Rovers get the job done against Lions

Hampton Rovers recorded a gritty 22-point victory over Therry Penola in damp conditions at Boss James Reserve on Saturday, to remain unbeaten after the opening six rounds of the season.

While the conditions weren’t the best, the breeze favouring the northern end of the Boss favoured the Rovers in the opening term. With goals to Rich Atkins and Speedy McPherson, Hampton managed to hold the opposition goalless but there were ominous signs.  Their five behinds could easily have been five goals.  The Rovers backs were under pressure as the Therry midfielders kept breaking out of the centre and hitting targets with pinpoint accuracy.  Up forward, Hampton’s forward moves were not fluid giving the opposition backs time to blanket our forwards.

Against the breeze in the second term, the supporters were a little anxious given the tight scoreline compared to that of previous weeks. Goals to Adam McNeil from the 50m line and Danny Corp soon after gave the home side a handy margin but not for long.  The Dean Rioli coached Therry boys were relentless in their attack on the ball and the man. A couple of easy goals to them, an easy mark straight in front and then a bad mistake from a throw in allowed them to waltz into the open goal.  Fortunately, Jessie Donald, using his speed and strength, broke free and goaled from outside 50m.  Eighteen points up at half time but it was a battle.  Josh Broadley was playing well in the ruck, Christian Carnovale was bashing and crashing through the midfield and Adam McNeil was effective around the ground.  The Rovers lost Adam Schaeche to an ankle injury half way through the quarter and he was out for the remainder of the game.

At the main break skipper, Christian Carnovale, summed it up “they’re making the intercepts all around the ground and we just can’t get our ball movement happening”.  Coach Anthony Quon was more emphatic “Just win the ball!”

The visitors, with the wind in the third term, bombarded the scoreboard in the first half of the quarter and fortunately for the Rovers, only returned 2.4 on the scoreboard.  When Oscar Roberts and Luke Deville collided in the goal square, they were both forced from the ground and the Rovers were down to one rotation on the bench with Therry taking advantage with a couple more goals – both from free kicks.  The skipper lifted and his two goals in a minute were inspirational. One point up at the final break, one on the bench – the Hampton backs were against the wall, and the game was up for the taking.

The arm wrestle ended at the 10-minute mark when Jess Donald burst free and goaled from 50.  Everyone at the ground endured another 15 minutes of tough, hard footy where the only scores were behinds.  Some lifted, Richard Atkins, made a couple of great plays, Ben Kneebush was wearing the Therry mid like a glove and eventually the tide started to turn.  As the rain started to tumble, goals to Ant Folino, Lachie Cairns and Adam McNeil with a minute to go and the Rovers were home with what turned out to be a comfortable 22-point margin.

Congratulations to Corey Jones who played his 200th club game. Next up, the Rovers face rivals Oakleigh away at WA Scammell Reserve. Then it’s Preston Bullants at home and the big one against second-placed Ormond, also at the Boss, to round out the first half of the season.

HAMPTON ROVERS  2.4  5.8  7.8  11.13 (79)
THERRY PENOLA  0.5  2.7  6.13  7.15 (57)
Goal Kickers: C. Carnovale 2, A. McNeil 2, J. Donald 2, J. McPherson, D. Corp, R. Atkins, A. Folino, L. Cairns
Best Players: J. Broadley, S. Clements, B. Kneebush, S. Curry, J. Donald, A. Folino

Watch the full match replay >

A hard-fought win by Reserves over Therry Penola (read match report) and a big 108-point win by the Thirds over West Brunswick with captain Adam Power kicking seven goals. The U19s were outclassed by Old Trinity and the Senior Women lost to Beaumaris at Boss James Reserve on Friday night.

It was a big day at Boss James Reserve with the sold-out Ladies Luncheon prior to the main game. Over 120 people were in attendance as over $2,000 was raised for charity Brainwave. Read more about the function >

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