Scouting Notes: 2024 AFL U18s – Allies vs. Western Australia

FOUR unanswered final quarter goals were enough to get the Allies home by 20 points against Western Australia in their thrilling clash at Blacktown International Sportspark on Sunday. We highlight the top prospects and performers from either side in the latest edition of Scouting Notes.

>> Match report: Allies on the board after downing plucky Black Ducks

  • Team
  • Allies
  • Western Australia


#2 Zeke Uwland (Suns Academy)
Defender | 178cm | 24/04/2007

Stats: 29 disposals, 5 rebound 50s, 1 goal

Having been utilised on the wing last week, Uwland was shifted to quite a natural role in defence where he could attack with his run and foot skills. He accumulated possessions by consistently being in the right spot to either intercept or receive on the outside, showcasing his high level smarts. The bottom-ager’s second quarter goal was one of the highlights of the match, as he stormed through the corridor with a bounce, got the one-two and finished on the run. His ability to be incisive worked hand-in-hand with his willingness to be decisive.

#8 Leonardo Lombard (Suns Academy)
Midfielder/Forward | 178cm | 05/10/2006

Stats: 32 disposals, 10 inside 50s, 2 goals

Arguably best afield for the Allies across both games, Lombard was nothing short of dominant on Sunday. The Queenslander had a knack for breaking out the front of stoppages, embodying the Allies’ ball movement perfectly with his ability to surge forward in waves and share the ball by hand. Lombard set the tone with his competitiveness and kicked two outrageously good goals; the first through sheer work rate to follow his centre clearance inside 50, and the second by tapping the ball over an opponent on the run before slotting the ball home at top speed.

#11 Josaia Delana (Giants Academy)
Midfielder/Forward | 176cm | 01/07/2006

Stats: 19 disposals, 5 marks, 14 tackles

Delana was unleashed through the midfield after half time having played a role up forward over the first game and a half. The Giants Academy captain popped up with moments of power and speed but really started to get going in the on-ball rotation, where he applied himself defensively and looked busy between the arcs. Delana also snuck inside 50 for consecutive shots on goal during the third quarter, but kicked one into the man on the mark and missed the following snap.

#16 Sam Marshall (Lions Academy/Sandringham Dragons)
Midfielder | 185cm | 19/01/2006

Stats: 28 disposals, 6 clearances, 1 goal

Picking up where he left off last week, Marshall’s driving run and ability to chain possessions made him a productive player on the attack. The Lions Academy prospect wasn’t afraid to back his speed and helped spark the Allies’ transitional play, often involved in end-to-end passages and even getting forward of the ball for a goal in term two. Marshall was challenged by frontal pressure at times but found space with overlap run and balanced his game with clean inside work.

#20 Daniel Annable (Lions Academy)
Midfielder | 183cm | 05/04/2007

Stats: 21 disposals, 4 clearances, 1 goal

Annable returned another impressive shift in midfield, working hard in the clinches and flicking out the ball with frequency. The bottom-ager couldn’t quite find as much space as last week, but it mattered little as he held his own with fend-offs and strength to prise contested possessions. He capped his game off by slotting a set shot goal in the final quarter as the Allies put the cherry on top their runaway win. A genuine workhorse.

#28 Joel Cochran (Swans Academy)
Key Defender | 195cm | 28/03/2006

Stats: 21 disposals, 4 marks, 7 rebound 50s

At 195cm, Cochran was one of the Allies’ most effective and prolific rebounders on Sunday. His mobility defied his height, with the Swans Academy product chaining possessions out of defensive 50 and taking the game on with his advances up the field. Cochran also popped up for a couple of intercept marks but was generally most effective when moving forward creatively.

#32 Jobe Shanahan (Bendigo Pioneers)
Key Forward | 194cm | 02/08/2006

Stats: 12 disposals, 5 marks, 2 goals

Shanahan saved his best for last on Sunday, rising to the challenge alongside fellow forwards Josh Murphy and Lenny Douglas to run out the game on top. The tall marking target added half of his kicks, marks, and goals in the fourth quarter, rising to take the ball cleanly and finding more space to get dangerous in. While WA’s key backs were valiant, they couldn’t keep a good player down.

#34 Nathaniel Sulzberger (Sandringham Dragons)
Midfielder | 187cm | 06/05/2006

Stats: 16 disposals, 3 marks, 4 inside 50s

Sulzberger looked on track for another big game, collecting 13 of his total 16 disposals in the first half before fading out of the contest. The powerful midfielder was notably more efficient with his ball use going inside 50 during the first term, before getting his handball game going in the second with productive movement out of the stoppage. Like many of the Allies midfielders, his strong frame and clean hands made him an integral part of several exciting passages through the corridor.

