest crew the 9 Yellow team who were at home against Eltham on the top oval, now while we don’t keep score, chatting with Coach Adrian he was mightily impressed with his young superstars who, when playing this mob earlier in the year they racked up a cricket score and we didn’t trouble the scorers. This time, half the score against and we got ourselves on the scoreboard – that’s what I call improvement. Well done one and all.

9 Red were also at home on the top oval, taking on Diamond Creek in biting cold conditions the team turned on a display of attractive team football that mesmerised the opposition and warmed the local crowd to the core.

While the home action on the top oval finished with our classy under 10 outfit taking on Eltham. Coach Alex braved the icy conditions in his Shorts and T-shirt to encourage the boys to yet another outstanding team performance. If only his beloved Blues could have shown the same commitment, endeavour and Heart later in the day at the G… Go Tiges.

Over on the main oval the under 11’s kicked off proceedings with a clash against Epping, this was a special day for two of our young Roosters in Matthew Warren and SOL (son of Legend, and already much better footballer) Ben Sauro who both played their 50th games, well done boys a great effort. Unfortunately the team could not get the win to celebrate in style, but it was another gutsy display against an impressive Epping outfit.

For the home action that leaves the under 14’s who took on Mernda in a top three clash, from my viewing perch on the hill on the top oval trying to take in as much action as possible on both ovals, this was a hard fought affair with the game in the balance at Half time. A fired up coaches address got the desired results, with the team recording a hard fought win.

For the juniors that leaves just our under 13’s who ventured to the ”Imposter Roosters” of West Ivanhoe and duly delivered a display befitting of a Real Rooster with a devastating display of team football.

Take a breath folks, what an action packed weekend. It was great to see quite a few at the rooms Sunday afternoon for a quite drink and chat – you’ll agree there was much to talk about.

Next week the seniors are away again, seeking redemption at Whittlesea, our Ladies have a much deserved break as they rest up for a finals charge, while our wonderful juniors will again travel far and wide to do us proud.

Don’t forget Ladies day is July 8th, senior home game against Northcote Park, it’s not too late to get a ticket to the hottest event on the calendar.
And check out the website to see our great local sponsors. Make sure you support them when you can and make sure you tell them you’re a Rooster!!

I need a nap.

See you at the footy.

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