Penno AFL Newsletter – ROUND 4 – Back to Baulko

May 8, 2023

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From the President

It has been fantastic to observe the young players stepping up when given the opportunity to this season. Whilst we await returns from injury etc. the depth being built at the club bids well for the season and beyond. Ben Roberts and Tom Dureau are building a solid senior squad, training together. Seeing the academy boys back in for ANZAC day clash step up and do their role is very pleasing. The club has enjoyed working with Mark McVeigh, now at the Swans Academy, on the development of future talent. I am very pleased to announce that Mark will also be assisting the club coaching development, running a coaching session for us at the clubrooms on the 22nd May. We will have all our junior feeder clubs sending coaches to attend also. Thank you Mark for your assistance in developing football in our region. These initiatives are important for our future health.

Mark Carroll, Daniel Fiedler, Jed Corbett and Aaron Crisfield are also working well to strengthen the women’s program. We are so glad to have retained talent from previous seasons and add to this with some exciting new players. Work being done with the junior feeder clubs will enhance the talent coming in over the next few years. Please get to watch the women play. The endeavour over football is outstanding. As they rebound from some tough games, in unfavourable conditions, we will see the chain of attractive football they are becoming known for return.

The joint venture between Westbrook and Pennant Hills Junior Clubs in boys football is exciting for us. Seeing the success this is enjoying so far, observing them play in a jumper very similar to ours and sing our song at the end of games is emboldening. We will work more closely with them to bridge the gap to senior football. The Northwest Lighting girls program has been a great success story from the beginning. With junior girls now achieving 100 game milestones, this experience joining our program over the next few years is also very exciting.

The greater challenge for our club is volunteer support. Everyone wants to have a very positive experience on game days at Club Thursdays or more events. This only happens when people are willing to assist make it happen. Please, I urge you to put your name down to run messages or water for another team, do goal umpiring or time keeping for them, jump on the barbeque or in the canteen. All of these experiences are a great way to get to know others around the club whilst gaining a greater appreciation for what makes a club work. Without you it doesn’t work and the few stepping up will burn out.

Round 4 was the traditional local derby clash with East Coast Eagles, there back to Baulkham Hills Day, at Kanebridge Oval. It was to be a tough day for Premier Division men bodies having come off only a four day turn around from the ANZAC Day clash with Inner West Magpies. There were some players out who were not able to recover and some of the list still out with injuries. Our under 19’s were certainly up for the day as we had a number of ex Baulkham Hills juniors who questioned the connection with East Coast and wanted to also honour their junior club with a positive result.

The ground at Kanebridge was in the best condition seen for a long time. East coast had a caller on the microphone all day, a DJ playing the Eagle rock song too many times to mention and their traditional hill crowd was alive and well, serving it up to our teams. We would not let this upset our plans for the day. The weather would prove to be the greatest challenging of the day for most.

East Coast Eagals, as they call their premier ladies team, were premiers last season so we knew this would be the biggest challenge of the day. The East Coast men are still young and trying to rebuild so we knew they would be quick and keen for the competition but lacking bigger bodies around the ball. Our Men's team needed to use the day to prepare for the tougher block of matches on the horizon.

Todd Williams - Pennant Hills AFL Club President

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Premier Division Men (with thanks to Pennant Hills Toyota)

(PH 9.16.70 defeated East Coast 0.3.3)

Round 4 would see us pitted against our local rivals, the East Coast Eagles, in their big day of the year, ‘back to baulko’. We knew it was going to take some grit after a bruising Anzac game vs a physical wests team 4 days prior.

Whilst the eagles haven’t had the best start to the year, we knew we had to be switched on with their pace & youth evident in their opening 3 games. We lose some key players (Mitchell Blow, Sam Eynaud, Tom Edmonds – soreness, Christian Webster & Cameron Estate – Swans) but welcome in form players from our reserve grade team, Zac Elliot, Oliver Williams, Jack Mortimer & Jonno Moran, it also marked the return of key midfielder, Maine Vidler after a serious knee injury in 2022.

The game started off as expected in a local derby, both teams going in hard to assert the early dominance. Our mature bodies would prevail, getting on top inside which brought our running game into play. Maine was able to kick the first goal of the game which capped off a great come back for the big body mid. Unfortunately, we would lose Jonno Moran to a hamstring injury, best wishes on a speedy recovery mate. We would go on to dominate possession but go in our leading by 18 (2.6) to 0.

