CLUB NOTES BY JOHN ACHESON Round 17 last weekend was an away round with Prems on a bye and Div 5 playing an Elimination Final. Ressies had a close encounter with H-P Goannas at Gipps Road. Although the Demons led for most of the match, had our boys kicked better in the first term, 1 goal 8 behinds, the match could have been put to bed before the first change. Inaccuracy in front of goals did not cost us this week, but our kicking needs to improve for the upcoming finals. Luke Bilbe kicked 4 goals in a welcome return to the Ressies. Div 3, in a rehearsal for next week’s Elimination Final against the same opponent, was very disappointing and this was probably the team’s poorest showing this season. As a consequence, we have probably ceded the psychological advantage to Wests and we will need to be better in all facets of the game if we are to go deeper into the finals. The U19 1s returned to better form with a 50 pt win over South Coast Thunder. Matt Preen’s 6 goals is his best return for some weeks and takes his season’s tally to 40. Unfortunately, the U19 2s were forced to forfeit due to insufficient player numbers. At Blacktown ISP, Div 5 (5th) took on H-P Goannas (4th) in the elimination final. The Goannas got the best of the start and had a narrow lead at the first change. Thereafter, Penno out-scored the Goannas 7 goals to 3 for a total of 26 scoring shots to 8 to come away convincing winners by 33 pts. The team’s veteran sharp-shooter, Greg ‘Civil’ Hume kicked 3 majors taking his Div 5 tally to 23. This week is the final H&A round for four of our teams while Div 3 and Div 5 compete in finals. Both play on Sunday at Blacktown ISP; Div 5 in the 1st semi-final versus Penrith and Div 3 in an elimination final against Western Suburbs. Div 5’s only encounter with the Rams this season was way back in Rd 2, Penrith winning by 13 pts. Although they only lost 2 games during the H&A season, the Rams (2nd) were badly mauled by UNSW/ES Bulldogs (3rd) in last weekend’s qualifying final. They will still be formidable opponents this week, particularly dangerous on the rebound. Div 3 were out-muscled, out-thought and generally out-played by Wests last week and it is unlikely that we will play as poorly again as we did then. Expect a much better effort from the Demons this weekend. Prems play North Shore on Saturday. These two teams have played each other 15 times over the past five seasons, with Penno enjoying the honours 10 wins to 5. Considering recent form and relative ladder positions, 3rd versus 8th, Penno should, on paper at least, bring home the bacon. But our boys wont be taking the Bombers lightly and will be looking to generate some good form to take into finals. Assuming other results go as expected, Penno will finish 3rd and play Manly in the qualifying final in week 1 of finals. Ressies play competition leaders Balmain. The minor premiership is still up for grabs and Penno has an outside chance of snatching the top spot if they beat Balmain by a reasonable margin and UTS go down to Sydney Uni. Such a result would mean a three-way tie for the minor premiership, decided then by percentage. However, Penno’s more immediate task is to find its best form to carry into the finals. Under 19 Div 1 plays Sydney Uni in its last H&A game. The minor premiership has been in the bag for a while now, however, our boys will be keen to build on the momentum gained in last week’s win in Wollongong and will be looking for a strong performance against Uni. The Div 2 boys play Moorebank and it would be great if they could close out their season with a victory. So, it’s a full afternoon of footy at MKO on Saturday and then two big finals at Blacktown ISP featuring our Div 3 and Div 5 teams. It would be great to see a large crowd of Demons supporters on Sunday to cheer on the ‘Red & the Blue.” So, come on down. Want to talk Demons history? Then drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.