Team In Focus
Year 11 Melville/Applecross Hawks
This week we talk to Year 11 Assistant Coach of the Melville/Applecross Hawks Team Lachie Shepherd as he fills us in on how our boys are going after a merge of Melville JFC and AMPJFC Year 11 teams at the start of 2021. Lachie played all is junior footy with AMPJFC, was a AMPJFC Junior Club Person recipient and 100+ game player with our Club and is continuing to give back to our Club through coaching, where he has been involved with this team for the last 3 years.
AMPJFC Write-up Year 11’s
It’s been an unusual year for AMPJFC’s year 11’s this year with the unfortunate folding of our team. With retaining only a team of 6 local legends; Risshi Aryaa, Harry Cornish, Bence Lippert, Thomas Martin, Roan O’Sullivan, Quentin, as well as a star Northam resident and Clontarf boy Samuel Monger, it was always going to be difficult to try and stop us from dominating the Junior Football world. We landed on a new nest just down the road on our neighbourly Hawkers Melville Junior Football Club who have welcomed us with wide-open wings.
Throughout our pre-season it was clear it was going to be a strong and challenging year for the boys as we flew away from our comfort of Gairloch and onto the wide-open terrain of Marmion Reserve. Straight away our focus was on developing our craft with high-intensity fundamental training with the addition of vigorous game-simulated running. It was exactly what we needed to welcome us into the new nest.
The boys have welcomed the challenge of joining a new team and it’s been outstanding to see how quickly their development on and off the field has grown. In a tough start of the season stationed at 2 wins 4 losses, we are determined as ever to prove ourselves worthy of flying the flag back to AMPJFC. We have welcomed a new Clontarf boy to the kettle this year, Kyle Egan, who has set games alight with his running and agile movements managing to score 2 goals on his debut. Similarly, this past week we have welcomed back a tackling machine and another local legend, Oscar Lee, who for the first time ever found his way towards the big sticks.
Our Local legends have also made big impacts on this season. Risshi has skyrocketed his skills in being an asset across Ruck, Wing, Half-Forward and a general down back, honing his craft with grit and determination. His developing leadership has also been a huge benefit in his successful start to this year. Harry unfortunately has suffered a set-back this year with a hand injury, but boy oh boy we can’t wait to have his wheels out there along with his courageous heart. Bence, like a slow burn, has been carefully growing and mesmerising us with his undeniable ability to cleanly pick up the footy in congestion and hit a handball straight to his teammates with a 78% success rate of the mighty hawks scoring from it. Thomas has been exciting this season with his dedication to finding the footy no matter what happens and leading the boys with his passion and heart to do everything he can to support them. Our General is back after an injury ridden 2020, Roan has been back to some of his best football. His dedication to improving his already elite skills has been undeniable, along with his ever-growing leadership and voice. Roan has developed beautiful form in recent times and his composure and level head has held in great stead. The Big Q, Quentin had a brilliant start to the year being a goal scoring mastermind. It took no time at all for Quentin to settle himself into the forward line finding the middle of the sticks every game and often multiple times. His energy and excitement has been contagious and a great asset to the team. Sammy, our resident cheeky hawk has proven time and time again why he is the star of Northam and Clontarf football. Sammy has had a scintillating start to the season. Whether it’s kicking bags of 4 up forward or intercept marking and playmaking off half back. There is never a moment where Sammy has looked like slowing down and continues to lift the team up time and time again.
Although the season has only just hit half way, you can count on us to be flying that flag back to AMPJFC this year. Lastly a big thank you must be said to the Melville Junior Football Club along with the Year 11 Coach, Glen Davies, and the Melville boys for the warm-hearted welcoming and for never letting us feel out of place.