We would start the 2nd quarter dominate inside with Jackson Potter & Nick Richards gathering touches at will, with our backline keeping east coast out of their forward half. East Coast to their credit keeping our key forwards in check, conceding to limit to forwards with 16 players at times in our forward 50, We would go into half time leading 33 to 0 in a wet slog.

The 3rd quarter was much the same, the ball was trapped in our forward half with east coast unable to break our press. They would get a free kick and shot on goal, only to kick a behind. Our backs were sensational all game, Mitch Kunigiskis, Tom Angel, Mikey Carroll & Connor Matthews all playing key roles.

The last quarter would be our most effective, we were able to create some room for our forwards to work in with big H (Harry Maguire) & Theo getting on top, after throwing themselves at contest & packs all day. Maine would hit the scoreboard again and we would run out victors by 67 points, the most pleasing aspect was not allowing a single goal.

Blakey would go on to win our infamous ‘players player’ award, which was well deserved. Ex premiership captain, Tom Angel again was instrumental in rallying our troops down back with some grunt work inside. Richards, Potter, Skrivanic all would play key roles in the midfield, with Kunigsikis, Carroll & Matthews all key clogs in keeping the eagles to 3 behinds.

Ben Roberts - Premier Division Men's Coach

Best: J. Blakemore, T. Angel, N. Richards, J. Potter, M. Kunigiskis, L. Skrivanic
Goals: T. Moraitis 3, M. Vidler 2, H. Maguire 2, J. Gunstone 1, J. Potter 1

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Premier Division Women

(PH 1.2.8 defeated by East Coast Eagals 8.10.58)

This was a game where we knew we had to take our chances if we had to beat the reigning Premiers of the competition. East Coast do not often slip up and are a very physical and fast team. In 2022 we had won 4/8 quarters we played against East Coast, and came off with a loss with both. The aim was to get some redemption.

The first quarter saw us much more even to East Coast than the score reflected, as they scored 3 goals to our 0. A couple of cheap free kicks that we gave away led to goals, but we had some strong spoiling out in the backs from Amie Maguire and Kaitlin Quinlan.

The second quarter was a different affair, as we struggled to keep up with East Coast’s pace in the centre, and they continued to have more numbers at the ball to us. Simply being outnumbered hurt us this quarter, as East Coast kicked 4 goals to our none. Our backs worked tirelessly to pressurise the opposition when needed, with Kaity Noble making some strong tackles when needed.

The third and fourth quarter we were a much more improved side, and we only conceded one goal the entire 2nd half thanks to the resilience of the entire team. We scored a great goal through Hayley Lowe, but it was great to see the Angels prove that they can hang with the best team in the competition when they push themselves to the limit.

Elly Rudd and Eliza Harvey were standouts in the middle of the ground in the second half, as was Laura Donohoe making strong leads and weaving her way around East Coast’s strong defensive pack. Next week we come up against newly merged Macquarie/Parramatta. This will be a test and a key game for us to win, putting us back into the top 4.

Fids - Premier Division Women's Coach

Best: A. Maguire, E. Harvey, E. Rudd, H. Lowe, L. Donohoe, K. Quinlan.
Goal Kickers: H. Lowe 1.

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Under 19's Division 1

(PH 8.13.61 defeated East Coast 5.2.32)

This past week the U19's took on the East Coast Eagles at their "Back-to-Baulko" day in the pouring rain nice and early. We had played East Coast in a practice match prior to round 1 which helped in terms of understanding what we were dealing with.

Fair to say it was a frustrating affair from the get go with us dominating a large portion of the game but never seemed to be able to put the hosting side away. We said from the start we were just going to have to grind the game out. Didn't have to be pretty, we just wanted to get the job done.

2nd term was fairly even with the Eagles straight kicking keeping them in the game and the 3rd only saw one goal between both sides. The last we knew we had them where we wanted them we just had to put the nail in the coffin, a 4 goal to 2 saw us close the game out by 29 points.

Liam "Spider" Everett and Mitchell Zywietz were exceptional all day by doing the simple things well, bodylining the footy and being clean with their skills. Kyan was fantastic in the ruck and Tom K was very solid in the air down back. Nathan C and Jacob Adams both had their best games for our team so far this year with fantastic front half pressure and both kicking a goal each in reward for their efforts.

Looking forward to SWS next week

Joel Cousens - U19's Division 1 Coach

Best: L. Everett, M. Zywietz, K. Upsall, T. Kohlhagen, N. Cranwell, J. Adams.
Goal Kickers: A. Murdoch 2, P. McMurrich 2, L. Fraser 1, N. Cranwell 1, D. Bonham 1, J. Adams 1.

