Tight clashes all day for Lilydale

The seniors tune in at the break. Picture: DARCY ALLEN

By Callum Ludwig

Round 4 saw Lilydale up against local rivals Mooroolbark at home in games in which both sides were desperate to come out on top.

The U19.5’s started the day off strongly for the Dales, toppling Mooroolbark by 27 points in a fiery clash that finished 12.12, 84 to 8.9, 57.

The late out of Lachlan Baxter saw Bailey Bateman fill the void of his partner in crime at full-forward, kicking 4 goals, well supported by Ryan ‘Ninja’ Haley who kicked 3 of his own.

Rory Petch was a defensive stalwart at full-back, demonstrating the fine balance between choosing to go up for the mark or revert to the tried and trusted golden fist. He kept Moooroolbark full-forward Zac Young to only 2 goals despite being undersized, with support from Daniel ‘Paddy’ Ryan.

Other top performers were Ashton Dobbin, Mitchell ‘Skip’ Van de Maat, Zac Carolan and his ever-dazzlingly bright white boots, and Lachlan ‘Dangerous Dust’ Isbester.

Luke Phillips was ecstatic to have finally featured in his first win for Lilydale.

With the U19.5’s comfortably settled in 3rd position as one of 5 teams on 12 premiership points, rumours of a #FlagDales push are starting to surface.

The Reserves fell agonisingly short, falling to Mooroolbark 7.7, 29, to 9.11, 65.

The 2’s were well and truly in the fight early, holding a slim lead at quarter time and were only down by one at the major change. However, a strong 4 goal 3rd quarter from Mooroolbark set them up for the win.

Harry ‘Tiktoks’ Mitchell was a livewire in the forward line, forming a Mosquito Fleet-esque partnership with Travis Mihan, each kicking two goals.

Ashton Dobbin and Luke Phillips came in for the second games of the day and were also amongst the best, despite Phillips succumbing to the inevitable cramps that hit in your 8th quarter of football for the day.

Ethan ‘Pony’ Filliponi was strong in a key defensive post, covering for the newly-retoothed Astin Bucci in his absence. Workhorse John De Vincentis was best on the ground and Will ‘Plem’ Pleming was also among the best performers.

The Reserves sit 7th on the ladder.

The Seniors went toe-to-toe with the Barkers all day, the margin never slipping beyond 15 points at a break until the final siren sounded, the final score 15.5, 83 to 17.14, 116 to Mooroolbark.

Much to the delight of his sponsors, Macauley Beckwith kicked another 3 goals to remain the leading goalkicker for Division One with 14 goals. Isaac ‘Sheldon’ Biasuzzo also joined him with 3, regular sharpshooter Jordan ‘Jaws’ Jaworski contributed 2, and there was a good spread of goalkickers with one apiece for Jack Bateman, Beau Mitchener, Harry Gayfer, Josh White and young Rowan Tucker in his first game for the 1’s.

The Lilydale backline’s strong showing was recognised, with the best featuring Douglas ‘Dougy’ Wooton, Nick ‘Delby’ Del Biondo as well as Ryan ‘Dobby’ McNay and Mitchell ‘DeFran’ De Franceschi who spent time there while rotating through the midfield. Ruckman Beau Mitchener was also one of the best, stepping up in the absence of his usual rotation option Matthew Phillips.

The formidable defensive pairing of the single-and-ready-to-mingle Clem and Delby was named best on and second-best on respectively. Delby in particular did a notable job early in the game on Mooroolbark full-forward, and half-brother of Lilydale players Riley and Cobey Clausen, Jai Jordan, who Cobey claimed ‘has probably had about 3 hardball gets in his life’. In fairness to Jordan, he did finish the game with 4 goals and is 3rd in the goalkicking count.

Lilydale’s seniors are also 7th on the ladder.

Lilydale takes on Bayswater away next week.