By Gary Stocks
Last Saturday for the O’Rourke Realty A-Grade team had the potential to be a season-defining game.
After a disappointing performance the previous week, the playing group was challenged. It was then a matter of how the players responded to the task against Fremantle CBC.
Remembering that CBC had dismembered the Beach in a pre-season fixture and the bunson burner was applying some raw heat on a few butts. It was a big day.
Within minutes it was obvious that this team would respond to that pressure in the traditional North Beach fashion. They were committed to the contest, played for each other, put on a terrific display of team footy.
And they won. Comprehensively.
It would have been more, had it not been for goal-front inaccuracy. But that would be nit-picking.
In the end the Beach won 12.21 (93) to 6.4 (40). It was a day when they regained trust in the blokes alongside them. A day when the belief returned. A performance full of pride. It was one for the jumper.
The standard was set by the likes of midfielders Cody Enders and Louis Davies, the defensive presence of Nathan Dwyer, in his club debut, Dan Leishman, Matt Irvine and Jamie Sajich as well as the ruckwork of Kieran Yakas.
To be truthful, there were few, if any, who were beaten in their positions.
Nick Reid played forward and loomed dangerous, Sammy Lamont returned and played with great passion, as did Andy Langsford, who was committed to his role and Michael Schofield was similarly effective.
The challenge now is to produce that level of committed footy on a weekly basis. For the time being, though, it needs to be enjoyed.
The Lifenet A-Reserves scored a comprehensive victory over CBC, winning virtually every position on the ground on the way to a 70-point triumph.
In a game where there were many outstanding contributors, and it was difficult to single players out, it was pleasing to see youngsters Brennen Irvine, Jack O’Gorman, Nick Bowe and Nathan Adler, who kicked seven goals, shine.
Also significant in the victory were experienced players Luke Pardini and Jacob Griffiths who chipped in with four goals. Another developing young forward Mitch Cameron chipped in with three as North Beach coast to victory – 18.3 (111) to 6.5 (41).
The Plasterwise Phil Scott Colts kicked the day off positively at Charles Riley Reserve, notching up a solid 23-point win over Fremantle CBC.
After a tight first half, the Beach assumed control but the trigger for the triumph came on the stroke of half time when the reward for having the courage to switch play opened up the fat side of the ground and created a precious goal.
Matt Raynor, Todd Hoffman, Kyle Stranger, Jordan Brooks and Peter Hoitis were key players as the Beach racked up a 7.9 (51) to 4.4 (28) victory.
The Red Hill Brett Jones Colts continued their impressive start to the season with a hard-fought triumph over North Fremantle at Gil Fraser Reserve – always a difficult assignment at the Magpies home base.
After an error-riddled first half, the Beach capitalised better on their opportunities and won 8.5 (53) to 6.9 (45).
Aaron Ugle and Riley Duncan kicked two goals apiece while Ben Johnson, Matt Torre and Josh Cameron were also solid contributors.
The Hybrid Linings D1-Grade made it a perfect day down south, eclipsing the Magpies by 46 points in an authorative display – 11.10 (76) to 4.6 (30).
Owen Collins and Liam Ellis loomed dangerous in attack and combined to kick five goals, while Matt Whitbread, Ben DeRosa, Joel Temm and Connor McGuire were also important contributors.
The Coast to Coast Imports D1-Reserves followed up that start by demolishing the Magpies in a dominant 17.15 (117) to 32 (20) victory.
As one would expect from a such a lop-sided scoreline, the Beach dictated terms from the outset with Tim van Der Kraats and Michael Bramley kicking seven goals between them to capitalise on a flood of opportunities inside attacking 50.
Kim Thompson was exceptional at half-back, so often intercepting the opposition and then playing a key role in the Beach pushing deep into attack.
The Express Bins D2-Grade suffered a disappointing loss to Whitford, hanging in the game courtesy of goal-front accuracy in the first half, but could not match the visitors after the long break, eventually sliding to a 47-point loss.
Tony Mirabile was again a strong contributor while Mitch Evans, Jay Hay-Hendry and Nelson Kennedy were also in good touch.
The Fusion D2-Reserves also did it tough, losing by the best part of 11 goals.
Pierce Rollo was a standout performer and kicked five of his teams six goals, while Mitch Clarke, Mark Ferreri and Brayden Bowden also worked hard.
Results, Round 3
O’Rourke Realty A-Grade
North Beach 2.4 4.9 7.16 12.21 93
Frem CBC 0.2 2.3 5.3 6.4 40
Goals – North Beach: Reid, Yakas 3; N Dwyer, Italiano, Schofield, Cranley, Doyle, M Irvine.
Best – North Beach: Enders, Davies, N Dwyer, Leishman, Yakas, Sajich, Irvine.
North Beach 6.1 8.3 14.3 18.3 111
Frem CBC 0.0 3.4 4.5 6.5 41
Goals – North Beach: Adler 7; Griffiths 4; Cameron 3; Ekert, Harbers, Luke Pardini, Irvine.
Best – North Beach: Irvine, Adler, Luke Pardini, O’Gorman, Griffiths, Bowe.
Plasterwise Phil Scott Colts
North Beach 1.3 3.5 5.7 7.9 51
Frem CBC 2.1 3.2 3.3 4.4 28
Goals – North Beach: Howie 2; Catalfamo, Hoskins, Marsh, McCarthy, Ryan.
Best – North Beach: Raynor, Hoitis, Hoffman, Brooks.
Hybrid Linings D1-Grade
North Beach 3.5 7.7 10.8 11.10 76
North Frem 3.1 3.2 3.3 4.6 30
Goals – North Beach: O Collins 3; Ellis 2; B Clarke. S Duckworth, Halley, McGuire, Temm, Tonus.
Best – North Beach: Whitbread, DeRosa, Temm, McGuire.
Coast to Coast Imports D1-Reserves
North Beach 4.3 7.8 11.12 17.15 117
North Frem 1.2 1.2 2.2 3.2 20
Goals – North Beach: van Der Kraats 4; Bramley 3; Tancred 2; Alco, Arnup, Botica, Clapham, Heap, Keating, D Veitch, Simon.
Best – North Beach: Thompson, Bramley, van Der Kraats.
Red Hill Brett Jones Colts
North Beach 2.0 4.1 7.1 8.5 53
North Frem 2.0 3.6 5.7 6.9 45
Goals – North Beach: Duncan, Ugle 2; Cameron, Johnson, Seaton, Torre.
Best – North Beach: Cameron, Ugle, Seaton.
Express Bins D2-Grade
Whitford 4.2 6.3 11.5 14.6 90
North Beach 2.0 5.0 5.1 7.1 43
Goals – North Beach: Hay-Hendry 2; French, Kennedy, Njegich, Padgett, Rice.
Best – North Beach: Mirabile, Evans, Hay-Hendry, Kennedy.
Whitford 7.2 7.5 11.8 16.11 107
North Beach 1.0 4.4 4.5 6.6 42
Goals – North Beach: Rollo 5; Clarke.
Best – North Beach: Rollo, Clarke, Ferreri, Bowden.