CHFA. The opening round of the Circular Head Football Association kicked off on Saturday with Irishtown hosting Scotchtown and Redpa battling Forest Stanley at home.
Both Seniors games saw some great individual performances, especially in front of goal as both Irishtown and Forest Stanley recorded big wins.
At Irishtown, the home side jumped the visitors early to record a seven to one goal opening term, to lead by 35 points at the first change.
An improved effort by Scotchtown in the second quarter saw them outscore Irishtown 4.0 to 2.5 to reduce the margin to 28 points at the major break.
Further improvement was shown in the third stanza with Scotchtown giving themselves every chance of recording an unlikely comeback as they reduced the margin again to a retrievable 19 points at the end of the third quarter.
In the final quarter, Scotchtown’s player shortage caught up with them as Irishtown finished stronger to keep Scotchtown goalless in the final term and record a 15.12.102 to 9.7.61 victory.
Irishtown coach Jason Gofton was pleased with his team’s performance but recognised that his side’s display wasn’t perfect in saying that lazy patches during the game could be put down to a lack of early season fitness.
Gofton praised the efforts of Callum Townsend, Daniel Littlejohn and Daniel Jago but was most impressed with Scott Jackson, who according to Gofton was “our best on”.
Jackson was the standout up forward for Irishtown kicking nine goals and he was ably supported by Townsend and Darryl Pearce with both players kicking two goals.
Gofton’s counterpart, Scotchtown co-coach Brent Burgess was pleased with his team’s effort especially after quarter time.
A large amount of unavailable players at both senior and reserve levels resulted in Scotchtown playing the game with no interchange.
Burgess applauded the efforts of some of his younger brigade which included 17-year-old vice-captain Tye Williams, U/16 captain Sam Muller, Joel Keep and Josh Stewart, who, according to Burgess, all “led by example”.
Burgess continued by saying that many of his senior players also stood up with Nathan Saward named Scotchtown’s best, however he agreed with Gofton that Jackson “was the difference”.
In round one’s other contest Forest Stanley – who opposition coaches rated as the team to beat in this year’s season preview – started their season with a resounding 156-point win over Redpa.
After a relatively even first term where Forest Stanley kicked 3.5 while restricting Redpa to just one behind, the Demons kicked into gear in the second.
Forest Stanley kicked 8.6 to 1.0 to extend the lead to 72 points which could have been far worse for Redpa had the Demons been able to convert more of their 14 second-quarter scoring shots.
The second half started as the first finished with Forest Stanley continuing their dominance.
The visitors increased their lead to 97 points at three-quarter time due to a six goal to two third term.
The confidence of Redpa was further dented in the final term as they were kept scoreless while Forest Stanley piled on nine last-quarter goals to finish victors 26.20.176 to 3.2.20
Demons coach Guy Kearnes said he felt his team was “starting to gel” and that the players’ outputs were even across the board. Marty Hardy and Peter Brown were two of the standouts for Forest Stanley as they both contributed six goals while Jack Gilliam was named Forest Stanley’s best.
Redpa coach Nathan Bransden was happy with his side’s effort in the first half especially considering five players were forced to play two games due to a lack of players.
Bransden praised the efforts of his ruckman John Lee who “battled hard all day”, defender Adrian Philpott and forward Sam Noble, with both Lee and Noble two of Redpa’s three goal kickers.
The Reserves and U/16s results saw the completion of clean sweeps as Irishtown and Forest Stanley opened their seasons in all grades with victories over their respective opponents.