The Narooma Devils put on a great show of attacking football at the Group 16 Nine-A-Side Tournament at Smyth Oval, Narooma last Saturday.
The Devils were impressive in winning their first two games by big scores, but were knocked out in the semi-finals by a determined Batemans Bay team, who were then narrowly defeated by Moruya in the grand final.
With a few top-line players out due injuries suffered in the Indigenous All-Stars game last week, it was a new look Devils team that took the field in the first game against Candelo-Bemboka.
Along with the established players from last year were new players James Streater and Ewen Campbell as well as young gun Gus Wilton and all played top football. Also returning was Lance Wright, who has not played at Narooma for six years.
It was also the first game for two American players, Sterling Winn and Roderigus Ceasar, and boy did they make a mark on the game.
Ceasar showed amazing speed to leave the opposition flatfooted and grasping thin air.
With good lead-up work by Lance Wright, he scored three tries from his first three touches of the ball for the Devils, and topped it off with another in the second half.
Two tries to Todd Bennett and one to Lance saw the score blow out to 43-nil.
In the second game against Eden the trend continued with Ceasar scoring his fifth for the day along with tries to Karn Mikolic, Cameron Bargwanna, Lance Wright, and Sterling Wynn, who with a determined display in attack and defence showed he will be a valuable asset to the team. The final score was 23-nil to the Devils.
In the semi-final against Batemans Bay the bounce of the ball didn’t go the Narooma’s way, the Devils going down 15-11. Tries to Ceasar, six total, and a great effort by Brendon Harper made for an exciting finish but time beat them.
Best for the Devils on the day were Brendon Harper, Tony Tyrell, Riley Hextell, Todd Bennett and Lance Wright as well as great debuts by Ceasar, Sterling and Gus.
The final between Moruya and Batemans Bay was a gripping affair with the Bay leading 4-nil with three minutes to go only to see Moruya score two quick tries to steal the game and the tournament 8-4. Well done to the Sharks.
A big thank you to all committee and players for their work and to the helpers on the day, especially Kylie McLaren, Ken Shepherd, Greg Willis and Gordon Barry, and also the league tag girls, who worked hard all day.
Finally our condolences go to the family of Ron Constable who passed away last week.
Ron was a former player for Narooma, being the halfback for the legendary 1955 premiership winning team that included such names as Ken Wright, Bob Bennett Snr, George Barker, Jimmy Pollack and Bob Brady. Our thoughts are with Joan, Phil and Chris at this time.