Wests have clearly had a difficult year only managing one win so far. However, they’re coming off their breakthrough game last week and will be up for the challenge. Penno needs to make every post a winner from now on to ensure a place in the finals. A win this weekend will make it 10 in row against the Maggies!
Division One and Three both play Holroyd-Parramatta Goannas and go in as favourites. Division Five have another stiff challenge when they take on 3rd placed UTS Bats. Confidence will have been rocked last week, so the boys need to come out hard and fast to shake out any early nerves. The Women take on Wollondilly and, based on form and ladder position, go in as strong favourites.
JASON CLARKE EQUALS CLUB RECORD … AGAIN!
In last weekend’s Division Five match against UNSW-ES Bulldogs, Club veteran and Senior Coach, Chris Yard, created history when he played his 320th open-age game for the Demons, setting a new Club games record. About two hours later, in the Division One match against Western Magic, another Club veteran, Jason Clarke, equalled Yardy’s benchmark for the second time in as many weeks. Clarkey has been gradually eroding Yardy’s record over many years and it would seem likely that in Round 12 he will at last claim the club record outright. With the Five’s playing at 11.30am, there is a slim chance that Yardy might don the red & the blue once again, however, it seems likely that he will not put this personal milestone ahead of his coaching duties. Whatever happens, these two champions of the Club are legends of equal merit. Congratulations to them both on fantastic footy careers!
Chris Yard is also approaching another significant milestone, 100 games as Senior Coach. Today’s match against Wests will be his 95th game at the helm of Premier Division and 169th if you include his matches as Reserve Grade Coach (2004 – 2007).
WALER’S 100 GAME MILESTONE
This weekend we celebrate Tim Wales’s 100th open-age club game with the Demons. 2016 is Tim’s 9th season playing with the Senior Club. He was a Westbrook junior and his great football potential was recognised when he was offered an AFL Scholarship to the Geelong Cats in 2008. He first played with Pennant Hills U18s as a 16 year old in 2008. He was 18 when he debuted for Premier Division against East Coast Eagles in Round 8, 2010 (we lost!). He has been a regular member of the first grade side for the past 5 seasons and is one of a coterie of current players who went through the frustration of consecutive Grand Final losses to Manly Warringah in 2013 and 2014, then achieving the ultimate pay-off for all the hard work in last season’s extraordinary victory over Hills rivals East Coast Eagles.
Waler has already achieved much in footy and we congratulate him on his 100 game milestone. Well done Waler!
ROUND 11 WRAP-UP
Our Premier Division had to sit out last weekend, the bye round for Penno, and a series of unexpected results both helped and hindered our position on the competition ladder. UNSW-ES Bulldogs were surprise winners against Manly Warringah and this helped Penno’s cause by preventing the Giants from leap-frogging our position. Penno remains 5th with 4 wins, 5 losses and Manly are 6th, also 4 and 5, but with a lower percentage.
North Shore’s victory over 2nd placed St George, however, meant that the Bombers snuck a further game ahead of the Demons. They are now two games clear of us, in 4th spot, however with a bye to come in a fortnight. In a mixed season so far for North Shore they have knocked off the two top teams, East Coast Eagles and St George Dragons, however, have lost matches against Manly and Sydney University, two teams well down on form this year. The other result that went against the grain, was in the Wests versus Sydney University match, in which Wests registered its first win for the season. Granted, Uni have only had two wins of their own, so there probably was never going to be much between these two teams. East Coast’s comfortable win over 3rd placed UTS Bats, leaves them on top of the ladder, 2 games clear of St George in 2nd place, and hot favourites for the premiership.
In a reversal of the Round 6 result against Western Magic, Penno had what ended up a comfortable win by 35 pts. The Round 6 result was 52 pts to Magic. Five goals to two in the final quarter sealed the deal, however, Penno left most of its scoring to the last few minutes, so there was still a heavy sigh of relief when the final siren sounded. Coach Clarke was happy enough with the outcome but still expressed displeasure and concern at the ease with which the opposition had been able to score their goals. Penno moved to 5th spot on the ladder, leap-frogging Western Magic with their win last week.
Divisions Three & Five
Both Division 3 and 5 remain competition leaders after 12 and 11 rounds, respectively. However, only Division 3 remains undefeated after Division 5 suffered their first loss of the season to second placed UNSW-ES Bulldogs.
Expecting a physical contest against Nor-West Jets, our Division 3 boys were a little hesitant at the start and this allowed Nor-West to kick the opening two goals of the match. Penno clawed its way back to be just a goal behind at quarter time and thereafter were never threatened. Nor-West kicked three first quarter goals but hardly bothered the goal umpires for the rest of the match, kicking no goals and just six points for the remainder of the game.
Over at Wollondilly, the Knights also remain undefeated after 11 matches and the sense of expectation for the first-time clash between Penno and the Knights, set for the wet weather catch-up round now only three weeks away (23 July), is certainly building.
Division 5 played UNSW-ES Bulldogs for the second time this season. In Round 2, Penno had a convincing 58 pt win, however, this proved to be the Bulldogs only loss so far this season. They turned the tables last weekend, giving our boys a real football lesson. They are younger and fitter and ran our guys off their feet. Penno managed one goal per quarter and the Bulldogs kicked 14 goals, the margin of 64 pts confirming a comfortable win. Penno still leads the competition, but only by percentage. UNSW-ES Bulldogs showed themselves to be a very real premiership threat.
Under 19 Division One
Our 19s made the journey to North Dalton Park in Wollongong. This venue, what with the tricky sea breeze that seems always to be blowing across the oval, has a reputation as a bit of a graveyard for visiting sides. What’s worse, the match was scheduled late in the afternoon and would have finished under lights. Windy, cold and dark … what chance did we have? In what looks like a close match, our boys went down by 18pts. Despite the loss, our 19s have retained their 3rd place spot on the ladder but there is only 3 games between 1st and 6th, so there could be considerable churning of ladder positions before season’s end.
Womens Division One
In a game they were not expected to win, our Women’s team acquitted itself very well.
Comparing last week’s result, a loss by 31 pts, to the earlier meeting in Round 3, which was a loss by 74 pts, is a good indicator of how much our girls have improved. Western Magic is a top four side, so to kick 4 goals against them and concede only 8 was a great effort.
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