Scouting Notes: 2022 NAB League Round 6
A STANDALONE fixture made up Round 6 of the 2022 NAB League season, and it saw Tasmania down the Western Jets by 29 points at Windsor Park. On a day where the wind, and eventually rain, wreaked havoc, 17 of the 18 combined goals were kicked at one end of the ground as either side took turns to kick to the scoring sticks.
Even more remarkably, the Devils’ lone fourth quarter goal was the only major kicked at the disadvantageous end of the ground, and it helped them hold on for an 11.17 (83) to 8.6 (54) victory. The heavens opened up at just the right time for Tasmania too, as the Launceston turf became sodden and difficult to play cleanly upon.
While Western was missing arguably its star player, co-captain Massimo D’Ambrosio, to the Young Guns showcase, both sides fielded relatively strong squads for what ended up being a competitive scrap until Tasmania took toll in term three. We highlight some of the top performers from both regions in our Scouting Notes.
TASMANIA DEVILS 4.6 | 4.9 | 10.16 | 11.17 (83)
WESTERN JETS 0.2 | 5.3 | 5.3 | 8.6 (54)
Tasmania: J. Callinan 3, B. Leary 2, G. Payne, W. Splann, S. Campbell, L. Cowan, L. Jones, B. Alomes
Western: L. Morris 3, J. Freeman 2, A. Tsia 2, J. Petric
Tasmania: C. McKercher, L. Cowan, T. McCullum, S. Campbell, J. Callinan, T. Beaumont
Western: J. Whybrow, C. Kizan, J. Pavlidis, L. Morris
The Tasmanian goalsneak produced some of his best form for the season on Sunday, snaring a team-high three goals and doing so in style. Callinan’s ability to finish quickly was impressive, with all three of his majors coming in general play and showcasing his sharp goal sense. While he shanked a set shot wide in term one, he bagged two of Tasmania’s first three goals to set up the win nicely.
#13 Seth Campbell
Another super smart forward who just knows how to get to the right spaces in attack, Campbell got his goal early and went on to contribute some clever plays. He snuck out the back to get on the end of a Lachie Cowan bomb inside 50, dribbling home a classy goal into the open square during term one. A productive handball chain with two give-and-go’s was another highlight, as was his intercept of a Western kick-in during term two, which he used to hit Brandon Leary inboard.
#14 Thomas Beaumont
The third Tasmanian forward to feature, Beaumont has proven a terrific addition to Jeromey Webberley’s side having missed some footy early in the year. He was clean in the front half on Sunday and positioned well on the arc to intercept Western’s clearing kicks, locking the ball in Tasmania’s attacking 50. With decent use on his left foot, Beaumont also hit multiple targets inside 50 and helped the Devils take advantage of the wind in term one.
#15 Lachlan Cowan
The type of player who defends by attacking, Cowan was again in exceptional touch for Tassie across half-back. He took full toll in the first quarter with a massive tailwind, launching the ball 60-plus metres on several occasions to send Tasmania forward. The skipper was also aggressive with his intercepts and met the ball at speed, even rising for a big speccy on the wing. He could do with lowering his eyes at times, as kicking long is his main mode, but it proved effective with plays like his 55-metre goal from a hand-off in the third term.
#27 Colby McKercher
Again featuring in midfield, the crafty bottom-ager showcased his turn of speed and nifty decision making in tight spots. While certainly capable of bursting away and catching the eye with his breaking speed, McKercher bided his time on the ball to find handball exits with handy awareness and vision. He still produced a couple of nice breaks, but it was not exactly a day fit for flair.
#37 Tom McCallum
While he took some time to warm to the contest, McCallum ended up reaching his typical form along with Cowan in defence. The top-ager’s speed and athleticism has been a feature so far this season, but it was his intercept marking ability which proved the real highlight of his game on Sunday. He found the going tough in term two when Western made its charge, though recovered well to produce some clean work in defence and help Tasmania look solid in its setup behind the ball.
#13 Jaelen Pavlidis
While others ended up being more prolific, Pavlidis looked a touch more lively with his 13 disposals from midfield. The Jets over-ager set the tone well alongside Jake Whybrow, competing when the ball was there to be won and using his short burst to get to the outer. One of his best moments was a stoppage break in the second quarter, where he streamed away from the defensive corridor to hit Logan Morris in attack.
#16 Cameron Kizan
Stationed behind the ball for Western, plenty of play came Kizan’s way on Sunday and he was made to use his greatest strengths to get the Jets out of trouble. A handy distributive kicker, Kizan was relatively sharp despite the gusty conditions and made good decisions when feeding the ball out of defence. He also chased and harassed well to round out a solid game, where he notched clear season-high numbers.
#53 Logan Morris
One of two players to boot three goals on the day, Morris’ scoring game in a hurry as he booted three of Western’s five majors during term two. The 192cm bottom-ager turned it on during said period, presenting with clean hands on the lead and finishing via a couple of sweetly struck set shots from range. He had no trouble clearing 50 metres, then snared a more straightforward goal with a snap much closer to home.