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The Courier SPORT Wednesday, May 13, 2015 – PAGE 7
DIVISION 2 FOOTBALL
with Ben Goldfinch
Great anticipation surrounded last
Saturday’s top of the table Hills
Football League Division 2 A-grade
Callington and Nairne-Bremer
United at Bridgewater Oval.
The respective sides entered the Round
5 clash with unblemished records, and the
crowd was greeted by a gloomy sky and
further threatening rain.
The senior teams had the best of the
conditions for the day and it was the
Raiders who took charge with a 25-23 to
“They won the midfield battle quite clearly
and that was the game,” commented Nairne
coach Tony Fielke.
“If you don’t win the midfield at Bridgewater
you’re not going to win.
“They got away to a really great start and
that was the ball game really.”
Bridgewater shot out of the blocks from the
opening centre break, as Adam Houlahan
missed in the opening 30 seconds.
The Raiders held the ball in the forward
line and skipper Steve Smith presented on a
strong lead taking the mark and converting
to open the account for the match.
Tight contested football in the centre of the
ground resulted in Nairne pushing forward
and key forward Jamahl Liddle scored his
first for the Rams.
The Raiders then dominated in the centre
and Samuel Naley scored in his debut
A-grade game, with further goals following
to Johnny McDonald, Jonty Schulz and
This period also included numerous
missed opportunities by the Raiders.
Nairne sharpshooter Chris Ladhams
converted his first major, which was followed
by a coast-to-coast effort finished by Liddle.
The Raiders led by 25 points at quarter
time after kicking 6-8 to 3-1 for the stanza.
Following on from the first term, skipper
Smith opened the scoring for the Raiders in
the second stanza.
The Rams responded once again through
Ladhams and both teams traded goals on
the tight confines.
It was clear that centre breaks were critical
and the Raiders squandered numerous
This let the Rams in during the closing
stages of the second quarter with four
Ladhams kicked two and demonstrated his
experience, along with Luke Murphy, who
also chipped in with one.
Bridgewater had 12 more scoring shots
than the Rams at half-time, however, the
Rams had cut the deficit to 17 points.
The crowd discussion at half-time revolved
around the better than expected conditions,
the high scoring nature of the match, and
whether the Raiders might pay for their
The third quarter opened in exactly the
same fashion as the initial two with Smith of
the Raiders kicking the opening goal.
Bridgewater kicked away when Adam
Leister kicked two in a minute and the lead
had quickly blown out to six goals, with
McDonald and Perry dominating in the
To the Rams credit they kept attacking and
couldn’t miss when they went forward.
Goals to Kain Ford, Elijah Rupcic and
Murphy narrowed the deficit, before
Bridgewater skipper Smith took a strong
mark and converted a steadying goal.
The Raiders managed four further goals
for the quarter and the Rams kept some
hope alive by kicking accurately from limited
Ladhams continued to display his class
and at the last change it was the Raiders
by 26 points.
There was plenty riding on the line at the
start of the fourth quarter with outright top
spot up for grabs.
The Raiders were in unchartered territory
and the Rams were desperate to fight back.
Ladhams opened the quarter for the Rams
cutting the deficit to 20 points.
McDonald answered kicking his fourth for
the afternoon, and then it was the Raiders
who took control.
A transition from the back pocket was
finished by Flatman for the hosts.
The Raiders had control of the centre
clearances with five unanswered goals,
including one by Fearnhead from the green
shed pocket, followed by Fielding in the
Bridgewater secured a comfortable
55-point win and it was Ladhams, Murphy
and Liddle, who kept the Rams up and
about throughout the clash.
Ladhams with seven goals for the afternoon
was clearly the Rams best player.
Smith led from the front for Bridgewater
and his seven-goal effort was also backed
up with some on ball work, which kept other
players scoring for the Raiders.
McDonald again demonstrated why the
Raiders are glad to have him back in their
ranks, however, overall it was a great effort
by the home team.
Now you can keep up to date with Hills sport while out of
the district by checking our website at www.courier.net.au
Influential Bridgewater midfielder John McDonald (left) eludes the
challenge of Nairne-Bremer ruckman Mitch Hein in Saturday’s Hills
Division 2 A-grade football encounter at Bridgewater Oval. McDonald was
high in the best players once again as the hosting Raiders cemented top
place on the premiership ladder with a solid 55-point victory.
Nairne-Bremer’s Calen Smith (front left) determinedly attempts to bullock his way free from
the joint tackle of Bridgewater-Callington Raiders Josh Fielding and Max Wakefield (right) in
Saturday’s Hills Football League Division 2 A-grade fixture. The hosting Raiders displayed some
wayward accuracy but were able to snare a clear cut win in the top of the table battle.