#41 Cooper Bell (Giants Academy)
Key Defender | 198cm | 30/11/2006

Stats: 12 disposals, 2 marks, 3 rebound 50s

Playing perhaps somewhat of an unheralded role down back, Bell locked down Kayle Gerreyn for much of the game and did plenty of mopping up on the last line. Bell’s athleticism impressed as he got to the loose balls and bought time with his agility, looking quite composed as he played the percentages by dishing off handballs. Gerreyn began to get off the leash in the second half but it was a terrific battle between he and the Giants Academy prospect.

Cody Angove was lively on the wing | Image Credit: Rookie Me Central


#1 Cody Angove (Claremont)
Wing | 182cm | 28/05/2006

Stats: 13 disposals, 5 inside 50s, 1 goal

A real ‘moments’ kind of player, Angove did some nice things throughout the match from out on the wing. Donning some of the brightest boots afield, he was hard to miss as he set off at speed and used the ball well at full tilt. Angove’s decision making was sound in those instances and kicked an excellent running goal in the third quarter to showcase some of his class.

#2 Luke Urquhart (East Fremantle)
Midfielder | 183cm | 19/09/2006

Stats: 20 disposals, 5 tackles, 1 goal

Standing in as skipper in the absence of Bo Allan, Urquhart led from the front as WA’s most prolific ball winner. He took little time to get his hands on the footy and brought a hard edge to the contest, while also hurting the Allies going deep inside 50. He had a few tries on goal and converted one heading into half time, slamming the ball home from long range. Urquhart’s competitiveness was complimented well by such moments, where his run and energy opened things up on the attack.

#3 Malakai Champion (Subiaco)
Small Forward | 176cm | 17/05/2006

Stats: 9 disposals, 5 marks, 2 goals

Champion is exactly the kind of player you don’t want to cough up easy chances to, and he proved as much with an emphatic opening goal. The lively small forward was gifted a density free kick at the top of forward 50 and buried the set shot with a bit of wind assistance. He was crafty as usual at ground level and caused chaos as he paddled the ball forward, only needing a slight opening to break through. He converted a classy snap in the second quarter and while quieter after half time, still looked to draw free kicks and had a couple more attempts on goal.

#6 Blake Kelly (Swan Districts)
Midfielder | 182cm | 03/01/2007

Stats: 16 disposals, 6 tackles, 1 goal

Recognised by his coaches as WA’s best player afield, Kelly’s toughness and effort were integral to his side’s ability to stay in the game. He started forward and booted the day’s opening goal via a set shot, before transferring his defensive pressure and contested nous to the midfield battle. The bottom-ager was caught a couple of times taking on one tackle too many, but could not be faulted for intensity throughout the four quarters and especially in the first half.

#10 Austin van der Struyf (Claremont)
Defender | 178cm | 17/03/2006

Stats: 17 disposals, 3 inside 50s, 7 rebound 50s

van der Struyf was WA’s chief distributor from defence, taking on the bulk of kick-in duties and utilising his sharp foot skills. The Claremont product showcased good range on his kicks and looked dangerous when he did so on the end of running passages – either by overlapping or chaining up his primary possessions. When WA fed van der Struyf, they transitioned the ball much more efficiently.

#18 Clancy Dennis (Claremont)
Key Defender | 194cm | 28/12/2006

Stats: 11 disposals, 5 marks, 5 rebound 50s

Part of Western Australia’s trio of resolute tall backs, Dennis combined well with Curtin and Darcy Petersen to both intercept and rebound the ball out of defensive 50. Dennis played the percentages when required, rising for spoils but also clunking five marks as a constant intercepting threat. On the way out, his booming boot served the Black Ducks well to gain momentum and metres.

#20 Cody Curtin (Claremont)
Key Defender | 197cm | 18/05/2007

Stats: 10 disposals, 2 marks, 2 rebound 50s

Fresh off an outstanding trial game last week, Curtin was tested by the step up in competition but held up well with support from Dennis and Petersen. He was consistently there to mop up loose balls inside defensive 50, displaying his dexterity and composure to get WA moving forward. In another solid all-round performance, he ended up notching a couple of marks and has plenty of traits to work with as he develops into his top-age campaign next year.

#23 Charlie Burke (Subiaco)
Wing | 183cm | 11/04/2006

Stats: 19 disposals, 7 marks, 5 inside 50s

Burke has a happy knack for racking up possessions and has made the wing his own in this West Australian side. The top-ager held his width and was often there to gather off hands or receive outside the contest, shifting the ball between the arcs and clearly favouring his kicking – going by foot 18 of 19 times. An unassuming, but very handy talent.

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