Grove motivated for bridge battle

A great way to kick things off under lights for Grubbers: Ocean Grove sing their theme song in the rooms after defeating Newcomb by 120 points at Shell Road on Saturday night. 153309 Picture: MARK HEENAN


OCEAN Grove coach Wayne Walsh remains determined to shake off the Grubbers’ bridesmaid tag against battle of the bridge opponents Barwon Heads this Saturday.
Walsh is yet to coach Ocean Grove to victory against Barwon Heads in his three attempts.
The Grubbers head into the clash following a 120-point demolition win over Newcomb on Saturday, 23 April under lights at Shell Road after two losses on the road to Geelong Amateur and Modewarre.
The Seagulls won all three games against the Grubbers in 2015 including their BFL knockout semi-final clash by 28 points at Torquay.
Ocean Grove has lost four of its past five games against Barwon Heads.
Second-placed Barwon Heads are in-form with a 4-1 record after five rounds despite going down to BFL ladder leader Queenscliff at Queenscliff by 36 points on Saturday.
“They (Barwon Heads) are good by foot, they spread well, our pressure has got to be spot on around the footy,” Walsh told the Voice.
Walsh said his side would need to improve on its 68-point drubbing at the hands of home side Barwon Heads in round 15 last year.
“We were absolutely terrible over at Barwon Heads (last time) and it sticks in my mind,” he said.
“They are arch-rivals, we want to get out there and play footy and we really want to do anything we can to win this Saturday.
“It will see where we are at as a group and if we are growing as a group … looking forward to the challenge and seeing how our young team responds.
“People have got to take this rivalry seriously, and wear their heart on their sleeve a bit as they say, we have got to play hard tough footy this Saturday.”
THE Grubbers who have a 3-2 record after five rounds, jumped into fourth spot on the BFL ladder courtesy of its 20-goal win over Newcomb.
Final scores were Ocean Grove 21.15.141 to Newcomb 2.9.21.
Ocean Grove youngster Mickitja Rotumah-Onus continued his bright start at BFL senior level to snare five goals against the Power, while livewire forward Travis Gavin booted three majors.
Grubber prize recruit James Linton who kicked two goals, was a spark through midfield and gained centre clearances and forward 50 entries with quick movement by foot.
Ocean Grove playing assistant coach David King showed good footy nous in the contests and along with Grubber ruckman Andrew Jarvis and senior skipper Kelly Williams were valuable contributors.
The home side led by 54 points at the main break and booted 13 goals to Newcomb’s two majors in the second half.
The Grubbers kept the bottom-placed Newcomb goalless in the first half, who were 0.6.6 at half time, and Walsh praised Ocean Grove’s solid defence.
“Our back six defenders or back eight players have been exceptional,” Walsh said.
“The week before (in the loss to Modewarre) we probably did not swing the ball enough around, we are pretty pleased with how our defence is going.”
OCEAN Grove’s senior match starts at 2.10pm against Barwon Heads at Howard Harmer Oval this Saturday.
IN the Under 18 Colts grading games, Ocean Grove 1 defeated St Albans by 12 points at Shell Road on Saturday.
Ocean Grove 2 lost to Newcomb by 56 points in the other Colts grading game played at Shell Road.