LVFNL Round 2 Football Preview


Inglewood kicks off campaign against Bears

TWO of last season’s finalists, Inglewood and Bears Lagoon-Serpentine clash in Saturday’s second round of senior footy in the Bendigo Bank Loddon Valley FNL season.

Inglewood’s Fergus Payne will mark his coaching debut on home turf as the Blues and Bears clash at Centre State Scaffolding Oval from 2.15pm.

Among the key recruits for Inglewood is skilful small forward Liam Marciano from Eaglehawk.

Marciano could also be used in an on-ball role.

The Blues also welcome ruckman Will Allen from South Bendigo and Mitchell Conlan from Jerilderie.

After crossing from Colbinabbin, Jackson Barnett will play his first match for Inglewood.

A player on the comeback trail is Lachy Ford whose most recent season was in 2021 with Strathmore.

Key players for the Blues include captain Daniel Polack, Keelan Payne, Gabe Nevins and Sam Polack.

The Bears kicked off their season by beating Pyramid Hill at Gadsden Finance Serpentine Reserve by 15 points.

It was a winning debut for playing coach Jake Wilkinson who was recruited from Sandhurst.

Best for the Bears in round one were key forward Josh Mellington, 10 goals; former coach Justin Laird, Charlie Gadsden and Ryan Prendergast.

A premiership star with Mitiamo, Ross Turner, and Doolan Nihill from White Hills played well in the first matches for the Bears.

After a strong showing against the highly-rated Bridgewater in round one, Newbridge is home at Walker’s Doughnuts Riverside Oval to take on reigning premier, Marong.

The Sam Gale and Daniel Smith-coached Newbridge were dealt the toughest start to the season.

Lots to like about the Maroons’ play at Bridgewater and the play of captain Will Daly, Will Copland, Tyler Constable and Tyler McLeod.

Huge test for Newbridge defenders Dylan Lloyd, Matt McArthur and Ed Aujard against Kain Robins, Ryan Wellington and Ryley Taylor.

The Maroons will look to Ricky Cathie, Caleb Sanders, Jono Aujard, Jackson Hufer and Caleb Argus to win contests and apply lots of pressure.

A formidable Marong team coached by Linton Jacobs includes athletic big men Richard Tibbett and Shaun Knott, ruckman Michael Bradbury, and running power of Nathan Devanny, Ben Gregg and Jack McCaig.

Stung by defeat in the Bears’ den, Pyramid Hill is back at Mitchell Park to take on Calivil United.

The Nathan Fitzpatrick-coached Bulldogs are likely to have too much pace and scoring power for the Demons to contain.

Key players for Pyramid Hill include Zach Alford, Dylan Collis, Bailey George, captain Steve Gunther, Brad Ladson and Seb Relouw.

The Bulldogs recruits include Jaydon Cowling from Charlton, and Ben Knight from North Bendigo.

The Anthony Dennis-coached Calivil United kicked off the season against Maiden Gully YCW Eagles at Marist College Oval.

Best for the Demons in that contest were Mitchell Stephens, Samuel Green, Sam Maher and Hamish McGregor.

Calivil United’s squad bound for Pyramid Hill includes Jordan Bonanno, Jordan Lea, Rhys Lourie and Kane Newton.

The day’s play will be completed with the night game between Maiden Gully YCW Eagles and Bridgewater at Marist College Oval in Maiden Gully from 5pm.

It was winning start for Eagles coaches Shawn Filo, non-playing, and Angus Monfries, playing.

The Loddon Valley FNL board has docked Maiden Gully YCW 12 premiership points for not fielding an under-18s team.

Maiden Gully YCW is weighing up an appeal.

On the first day of the season it was Declan Phyland, Thomas Pridgeon and Matthew Crooks who led the Eagles to a 62-50 win against Calivil United.

Vice-captain Thomas Birch was named at full-back to take on gun goalkicker Lachlan Sharp who marked his debut for Bridgewater by kicking eight goals.

A multiple premiership winner and also a Michelsen medallist in a brilliant career with Strathfieldsaye, Sharp is part of a Bridgewater attack that includes captain Josh Martyn, Harry Donegan and Harry Conway.

Massive challenge for Eagles defenders Bryce Franzini, Josh Covington and Jayden Magnusson who will rely a lot on team-mates affecting the quality and quantity of supply to the Mean Machine forwards.

The Machine’s midfield is Andy Collins, Charlton Hindle and Nic Naughton.

Whether he is across half-forward or half-back, Angus Monfries brings 211 games of AFL experience from stints with Essendon and Port Adelaide.

There was one forced change to the Eagles team as Grayson Brown lodged an early guilty plea and was suspended for one match for striking.

Mitiamo has the bye.

Loddon Valley FNL senior footy ladder:

Marong 1937 per cent, 4 points; Bridgewater 125, 4; Bears Lagoon-Serpentine 115, 4; Maiden Gully YCW Eagles 124, 0; Pyramid Hill 86, 0; Calivil United 80, 0; Newbridge 79, 0; Mitiamo 5, 0; Inglewood 0, 0.

Leading goalkickers:

10 Josh Mellington, Bears Lagoon-Serpentine.

8 Lachlan Sharp, Bridgewater.

5 Zach Alford, Pyramid Hill.

4 Farran Priest, Bears Lagoon-Serpentine.

3 Andy Collins, Bridgewater.

3 Will Farrer, Maiden Gully YCW Eagles.

3 Matt Riordan, Marong.

3 Ryley Taylor, Marong.

3 Ryan Wellington, Marong.