Scouting Notes: 2022 SANFL U18s Grand Final

GLENELG took out the 2022 SANFL Under 18 premiership on Friday night, downing North Adelaide by eight points at Adelaide Oval. The result capped off a sensational postseason run for the Bays, who won all three knockout finals by single-digit margins. We noted some of the top performers from either side, before taking a look up the grades.

  • Team
  • North Adelaide
  • Glenelg


#5 Isaac Keeler

Dangerous North Adelaide tall Keeler spent most of the game in the ruck where he took on Glenelg’s Kynan Dunn. Keeler managed 14 hitouts to Dunn’s 20, and wasn’t able to have his usual impact on the game. Onlookers would have kept waiting for a moment of Keeler brilliance to get things going for the Roosters when the game was on the line, but it never truly came despite a handful of promising glimpses from the ultra-talented tall.

#6 Shaun Bennier

Tall swingman Bennier lined up at full back where his overhead marking strength was a feature. Although North Adelaide dominated proceedings early in the piece, whenever the Bays went deep inside 50 Bennier was able to impact the contest in some manner. He was physical in the contest and didn’t mind a scrap afterwards. When Glenelg got on a run in the third term, booting three goals in a row and dominating possession, Roosters coach Craig Brooks swung Bennier forward and the move paid immediate dividends. Bennier took a strong contested mark then hoisted a long bomb goal from outside 50 which easily made the distance and prompted a response from North. Bennier was excellent, managing 14 disposals, four marks (two contested), four tackles and six rebounds.

#13 Oliver Dignan

Dignan single-handedly kept North Adelaide in the contest for parts of the Grand Final. He booted two goals in quick succession in the second quarter to give the Roosters some much-needed breathing space. Dignan’s highlight for the game was a terrific curling set shot from a difficult angle which put the Roosters back on top early in the last term. When Dignan booted his fourth goal, it appeared as if he had sealed the deal for the Roosters, but it wasn’t to be. However the forward from Orroroo did all he could in attack, making the most of his eight touches and four marks.

#14 Billy Dowling

North midfielder Dowling played a strong game in the midfield for North Adelaide and was instrumental in generating an onslaught of opportunities on goal in the first term. Dowling booted the Roosters’ first of the game with a running shot on goal, and generated plenty of other chances with his strong clearance work. The St Peter’s College skipper ran to the right spaces and used the ball well going inside 50. He gathered 26 disposals, three marks, three tackles and seven inside 50s.

#23 Hughen Wissman

Rugged on-baller Wissman was arguably North Adelaide’s best player on a frustrating night for the Roosters. The Prince Alfred College product was integral to North’s early midfield dominance, winning the ball at stoppage but also quickly applying pressure on the opposition ball carrier when going the other way. He finished the game with a team-high 27 disposals, two marks, 12 tackles and four clearances.

#25 Max Blacker

The diminutive Blacker produced another fine game in what has been a consistent year at college, SANFL Under 18 and state level. Starting at half-forward, Blacker rotated into the middle where his natural footy smarts and skill level with ball in hand were noticeable. He was clean with his hands in-tight and was one of North’s leading clearance winners with five, to go with his 20 touches.

Ben Ridgway wheels away with the ball | Image Credit: Glenelg FC


#4 Archie Lovelock

The form player of the competition claimed the Alan Stewart Medal as best on ground in the Under 18 decider. Lovelock was everywhere in the middle and at half-forward, and when the Bays got on their run in the third term, it was Lovelock who took a mark deep inside 50 and nailed just their third goal of the game. The classy midfielder had the ball on a string, winning it in congestion but also getting his hands to it away from stoppages and in general play where he was able to use his clean skills to hurt the opposition. Alongside his 35 possessions, Lovelock took eight marks (two contested), laid seven tackles, won five clearances, seven inside 50s and five rebounds in a scintillating performance to cap off a terrific year across multiple levels.

#5 Ben Ridgway

Glenelg skipper Ridgway was terrific when the Bays needed someone to step up in the middle against a star-studded North on-ball unit. He was one of the catalysts for Glenelg’s terrific start after half time, winning the ball in the coalface and pushing forward to hit the scoreboard from a stoppage inside 50. As we’ve come to expect from Ridgway, the McCallum Tomkins Medalist used his strong body to apply pressure of the Roosters mids and tried to bullock his way through stoppages. He finished with 28 disposals, five marks, seven tackles and seven inside 50s.

#7 Jake Walker

Walker provided a touch of class in the midfield. Not only was he the second-leading clearance winner on the ground, Walker used the ball beautifully going inside 50. In a typical performance from the Prince Alfred College star and SA Under 18 representative, Walker didn’t need an abundance of the ball to have a meaningful impact on the game. He managed 21 touches, four marks, five tackles and seven inside 50s.

#10 Eli Redman

Glenelg forward Redman was pivotal in the Bays triumph, booting three goals including the first two of the game. His first came within the first five minutes of the match, as Redman curled home a ripper from long-range to kickstart the Bays. He converted another couple of shots, including a late one in the fourth term when Glenelg were down by three points. He had eight touches, three marks and three inside 50s.

#12 Jakob Ryan

The ever-reliable Ryan was sound down back. He made a rare early error by foot, turning it over exiting the defensive 50, but didn’t let that stop him from backing in his skills for the rest of the game. Ryan’s foot skills over short and long distances were excellent, and were matched by his cleanliness in the air. He knew when to come off his direct opponent and intercept, but was equally solid defending one-on-one. Charged with the kick-in duties, he set up the play nicely from half-back but pushed forward to send the Bays inside 50 on seven occasions. He gathered 29 disposals, ten marks and seven inside 50s.

#13 Hayden Brokensha

The reliable Brokensha capped off a fantastic season in the yellow and black with another solid outing in the decider. Playing mainly off half-back, Brokensha along with Jakob Ryan, provided some meaningful rebound for the Tigers. His clean kicking was a feature, so to overhead marking. Brokensha had 25 disposals, took six grabs and recorded seven rebound 50s.

#31 Jack McAuley

When Glenelg needed a marking target in attack, McAuley was the man they turned to. After getting the Bays over the line last week with a strong second-half performance, McAuley booted another two after half time in the Grand Final to secure the premiership. He took a couple of terrific grabs in attack, booting a set-shot then pouncing on a loose ball out the back and finishing well. He only had the eight touches but took two contested marks and provided the focal point Glenelg needed up forward.

Glenelg’s Archie Lovelock with the Alan Stewart Medal | Image Credit: Glenelg FC


Glenelg fell short of pulling off a double junior premiership as the Bays’ Under 16’s lost out to Woodville-West Torrens by 40 points. The Eagles were spearheaded by future Adelaide father-son prospect Tyler Welsh (four goals) and Zane Peucker (three), while ruck Tom Luck (28 disposals) and Rome Burgoyne (26) were typically prolific.

Both were beaten out by Glenelg’s Charlie McAuliffe atop the ball winning charts, as he racked up 30, followed closely by 2024 Carlton father-son hope Lucas Camporeale. Twin brother Ben had it 19 times as his side went down 9.10 (64) to 3.6 (24).

After North Adelaide’s Reserves and Under 18s went down in their respective deciders, the Roosters were also beaten in a dramatic League Grand Final. In terms of the draft age talent afield, state combine invitee Baynen Lowe snared a goal from five kicks for Norwood.

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