By Joseph Vasquez
Round 15 of the 2023 TSL season proved to be an interesting weekend of football heading into the end of the regular season, with matches played between Clarence and Lauderdale, Launceston and North Launceston, and North Hobart and Kingborough.
To kick off the action, Clarence and Lauderdale resumed their rivalry at Blundstone Arena. Clarence made a strong start at home against the Bombers, kicking 5.5 to 3.0 to take a 17-point lead at the first change. In the following quarter, the Roos extended their lead to 49 at half-time after kicking 6.5 to 1.3. Clarence went into cruise control in the second half, taking their lead out to 62 points at three-quarter-time. In the end, the Roos ran out 17.16.118 to 9.9.63 winners over Lauderdale.
Bryce Alomes was powerful up forward for the Roos kicking six goals, whiles Baxter Norton (one goal, seven marks, seven clearances, 14 inside-50s, 19 contested possessions, 33 disposals), Jack Preshaw (one goal, five inside-50s, 11 contested possessions, 19 disposals), and Noah Holmes (one goal, five marks, seven clearances, 10 contested possessions, 18 disposals) were key in a dominant win for Clarence.
For the Bombers, Sam Siggins (two goals, six one-percenters, seven inside-50s, 19 clearances, 21 contested possessions, 33 disposals) and Josh McGuinness (two goals, five tackles, six marks, nine contested possessions, 22 disposals) held their ground against the Roos.
Next, it was Launceston and North Launceston battling it out at Windsor Park. North Launceston made a red-hot start against their crosstown rivals, kicking 7.3 to 3.0 in the first term to lead by 27 points at quarter-time. The Northern Bombers retained their lead of 27 at the half after both sides registered 1.3 in the second quarter. Despite some inaccuracy, North Launceston extended their lead after half-time, leading by 37 points at the final change. In the end, it was a hard-fought victory for the Northern Bombers, winning 9.14.68 to 5.8.38.
Brad Cox-Goodyer, Brandon Leary and Harvey Griffiths kicked two goals apiece for North Launceston, while Ben Simpson (five inside-50s, 12 clearances, 15 contested possessions, 28 disposals) and Alex Lee (five inside-50s, five clearances, six marks, 60 hit-outs, 14 disposals) were two of North Launceston’s key contributors.
For Launceston, Tasmania Devils and Allies star Colby McKercher was arguably their best on ground, amassing 32 disposals in his return to TSL football. Other noteworthy contributors in navy blue included Arie Schoenmaker (one goal, five contested possessions, 10 rebound-50s, 11 marks, 30 disposals), Samuel Foley (five one-percenters, nine contested possessions, nine marks, nine rebound-50s, 27 disposals), and Lockie Presnell (one goal, 13 marks, 26 disposals).
Finally, North Hobart took on the Kingborough Tigers at North Hobart Oval. The Tigers took a three-point lead at quarter-time after kicking 3.4 to the Demons’ 3.1. The former kicked away to an 18-point lead at the end of the first half after kicking 4.3 to 2.0 in the second quarter. Kingborough gradually extended their lead in the third quarter and led by 27 at the last interval. Despite some wayward goalkicking, the Tigers came out on top to win 11.17.83 to 8.3.51.
Kieran Lovell (seven marks, 12 clearances, 18 contested possessions, 37 disposals), Lachie Clifford (seven clearances, eight marks, eight tackles, nine inside-50s, 11 contested possessions, 34 disposals), Lochie Griggs (one goal, six rebound-50s, eight contested possessions, eight marks, nine inside-50s, 27 disposals), and Eddie Cole (five inside-50s, five tackles, seven marks, seven clearances, 18 contested possessions, 27 disposals) were among the Tigers’ best on the afternoon.
For the Demons, Angus Norton (seven rebound-50s, eight tackles, 11 contested possessions, 11 marks, 48 disposals), Matthew Campbell (eight contested possessions, eight rebound-50s, 11 marks, 28 disposals), and Thomas Liefhebber (seven marks, 12 contested possessions, 27 disposals) battled hard in the red and blue.
This weekend, Glenorchy returns from the bye and hosts the Tigers at KGV Oval, Clarence courts North Launceston at Blundstone Arena, and Lauderdale skirmishes with North Hobart at SkyBus Oval.