By Gary Stocks
The transformation of the O’Rourke Realty A-Grade team took another step forward when North Beach clinched an important victory against West Coast Cowan on Saturday.
Necessity has commanded that a number of new faces have been injected into the team in the first seven rounds of the season with several senior players stepping away.
And when North Beach needed it most a couple of the rookies stepped up and imposed themselves on the game.
Ruckman Kieren Yakas, a raw 20-year-old, seized the moment, with his senior partner Alex Hack out injured, and wingman-forward Jordan Webster was crucial when the game was on the line.
Webster kicked three goals in the second term, after West Coast had made a bright start, allowing the Beach to take a two-goal lead into the half-time break – an ascendancy that was never surrendered.
With emerging defender Ben Sweeny continuing his good form, they piloted the way for the new-comers on a day when the past was celebrated.
The annual Gary Tait Day was also a focus, with the 10th anniversary of the 2004 A-Grade premiership and the 20th anniversary of the 1994 colts premiership acknowledged.
Significantly, Josh McGinnity won the Tait Medal, having played in that premiership triumph a decade ago, while Aaron Jarvis, Tim Nelli and Steve Bandy provided significant experience and guidance for those of lesser kilometres on the football journey.
The 20-point triumph was the Beach’s third in succession as the senior teams move into a bye round for the State game where three North Beach players are short-listed for selection – Christian Bottechia, Jimmy Lee and ‘Freddie’ Alone.
The youthful theme was personified in the Credent Financial A-Reserves contest when four colts – Jarrod Chapman, Joel Warner, Ryan Turner and Sam Zehnder all stepped up to senior football and acquitted themselves well.
They were not out of their depth and all contributed as the Beach posted an emphatic 78-point victory.
The victory was set up by the class of Peter Harvey through the middle, Liam Vardy, who was never beaten in a contest in defence, Earl Quinlan and the ultra-consistent Dion Cownie.
The Coast to Coast Imports Phil Scott Colts started the day appropriately with a convincing 94-point triumph over West Coast.
North Beach were in control from the outset and carried to much arsenal for their opponents. They were never challenged and dominated in virtually every position on the ground.
Jamie Rudrum, Michael Hoskins, Alex Csar and Connor McGuire were outstanding performers in a high calibre team performance.
The Cabling Network Solutions D1-Grade continued its outstanding start to the season with another remarkable victory – this time against University.
The Beach was stunningly accurate in front of goal, kicking 14.2 (86) to 8.9 (57) with veteran forward Mitch Holbrook leading the way with a blemish-free haul of 6.0.
In addition Chris Perkin was at his efficient best, along with the fierce tackling Tom McNeill, young ruckman Ben Bubnich, tough defender Saxon Graham and Sam Callow.
The Hybrid Linings D1-Reserves were also victorious, clinching a 19-point victory on the back of a second half performance, 10.10 (70) to 7.9 (51).
The Brett Jones Colts were the only team to lose on the day, slipping to a 61-point loss to University.
The endeavour could not have been questioned, but the Beach lacked the discipline to man up when required and given freedom the Scholars carved out a solid performance. Mitch Cameron, James Carmody and Jordan Mesiti were solid contributors for the Beach.
The Express Bins E2-Grade rounded out a memorable day for the club, chalking up a 47-point win over Warnbro. Remarkably, the Beach made a slow start but did not concede a goal after quarter-time on the way to a 11.7 (73) – 3.8 (26) triumph.
Novak Smith continued his stellar form up front with four goals, while Anthony Mirabile, Adam Purcell and Alex Luck were also significant factors.
O’Rourke Realty A-Grade
North Beach 2.0 7.3 10.6 13.10 88
West Coast 2.2 5.4 8.6 10.8 68
Goals – North Beach: Webster 3; Sajich, Jarvis 2; Nelli, McDonnell, McGinnity, Alone, Lee, Bottechia 1.
Best – North Beach: Nelli, Yakas, Jarvis, Webster, McGinnity, Witheridge, Sweeny.
Credent Financial Services A-Reserves
North Beach 3.1 8.4 11.7 15.9 99
West Coast 1.3 3.3 3.3 3.3 21
Goals – North Beach: Harvey 3; Harwood, Potts, Cownie, Gray 2; Melvin, Hackett, Stott, Nash.
Best – North Beach: Harvey, Vardy, E Quinlan, Duff, Cownie, Stott.
Coast to Coast Imports Phil Scott Colts
North Beach 3.5 8.9 10.13 15.14 104
West Coast 0.1 0.2 1.4 1.4 10
Goals – North Beach: Adler, Ekert, Lynch 3; Bowe, McGuire 2; Csar, Rudrum 1.
Best – North Beach: Rudrum, Hoskins, Bowe, Csar, McGuire.
Brett Jones Colts
University 4.4 9.6 11.13 15.14 104
North Beach 2.0 3.1 4.1 7.1 43
Goals – North Beach: Hart 2; Botica, Cameron, Collins, Higgins, Orr-Young 1.
Best – North Beach: Blake, Rimmy, M Cameron, Mesiti, J Carmody.
Cabling Network Solutions D1-Grade
North Beach 2.0 6.0 10.0 14.2 86
University 0.4 4.4 7.6 8.9 57
Goals – North Beach: M Holbrook 6; Bubnich, Byrne 2; Christie, Cosgrove, Duim, Flynn, Heap.
Best – North Beach: Perkin, McNeill, Bubnich, Graham, Callow, M Holbrook.
Hybrid Linings D1-Reserves
North Beach 2.4 4.5 5.8 10.10 70
University 1.1 5.2 6.6 7.9 51
Goals – North Beach: Vry 3; Anthony, Bramley 2; Boys, Tincknell, Turner 1.
Express Bins E2-Grade
North Beach 0.2 5.2 9.2 11.7 73
Warnbro 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.8 26
Goals – North Beach: Smith 4; Kuenen, Padgett 2; Missikos, Harrison, Luck 1.
Best – North Beach: Mirabile, Purcell, Luck, Smith.