VAFA Report: Home-spun De La race to extraordinary win

By Paul Daffey

The De La Salle Old Collegians Football Club’s decision to place its faith entirely with former students of the college is in stark contrast to its A-section rival Old Brighton, whose ranks feature several big names from beyond the Brighton Grammar community. If the weekend’s game between the clubs at Waverley Park is a guide, it’s De La Salle that’s on the right track.

De La jumped Brighton with seven and ten goals in the opening two quarters to lead by 94 points at half-time, 17.6 (112) to 3.0 (18). The final margin was 111 points, 24.16 (160) to 8.1 (49), an extraordinary result considering that Brighton had knocked off the previously unbeaten St Bede’s Mentone just two rounds ago.

De La old-timers like Bernie Dunn, a premiership captain and coach who began his career at the club in the early 1970s, said they’d never seen a performance like it from a team in blue and gold panels.

Dunn coached De La to a flag in 1991. The captain of that team was Mark Lowe. De La’s current team is so home-spun that the captain, David Lowe, is Mark’s son.

David, who inherited his father’s never-say-die approach, was part of a dominant midfield against Brighton. Sam Pickett was named best on ground on the day of his 21st birthday party.

Old Scotch, faltering a month ago, showed that it remains a strong finals chance after forging an upset 17-point victory over Collegians at the Harry Trott Oval, despite having fewer scoring shots.

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