By Daniel Atamian
From something that looked like it was out of the prologue of a horror movie, the Lions stepped out on the Tyabb home ground under a thick fog that blanketed the entire ground making visibility minimal from one goal square to the centre circle and only a slight silhouette of the goal posts at the opposite end. The scene was set, will the antagonist come out of the mist the victor or would the Lions survive and tell their tale of the most bizarre 4 point victory for the team.
The first quarter started off in a much thicker fog than when the girls were out for their warm up drills, and it only seemed to get worse as it got later in time and the temperature kept lowering. Prior to the first bounce there was talks between both team coaches and the umpires as to whether the game should go forward due to the lack of visibility on the oval. After a moment or two of discussion both coaches and officials agreed to play the game and the umpires would make a decision as to whether the game would be called off or not on a quarter by quarter basis. As expected it was a slow start for both teams fumbling with the ball in hand and as they tried to adapt their vision in the trying conditions. Tyabb would be awarded a free kick for the first kicking blunder from Coburg kicking the ball out of bands on the full, this mistake would be quickly amended however with the Lions smooth passage of play that would lead to Teagan Brett opening up the goal account with for the quarter as the Lions looked a lot more comfortable and adapted to the fog.
Entering into the second term both teams picked up their intensity at the contest and trying to send the ball into their attacking half of the ground. Visibility was still a massive issue with the goal lines basically invisible leading to goal umpires having to walk out to the centre of the ground when the ball left their half to see what the other goal umpire would call for the players scoring opportunity. The difficulty of vision was not restricted to the umpires as Tyabb and their supporters thought a behind had gone through as a goal showing the extremity of the fogs effects. The fog may have affected the surroundings also as Mia Muscat was able to save Tyabb surge and momentum booster by smothering a down field free kick which led to a battle in the middle of the ground with neither team able to move the ball until a clever play from Hanna Fosbrooke saw her feed the ball down into the Lions forward line for Jaime Nankiville to pounce on the ball and attack to give the Lions another goal before half time.
Tyabb came attacking strong in the third quarter being rewarded with a scoring opportunity with a free kick in front of goal to kick their first major showing that they were coming into the second half of the game with more intent and intensity to that of the Lions, giving a greater emphasis in their defensive pressure with their huge efforts to nullify the Burgers attack. The Yabbies forward pressure was hot on the Lions heels with defensive stop and turn to attack time and time again only to kick minor scores with one snap just steering towards to the posts. With their fans behind them and even more vocal than they were in the first half, Amy Mitchener delivery to Simone Craige from full back kept the jeers at bay, with Craige following her strong hands to pull down marks with with even stronger tackles to win the free kick. The defensive hunger acts seemed to carry over to Craige’s teammates as Dacia Abela & Lauren Sims upped the ante anytime the ball came near the Yabbies attacking 50 and applying defensive pressure to see out the third term.
It looked like Tyabb had turned the tide of the game entering the last quarter as they capitalised with an early goal to tie the game. Never one to be counted out of a contest Nankiville with an immediate response to score her second major for the night and reclaim the Lions lead. The tough contest in the trying conditions was starting to show as players were visibly sore but were pushing through to put on more scoreboard pressure despite being unable to capitalise with a goal only managing three straight behind. Enter Nankiville, who once again stepped up to kick her third major for the night and bridge the gap , but just as you thought she was done Jamie would go running into an open 50 to pick up a loose ball and with a beautiful snap kick her fourth goal to seal the victory for the Burgers.
Tyab: 0.1.(1) | 0.2.(2) | 1.4.(10) | 2.6.(18)
Coburg: 1.2.(8) | 2.3.(15) | 2.4.(16) | 5.7.(37)
(4) J. Nankiville & (1) T. Brett