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Premier Division Reserves

(PH 13.27.105 defeated East Coast 2.2.14)

We travelled to Kellyville this week to take on East Coast on a miserable day.

It was a special day for our team as we celebrated Mitch Trenaman’s 100th game. Mitch is a heart and soul player for our group, and one everyone looks up to, so getting the win today was extremely important for our group.

The first quarter was an interesting one. We kicked the first goal, and ECE responded – maybe we were in for a tougher day than anticipated?

After a rev-up at quarter time, the boys came out firing in the second quarter and put on 38 points while holding ECE scoreless.

The second half was much the same. Although the weather was terrible, we were clean with our ball-use and excellent with our skills. We ended up running out the game ahead by 91 points. Inaccuracy in front of goal was our biggest issue on Saturday, but with the bye this week it allows us time to hone that skill and prepare for UTS away the following week.

Saturday was an excellent team game overall, but there are a few notable mentions. Ollie Maybury was incredible in defence, Baba Elkander competed all day, Matty Hall was excellent out on the wing, and Mitch Trenaman was outstanding in his milestone match.

Well done to our boys, they fought hard all day and have earned themselves a well-deserved break with the bye this weekend.

Tom Dureau - Premier Division Men's Coach

Goal Kickers: S. Zikman 3, A. Wilkinson 2, B. Elkander 2, J. Preedy 1, M. Hall 1, M. Carey 1, M. Weathers 1, M. Trenaman 1, O. Nockles 1,
Best: O. Maybury, B. Elkander, M. Hall, M. Trenaman, D. Carnahan, M. Collins

Division 1 Men

(PH 12.8.80 defeated Jets 2.4.16)

Round 4 saw a scenic drive out to Bensons Lane Richmond to take on the newly promoted Hawkesbury Saints on a wet and miserable Saturday. With the Hawkesbury Show on just down the road, the players need to be commended for remaining focused on the job at hand.

Whilst the weather wasn’t the greatest, the ground held up quite well considering. A goal within the 1st minute from Jy Durkin followed by his 2nd a few minutes later ensured we were able to get off to a good start. The wet conditions and heavy Sherrin made for a physical and tight contest however our superior skill and fitness levels enabled us to maintain a comfortable lead throughout. Consistent quarters of 4, 3, 3 & 2 goals saw us run out comfortable winners 12.8 to 2.4. To the oppositions credit, they kept on fighting until the end making sure we had to earn every possession.

A good team effort from everyone with the better players being Durkin who keeps on finding himself in the right spot, big Ethan Sydenhan on his return who gave us first use in the middle, the ever reliable Zac Lorschy in both defence and up forward, Supercoach Corbett who made the wet conditions look easy with his clean ball handling with onballers Jono Friend and Josh Natoli being the two standouts with their relentless attack on both the ball and man.

Solid effort from all with a week off to recover before we take on Randwick at their home ground.

Seb Parker - Division 1 Men's Coach

Goal Kickers: A. Nixon 3, J. Corbett 2, Z. Lorschy 2, J. Durkin 2, J. Alford 2, A. Vink 1
Best: J. Natoli, J. Friend, J. Corbett, Z. Lorschy, E. Sydenham, J. Durkin.

Division 1 Women

(PH 5.3.33 defeated by East Coast 5.7.37)

It was a wet day and we had the prime time slot of 5pm in the rain and cold. We knew it would be scrappy and so the idea for the game was tackle pressure and territory, trying to lock the ball in our forward half as much as possible to try and score.

We started off very strongly, a goal to Riley Quinn in the first 25 seconds and we were off to a great start. Our pressure and tackling was fantastic and we were playing the wet conditions well. We kicked another in the first quarter and kept them scoreless. Second quarter was more of the same, our midfield was working well and smart setup around the ball by Emily Carroll and Lauren Jacobs meant that it was hard for East Coast to move the ball. We went in at the half up 26-9.

The third quarter saw East Coast come out strongly and they kicked a few early goals to really peg back our lead. We managed to kick one goal but they had started to be able to break away from contests and utilise their run and we were clinging to a 4 point lead going into the final quarter.

From there it was a slug fest, very contested and tight and our defence was working extremely hard to try to stop the bombardment. We weren’t able to move the ball out into our forward half and eventually East Coast kicked a goal to win it with a few minutes left. A tough one to lose by 4 points but lots of positives to come from it. It will shape up for a great game next time we meet and one we definitely want to get back.

