Heads square the ledger

Barwon Heads is happy to have Cooper Ward playing before he lines up for the Geelong Falcons in a few weeks. (Ivan Kemp) 355585_05

By Justin Flynn

Consecutive wins has Barwon Heads back in the hunt after opening the Bellarine Football League season with losses to Anglesea and Drysdale.

The comfortable 19.13(127) to 7.6(48) away win against Ocean Grove at Steeline Ray Menzies Oval on April 20 sees the Seagulls in the five with a 2-2 record.

“It was a difficult start, we ran into a red hot Anglesea,” co-coach Sam Schaller said of the round one loss.

“We just had a poor second quarter in that game and we couldn’t catch up after that. Drysdale the same, just a bad quarter that cost us really. We also were just giving the ball back in some really horrible places that made it really hard for us to defend.”

However, wins against a vastly improved Newcomb and Saturday’s Battle of the Bridge triumph has given the Heads a renewed sense of optimism.

“The Newcomb game was a glimpse of what we consider our best brand,” Schaller said.

“We went closer to playing that for longer, still had some poor periods and Newcomb were super impressive. We probably just looked after the ball better.

“There’s always a big build up for the Battle of the Bridge and today was no different – especially for the younger guys.

“But our guys were great – they took on the challenge of the occasion and also the challenge of launching our season and our first quarter set the tone.”

The Seagulls are battling injury concerns with Charlie Walter still sidelined with a foot injury while Jimmy Allen (hamstring), Finn Cornell (finger), Lachy Slorach (hamstring), Brock Close (abductor) and Reid Adams (concussion) all out of action. A long-term injury to Sam Witherden should see him return later in the season.

“We’re hopeful to see all those guys straight after the bye (after round six),” Schaller said.

“Witherden will be closer to the next bye (after round 10). So we’ve missed some guys but we are really happy with our depth and guys stepping up.”

Geelong Falcon Cooper Ward has two consecutive five-goal hauls and 16-year-old Angus Ford has settled in well as a small forward.

The Heads take on Geelong Amateur this week at home. Ammos came back to earth with a thud with a 62-point loss to Torquay.

“I feel they would have set themselves for a big one against Torquay and ultimately came up short, so they’ll be keen to make amends for that,” Schaller said.

“They have recruited well again and we’ll need to be at our best to be in the contest.”

TORQUAY remained the clear premiership favourite after a 15.13(103) to 5.11(41) win against Geelong Amateur. Skipper Ben McNamara was best for the Tigers while Weylin Doyle booted four goals.

MODEWARRE got the better of Portarlington with a 12.15(87) to 10.9(69) win. Three goals each to Tom Hornsey, Connor Joseph and Will Thrum were enough, although Kelly Pickard and Stephen Heppel each kicked five for the Demons.

ANGLESEA bounced back with a 13.11(89) to 8.13(61) win against Queenscliff. Kobe Iversen-Smith generated plenty of run for the Seas while young tall Joe Cincotta continued his fine season with four goals for the Coutas.

DRYSDALE was pushed all the way by Newcomb to win 6.14(50) to 6.6(42). Defenders Luke Preece and Jack Jenkins again led the way for the Hawks while Jack Duke continued his strong start to the season with four goals for the Power.