Glenorchy made a positive start to its centenary season with a win away from home over Launceston at Windsor Park, writes Mitchell Jones.
The first quarter was a deadlock for the most part, with both teams having an equal share of the possessions.
This deadlock was eventually broken, however, when recruit Aiden Grace broke through to kick the opening goal of the game – and his first in the black and white after playing for Clarence and spending a one-year stint in Victoria.
Launceston bounced back quickly with Brodie Palfreyman slotting a long range goal that skidded through, while Glenorchy again responded through the craftiness of Callan Daly who snapped a good goal to give his side a 10-point buffer at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter proved to be a similarly dour struggle, with both sides finding it hard to score.
Launceston’s defensive unit held up well under duress, with the likes Miller Hodge and Jack Tuthill having goal saving plays for the Blues.
Glenorchy would be held goalless in this quarter, winning plenty of the football but unable to have this reflected on the scoreboard – something coach Paul Kennedy addressed post game.
“All the stats we were keeping told us we were playing good footy, we just weren’t connecting,” he said.
Launceston would finish the quarter with a goal to new club coach Mitch Thorp to make the Magpies pay for a lack of scoreboard pressure, with the Blues trailing by just three points and well and truly within striking distance at the half time.
The third quarter was all Glenorchy early on, as they started the term with some important goals to push further ahead.
This was built off the back of Glenorchy’s mature midfield brigade of Rhys Mott, Brayden Webb and ex-Launceston player Sam Rundle winning more ball out of the middle and having a larger influence on the contest. Ruckman Cameron Duffy also further imposed himself on the match, competing well in the ruck and around the ground.
As had so often been the case across the opening half, however, the Blues refused to give in and pegged Glenorchy back to have the game back on the line with a seven-point deficit heading into the final stanza.
FULL TIME from Windsor park as Glenorchy run over Launceston in a tight contest for most of the day. A Young Launceston side was well lead by the likes of Jobi Harper and Hamish leedham , while the winning team Gleenorchy proved too strong with their bigger bodies prevailing as Aiden Grace, Brayden Webb and Sam Rundle all had impressive starts to the season.Launceston 5.10 (40)Goals: B Palfreyman, M Thorpe, J Harper, L Walsh, H GriffithGlenorchy 9.15 (69)Goals: A Grace 4, C French 2, C Daly, S Rundle#BUPATSL
Posted by Tasmanian State League on Friday, 29 March 2019
The Magpies found another gear in the final term, however, with Aiden Grace slotting two more to finish with four majors in his TSL return.
The last quarter was dominated by Glenorchy as Aiden grace slotted 2 more goals leaving him with 4 majors in his return to the TSL and debut for Glenorchy.
The ‘Pies strong finished pushed them out to a 29-point advantage as the final siren sounded, with a gallant and new-look Launceston side forced to start the season with a loss.
Post-match Kennedy was full of praise for Sam Rundle, Cam Duffy and particularly Tim Butterworth, who manfully held Launceston coach and key forward Mitch Thorp to just the one goal.
“He (Butterwoth) put his hand up for that job and really did an excellent job.”
Injured Launceston co-captain Jay Blackberry wasn’t too disappointed with his sides effort, with emphasis put on the effort of some of the side’s younger players.
“I don’t think it was to disappointing as far as the effort and intent to play,” he said.
“There are a lot of positives to come out of the game”.
Blackberry thought that Jack Tuthill was a clear best on in his first game at senior TSL level, commenting on the youngster’s game sense.
“Jack was reliable and read the game well all day. He probably saved us a few times [in defence].”
Launceston travel to Lauderdale Oval next week in a clash with the southern Bombers, while Glenorchy will host North Hobart.
Launceston 5.10 (40)
Goals: B Palfreyman, M Thorp, J Harper, L Walsh, H Griffith
Best Players: J Smith, J Tuthill, C Brown, R Tyrell, B Taylor, B Palfreyman
Glenorchy 9.15 (69)
Goals: A Grace 4, C French 2, C Daly, S Rundle, J Grant
Best Players: C Duffy, T. Butterworth, S Rundle, R Mott, A Grace, J Bowden