Grubbers too hot for Demons

Star onballer James Linton in action. 166880 Pictures: JAMIE CULLUM

By Mark Heenan

Ocean Grove signalled its early season desire for ultimate success as the Grubbers smashed an inaccurate Portarlington by 105 points in their BFL opener on 1 April.
The Grubbers 17.21(123) defeated Portarlington 1.12(18) in the one-sided match after quarter time at Ray Menzies Oval at Shell Road.
The Demons kicked with a wind advantage in the first term and led a goalless Ocean Grove at quarter time by seven points.
After the first break, Portarlington failed to score another goal as the home side kept the visitors scoreless in the final term.
Ocean Grove almost doubled their score in the fourth quarter and slammed home 9.5 to run over the top of the Demons.
“We knew they were going to come out pretty strong, but we have had a big pre-season, we backed ourselves in on a big ground to run over the top of them,” said Grubber Kaiden Long, in his debut senior game as stand-in captain.
Long was captain in place of injured skipper Kelly Williams (back).
New Grubber playing assistant coach Brent Macleod was at his damaging best and booted five goals.
Macleod, a goalkicking midfielder won the GDFL Neville Whitey Medal after booting 96 goals last season with Thomson, kick-started the Grubber charge in the second term with three of his five goals.
“He (Macleod) stays very low to the ground, fends off and always dishes out,” Long said.
“He is very professional and very good at what he does – he is a good asset to have.”
Five players made their senior debuts for the Grubbers including star recruits Macleod, Jake Carmody, Peter Hardy and Adam Marangon.
Debutant Issac Wilkins made a successful transition from Grubber Under 18 level and kicked his first senior goal.
“As soon as he got the mark we all knew and he kicked the goal being his first senior game. It was good to get around him,” Long said.
Dynamic forward Daniel Maloney kicked four goals, vice-captain Matt Caldow booted three majors, while Corey Walter chipped in with two goals.
Demon Tom Dewey was the only goalkicker for Portarlington.
In the reserves grade Ocean Grove suffered a 36-point loss to Portarlington – 9.11(65) to 4.6(30).
The Demons jumped the Grubbers at quarter time to lead by 23 points thanks to a four-goal first quarter. Jon Ansell booted two goals for Portarlington.
In the Under 18 Colts grading games, Ocean Grove 1 lost 6.9(45) to Barwon Heads 14.8(92) by 47 points at Ray Menzies Oval.
It was a different outcome for Grubbers in the other Colts grading game with Ocean Grove 10.11(71) defeating Newcomb 1.0(6) by 65 points at Ray Menzies Oval. Casey Bongiorno kicked three goals for the Grubbers.
OCEAN GROVE 17.21(123) def PORTARLINGTON 1.12(18)
Goal Kickers: B. Macleod 5, D. Maloney 4, M. Caldow 3, C. Walter 2, I. Wilkins, T. Gavin, A. Marangon.
Best Players: B. Macleod, K. Long, T. Hobbs, P. Hardy, J. Carmody, M. Caldow.