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At half time in Sunday’s game at Trevor Barker Beach Oval, things weren’t looking too flash for the flailing finals prospects of the Casey Demons. Key forward Sam Weideman had suffered a concussion in his first contest and, with a few exceptions, the team was playing like a rabble rather than a finals contender. The Demons were 23 points in arrears to the Zebras and their season was headed towards oblivion. It was the skipper Mitch White who spurred his team on by word and by deed - he finished with three goals and really rallied the team to a great comeback that saw the team’s final hopes remain on track with a 12-points victory. But if White was the catalyst, then it was certainly ruckman Braydon Preuss who made up for the disappointment of being dropped from Melbourne’s losing side against the Eagles to record an outstanding 185 dream team points in one of the best ruck performances seen at this level. The Demon big man was easily best on the ground with 27 possessions, 14 clearances, four tackles and 59 hit-outs. He even kicked a goal as the cherry on top of his stellar performance. If there was anyone who came close to the same stratosphere as Preuss then it was Jimmy Munro who recorded 18 kicks and 12 handballs on top of eight crunching tackles. He well and truly put the Saints’ Jack Stevens under the hammer and earned the accolades of all and sundry at the ground for his persistence and determination. Twenty third player Ariek Lual showed some flashes of brilliance and will be worth watching as a player with definite X factor attributes. There were some other good performances on the day - mostly in the second half - with defender Marty Hore returning from a broken collarbone sustained less than a month ago. Jay Kennedy Harris was, as usual, very steady and reliable at this level. The Demons remain in ninth place on the VFL ladder and, following narrow losses in their previous two games, are very much an outside chance of progressing any higher on the ladder. This week they face a tough battle against ladder leaders Richmond VFL at the Swinburne Centre and will have to be at their absolute best to get the points and remain in the finals race. The moment of truth is coming. 2019 Hard Yakka / Totally Workwear VFL Casey Demons 2.0.12 4.5.29 9.9.63 12.11.83 Sandringham 4.1.25 8.4.52 10.4.64 11.5.71 Goals Casey Demons White 3 Dunkley Lockhart Melksham 2 Jordon Lefau Preuss Sandringham Joyce Owens Steven 2 Answerth Parker Rice Seccull Young Best Sandringham Joyce Seccull White Marsh Steven Fox Casey Demons Preuss Hore Kennedy-Harris Munro White Lual Statistics Toby Bedford 1 behind 3 kicks 7 handballs 10 disposals 9 tackles 63 dream team points Austin Bradtke 4 kicks 3 handballs 7 disposals 3 marks 1 tackle 2 hit outs 33 dream team points Kade Chandler 6 kicks 10 handballs 16 disposals 1 mark 5 tackles 59 dream team points Wayne Collis 7 kicks 8 handballs 15 disposals 1 mark 4 tackles 58 dream team points Kyle Dunkley 2 goals 13 kicks 7 handballs 20 disposals 4 marks 7 tackles 106 dream team points Tom Freeman 12 kicks 4 handballs 16 disposals 3 marks 1 tackle 55 dream team points Marty Hore 15 kicks 5 handballs 20 disposals 6 marks 1 tackle 77 dream team points Jack Hutchins 1 behind 8 kicks 2 handballs 10 disposals 4 marks 4 tackles 57 dream team points James Jordon 1 goal 7 kicks 8 handballs 15 disposals 1 mark 2 tackles 55 dream team points Declan Keilty 3 kicks 4 handballs 7 disposals 2 marks 1 tackles 14 hit outs 41 dream team points Jay Kennedy Harris 16 kicks 8 handballs 24 disposals 1 mark 4 tackles 77 dream team points Mykelti Lefau 1 goal 6 kicks 3 handballs 9 disposals 2 marks 33 dream team points Jay Lockhart 2 goals 7 kicks 5 handballs 12 disposals 2 marks 5 tackles 65 dream team points Ariek Lual 5 kicks 6 handballs 11 disposals 3 marks 5 tackles 57 dream team points Jake Melksham 2 goals 1 behind 11 kicks 5 handballs 16 disposals 5 marks 5 tackles 85 dream team points James Munro 1 behind 18 kicks 12 handballs 30 disposals 4 marks 8 tackles 121 dream team points Braydon Preuss 1 goal 1 behind 24 kicks 3 handballs 27 disposals 8 marks 4 tackles 59 hit outs 185 dream team points Aiden Quigley 2 kicks 2 handballs 4 disposals 1 mark 2 tackles 22 dream team points Cory Stockdale 1 kicks 6 handballs 7 disposals 1 marks 3 tackles 21 dream team points Billy Stretch 9 kicks 7 handballs 16 disposals 2 marks 48 dream team points Luke Tynan 3 kicks 10 handballs 13 disposals 2 marks 2 tackles 43 dream team points Sam Weideman - injured early in game (no statistics) Mitch White 3 goals 3 behinds 12 kicks 3 handballs 15 disposals 4 marks 1 tackles 73 dream team points
