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We won't accept honourable losses
Round Number 11, Saturday, 25 June 2016
- Opponent: Uni Blues
- Match Result: Loss
- Played at: Home
Q1 Q2 Q3 Final Score Us 3.3 5.3 7.5 9.5.59 Them 3.3 4.4 8.7 17.11.113
Best Players: L. Crozier, J. Rowe, B. Smithwick, A. Sloan, J. Gaff, L. Fotheringham
Saturday saw the Panthers host Uni Blues with five forced changes from the previous week due to injury and unavailability. We were in a buoyant mood despite this, as the changes give someone else opportunity and we were thrilled to have Tim Smith back in the fold - the 40th player to have represented the Panthers in season 2016.
It was evident from the opening bounce that Old Carey's new found intensity displayed last week v OM's was present, and we went toe-to-toe with the table-topping Uni Blues in the first quarter. In another 'black cat' moment we were down two rotations by the 10 minute mark of the game, with last week's young guns Nichols and Carter-Taylor out of the game for good. This did not define us and we went in at quarter-time 3.3 (21) apiece on the back of great clearance work and run all round the ground.
Lewis Fotheringham gave us consistent first use in a Herculean performance rucking all day, and the back six held firm with the help of great pressure up the ground from the forwards and mids. For the first time in 2016 we went in at half-time leading, 5.3 (33) to 4.4 (29).
When James Gaff kicked the first goal of the second half, we led by 11 points and the boys started to believe. Uni Blues are the top team for a reason and we knew they'd come back hard which they did. The boys continued to fight and we were right in the game at three-quarter time being only eight points down and with a real sniff of our first win for the year.
Alas, fatigue took its toll on our young side and we were rolled by a physically stronger outfit in the last quarter, eventually going down 17.11 (113) to 9.5 (59).
The scores do not indicate the closeness of the contest for three quarters.
Jules Rowe was superb up front kicking five goals of the team’s nine, and our leaders Ben Smithwick, Joel Rice and Sam Cust never stopped trying. It was great to see younger players like Patty Cremean, Andrew Sloan and Lachie Macleod really take it up to the top side and Luke Crozier was huge all day down back.
The boys were disappointed which is a good sign that we will not accept honourable losses as something that defines us.
We face SKOB's next week away and are determined to continue our upward curve and show them they have a fight on their hands.