Bears prove they’re the real deal

Published on Sunday, May 12, 2024

Author : Jack Ryan

Banyule have established themselves as a true contender in the 2024 Melbourne Greyhounds Division 1 season after prevailing by 10 points over an unbeaten Greensborough outfit at Greensborough War Memorial Park.

After being goalless in the opening term, an incredible seven-goal second quarter proved to be the catalyst in the 11.9 (75) to 8.17 (65) triumph, which now sees the Bears move to a 4-1 record after five matches, having defeated last year’s finalists in Hurstbridge and Montmorency prior to Saturday’s win over the Boro.

Despite trailing by 25 points at three quarter time, the hosts had their chances to regain the advantage, and were able to keep Banyule to 1.3 in the final term. However, Greensborough were wasteful with their opportunities and kicked 3.6 for the quarter.

It was an all-round team performance from Paul Harris’ men, led by Davin Cameron and Lewin Davis, who managed to kick seven of their side’s 11 majors.

Jack Sammartino also continued his great start to the 2024 campaign and was instrumental again for the Bears, while Deakin Lawler and Kristian Ferronato finished as the home side’s best for the afternoon.

Greensborough started the game on fire, with Ferronato immediately impacting the contest after coming back into the team this week, winning the first centre clearance of the day and hitting Nathan Howard who marked out in front strongly.

Ferronato was a raging bull in the initial stages of the match, with the youngster bursting away from a forward 50 throw-in and snapping truly to get the first goal of the day.

Quality looks at goal were hard to come by in the first term for Banyule, with the Boro restricting them to just four behinds. Aydin Dani nearly produced a moment of brilliance to get the Bears first, roving a marking contest inside 50 and collecting the ball beautifully, but his spectacular work only resulted in a behind.

The contest was more even than the quarter time score line suggested, the difference being Greensborough winning critical contests and taking their chances in front of goal.

Being 23 points down at quarter time, the second term couldn’t have gone much better for the visitors, managing seven majors to the Boro’s single goal.

Davin Cameron got things going for his side, creating something out of nothing in the pocket and slotting the goal despite the traffic around him. Cameron dominated the quarter and managed three majors in the stanza.

The Bears’ pressure was elite, highlighted by forward Daniel Owen, who pounced on a Boro dropped mark in defensive 50 and snapped truly to make it six unanswered goals for Banyule.

After conceding a seventh goal for the match, the Boro’s Lachlan Hill broke the runoff goals, kicking true from the pocket to reduce the half time margin to 12.

An inaccurate third quarter for Greensborough made the challenge of restoring their early lead a more difficult one, as they managed just five behinds.

Banyule meanwhile, would continue their dominance early in the term. Everything was going their way, illustrated by a shot at goal for the Bears which landed short, but still found Cameron who was in the right place at the time, to kick his fourth of the day.

Soon after, a pinpoint Lachlan King pass found Jack Langford, who made no mistake to extend the lead to 22 points.

Greensborough managed to control the ball for most of the quarter but could not get the reward on the scoreboard through a mixture of misfortune and bad kicking.

Charlie Bowes and Zac McCubbin were both inches away from kicking some tricky and much needed goals, before the visitors got some more breathing room through Langford, who kicked a goal against the run of play.

The deficit to chase for the hosts was 25 points, and as the atmosphere lifted at Greensborough War Memorial Park, the Boro looked to be back in the hunt.

A Banyule kick-out was intercepted by Zac McCubbin who made them pay from directly in front. His goal was then followed by a Jackson Hasler major, after he nailed a kick from outside 50 on the run, reducing the deficit to just 12 points.

The Boro surge continued, with a quick transition out of defence ending in McCubbin taking an uncontested mark at centre half forward but was this time, he was unable to convert.

Lewis Davis would restore faith in Banyule’s ability to hold their advantage, marking at the back of a pack and kicking his third goal of the afternoon to make it a 16-point ball game.

The Boro replied quickly through William McFawn and it was under a two-goal margin with time on approaching.

Both teams struggled to maintain control of the ball and get good looks at goal in a crucial five-minute patch after the 20-minute mark, with both defences at their outstanding best.

After some more desperate thrusts forward from the hosts, the Bears got the game on their terms, finding loose targets and chewing down precious minutes to eventually triumph by 10 points.

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