BJFL Interleague | Bendigo’s young guns take on Ballarat in La Trobe Uni Goldfields Challenge


BENDIGO will be striving to reclaim the Goldfields Trophy when it tackles Ballarat in this Saturday’s junior inter-league action at Epsom Huntly Reserve.

Support from LaTrobe University Bendigo ensures the inter-league tradition which began in 1986 keeps rolling.

Other major backers for the BFJL in 2023 are IGA, Cavalier Homes, and Bendigo Bank.

There will be seven matches played to decide the Goldfields champions.

A big day of action on Saturday features under-13, 14, 15 and 16 boys line-ups; and under-14, 16 and 18 girls teams.

The Goldfields Challenge was first played for in 1986.

Wins in the past two series at Strathfieldsaye in 2021, and Wendouree a year ago, have lifted Ballarat’s victory tally to 21.

Bendigo’s record is 15 wins after success at Strathfieldsaye in 2019.

The Youth Girls challenge marks a return for the first time since 2017.

Ballarat has a 4-1 record.

First of this Saturday’s matches will be the under-14 boys from 9.45am on oval one.

Play in the under-13 boys starts on oval two at 10am.

The under-14 girls will play from 11.30am on oval two.

Last match on oval two will be the under-16 girls from 1pm.

Schedule for oval one is under-15 boys at 11.35am; under-18 girls at 1.25pm; and under-16 boys from 2.50pm.

It will be 15-minute quarters, no time-on, in the under-13 boys, 14, 16 and 18 girls matches.

Format in the under-14, 15 and 16 boys is 20 minute quarters, no time-on.

There’s plenty of footy experience as former AFL player Michael Hartley teams up with former VFL player and Golden Square great Simon Rosa to coach the under-13 boys.

Hartley played 44 matches for Essendon and five games for Hawthorn and this year has taken on a new role with AFL Central Victoria as league manager of the new CVFL under-18s competition.

Rosa’s record includes four premierships with Golden Square and the gun midfielder also played VFL for Carlton, Bendigo Diggers and Bendigo Bombers; TAC Cup with Bendigo Pioneers; and had a stint in Western Australia with Peel Thunder.

The BJFL under-18 girls team is being coached by Molly Metcalf who is playing co-coach of Eaglehawk in the CVFL senior women’s football competition.

Matt Hargraves and David Hancock team up to catch the under-14 boys, and Dakota Steele is in charge of the under-14 girls team.

A hectic day for Kangaroo Flat’s Leigh Stevens includes being coach of the under-16 girls, and also co-coach of the under-15 boys with Steve Osborne.

Bendigo’s coaches of the under-16 boys are Kevin Roberts and Ash Wilson.

There are 16 clubs represented across Bendigo’s seven teams to take on Ballarat’s rising stars.

Bendigo Bank Bendigo Junior Football League teams:

Under-13 boys

Coaches: Michael Hartley and Simon Rosa.

Eaglehawk: Jack Frankel, Cale Hinton, Xavier Stone.

Golden Square: Hugh Casey, Oisin Dunne, Charlie Macumber, Wally Minne, Jake Rosa.

Lockington Bamawm United: Campbell Keele.

Maiden Gully YCW: Jack Moresi.

Marong: Will Hope.

Rochester: Harvey Keating.

Sandhurst: Quinlan Cody, Jaxon Kelly, Paddy McNamara, Oscar Suckling, Jamison Westley,

Strathfieldsaye: Eli Fennell, Nicholas Hietbrink, Alistair Hughes, Keelan McInerney, Darcy Tyler.


Huntly: Miller Connors.

Strathfieldsaye: Spencer Worthington.

Under-14 boys:

Coaches: Matt Hargraves and David Hancock.

Eaglehawk: Jamieson Webster, Logan Wilson.

Golden Square: Billy Buhagiar, Josh Kelly, Mack Skinner.

Kangaroo Flat: Lachlan McKay.

Lockington Bamawm United: Patrick Keele.

Maiden Gully YCW: Drew Warren.

Rochester: Cale James, Darby Martin.

Sandhurst: Griffin O’Shea, Riley Travaglia.