If embattled Demon coach Simon Goodwin is looking for answers on the vexing question of how his charges should handle windy conditions, he could do worse than consult his colleague Justin Plapp at Casey. Plapp's Casey Demons were well and truly under the pump by half time at Trevor Barker Beach Oval on Saturday after Sandringham dominated the opening two quarters, mastering the windy conditions to hold a 28 point lead. Yet it was the visitors who triumphed in the end by 10 points despite the fact that they trailed by a point at the final break with three players already out of the game through injury and facing the prospect of 30 minutes kicking directly in the face of a wicked north wind. Early in the game, the Demons struggled to adapt to the windy conditions. They did manage the opening two goals to Bayley Fritsch and James Munro to lead by 13 points a mere six minutes into the game but they were then stopped dead in their tracks by the determined Zebras who played extra men down back, bottled up play in the defensive pockets and turned the game into a scrappy affair making it difficult to score even with the aid of the wind. A late goal to Angus Scott just before the quarter time siren helped the home side to a 15 point lead but Sandy took little time to whittle away the deficit. They kicked the next six goals before Bayley Fritsch dribbled one through at the 30 minute mark but a goal just before the half time siren gave them a big lead. Ben Kennedy was quick off the mark early in the third term, followed by one from Liam Hulett but when the Zebras responded with two goals of their own, they still led by 27 points with half the quarter gone. It was at this point that the entire complexion of the game changed. First, a great pack mark from Declan Keilty in the goal square, followed up with a goal lifted the team spirits and suddenly long, direct kicking for goal became the order of the day. Ben Giobbi, Will Collis and Sam Weideman all kicked long goals and the scores were level. Sandy kicked a late point to lead by a point at the final siren. The opening two goals of the final quarter were crucial. They went to Scott and Fritsch and Casey now held a two goal lead before Sandringham fought back with two of their own. Despite the fact that the Demons had lost Joel Smith, Jake Spencer and James Munro and their rotations were limited, they dug into their reserves of energy and from that came goals to Scott and Ferreira to sew up a famous 10 point victory. Jay Kennedy-Harris' 40 plus possession game was enormous while Angus Brayshaw and Billy Stretch were all class with their ability to find the football. Young ruckman Mitch King was important in the ruck contests while Fritsch and Scott were both damaging around the goals to set up the win. A win at home next week against the Northern Blues should just about seal another place for Casey Peter Jackson VFL 2017 Casey Demons 3.3.21 4.3.27 10.7.67 14.9.93 Sandringham 1.0.6 8.7.55 10.8.68 12.11.83 Goals Casey Demons Fritsch Scott 3 Collis Ferreira Giobbi Hulett Keilty Kennedy Munro Weideman Sandringham Cook Holmes Lonie Rich 2 Bailey Battle Long Phillips Best Casey Demons Stretch Brayshaw Keilty Kennedy Kennedy-Harris Fritsch Sandringham Lonie Long Weickhardt Statistics Angus Brayshaw 1 behind 16 kicks 18 handballs 34 disposals 6 marks 5 tackles 117 dream team points Liam Hulett 1 goal 1 behind 6 kicks 6 disposals 2 marks 1 tackles 33 dream team points Dion Johnstone 1 behind 10 kicks 14 handballs 24 disposals 1 mark 56 dream team points Declan Keilty 1 goal 9 kicks 3 handballs 12 disposals 6 marks 3 tackles 66 dream team points Ben Kennedy 1 goals 15 kicks 16 handballs 31 disposals 5 marks 4 tackles 109 dream team points Jay Kennedy-Harris 19 kicks 24 handballs 43 disposals 3 marks 9 tackles 147 dream team points Mitch King 4 kicks 3 handballs 7 disposals 2 marks 6 tackles 24 hit outs 66 dream team points Joel Smith 2 kicks 3 handballs 5 disposals 2 marks 18 dream team points [injured] Jake Spencer 4 hit outs 4 dream team points [injured] Billy Stretch 1 behind 9 kicks 13 handballs 22 disposals 2 marks 9 tackles 97 dream team points Jack Trengove 1 behind 8 kicks 16 handballs 24 disposals 1 marks 4 tackles 73 dream team points Sam Weideman 1 goal 1 behind 5 kicks 4 handballs 9 disposals 3 marks 3 tackles 3 hit outs 55 dream team points The Development League team booked its finals place in the historic last season of this competition with an emphatic 49-point win over Sandringham. Yillber Zijai impressed with four goals for the Demons. AFL Vic Development League 2017 Casey Demons 3.3.21 7.9.51 11.10.76 15.14.104 Sandringham 3.2.20 3.2.20 7.5.47 8.7.55 Goals Casey Demons Zijai 4 Di Pasquale 3 Briggs Byers Cox Foote Gardiner Hillard Lefau Vander Haar Sandringham Smith 5 Cathcart Iudica Pavlou Best Casey Demons Zijai Freeman Byers Lovett Di Pasquale Dan Johnston Sandringham Iudica Verma Hooy Thompson Smith Butler