Scouting Notes: 2024 AFL U16s – Vic Metro vs. Vic Country

VIC COUNTRY earned bragging rights over their Metro counterparts with a 22-point win in Saturday’s Under 16 National Championships clash at Trevor Barker Beach Oval. The victors controlled much of the match and overcame goalkicking inaccuracy to salute 9.17 (71) to 7.7 (49).

Vic Metro more than doubled their score in term four but was not enough to bridge the gap Country had built. After leading by 18 points at half time, Vic Country bolstered their buffer to an unassailable 38 points at the final break and held off Metro’s gallant finish to claim victory.

VIC METRO 1.1 | 1.3 | 3.6 | 7.7 (49)
VIC COUNTRY 1.4 | 3.9 | 8.14 | 9.17 (71)

Vic Metro: A. Butler 3, S. Gayfer 2, H. Ryan, H. Van Hattum
Vic Country: C. Walker 2, J. Pickett 2, M. Prasad, S. Doherty, W. Malady, N. Williams, T. Dak Liem

Vic Metro: M. Downes, W. Waller, H. Van Hattum, A. Butler, T. Hodgson, H. Ryan
Vic Country: C. Walker, J. Phillips, M. Toner, M. Neocleous, M. Prasad, C. Templeton

  • Team
  • Vic Metro
  • Vic Country


#2 Jack Dodorico (Calder Cannons)
Defender | 178cm | 30/05/2008

Stats: 12 disposals, 6 marks, 1 rebound 50

Dodorico was a fast starter, making an impact with seven of his 12 disposals in the first half. Four of them came from marks, as the defender put himself in good spots to intercept and did so bravely. His positioning and decision making were aggressive, allowing for passages where he’d win possession and continue his momentum to spark a counter-attack. Deceptively tough.

#10 Max Downes (Northern Knights)
Midfielder | 180cm | 09/07/2008

Stats: 25 disposals, 7 clearances, 5 inside 50s

Downes’ class was evident from the get-go, as he got his hands on the opening centre clearance and went on to dominate that aspect of the game with seven overall. Not only was he adept at finding first possession, but he also spread hard to compound his impact in attacking phases. The only real knock on the midfielder’s game was that he was caught in possession a few times, looking to take on tacklers or thinking he had more time than what was afforded to him.

#11 Arki Butler (Sandringham Dragons)
Forward | 180cm | 23/04/2008

Stats: 16 disposals, 7 marks, 3 goals

There will be an all-time highlight reel by the time Butler is through the pathway, and the forward added to his tape with three majors on Saturday. He was among the catalysts for Vic Metro’s late surge, booting two majors in the final quarter to give his side a sniff. His overhead marking was eye-catching, and he only needed a small pocket of space to manufacture scoring chances. Earlier in the game, his movement and athleticism was a feature working up the ground.

#19 William Waller (Eastern Ranges)
Tall Defender | 191cm | 03/08/2008

Stats: 18 disposals, 9 marks, 9 rebound 50s

Waller put in an enormous shift down back, clunking intercept marks for fun and helping keep his side somewhat competitive. The 191cm high-flyer showcased a spring-heeled leap and strong hands with four of his grabs being contested. His defensive decision making was matched by sound distribution with ball in hand, as he helped his side navigate out of defence on the restarts.

#20 Sam Gayfer (Northern Knights)
Tall Forward | 191cm | 21/05/2008

Stats: 7 disposals, 2 marks, 2 goals

Gayfer may only have registered seven disposals but had his moments with limited opportunities. He was rewarded with two goals in the final quarter, teaming up with Butler to restore respectability to the scoreboard and finishing his work well. Earlier, he caught the eye with some lovely leaps at the ball, reeling in a pair of contested marks and getting his hands on a few more.

#24 Tate Hodgson (Northern Knights)
Tall Defender | 193cm | 24/07/2008

Stats: 15 disposals, 9 marks, 5 rebound 50s

Along with Waller, Hodgson held up under enormous pressure at times as a handy interceptor and distributor down back. He got his marking game going with six in the first half, positioning well behind the play and peeling off to impact the contest. Hodgson was also productive on the rebound, as proven with his chain of handballs to spark a third quarter transition from defence.

#27 Harry Van Hattum (Northern Knights)
Ruck | 202cm | 01/07/2008

Stats: 14 disposals, 7 marks, 23 hitouts

The dominant key position player afield, Van Hattum imposed himself on the contest with ominous aerial work and strong ruck craft. He also got involved around the ground and when rotating forward, leaping at the ball nicely as an outlet down the line to clunk a whopping six contested marks. Van Hattum’s awareness at stoppages was impressive too as he was not afraid to take possession and throw his big frame around.

