By Joseph Vasquez
Round 19 of the 2023 TSL season was an eventful weekend of football around the state, with matches played between Lauderdale and Glenorchy, North Hobart and Launceston, and North Launceston and Kingborough.
First off, Lauderdale and Glenorchy did battle at SkyBus Oval. Lauderdale made a strong start at home, kicking 5.4 and keeping the Magpies scoreless for the opening term to lead by 34 points at quarter-time. Glenorchy pulled the margin back slightly to 26 points at half-time after kicking 4.1 to the Bombers’ 2.5, but Lauderdale remained in control and following the main interval kicked away to a 43-point lead at three-quarter-time. In the end, Lauderdale were too strong for Glenorchy, winning 12.18.90 to 9.6.60.
Sam Siggins was arguably best afield for Lauderdale, kicking four majors and amassing 33 disposals, and the likes of Phillip Bellchambers (five marks, eight inside-50s, 12 contested possessions, 32 disposals) and Nat Franklin (five inside-50s, 12 clearances, 15 contested possessions, 27 disposals) were also greatly influential in red and black. Additionally, Ed Stanley went out on a high, kicking three goals in his final TSL game.
For the Pies, Callum Thompson (one goal, five inside-50s, nine clearances, 13 tackles, 20 contested possessions, 26 disposals) and Matthew Joseph (one goal, six contested possessions, six one-percenters, 13 rebound-50s, 24 disposals) were resolute in black and white, and Josh Arnold played with pride in his 238th TSL game, a new league record for games played.
Next, North Hobart and Launceston skirmished at North Hobart Oval. The Demons took a lead of nine points at the first break after kicking 2.3 to one solitary Launceston goal, however the Blues pinched the lead before half-time after kicking 4.3 to 2.4 in the second term. The match continued to seesaw after half-time as North Hobart retook the lead, in front by four points with a quarter remaining. Despite Launceston’s efforts late, the Demons would not be denied, winning 12.13.85 to 10.8.68 and keeping their season alive.
Cohen Stephenson was lively in front of goals for North Hobart kicking three majors, and Tyler McGinniss (six marks, 13 contested possessions, 26 disposals), Thomas Liefhebber (five marks, eight tackles, nine clearances, 12 contested possessions, 25 disposals), and Harrison McLeod (eight inside-50s, 25 disposals) were prolific in red and blue.
For Launceston, Dylan Riley was enormous, kicking six of the Blues’ ten goals for the match, and Liam Jones (one goal, 10 rebound-50s, 27 disposals) and Brodie Palfreyman (five marks, six tackles, six clearances, 11 contested possessions, 22 disposals) held their ground against North Hobart.
And finally, in the match of the round, North Launceston and the Kingborough Tigers faced off at UTAS Stadium. The Northern Bombers took a slender lead of three points at quarter-time after kicking 2.4 to the Tigers’ 2.1. Both sides were unable to register a major score in the second quarter, and North Launceston extended their quarter-time lead by a point at the half. However, the Tigers were resurgent in the third term, kicking 3.3 to North Launceston’s 1.2 to lead by nine points at the final change. It was an enthralling final quarter, but Kingborough came out on top, winning 8.10.58 to 7.11.53, further solidifying their place atop the ladder and snapping North Launceston’s winning streak.
Marcus Gardner, Jack Tomkinson, and Tyler Carter kicked two apiece for the Tigers, and Lachie Clifford (five inside-50s, six tackles, eight clearances, 16 contested possessions, 32 disposals), Eddie Cole (six clearances, seven inside-50s, 14 contested possessions, 25 disposals), and James Webb (five marks, six rebound-50s, six clearances, 15 contested possessions, 25 disposals) were brilliant for Kingborough.
For North Launceston, Brad Cox-Goodyer and Oliver Dean kicked two goals each, and Jack Avent (seven inside-50s, seven tackles, 17 clearances, 22 contested possessions, 34 disposals) and Declan Chugg (one goal, five marks, six tackles, 16 contested possessions, 25 disposals) were superb for the Northern Bombers despite the nail-biting loss.
This weekend, Glenorchy hosts North Launceston at KGV Oval, Launceston courts Lauderdale at Windsor Park, and North Hobart is set to do battle with Clarence at North Hobart Oval.