Round seven produced one of the games of the season when Launceston defeated Glenorchy in a one-point thriller at Windsor Park, but as TSL Digital Media Reporter Ryan Rosendale writes, it was the Pies who recorded the more decisive victory this time around.
It was two teams on opposite ends of the spectrum prior to the Round 14 game between Glenorchy and Launceston.
The Pies were fresh off their third win on the trot while the men from Windsor Park hadn’t tasted victory in as many games; and while the Blues produced more fight and effort than the week prior in their shock loss to the Tigers, it was the home side that claimed the victory – 15.10 (100) to 7.10 (52).
Saturday’s game started as a highly contested contest and while it was Launceston spearhead Mitch Thorp who kicked the opening goal of the game, a responding one from the man they call ‘Disco’ in Ben Kamaric, and a late major from Matthew Joseph gave the Pies a six-point advantage at the first break.
It was all the Pies from there, however, and while the margin never really got out to a point where Launceston were completely out of the game, an 11.6 to 5.7 stretch between the second and third quarters was enough for Glenorchy to run out 48-point winners.
“The way we grounded that game out over four quarters was really pleasing and that’s been one of our focuses over the last six weeks,” Glenorchy coach Paul Kennedy said post-match.
“The first twenty minutes of the second quarter and the third quarter, that was our best footy of the day… and again to win the last quarter (2.1 -1.1) into the breeze showed some discipline in the way we want to execute and to make sure we closed the game out.”
That middle stretch produced a number of highlights for the Pies who through their defensive work up the ground allowed star forward Jaye Bowden to kick four goals and in-turn take him to second place on the Hudson Medal leader board after his hot-form has seen him kick 23 goals post the round nine bye.
“We went through a period there where we were trialing a few different things and he spent some time in different positions and sometimes that messes with your rhythm but these last four weeks he (Bowden) has really started to understand the role we want him to play and we’ve given him time to settle in that role and he’s doing it really well,” Kennedy said.
Fellow tall forward Mitch Walker finished the day with three goals while Matthew Joseph and 100th gamer Mitch Rainbird chimed in with two each.
“I’ve been happy with how coachable he’s been this year,” Kennedy said of the 21-year-old milestone man.
“Mitch has been willing to learn and change his game abit for the betterment of the team and he’ll tell you that’s still a work in progress but it’s a good one and he’s playing some good footy so to hit hundred games at twenty-one years of age just shows the quality of player he is.”
Young gun Harrison Gunther produced what Kennedy labelled as “the best game I’ve seen him play” while defender Josh Grant’s role on keeping Thorp to two goals was a key ingredient in the Pies victory.
While they again travelled back north without a win, Launceston assistant coach Darrin Geard said there were more pleasing aspects of the side’s performance than the week prior.
“Certainly disappointing (not to get the win) but really pleased with the effort of the guys across the game.”
“At times we felt like we were in the game but probably some skill execution cost us in the end.”
Geard said the message post-game from coach Sam Lonergan was a positive one despite the loss and said they would work on their skill execution throughout the week.
For the visitors, Sam Rundle worked hard throughout the day and finished with one major while ruckman Hamish Leedham provided his midfield with plenty of opportunities and finished as the Blues best.
Launceston will look to end their four-game losing streak in the season’s final Friday night match when they meet cross-town rivals North Launceston at UTAS Stadium at 6:00PM while Glenorchy will head into the bye full of confidence before facing Lauderdale in Round 16 at Lauderdale Oval.
Glenorchy 2.3 6.6 13.9 15.10 (100)
Launceston 1.3 2.9 6.9 7.10 (52)
Glenorchy: J. Bowden 4, M. Walker 3, M. Joseph 2, M. Rainbird 2, C. Daly, J. Webb, A. Roberts, B. Kamaric
Launceston: M. Thorp 2, S. Rundle, B. Taylor, B. Palfreyman, J. Boyd, J. House
Glenorchy: H. Gunther, D. Joseph, J. Grant, J. Geard, M. Rainbird, J. Arnold
Launceston: H. Leedham, J. Smith, S. Vandervelde, B. Palfreyman, D. Riley, S. Rundle