HBL Win Thriller Over Bunbury

The Harvey Brunswick Leschenault Lions have won the game of season so far, when they defeated Bunbury by ten points in a pulsating Belt Up round five encounter on Sunday afternoon, in front of almost 1000 fans.

The biggest crowd of the season, were witness to a fantastic contest, which had all of the hall marks of our great game, including great goals, sublime skills from both teams in perfect weather and some high marking, including an early contender for mark of the year.

Blake Offer kicked just the one goal on Sunday afternoon, but was one of the best on the ground. Photo: Jon Gellweiler

After showing their intent early, kicking a goal in the opening thirty seconds, the Lions would kick the next two from Xavier Milner and Bronson Martin to open up an eighteen point margin at the ten minute mark of the opening quarter.   Joel Houghton steadied the ship kicking Bunbury’s first after delay as Ned Gualter hobbled off are landing awkwardly in the marking contest that led to the Houghton goal.  Bunbury started to gain more possession, and started to apply pressure to the Lions back half, but weren’t rewarded on the scoreboard, kicking three behinds.  Luke Bennett snapped truly from the goal square to extend the margin further, and when Milner kicked his second, this time from long range, the home side led by 23 points.

The quarter time address from Troy Hollands had immediate consequences, with the Bulldogs hitting back hard, kicking four goals in the opening seven minutes to take the lead, with Jesse Gribble, Jett Woods, Houghton all converting, with Woods second goal from 45 metres, landing the Bulldogs in front for the first time in the match.

Two minutes later Zac Piper converted courtesy of a 50m penalty to put the Lions back in front, before Houghton received a free kick in a one on one contest, to restore the lead for the Bulldogs.  Jett Woods took a mark in the goal square to extend Bunbury’s lead to ten points, before Martin applied some great forward pressure, winning a free kick for holding the ball, narrowing the margin back to four points just prior to half time.

Bunbury kicked the opening goal of the third, before an immediate reply from the Lions.  Joel Houghton replied almost immediately in what was a gripping contest to restore Bunbury’s advantage but Ty Anderson put the home fans into raptures when he goaled, giving the Lions back the lead, the fourth lead change of the match.  It would be lead change number five when Houghton goaled again, as Bunbury started to look the better side.

Fans were witness to a great contest on Sunday.

The final term was akin to a final, with a great atmosphere generated by the big crowd, with the Lions kicking the opening goal of the last, narrowing the margin to three points.  Luke Bennett kicked his second goal, putting the Lions back in front with the sixth lead change of the match, before Bunbury gained some momentum back, but were not able to score, in what turned out to be a thrilling last term.  Luke Bennett practically brought the house down with a hanger in the goal square (picture below) which he duly converted, to give the home side a nine point lead at the twelve minute mark.  Blake Offer kicked his first goal of the afternoon with a snap on the run to extend the margin further, but Houghton was not done with at the opposite end, kicking his fifth goal to bring the margin back yet again.

The resistance was broken at the twenty three minute mark when Geoff Saunders kicked a goal to make the margin seventeen points, with a late goal to Bunbury finalising the margin at ten points.

Ty Anderson and Connor Carbone again played great games for the Lions, while Bunbury’s captain, Denholm King led from the front again playing a great game, while Jesse Gribble and Dylan Heasman had a multitude of possessions.

The Lions will head to Kelly Park on Saturday evening to play Carey Park in what promises to be a great match, while Bunbury head to Glen Huon Reserve to take on Eaton on Sunday.

MATCH CENTRE

Harv Bruns Lesch   5.3.33     7.4.46     9.8.62     14.11.95
Bunbury                       1.5.11     7.8.50    10.11.71    12.13.85

Goals:  Harvey Brunswick Leschenault – Luke Bennett 3, Bronson Martin 3, Xavier Milner 2, Zac Piper 2, Ty Anderson 1, Jarrod Humphries 1, Blake Offer 1, Geoffrey Saunders 1.   Bunbury – Joel Houghton 5, Jett Woods 3, Dylan Heasman 2, Max Bilcich 1, Jesse Gribble 1.
Best:  Harvey Brunswick LeschenaultTy Anderson, Connor Carbone, Blake Offer, Jack Fletcher, Xavier Milner, Pierce Ferguson.  Bunbury – Denholm King, Jesse Gribble, Joel Houghton, Dylan Heasman, Harry Creasey, Daniel Perks.
Ground:  Brunswick Oval
Umpires:  Braden Surrall, Talen Guthrie, Greg Rolfe
Reports:  Nil
Crowd: 964
Belt Up Ball:  Ty Anderson