Max Downes was best afield for Vic Metro | Image Credit: Morgan Hancock/AFL Photos


#1 Marcus Prasad (Dandenong Stingrays)
Small Forward | 167cm | 23/03/2008

Stats: 20 disposals, 7 tackles, 7 inside 50s

Whether it was creating scoring opportunities inside 50 or shutting down the opposition with menacing tackle pressure, Prasad played a classic small forward’s game. His craftiness was on show with kicks executed on the inside and outside of his boot, including a snap goal in the third term. He would later feature in midfield with terrific energy and ground level presence.

#3 Noah Williams (Geelong Falcons)
Wing | 174cm | 22/01/2008

Stats: 15 disposals, 5 inside 50s, 1 goal

Williams generated some electric outside run on Saturday, bringing fluency to Vic Country’s transitional play. His turn of speed made him a high metres gained player, but he was also competitive enough to win ground balls on top of being an outlet in space. Williams’ creativity on the attack was rewarded with a sealing goal in the final quarter, aided by a 50-metre penalty.

#4 Ethan Drever (GWV Rebels)
Midfielder | 181cm | 10/07/2008

Stats: 14 disposals, 3 tackles, 5 clearances

One of three Vic Country midfielders to win five clearances, Drever was clean in the clinches and slick with his ball use. His awareness and vision at stoppages were superb, able to take first possession and flick it out at all angles to release teammates. Others may have been more prolific away from stoppage, but Drever brought his strengths to the table and made good use of them.

#6 Jackson Phillips (Dandenong Stingrays)
Midfielder | 182cm | 30/01/2008

Stats: 18 disposals, 5 tackles, 7 clearances

Vic Country’s leading clearance winner with an equal game-high seven, Phillips provided spurts of power and drive to the midfield battle. He used his strength to burst out of tackles and was able to connect with teammates when exiting congestion, accelerating and getting creative by hand. Along with Walker, he brought the ball from inside to outside effectively.

#7 Marlon Neocleous (Gippsland Power)
Small Forward | 167cm | 26/02/2008

Stats: 18 disposals, 5 marks, 4 inside 50s

Along with Prasad, Neocleous was a creative force inside Vic Country’s attacking 50. The diminutive talent was unselfish to set up others with crafty kicks and had a couple of chances himself, but couldn’t convert. He began to venture further afield in the second half and left his biggest quarter for last, adding seven disposals to his tally to run out the game strongly.

#8 Cody Walker (Bendigo Pioneers)
Midfielder | 183cm | 26/01/2008

Stats: 28 disposals, 7 inside 50s, 2 goals

Carlton fans were rejoicing on Saturday as their 2026 father-son prospect turned in a best afield performance. The son of 202-game Blue, Andrew booted two of the first three goals of the game, backing himself from long-range to sink a pair of 50-metre bombs. Walker’s power and athleticism were the main event though, as he crashed and bashed at the contest, but also glided across the turf with smart and hard running on the spread. He has dual eligibility as a Richmond NGA product.

#14 Cody Templeton (Gippsland Power)
Defender | 181cm | 01/01/2008

Stats: 15 disposals, 5 marks, 5 rebound 50s

Templeton offered flashes of flair in Vic Country’s backline, utilising his pace to transition the ball energetically. Barring Michael Hughes who dominated the kick-in duties, Templeton was his side’s most prolific rebounder and did so with intent in every foray. He had plenty to do as Vic Metro stormed home in the final quarter, posting six of his 15 disposals in the last 23 minutes.

#17 Mitch Toner (Dandenong Stingrays)
Forward | 186cm | 16/01/2008

Stats: 15 disposals, 5 marks, 9 inside 50s

With a strong frame and raw athleticism, Toner showed out as one of Vic Country’s most dangerous forwards. A finishing touch may have eluded him, but the 186cm powerhouse utilised all his physical gifts to take strong marks at the top of attacking 50 and launch the ball deep into scoring zones. His aggressive approach made him a constant threat, and he showcased an ability to sit opponents down with pure brawn. Adding touches of composure and polish will be the next step.

#18 Wil Malady (Gippsland Power)
Forward | 188cm | 12/10/2008

Stats: 7 disposals, 4 marks, 1 goal

Malady had a happy knack for finding space inside 50, utilising clever leading patterns and showcasing his terrific overhead marking. The only thing missing from his game was the ability to convert, as he bagged a third quarter snap goal to go with four behinds. Three of his minor scores were set shots, including one from the top of the goalsquare in an ‘almost’ kind of performance.

#23 Xavier Ladbrook (Gippsland Power)
Key Defender | 197cm | 16/10/2008

Stats: 7 disposals, 4 marks, 2 rebound 50s

With Vic Country dominating for large parts of the game, there were patches were Ladbrook had little to do but he showed promise when called upon. The mobile key defender is capable of flying for intercept marks but was just as suited to running the ball out of defence and backing his skills. His extension at the ball and neat use are handy traits for a versatile tall talent.

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