Neighboring rivals Lobethal (2-3) and Torrens
Valley (5-0) do battle at Thomas Foods
International Park in Lobethal this Saturday.
The Hills Division 1 match will be broadcast live on 88.9FM
Hills Radio from 2pm.
The Tigers form has been up and down, whilst the Valley
Lions have been strong since Round 1.
Victories against Onka Valley and Mt Lofty appeared to
spark Lobethal, however, it was out pressured by Ironbank
in Round 5.
Lobethal have the personnel, but have been frustrating and
undisciplined at key moments.
Torrens Valley spearhead Dale Ellis grasped the mantle
with eight goals against Blackwood.
Ellis and John Boras have combined for 41 goals, whilst
Brad Hunter and Anthony Cooper should return, further
strengthening a confident Lions playing group.
Mt Barker host Ironbank with both sides having chalked up
The Barkeroos slipped away from Mt Lofty with a six-goal
third quarter and Jack Lores’ game breaking pace was on
display. Stuart Hill has kicked 11 goals in the past three
rounds, however, playing coach Lucas Block appears to be
Ironbank were missing Daniel Motlop and Cam DeVisser
last Saturday, but found a way to win.
Goal scoring duties were spread with Adam Shearwood,
skipper Will Muirden, Will Van Den Berg and Mark Harrison
kicking multiple majors.
Ironbank’s forward pressure was superb against Lobethal.
Onka Valley (0-5) host Echunga (3-2) and the Valley
Bulldogs’ A-grade and B-grade have been decimated by
injury, resulting in sitting bottom on the club shield.
Damian Green, Ben Hochuli, Sam Ferraro, Adam Grocke,
Ben Pfeiffer, Ben Woolford, Josh Oddy, Angus Glazbrook,
Tyler Bosman and Tom Jefferies are all currently missing
from the A-grade.
Steve Tanner played his first game for the season last
Onkas have been highly competitive in the majority of
matches, including last Saturday’s contest against Uraidla.
Echunga’s depth is being tested, with Adam Edwards,
Dwayne Henke, Brock Rothe, Henry Reuther, Steven and
David Edmonds, Eddie Legallant, Luke Carey and Jake
Girke missing against Hahndorf.
Coach Lindsay Bassani delivered some stern words
following the loss to Hahndorf and a strong response is
expected from the southern Demons.
Hahndorf (3-2) have equalled last season’s winning quota,
and host Blackwood (2-3) at Pine Avenue.
Despite missing Darcy Hourigan for three quarters, the
Magpies shared the workload against Echunga, with David
Hankin kicking four.
Big cats battle
Hahndorf ’s next generation have a winning mindset from
colts football and aren’t overawed.
Invaluable onfield leader Michael Handby should play his
Blackwood coach Damian Salievic would have been
disappointed with his side’s second half against Torrens
The Woods kicked 1-6 during the second quarter and
failed to make the most of opportunities.
A key match up is Glenn Dundovic’s battle with Scott
Purling, whilst running defender Kurt Thompson is one of
the in-form players in the HFL.
Undefeated Uraidla Districts (5-0) host Mt Lofty (1-4)
and the hosts are well aware Mt Lofty possess a talented
young group, and an elite midfield, led by Brad Burch and
Sam Miles, whilst Ben Pohl can provide headaches in
attack when on song.
Uraidla have suffocated sides, conceding a miserly six
goals per game, and Trav Oakley has kicked nine goals.
Macclesfield (2-2) and Kangarilla (2-2) clash at
Macclesfield Oval on Saturday and the visitors are quietly
confident about making it three wins on the trot
With victories against Gumeracha and Sedan-Cambrai,
fifth ranked Kangarilla are confident and itching to take on
Kangarila duo Matthew Spencely and Mitchell Young
combined for 13 goals against Sedan-Cambrai, whilst Jake
Spencely posted five for Macclesfield against Gumeracha.
Meadows trailed Kersbrook by just 16 points at three-
quarter time before being over-run in the final term.
The youthful southern Bulldogs can’t afford to go into their
shell this Saturday as they confront another stiff challenge
against undefeated Bridgewater at Meadows Oval.
The Raiders midfield were simply superb against Nairne,
with Steve Smith and John McDonald combining for 11
Birdwood (1-3) will be aiming to move back into the top
five with a victory against winless Gumeracha.
Fresh from the bye, the Roosters proved their wares
against Bridgewater in Round 4, whilst the northern
Magpies are struggling with personnel.
The more Birdwood play together the better it will be, and
now it’s about getting some consistency.
Kersbrook host Sedan-Cambrai and the Brookers did
enough against Meadows, with co-skipper Matt Gardner
posting six majors.
Sedan-Cambrai will be disappointed with the past
fortnight against Kangarilla and Meadows, whilst the
Brookers are gearing up for their Round 7 top of the table
battle against Bridgewater.
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