A critical match in the Central Blues season turned out the way we all hoped it would on a cloudy Saturday at Humber College.
The Blues Division 1 side returns to the Finals after a multi-seasonal absence. Blues led throughout against the improved Grand River Gargoyles, winning 12.14.86 to 3.6.24, and earning home field advantage for the Finals.
Following a strong start, the second quarter gave the Blues a few scares, as Grand River pressured the Blues in the midfield, settled into a grinding style of play. Jacob Sone, and Diarmuid Moroney received Best’s votes following the dominant performance of the on-ballers and midfield in the second half.
Pablo “Pauly” Davis returned to full forward, driving an impressive 3.5 near, through, or at the goal posts. Sean “Shorty” Goedheer was velcro on the ball, unselfishly kicking 7.3, putting in a dominant performance inside the 50. Both men earned their fair share of Best-on-Ground votes, with BOG Riley “Vossy” Armstrong fresh off his tour of duty with Northwind.
Final Score – Div 1
Saturday, August 23rd
Blues vs Gargoyles
12.14.86 · 3.8.24
With the Blues having already secured a place in the finals the Div 2 men and women were looking forward to taking to the field and doing what they do best, playing some fun Saturday afternoon footy.
Having lost a number of vital players to emigration, the international cup in Melbourne, TTC station upgrades, marriage and beer, it was a rag tag bag of misfits that kitted out and watched on as the new Div 2 skipper, Cool Simon, stepped up for the precursory pre-game coin toss. Having determined that there was no real advantage to be made playing in either direction the Central Blues lined up playing towards the stream of lost balls and muddy cleats.
The initial throw went in favour of the Blues, in no small part, thanks to cool Simon balancing the art of size, strength, speed and skill he deftly tapped the ball down to his roving midfielders. Through fast hands and strong shepherd’s by Vossy, Ben and Dermy, it wasn’t long before the ball was sent up front to the hawk eyed forwards of Chopper, Swifty, Kenny and Braydon. The first quarter ended with only 2 points separating the two teams. Which was in large part thanks to the tight back line defence of Bruce, Vera, Nick, Dave and Rob who held the Rebels attacks at bay and had their forwards questioning their own ability after a sterling opening quarter by the blues.
Realizing that they were going to have to knuckle down if they expected to win this game, the Rebels returned to the field all guns blazing for the second quarter. The Blues returned in the second quarter having dropped a gear. Perhaps it was the hour of the day, maybe it was the pre-game beers or maybe it was the lacklustre encouragement from Tim “the snoozing side line coach” Keck. The Rebels managed to extend their lead in the second quarter and the Blues knew that they needed to bring the game back to the Rebels if they had any chance of coming out with a win.
After a hydration replenishing half time water break, kindly provided by Mr. H2O aka Fritzy, a review of the first half was summarized and a game plan for the second half finalized. With the arrival of Claire “don’t forget to bounce the ball” Moroney, the replacement bench doubled in size to two. The Blues locked down the Rebels in the third quarter preventing them from extending their lead any further. A difference in opinion led to a brief side line stint for red Voss and Ben Rossington’s body was feeling the impact of his earlier Div 1 game finally taking its toll on his body, with him sitting out the remainder of the game.
Some spectacular goal kicking by Swifty and Chopper in 4th quarter reduced the gap between the Blues and Rebels but unfortunately the Blues limped off the field a goal behind but with their heads held high. A spectacular display of football South Humber has ever seen. Special call out to Beebs, who’s side line encouragement was greatly appreciated. Final score Rebels 6-6-42 and Blues 5-6-36.
Final Score – Div 2
Saturday, August 23rd
Rebels vs Blues
6.7.43 · 5.6.36
On a sadder note, Coach Simon “Woodsy” Harwood coached his final game for the Central Blues on Saturday, as he meanders his way back to Australia at the end of this summer. The Social Committee presented him with a signed team jumper and a fine bottle of scotch; Woodsy said his thanks, had a quick sip of his beer, and headed home as it was getting late. His coaching skill and passion for diamond-shapes will be missed by the whole organization.
PS: Congratulations to Meghan and Peter on an wonderful wedding. Post-event report had Tim Keck “winning” the garter with a specky and a dominant performance on the d-floor. Hope to see Mr. Buckthought back for a Division 2 Finals performance.