By Gary Stocks
North Beach’s stuttering start to the season finally saw some momentum build with a fighting victory over Fremantle CBC at Morris Buzacott last Saturday.
The nine-point triumph means that for the first time this season the Beach has notched consecutive away game triumphs, backing up from a similarly tough win over North Fremantle the previous week.
While the Beach surged away in the ;last quarter, after scores were tied at the last change, coach Bill Duckworth and his players know that further improvement must come if the club hopes to defend its run of seven successive premierships.
The veteran coach put the success against Fremantle CBC down to perseverance and persistence rather than a slick, polished performance. But some important players are starting to filter back into the team, including class midfielders Beau Witheridge and Josh Bollen, who were both prominent on Saturday.
Veterans Shane Paap and Dean Brennan were also important while Rob McComiskie capped off his performance with two goals and Mitch Holbrook provided a reliable target up forward.
The A-Grade success capped a good day for the club with wins in five of the six games the club played last Saturday. The Brett Jones team had a bye.
The A-Reserves, bolstered by the return of several stars, also proved too good for CBC, winning by 28 points after leading by just a couple of points at three quarter-time.
Andrew Langsford was prominent through the midfield, Byron Boys and Kent Traeger were reliable in defence and Cale Potts enjoyed the switch from defence to kick four goals.
In addition Alex Billi, Jacob Griffith and Trevor Lang all made significant contributions.
The D1 team was the only team to taste defeat on the day, with Trinity Aquinas holding sway throughout the day.
Goals proved hard to come by, with the Beach kicking just five, and two of them came from Sam Keeley.
The D1 Reserves got away to a flier against Trinity Aquinas, kicking the first eight goals and then working their way to a comprehensive 63-point win.
Tom McComiskie was effective throughout, along with Dean Wilson and Josh Stretch, while Simon Wilson and Hayden French kicked eight goals between them.
The injection of a little youth, largely colts players looking for a game because of their bye, assisted the E2 Grade build a comprehensive victory over High Wycombe.
The Phil Scott Colts hung on for a much-needed victory against Fremantle CBC, although goal-front inaccuracy almost cost victory once again.
The Beach fought determinedly throughout and were two goals down at the last change before dominating the game and kicking 2.7 in the final term. That made for a tense finish but the boys clung to a two-point advantage at game’s end.
Mitch Dillon was outstanding at half-back, while captain Kris Hackett was a driving force and Marc Gangemi did a great job at centre half-back before wilting in the second half. Ben Sweeny continues to build his form along with Kahlil Campbell and Jordan Kickett.
North Beach 2.2 4.7 6.11 9.15 69
Fremantle CBC 1.2 5.3 7.5 9.6 60
Goals – North Beach: M Holbrook, McComiskie 2; Brennan, Pearce, Heap, Paap, Sitters 1.
Best – North Beach: Witheridge, Paap, McComiskie, Bollen, Heap.
North Beach 2.0 3.6 6.8 11.11 77
Fremantle CBC 3.0 5.2 6.6 7.7 49
Goals – North Beach: Potts 4; S Holbrook 2; Barber, Billi, Dwyer, Hall, Robinson 1.
Best – North Beach: Langsford, B Boys, Traeger, Billi, Griffiths, Lang.
Trinity Aquinas 2.2 4.5 7.7 10.8 68
North Beach 2.0 2.1 3.2 5.6 36
Goals – North Beach: Keeley 2; Seeds, McEvoy, Coutts 1.
North Beach 4.4 8.8 10.11 12.14 86
Trinity Aquinas 0.2 0.2 1.2 3.5 23
Goals – North Beach: S Wilson 5; French 3; Brown, Gregoire, Mirabile, Missikos 1.
Best – North Beach: T McComiskie, S Wilson, D Wilson, Stretch 1.
North Beach 2.6 6.9 9.13 13.15 93
High Wycombe 0.1 0.2 0.2 0.3 3
Goals – North Beach: Cole 4; Nugget, Perris, Jimmy 2; Brooks, Gomer, Rob.
Best – North Beach: Jimmy, Cole, Quartermain.
Phil Scott Colts
North Beach 2.3 2.6 5.9 7.16 58
Fremantle CBC 1.3 4.6 7.8 8.8 56
Goals – North Beach: Kickett 2; Grapiglia, Gangemi, Foreman, Clark, Campbell 1.
Best – North Beach: M Dillon, Hackett, Gangemi, Sweeny, Campbell, Kickett.