Queensland Win After Siren
Queensland Under 18 State side walked away with a lucky win on Saturday when they took on the Bendigo Pioneers in the TAC Cup competition.
The interstaters were the dominant force throughout the game; however they waited until the dying moments of the match to steal a 3 point victory over Bendigo.
The Pioneers kicked off the opening quarter of this Country Round contest by slotting through the first major thanks to Blake O’Halloran. Queensland responded quickly through Jordan Bourke, but the interstate side let themselves down through their defence with Bendigo being given the space to lead forward without deterrence.
Queensland was let off the hook due to the Pioneers not being able to convert on their opportunities in front of goal.
The interstaters finished the first term seven points ahead but the quarter highlighted that both teams were lacking some pace and energy, with several players looking more like spectators than contributors.
Following the quarter time break, both teams came out firing with a hard hitting brand of footy. Bourke provided a solid target in Queensland’s forward line, kicking his second of three goals for the match.
Bendigo made the contest even harder on themselves with poor communication across the ground costing them in unnecessary turnovers.
Queensland’s tall timber began to dominate the ruck in the second term which shifted the momentum of the game in their favour. This centre supremacy was obvious at the end of the match with Queensland winning overall hit-outs 45 to Bendigo’s 29.
The start of the third term saw the heavens open and hammering rain cover Victoria Park. The conditions brought about an extreme shift in play with Bendigo scrabbling successfully at every contest to pull a 26 point gap back to a mere 4 points.
Queensland yet again was burdened in defence, letting Bendigo make effortless decisions.
The final quarter produced an exciting style of footy, with Queensland kicking the term off well with a handful of goals. Bendigo soon fought back to take the lead for the first time since the opening minutes of the game.
The match ended with a film script finale. Queensland was down by 3 points before small forward Daniel Brown received a free kick 20 metres out from goal on an angle. The siren sounded as he paced his way back to line up for goal, shifting his teams hopes onto his individual shoulders. Brown slotted though a wobbly looking kick that gave the interstate side a 3 point win.
The Pioneers Oliver Wines had an outstanding game amassing 20 disposals, 13 tackles and booting 3 goals – earning a best on ground performance for his side.
Although not named in the best, Queenslander Aliir Aliir highlighted the immense potential that he holds for the future. The athletic ruckman showcased his leap coupled with delicate and methodical taps to his teammates.
Queensland’s minor win will provide the team with confidence leading into their NAB AFL Under 18 Championship match against WA this weekend. They may not be a premiership contender, but the side possesses some fantastic draft options come November.
Bendigo Pioneers will continue their TAC Cup season by lining up against the bottom side, Eastern Ranges. The game will take place on Saturday 2nd June at Epsom/Huntly Reserve – 1pm.
Queensland 11.7.73 def Bendigo Pioneers 10.10.70