By Gary Stocks
The bug last week, the windscreen on Saturday. Such has been the fluctuating fortunes for the O’Rourke Realty North Beach A-Grade combination in one-point games.
Defeated by Mt Lawley in round eight on the last kick of the day, the Beach reversed the outcome on a sodden Saturday against Swan Athletic, clawing back 11 points down with 10 minutes remaining to clinch a clutch victory at Fawell Park.
On a day when skipper Beau Witheridge won the tops and kicked with the tide, North Beach held the balance of play for the majority of the game and looked in control of a low-scoring affair when it led by eight points at the last change.
That advantage should have been greater, given the Beach had achieved the minimum from eight more scoring shots. And that left the door ajar for Swan Athletic, who saw an opportunity to post their second win of the season.
They lifted, kicked the first three goals of the quarter and had the Beach virtually two goals down with the clock fast becoming the enemy.
Fortunately, led by Jimmy Lee, Tim Langsford, Michael Taylor, Witheridge and Ben Sweeny, the Beach found away and in a mirror image of the game the previous week they managed to fall over the line.
The Credent Financial Services again paid the price for a slow start, the eventual margin essentially being the lead established by the home side by the end of the first term.
Eventually the Beach did get going, but a case of too little, too late.
There were, however, some standout individual performances, with Alex Billi producing a solid all-round performance through the midfield, Liam Vardy continuing his outstanding form in defence, while Adam Duff and Sasha Kernutt were also strong contributors.
The Coast to Coast Imports Phil Scott Colts produced a dominant second half performance to carve out an impressive 40-point victory in the testing conditions.
After controlling the game in the first half without reflecting their superiority on the scoreboard, the Beach finally got some reward for effort, kicking 5.10 to 2.0 after the main break.
Rhys Messenger, Nick Bowe, Jack O’Gorman and Jarrod Chapman set a wonderful example and have helped propel the colts into second position on the ladder and in a perfect place from to launch a serious assault in the second half of the year.
The Brett Jones Colts set up an important win against arch rivals Whitford with an outstanding opening three quarters. Unfortunately, they fell away a little in the final term, but still won by eight points – 6.6 (42) to 5.4 (34).
Led by Joel Temm, Luke Spies, Josh Carson and Josh Cuzens, the Beach carried too much class for their opponents and are now entrenched in the top half of the table, illustrating the depth within the colts group.
The Cabling Network Solutions D1-Grade continue to set the benchmark in that grade, scoring a convincing 35-point victory to galvanise their position at the top of the table.
While Anthony Jones and Mitch Holbrook provided good targets up forward, it was the performance of a number of the young players which most pleased coach Bill Duckworth – including Sam Callow, Shane Duckworth, Dean Wilson and Harry Byrne.
The Hybrid Linings D1-Reserves were again dominant, despatching Whitford by 111 points – with the Warriors only managing to get on the scoreboard in the last term.
Michael Bramley was again an outstanding target up forward, finishing with five goals, while Tyson Barry and Jon Turner continued their brilliant form in a team performance that was notable for every player performing his role.
The Express Bins E2-Grade rounded out a good day for the club with a rock solid 17-point win over Coolbinia-West Perth.
It was a tough victory in the most trying of conditions and that made the six goal haul from Michael Missikos even more meritorious.
With support coming from Alex Luck, Sam Harrison and Blake Slatter the Beach was able to stave off a strong second-half challenge from their opponents to rack up an important victory.
Saturday, June 21
O’Rourke Realty A-Grade
North Beach 2.2 2.6 4.10 6.10 46
Swan Athletic 3.1 4.1 4.2 7.3 45
Goals – North Beach: Bottechia 2; Cownie, Lee, McDonnell, McGinnity 1.
Best – North Beach: Lee, Ward, T Langsford, Taylor, Witheridge, Sweeny.
Credent Financial Services A-Reserves
Swan Athletic 6.13 (49) def North Beach 2.6 (18)
Goals – North Beach. Not available.
Best – North Beach: Billi, Vardy, Duff, Kernutt.
Coast to Coast Imports Phil Scott Colts
North Beach 0.6 3.10 6.14 8.20 68
Swan Athletic 0.3 2.4 3.4 4.4 28
Goals – North Beach: Bowe, Brown, Csar, Ekert, Lynch, Messenger, Rudrum, Tonus 1.
Best – North Beach: Messenger, Bowe, O’Gorman, Chapman.
Brett Jones Colts
North Beach 2.2 3.2 6.6 6.6 42
Whitford 1.1 1.1 1.2 5.4 34
Goals – North Beach: Damien 3; Higgins, Evans, Bryce 1.
Best – North Beach: Temm, Spies, Carson, J Cuzens.
Cabling Network Solutions D1-Grade
North Beach 4.2 8.3 10.4 12.8 80
Whitford 1.2 3.5 6.9 6.9 45
Goals – North Beach: Jones 3; Christie, M Holbrook 2; Cosgrove, Duim, S Holbrook, Perkin, Pires 1.
Best – North Beach: Callow, S Duckworth, Wilson, Byrne.
Hybrid Linings D1-Reserves
North Beach 4.4 8.8 11.17 16.17 113
Whitford 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.2 2
Goals – North Beach: Bramley 5; Barry, Turner 2; Alco, Allan, Boys, T Cavanagh, Holdman, Hurley, Tincknell 1.
Best – North Beach: Bramley, Turner, Barry.
Express Bins E2-Grade
North Beach 4.2 7.4 8.6 11.8 74
Coolbinia-WP 1.2 2.2 6.3 9.3 57
Goals – North Beach: Missikos 6; Slatter 2; Brown, Harrison, Smith 1.
Best – North Beach: Missikos, Luck, Harrison, Slatter, Mirabile.