Jed Corbett - Division 1 Women's Coach

Goal Kickers: J. Llamas 1, R. Quinn 1, A. Gammie 1, A. Grubba 1, B. Nash 1,
Best: E. Dunn, J. Blow, L. Jacobs, E. Carroll, R. Quinn, B. Hutchings

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Division 2 Men

(PH 2.3.15 defeated by North Shore 13.14.92)

Over to Gore Hill on Saturday for an early game to take on top of the ladder North Shore. Was a good start to the day beating the rain but unfortunately that was the only win. We stood up well to a very skilled fast team with some great defensive pressure and acts. Young Callum Toohey took a role on their number one forward and stood up very well for his third game earning a best on ground nod.

He wasn’t the only new defensive player who had a big impact, Richard Fornari also stood up at centre half back playing a very strong role. It was also great to see Braydon Rohr’s development in the midfield improving as he took the game on and never gave in.

By the start of the 3rd quarter we had a few injuries and had no spare on the bench so the boys had to run out the day. We still held strong not falling over too much. Even though the score board doesn’t go our way there are always positives to take away.

Big thankyou to the masters who filled in on the weekend. They all played awesome and bought some great old football minds to our side.

Warren Atwell - Division 2 Men's Coach

Goal Kickers: not recorded
Best: C. Toohey, N. Breen, A. Huggins, B. Rohr, R. Fornari, H. McDiarmid

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Division 3 Women

MOU with Western Magic VS St George
(WM 0.3.3 defeated by St George 4.8.32)

On a wet rainy morning at Blacktown no 2, Western Magic Div 3 hit off against St George.

St George started well with strong clearances from the middle, and despite strong defense were able to snag 2 goals in the quarter.

A big welcome to Kat for her first game of AFL and Kellie for her first game with the club. Together with Gabby they were in the middle and the wings and ran hard all day. Kellie had some strong possessions and tackles.

The second quarter saw St George continue to push forward but Rachel, Ali and Soph were doing a power of work and clearing out of defense well. Magic were struggling to get the ball into the forward line and only managed a point for the qtr. Sara went to the forward line and competed well but was not getting much opportunity.

The third qtr saw more of the same although Magic were starting to gel and win more of the contested ball. Rachel was really shining in the backline with lots of marks and clearances.

The last qtr saw Magic really come together as a team and took the game up to St George. Sara was desperately unlucky not to get a goal when she was pushed in the back in the goalsquare. Good work from Magic to win the last qtr. Hopefully we can continue this last qtr form into the next game.

Mark Carroll - Head of Women's Program

Under 19's Division 2

(PH 41.0.6 defeated by Manly 10.14.74)

The boys had a good hit out in shocking weather on Saturday against Manly.

Starting again with no bench, they really took a classy Manly side by surprise with their relentless pressure – hounding the opposition on the ball and again being the first to every contest. This effort really showed with Manly struggling for accuracy early.

As the game continued on the effort didn’t let up, however the lack of reinforcements made it tough on the lads with Manly starting to pull away. Despite some tinkering with positions the boys never gave up, with a special mention to Cooper Smith who was a terrier down back and, in the middle, – consistently giving repeat efforts and refusing to be beaten. I can imagine there were a few opposition boys who were keen to see the back of Cooper, our BOG for the game.

Leandre really stepped up in this one with the absence of our inspirational captain Jack – Trent & I could consistently hear Dre marshalling the troops from the back, his organisational skills a huge reason why Manly were never able to really take the score to the next level. Similarly, Toby really battled hard again, taking his play from last match up another notch – consistently battling with and beating the opposite ruckman to the punch, despite having nobody out there to give him a spell.

Mark again showed his class through the middle –showing moments of real brilliance, a fantastic sign for the young man, never looking out of place despite his freshness to 19’s footy.

It was fantastic to see the boys lift again in the fourth quarter, saving their best for last 2 weeks in a row, outworking and outhustling their opposition – led by an inspirational quarter from Thomas Catlin, who despite being moved out of position laid four tackles in the term – one of which led to an outstanding team goal scored by Max Newley, another one of our young brigade who are really stepping up.

Honestly, for the second week in a row I can say that this team should be holding their heads high, and if they keep playing like I know they are able to, will start to see results turning in their favour. Great game again boys and look forwards to seeing another inspiring effort next week.

Harry McDiarmid - U19's Division 2 Coach

Goal Kickers: not recorded
Best: H. Baxter, L. Pandoulis, T. Conway, M. Mifsud, T. Caitlin, S. Paris

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