We picked the right week to play on plastic.
As Sydney copped a drenching and grounds were under water, we had the luxury of the ELS Hall synthetic surface, although there were envious looks at the kids trudging off the lower oval covered in mud.
While we love a bit of mud footy, the good surface contributed to a cracking high scoring game of to and fro, but we just ran out of legs in the end.
It allowed the lads to again show their maturing skills – Alex, Nic and Andrew in the air, Archie gobbling up gifts from the opposition ruckman, Joey’s speed and dare, while the boys also showed plenty of grunt and backed each other up when things got physical.
After allowing Forest to skip away with the first few goals, we woke up and took control of the game to kick the next four goals and hold a handy lead.
We’d been threatening for a while until Sam F gathered a Forest clearance on the wall and loaded up to goal from just inside the 50m and put us on the scoreboard.
Tommo was tough in defence with his fierce tackling and rebound and Manfred was taking the game on, with a penetrating run and bounce through the middle to send the ball deep into our forward line.
With the momentum our way, we carried on in the second quarter, as Archie won a hard ball in the middle and kicked long to the goal square where Joey crumbed off the pack for the first of his two goals in the term.
Andrew and Sam combined with strength and smarts in defence, while Ozy came into his own on the wing with tackles and shepherds, taking marks and delivering clever kicks to teammates.
Paddy combined a hard ball get with some fancy footwork around the boundary line to set up Alex’s first goal, while Nic started the next in the back pocket. His dash out of defence found Alex who kicked to a pack on the forward flank where Joey again pounced on the crumbs and sped away with a bounce to goal on the run and all of a sudden we were 12 points up.
To Forest’s credit, they hit back with a pair of goals to lead by one point at half time.
It went goal for goal in a ripping third quarter as Andrew and Archie provided the drive and Alex finished off with the class for a pair of goals. AOur Cannons stepped up for each other and kept the margin to two points as the three quarter time siren loomed until Forest snuck a late goal in to take an eight point lead into the final break.
We started the final quarter on top as tough physical stuff from Tommo in defence set up Joey who combined with Paddy and then Finn to centre the ball to X and we were back to within two points.
But again, the momentum swung the other way and Forest clawed their way back on top, taking advantage of having a couple of kids on the bench and just finished off too fresh and with three goals to claim a 19-point win.
The good news is, we have another crack at them in a fortnight.
CANADA BAY 7.10.52 Goals: Alex 3, Joey 2, Sam F 1, Xavier 1