By Justin Flynn
Ocean Grove’s winning run came to an end at the hands of a strong Anglesea side in round seven of Bellarine Football League.
The Grubbers had won three in a row coming into the clash at Ellimatta Reserve, but a 13.12(90) to 6.12(48) defeat has them clinging onto fifth spot.
It might have come as a reality check for Ocean Grove against the second-placed Kangaroos, but coach Pete Davey was having none of it.
“We know exactly where we’re at and we also know Anglesea are a very good team and hard to beat on their home deck,” he told the Voice.
“We went there expecting a really tough test and it’s exactly what transpired.
“A few people externally have mentioned the phrase ‘reality check’ which amuses me. We know exactly what our reality is.”
Anglesea had control of the game from the start, booting four goals to none in the first term.
Ocean Grove hit back to trail by 19 points at the long break but a five goal to one third term sealed the win.
“It was a really frustrating day of footy as they didn’t allow us to get any fluency whatsoever when we had the ball,” Davey said.
“I honestly can’t recall too many occasions where we had a clear chain of three or more kicks and you’re not going to win many games when that’s the case.
“One thing I do hate is hearing opposition coaches say ‘we lost because we didn’t play well’. On Saturday we lost because Anglesea didn’t allow us to play well.
“They’re a good side and one that we will look to learn a few things from.”
Anglesea defender Dale Carson kept the dangerous James Paterson goalless.
Half-back Nick Swain ran the ball out of defence well all day while utility Lewis Beers booted three goals.
For Grove, Glenn Campbell, Mitch Taylor, Logan Taylor and Jake Ward (two goals) tried hard.
Davey said reviewing the game will be difficult with no footage taken on the day.
“There are a few scenarios that we encountered on Saturday that I don’t think we handled overly well,” he said
“Unfortunately with no vision of the game available, we can’t sit down and talk it through as a group while we watch it but we’ll recreate some of those moments at training and work out a way to better navigate our way through if/when we are confronted by it again.”
Anglesea faces a blockbuster top of the table clash against Torquay tomorrow while Ocean Grove takes on Geelong Amateur.
Amateur is struggling this season and Grove will start favourites, but Davey said there was zero chance of complacency.
“We know that Geelong Amateur at full strength are one of the best sides in the league, this season they just haven’t been able to get their best group together on a consistent basis due to injuries, but we know they have quality players coming back in,” he said.
“As far as complacency goes, we’re a side that won four games and finished second-bottom in 2019.
“As I mentioned, we know exactly where we’re at and where we’re coming from. We have to work harder and longer than everyone else to be able to compete at everybody else’s level.
“Suggesting that anybody wearing an Ocean Grove jumper would take any opposition lightly, let alone a club like Geelong Amateur, goes against everything our group stands for.”
In the reserves, Anglesea won a tight encounter by seven points.
No more than three points separated the sides at each change, but a three goal last term gave the Seas the win.
Tom Hobbs booted four goals for the Grubbers on a day where goals were at a premium.
In round six, Ocean Grove defeated Queenscliff by 38 points thanks to a huge third quarter that blew the game wide open.
The Grubbers booted six goals to two with livewire forward Sam Donegan slamming through five goals and contributing eight tackles in a best afield performance. Nathan Down and James Paterson each kicked three while Oliver Monteith was busy.
“It was almost a case of entering ‘team effort’ into the best players column but we did have some great contributions,” Davey said.
Ocean Grove also proved too good in the reserves, with a 33 point win. Only four points separated the sides at three quarter time, but Nick Chapman, Tim Lazzaro and Tom Hobbs led the charge when the game was on the line.