A FAIRLY low scoring game in Sunday’s Springbank versus Bungaree match saw Springbank victorious by 13 points (9.6 (60) 6.11 (47)).
Springbank co-coach Michael Searl said it was a hard fought with only twogoals the difference at siren time.
“We played patches of good footy but we knew when you come up against good opposition the momentum will certainly swing to and from teams,” he said. “We had the first quarter momentum in our favour but they then played better football in the second and third quarters, and restricted our efficiency, due to pressure.” The last quarter saw Springbank playing to their strengths, which is one on one, something Springbank is good at.
“With the forwards that we’ve got, if you kick one on one to them, we’ll get a mark especially Macca (Mcmahon) who marks everything that comes his way,” Searl said. While many expected a top notch game, it did not eventuate. “Conditions were certainly tough and it was not the best spectacle of sport you could see, it was quite blustery out there at times, and our disposal, I think, at both parts was not where we would like it to be but it also they were putting on the ball carrier and things like that,” Searl added. “We spoke at half time, a few people were quite fumbly we found, and I think that’s perceived pressure, the feeling that someone is breathing down your neck and then you fumble and try to get rid of it before you’ve even got it sort of thing.”
Both teams appeared to be doing a lot of anticipating rather than just going for the ball.
“That was another thing we addressed at half time, that they would have to absorb the pressure, first and foremost get the ball and if you’ve got time to get away and get a disposal off then do so, if you know you will get tackled then absorb the tackle don’t cough it up,” Searl said. This is Searl’s first time as coach, aside from coaching the Alfredton Primary School Grade 6 class.
“That’s as far as my experience goes, obviously doing some leadership roles that North Ballarat give you, certainly gives you some handy preparation,” he said. “I gained my knowledge from North Ballarat and we found it worked for us and obviously you have to adept it fit it to suit the conditions of the culture of the club, as well.” Searl co-coaches with Nick Couch.
Taking over the coaching of a premiership side, Searl admits the pressure is there to keep up the momentum. “First and foremost we were trying to retain as many players as we could, I think we only lost 2 from the grand final team one has moved to another club and the other has retired,” he said. “We thought if we could keep them as a group, add a couple more to it and continue to develop those younger kids coming through, we would be thereabouts again. “It certainly won’t be easy but we just want to continue to improve and we find when we are playing good football we will be hard to beat.”