South Bendigo: Cooper Coll, Max Kornmann, Rylan Newman, Zavier Ralphs.

Strathfieldsaye: Ned Browell, Tyce Griffin, Ayden Hand, Sam O’Bree, Jordan Mathews.

White Hills: Blaine Schelfhout.


Castlemaine: Levi Bruce.

Eaglehawk: Harry Miller.

Under-14 girls:

Coach: Dakota Steele.

Squad to be selected from:

Castlemaine: Tegan Barry, Piper  Marshall.

Eaglehawk: Zoe Hodgskiss, Maleah Lawry, Suzi Lees, Kylah Virtue.

Golden Square: Lora Soko, Layla Walsh.

Kangaroo Flat: London Benaim, Mia Berryman.

Rochester: Kassidy Cail.

Sandhurst: Milla Franklin, Tully Place, Kyah Spiteri.

South Bendigo: Mia Maxted.

St Francis of the Field: Etta Place.

Strathfieldsaye: Chella Fitzgerald, Dempsey McDonnell, Jordan O’Bree.

White Hills: Madisyn Morrison, Lucy Newton, Layla O’Brien, Sophie O’Connell, Lily Rochester.

Woorinen: Sunny Barry, Chloe Lovell.

Under-15 boys:

Coaches: Leigh Stevens and Steve Osborne.

Golden Square: Ryan Brown, Xavier Grant, Charlie Mortimer.

Huntly: Ben Miller.

Lockington Bamawm United: James Brentnall, Nick Mitchell.

Maiden Gully YCW: Anthony Gray, Lewis Pigdon.

Maryborough: Zac Cicchini, Logan Howell, Campbell Wood.

Rochester: Rory Hayes, Harrison Keating.

Sandhurst: Eamon Austin, Lenny McNamara, Miller Nihill, Oliver Stewart, Noah Willits.

South Bendigo: Jack Bell, Aydin Price, Harry Purcell.

Strathfieldsaye: Will Bartlett.


Castlemaine: Ben Jardine.

White Hills: Jarrell Ratcliffe.

Under-16 boys:

Coaches: Kevin Roberts and Ash Wilson.

Castlemaine: Mitchell McKnight.

Eaglehawk: Lennox Barker, James Coates-Moore, Noah Jorgensen-Slimmon, Deacon Marsh, Max Miller.

Golden Square: Xavier Cain, Riley Dillon, Jackson Lowery, Bailey Warfe.

Maiden Gully YCW: Cahal Blandthorn, Jonty Davis.

Rochester: Lachlan Joyce, Jordy Rasmussen.

Sandhurst: Oscar Cail, Thomas Davie, Charles Duke, Madden Guthrie, Darby Whatley.

Strathfieldsaye: Dusty Crawford.

White Hills: Ben Masters, Caleb Tobin. 

Under-16 girls:

Coach: Leigh Stevens.

Eaglehawk: Shayla Daffy, Mackenzie Gard, Jasmine Gowty, Gracie Whitford.

Golden Square: Jayda Lockwood, Lily Mansfield, Abbey Weir.

Kangaroo Flat: Lucy Gilbee.

Sandhurst: Leni Brown, Hannah Cochrane, Tanisha Daly, Georgia Garlic, Charlotte Scanlon, Chloe Tweed.

Strathfieldsaye: Alysha Boyd, Maddie Dunn, Gemma Fox, Scarlett Ward.

White Hills: Mia Clark, Tarlia Murphy, Reagan Wirken.

Woorinen: Grace Ayars.

Under-18 girls:

Coach: Molly Metcalf.

Castlemaine: Chloe Drew, Lori Whaley.

Eaglehawk: Taylor Collier, Hayley Fitt, Courtney Gibson, Jorja Gibson, Isabelle James, Charlotte Liddy, Jayda Matthews-Shanley.

Golden Square: Mackenzie Bickley, Ruby Demeo, Gabrielle Drage.

Sandhurst: Scout Carmody, Chloe Naughton, Dakota Steele, Chloe Taylor.

White Hills: Chelsea Edwards, Tahlia Kendall, Hannah Ripper, Sophie Sarre, Kadeisha Smith, Oakley Turner.