Great report. Thanks. Am super excited by Reeves. Fingers crossed this is a turning point and he kicks on.Desperate for some footy positivity I went and watched Box Hill today.
Found plenty. Infinitely more watchable than last night's garbage.
But first the bad news - Will Golds did his ACL. Tragic for the kid, was playing well.
Ok, the good stuff - we won 11.7 73 to 2.12 24.
3.2 - 0.3
5.3 - 0.9
7.7 - 0.10
11.7 - 2.12
As far as I could tell the Dees had 11 listed players to our 10. The first half was pretty evenly fought, but Casey just couldn't find a goal. We rushed a lot of their points but they sprayed quite a few they should have got. Second half was dominated by Box Hill.
Our listed players were Golds, Day, Jeka, Maginness, Hartley, Moore, Ross, Jones, Pepper, Reeves.
Glass was there, in civvies. Didn't seem injured, not sure why he wasn't playing. Must be a niggle. No sign of O'Brien, Howe, Gunston or M.Walker (what's happened to him?).
Day, Hartley and Pepper lined up down back. Reeves, Maginness and Jones in the middle. Ross, Jeka, Moore and Golds up forward.
Dylan Moore started on fire - best player in the first qtr. Ross kicked our first 2, the first a really good snap. Cucinotta got the 3rd from a set shot. Reeves was great, winning all the taps and taking 4 or 5 marks, 2 of them good strong contested ones.
2nd qtr was a bit more of a slog. Casey off target, and Box Hill scrapping a couple of goals - Ross walking into an open goal and Jeka with a big snap around the body from distance. Golds injured early in the qtr.
3rd qtr we dominated but struggled to find the goals. Maginness and Jones really worked into it. Reeves serving it on a platter for our mids. Ross kicked his 4th and Will Day kicked a beauty late. Worthy of a description - Casey cleared from deep, Day sprinted hard to make the contest and spoiled the ball to ground wide on the boundary, somehow landing and pirouetting as he did, somehow emerging from the traffic with the ball tucked under his arm. Handpassed forward, then got it back and snapped across his body on the angle for a brilliant goal. We bemoan a lack of class in the senior side, well this kid has it in spades.
Last qtr foot came off the gas a bit and Casey snagged a couple, but it opened up for Box Hill as well. Jeka got on the end of a great passage of play, taking a big mark in the goal square. Kid can play. Reeves drifted forward and took a strong grab, dobbing it from about 25 out. Riley Bowman - new young ruckman - struggled most of the day but hit a purple patch with the last two goals, one a quick snap from a pack and then a good lead out mark and conversion.
HFC listed blokes:
Reeves - BOG by a mile for mine. I haven't seen a more dominant display by a Hawthorn ruckman since Salmon. Sure, I don't know who he was up against, but he was that dominant and impacted the game to a ridiculous extent. Every stoppage, he put it down a BH player's throat. Taps behind his head to blokes on the move, thumps into space where our blokes ran onto it, palms straight to Finn and Jones over and over again. I'll say again, I haven't seen anything like it for 20 years, and I've watched a lot of footy. Also took marks around the ground, kicked a goal, laid some heavy tackles. About 500% better than I've ever seen him play before.
Jeka - moved well, got up the ground, took marks, distributed well. Kicked a couple, could have maybe had one or two more as he had one touched on the line and one slipped through his hands in the square after he'd done all the body work to take the mark. Has a presence. Lot to like.
Day - got more and more prominent. Just after he kicked that great goal, he did a lazy kick on the wing that drifted wide of the mark and went to an oppo player. I watched him for a reaction - he took off toward the action like a mad man. I thought he's not going to impact this, it's just going back over his head. But he threw himself headlong and smothered the kick over the boundary. In the last quarter, he was everywhere, linking and driving forward. Took a big defensive mark in the goal square at full back. He's got me very very keen to see more.
Maginness - was workman-like. I'll stop short of saying he was great, but he played as well as any of our mids, and clearly knows how to play. Got ridiculous silver service at the stoppages from Reeves, and fed it out well most times. I tried to keep rough track of his possessions, I'd say he got around 20.
Jones - very very similar to Maginness. They actually play similar games. Finn actually looks the stronger, but Jones is slightly more manic and fights in and under.
Hartley - great game at full back. His ability to be in the right spot was a bit dare I say Mirra-like. He's a great kick, although he did bite off a couple of kickouts that were a bit over ambitious. He'll be a very handy player for Box Hill.
Pepper - this kid could be an absolute steal. The knock was his kicking, but he looks to have a nice compact action and hit all his targets today. (In fact Box Hill's overall skill made a mockery of what we saw last night - brrrr trying to forget). Pepper competes like crazy, has a great leap, and looks really composed. Like I said, he looks a steal.
Ross - has that happy knack of getting to the right spots at the right time. He's a very dangerous and clever player. Four goals is a good return. Did drift out of it a fraction in the second half but we were rotating forwards and he was still creating for others.
Moore - started on fire. Only played the first half, but was doing it all - marking, tackling, linking. Seem to be playing high HFF, not playing close to goal.
Golds - really sad. Was going pretty nicely, getting his share of touches pre injury.
Box Hill lads -
to be honest I was there more for the Hawks but these blokes stood out:
Mullenger-McHugh - played at CHB and looked more at home in defence than any time I saw him last year up forward. Very good game with some disciplined spoils and intercepts.
Bowman - young ruckman looked a tentative for the most part until taking his chances up forward in the last qtr. Box Hill might be very happy to have Brooksby to accompany Reeves cos Bowman doesn't look up to it (admittedly at first glance).
Deluca - stocky left footed midfielder, got involved a lot. Could be a handy replacement for Meadows, looks a similar type.
DeWit - after playing defence last year he was used as a tall wingman today and was quite prominent.
Otten was serviceable down back, Deledio didn't play.
I know this is all probably a little overly positive, but after last night I know I needed it. Was a good spectacle, and a fair bit to take away for Box Hill.