A HAWK who became a Saint, Jarryn Geary rode the roller-coaster to make it and then throughout a 207-game career in the AFL.
The popular Saints defender has called time on an incredible playing career in the big league that began when he was taken at pick 58 in the 2006 AFL rookie draft.
Winner of the Neville Strauch Medal as the Bendigo Pioneers club champion in the 2006 TAC Cup season, Geary was not taken in that year’s national draft.
Those who were selected included Pioneers clubmates Joel Selwood to Geelong, and Andy Collins and Daniel Connors to Richmond.
For Jarryn Geary there was no moping about, just get on with it.
The rookie draft had unearthed plenty of football gold – West Coast’s Dean Cox and Matt Priddis, St Kilda’s Stephen Milne, Hawthorn’s Josh Gibson, and Collingwood premiership skipper Nick Maxwell made their way on to AFL lists that way.
Jarryn Geary from the borough in Eaglehawk was to be another.
A defender with a “team first” mentality, Geary was an emergency for St Kilda’s grand finals in 2009 and 2010.
The Saints were beaten by Geelong by 12 points in 2009 as now Kyneton coach Paul Chapman earned the Norm Smith Medal.
A year later and Collingwood beat the Saints.
In 2017, Jarryn Geary was appointed captain of St Kilda.
He was captain from 2017 to 20, and co-captain in ’21.
A broken leg ended Geary’s season with the Pioneers in 2006 and his mental and physical toughness was to be tested many times during his time with the Saints.
The Geary family has made a great impact on football across the past 15 years.
Jarryn went on to the big league, while brothers Daniel, Shannon and Kallen have been or continue to be outstanding players for Strathfieldsaye Storm.
Another of the Geary clan, Eli was a talented swimmer.
Just two days after Jarryn announced his retirement from the AFL, Kallen played his 100th senior game for Strathfieldsaye.
A dual winner of the Neville Strauch Medal with the Pioneers, Kallen is a triple premiership player with Storm.
The team is co-coached by Shannon, also a star in Storm’s successful run.
Written by Nathan Dole.
Photo Courtesy – Bendigo Advertiser