DOGS SO CLOSE
The old saying ‘the best team won’ was not applicable when Central District bravely lost by a single point to reigning premier Glenelg, in the penultimate SANFL minor round clash at Glenelg on Saturday evening.
After the Tigers stretched their lead out to 18 points early in the last quarter, it looked like Glenelg by how much, but the tenacious Bulldogs fought hard, helped by two stunning passes by Justin Hoskin to Murray Stephenson for goals, as Central hit the front early into time on of the final stanza.
Then John Butcher took a mark 30m out but played on and only managed a behind, as the Dogs led by three points at the 23-minute mark.
Against the run of play Glenelg booted a goal, with the final four minutes of the game played in Central’s half of the ground. Just two further behinds on snaps was not enough, with the ball around 20m in front of goals when the siren blew, the Dogs one point in arrears.
It was one of Central’s best four-quarter efforts of the season, with the 18-point deficit early in the final term the greatest margin of the day.
While Glenelg opened with the first major, the Bulldogs had a flurry of goals mid-term, starting with Jordan O’Brien’s goal of the game from the boundary, with further six-pointers to Butcher and Chris Olsson following, as Central led 3.4 to 1.2 at the first break.
Jarrod Schiller was a beast in the fist quarter and the dynamo that got the Dogs going. He ended up leading from the front the rest of the way to be the standout player on the field.
The Tigers opened the second term with three goals in eight minutes to go ahead, with Marcus Burreau taking a two-grab mark and converted in time on for the Bulldogs to grab the lead. But an unfathomable two 25m penalties gifted Glenelg a reply, as Central trailed at the long break, 4.8 to 5.6.
Glenelg kicked the first goal of the third quarter, again after a 25m penalty, with Kyle Jenner having the answer when he calmly slotted a major eight minutes into the second half. Butcher soon followed with a goal and Central was again ahead.
Over the second half of the third quarter Glenelg started gaining control, booting a pair of majors to lead 8.11 to 6.11 at lemons.
When Butcher kicked his third goal of the game a minute into the final stanza, it looked like game on, but a pair of Tigers’ six-pointers saw the biggest lead of the game, 18-points, at the seven-minute mark.
But Jenner had a quick reply with one goal, then the Hoskin/Stephenson combination again put the Dogs ahead, before the heartbreaking final eight minutes transpired.
There were 10 lead changes in the game!
While Jarrod Schiller was exemplary, he had a lot of willing team-mates who played well, including Fraser Fort and Luke Habel in defense, and Hoskin, Travis Schiller, James Boyd, Jack Toner and Ben Nason running through the midfield.
In the shortest season in Club history, Central finishes its 2020 campaign with a home game against flag favourite Woodville West Torrens on Saturday.
Best: J. Schiller, Fort, Hoskin, T. Schiller, Boyd, Toner, Habel, Nason.
Goals: Butcher 3, Jenner, Stephenson 2, O’Brien, Olsson, Barreau 1.
By Robert Laidlaw