Sat 13th April Round 1 v McLaren Vale.
Round 11 Vs Encounter Bay A Grade match report
With Victor Harbor being the only two team town in the league, there is a no more local derby than this one. The first time these two teams played this year was under lights back in the second round where Victor stole a 2 point win and the gloomy conditions that greeted both sides were not much brighter than on that cold April night and the light but persistent rain ensured that there would be plenty of stoppages when players were wrapped up trying to get a handle on the slippery ball.
The opening term was more than halfway over before the first goal of the match was scored by Iljcesen for Victor who was on the end of a rare coast to coast passage of clean play. Eli Horrocks was quick to reply for the Bays a couple of minutes later and all signs were pointing to another close contest between these sides. A left foot snap from Iljcesen was his last score due to the close attention of Neale and a long bomb and kind bounce from Ryan saw the home sides lead stretch to 13 points at the first change but it was precious little return for the amount of possession the Roos had. Bays forwards tried to use their rare opportunities but great work from Brown, Parker and Simmons was making it difficult.
When Boyd snapped truly from his right boot to open the second quarter it looked as if his team may kick away but Miels from Encounter Bay had a different idea as he kicked all three of the visitors goals in ten minutes to see his side go into the long break with a one point lead. This really brought the favourites back to earth with a thump as their season was now teetering on the brink with Mt Compass snapping at the heels of the five.
Victor began the third term as they had the second but this time it was the consistent Jurek that snapped the opening goal to regain the lead; this was to be short lived when Williams made the most of his free kick dead in front two minutes later. The lack of any score for the next 20 minute saw a pack of fifteen players around the ball that you could throw a beach towel over. Hanneman and McGregor fought it out in the ruck while a host of on ball players through themselves into the fray after each hit out. Fairhurst was the pick of them for Victor by playing four consistent quarters and was well assisted by Jurek, Hodge and Boyd while Lintern, Hooper and Gein were running in straight lines from the other direction. Harvey snapped his goal with only seconds remaining to take a 7 point lead as the siren sounded to end the third term.
Some nice touch from Parker, now a long way from his back pocket, found the chest of Hodge in front of goal in the first minute to peg back the lead again but once again Bays had the quick reply when Butler took a mark on the tightest of angles but was awarded 50 to make the shot from zero metres out. Soon after he was in the right spot at the right time when a long shot spilled over the back of the pack to where he stood alone on the goal line to blow the lead out to 14 points. With ten minutes left and all the momentum and breeze with the opposition it looked like too much of a task for Victor to snatch this one.
Leigh Ryan had been quiet since jagging that goal back in the first quarter. His second goal was from a standard mark and set shot to narrow the gap, Parker then bobbed up with a snap to get a bit closer, Ryans third goal was one of the best seen at Victor oval when, with a wet ball, kicked truly from 55m into the wind to regain the lead and turn the tide in Victors favour. Just to prove it was no fluke he kicked his fourth from a similar distance but from the opposite flank to seal the unlikely victory.
It is hard to believe Bays have not won more games after the hard work they put in for most of the day and both teams are going to enjoy this week of for a chance to recover from this wonderful display of country football rivalry that was played in the true spirit of the game that flowed on late into the evening.