Rovers defeat Prahran

The Hampton Rovers put on an impressive display to down third-placed Prahran by 43 points at Boss James Reserve on Saturday. The win sees the Rovers move up a spot on the ladder and square the ledger at 4-4.

So far this year, the Rovers had struggled against top sides while demolishing the lower teams. As the team continues to gel and after last week’s 201-point thumping of Therry Penola, the boys were keen to put on a good performance and make it back-to-back wins for the first time in 2007.

And that they did, shooting out of the blocks kicking 10 goals in the opening quarter to Prahran’s 2, setting up a 50-point lead at the first break.

Coach Gary Sheldon urged the players not to let up in the second quarter as was the case last week. It was a much closer contest in the second with both teams managing four majors each.

Playing in his 150th senior game, Rovers full-back Gerrard Woods was solid as always as the Rovers defence held strong. Stuart Burggraaff was also playing a milestone game – his 100th senior, as he played his first game since returning from injury.

Another big crowd was on hand at Boss James, and after the main break, the Two Blues applied further scoreboard pressure kicking 5 goals however the Rovers managed 3 of their own and at three-quarter time, the home team still held a handy 37-point lead.

The Prahran full-back did a superb job on Matthew Lawrence preventing the section’s top goal scorer from kicking a single major. However other players stepped up including Jason Zampaglione kicked 4 while Anton Duddy managed 3.

It was a tight final term with both teams managing two majors. At the final siren, it was the Rovers prevailing 19.15 (129) to Prahran 13.8 (86).

Rovers onballer Leigh Fletcher was best on ground while Mark Ferrari played his best game since joining the club. Other best players were Anton Duddy, Gerrard Woods, Jason Zampaglione and Gary Carr.

As well as Zampaglione and Duddy’s 4 and 3 goals respectively, the Rovers other goal kickers were Rob Alexander, Daniel Andersen, Leigh De Boer and Trembath all with 2 each, and singles to Mark Devereaux, Mark Ferrari, Brenton Holt and Josh Verlin.

Next week the Rovers face another big game against second-placed Oakleigh away at Scammell Reserve.

The Reserves held a 29-point lead at quarter time, but only managed another 3 goals for the game as Prahran ran over the home side. The scores were all square with just moments remaining in the game, however it was Prahran who kicked a goal on the siren to win it by 6 points.

Best players for the Rovers were Chris Delosa, Lee Smith, Tom Mitchell, Rob Lang, Mitch Westhead and Max Greenway. Ash Fisher and Cain Malthouse both kicked 2 goals each with singles to Nick Evans, Matthew Gray, Tom Mitchell, Jarred Schafer and Jeremy Yelland.

On Sunday, the Under 19’s faced Ajax at Elsternwick Park Oval 2. The small ground and conditions didn’t suit the Rovers who went down by 8 points in a tight game. Best players were Cameron Bell, Tom McCarthy, Richard McKeon and Kyle Pinto.

HAMPTON ROVERS  10.3  14.5  17.7  19.15 (129)
PRAHRAN  2.1  6.4  11.6  13.8 (86)
Goals: Zampaglione 4, Duddy 3, Alexander 2, Andersen 2, De Boer 2, Trembath 2, Devereaux, Ferrari, Holt, Verlin.
Best: L.Fletcher, Ferrari, Duddy, Woods, Zampaglione, Carr.

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