Day draped in disappointment as Sharks bite Blacks

The long weekend bye provided all players the opportunity to take a break and reflect on deeds done. The notion of reflection is one that was prominent in the household of your narrator whilst growing up. Every Sunday my Mother would take us to morning mass where we were instructed to reflect on the week that had gone by. Clearly reflection and teenagers aren’t exactly a Dunstall/Brereton combination, as I’m sure I spent most of my time watching the clock and hoping we’d get home in time for the ‘Cash for Dash’. To be honest, I think my Dad enjoyed this ‘reflection’ more than most, as we’d always be able to hear the stereo from two streets away on our way home. Though the time we caught him in his jocks and Ray-Bans was fairly awkward.
After a series of one-sided affairs in the weeks leading up to the bye, Lukey O’s boys were very much looking forward to a tough match against an in-form Beaumaris side. It is my understanding that all players were handed dossiers, DVDs and the star signs of each of their respective opponents pre-game. This received a mixed reaction amongst the playing group. The studious Simon Yule, for example, memorised every profile, translated them into 3 languages, and then constructed an individual training program for each. Others were not as thrilled, with Scotty Myers having to add such homework to his role as social coordinator (the famous Blacks Ball doesn’t organise itself). Throw the workload concerns in with his penchant for misquotes and you’ve got a disaster waiting to happen.
The first half was a thrilling exhibition of football and many in attendance remarked that it was the highest standard of reserves football seen at the Uni Main for a long time. Personally, your columnist thinks that is a bit harsh on the Uni Blues A-reserve premiership sides of 2008-2010, but this is hardly the time nor place. With only a goal separating the two sides at half time, the crowd was expecting a very tight finish.
By 3 quarter time, however, that had all changed. In a magnificent quarter of team football, our Scoobie Doos kicked 6.2 to the Sharks’ 1 point. There was running off the half back line, strong marking, sharing of the ball and a speed through the midfield that would’ve made any opponent look slower than the VAFA website.
One player who stood out in the victory was James Bismire. Having been left out of the senior side, Biz responded with 7 goals. Some were crumbing goals, some were goals after marks, and some of them were just goals. For a man who clearly loves the big sticks, he is very no-fuss and changed what some would see as a disappointment into an opportunity. The grace with which he handled the situation was extended to the post-match, where he offered to buy the coach a beer. Well, it was actually 7 beers, with 7 packets of chips and 7 party pies. No sausage rolls though. All out apparently.
Uni Blacks
Goal Kickers
Bismire 7, Gardiner 2, Steadman 2, Holt, Yule, Crow, Woods
Best Players
Kalms, Gardner, McNamara, Bismire, Guthrie, Judson
With the twos saluting in magnificent style, the focus was on the senior side and whether they could maintain their undefeated start to the season. In the first seven rounds, each victory had increased the desire of the Black. As Mad Men’s Don Draper once said, “Happiness is the moment you have before you need more happiness”. Whether it’s appropriate to quote a womanising, chain-smoking, misogynistic TV character in this forum is questionable, but it does sum that up that ‘winning feeling’.
Two men who display none of the afore-mentioned character traits are Scott Weekley and Tom Howgate. With Captain Costello out injured, these fine men took the reins of the senior side and had the players fully focused on the contest. Weeks’ ability to win the ball, size up the situation with what seems an unlimited amount of time, and deliver is magnificent. Howgie just likes to win the ball, and then ensure that no-one else in the area would want to go near the ball, or anything that looks like a ball, or even go to a ball ever again.
With a typically passionate band of travelling supporters hovering around the Uni pavilion, it was clear that the Sharks were keen for a contest. This was certainly anticipated by the Blacks, given that Beaumaris had beaten our boys twice in the season previous. Although the margin got out to 3 goals in the 2nd quarter, the boys in the blue and gold were making things very difficult for the home side. In particular, many forward entries were being smothered by a very disciplined defence.
With things getting tight in the 3rd quarter, a young man called Slab decided that the best way forward would be to mark everything within a 20 metre radius. Any seasoned football person watching the game would be impressed that a man of such height and obvious strength could be so mobile. Having said that, if that person could also tell that Mr Slabbert is still not yet 20, then I’ll go he. That’s right folks, he wasn’t even born when we all discovered what ‘Amigos para siempre’ meant.
The last quarter was a magnificent exhibition of amateur football. The play was fierce, the crowd was vocal, the umpiring was at times questionable for both sides (which probably means there was nothing wrong with it), and light was fading rapidly. The visitors were the first team to take advantage of their possession, and kicked the first 3 goals of the quarter to register a 2 goal lead. With caution being thrown to the wind like one of Mr Draper’s cigarette butts, the Blacks came charging back and were using the middle of ground like a fine negotiator. One goal was scored to bring the difference to less than another, but ultimately the home side fell short and the Sharks celebrated.
Whilst this was a tough loss to take, the message has already come through that the response this week will be telling. Some may say that there’s no better time than to travel to TH King to play St Kevins. The fact that both the reserve and senior sides get to play the undefeated ladder leaders is very special. I’m sure we’ll see you there.
Uni Blacks
Goal Kickers
Slabbert 3, Foster 2, Matthews, Flight, Lahy, Cook, Delahunty
Best Players
Lahy, Delahunty, Slabbert, Mahon, Howgate, D Batten

About The Black Hack

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