VALLEY Wolves will take on LTU in a massive Premier Mixed M-League mid-table clash, as Round 8 kicks off in the competition. That is our focus match for tonight, while in the Premier Men’s league, a top two battle takes place.
PREMIER MEN’S LEAGUE:
Round 8: (At 9:40pm)
Ariels vs. Boroondara Thunder – Court 1
City Heat vs. Altona Falcons – Court 2
Darebin Dragons vs. St Therese – Court 7
Few could look past the top of the table clash between City Heat and Altona Falcons which takes place on Court 2 to kick off Round 8. The Heat are undefeated in the 2022/23 season and will be looking to continue that run in the second half. Altona is far from an easybeat however, and is coming off a Round 7 bye. The Falcons copped a heavy beating and will be keen to bounce back and take a huge scalp.
Altona will look to its shooting combination of Andrew Lewis and Josh Smith in attack to put a score on the board, with Andrew Burgess up the other end capable of switching if required. Zac Mabilia has also been known to impact games through the midcourt. The undefeated Heat have no shortage of talent, with Jake Noonan controlling the midcourt, and a shooting pair of Cameron Allum and Brodie McCleish. In defence, Simon Cartwright will look to intercept forward forays for the Falcons.
In the other matches, St Therese will be expected to win big against the last placed Darebin Dragons in Round 8, while fifth placed Ariels hope to bounce back from a heavy loss to St Therese with a win over Boroondara Thunder. The Thunder are coming off a one-goal nail-biting upset over Netblacks who have the bye tonight.
PREMIER MIXED LEAGUE:
Round 8: (At 8:20pm)
Valley Wolves vs. LTU – Court 1
Parkville Panthers vs. Ariels – Court 2
Geelong vs. Altona Falcons – Court 6
NNE Vipers vs. Eastside Sonics – Court 7
Bye: Melbourne Quakes
A critical mid-table clash between Valley Wolves and LTU takes place in Round 8 of the Premier Mixed division. Both sides have three wins to-date with the Wolves 3-4 from seven matches, while LTU have a game in hand and are on an even keel of 3-3. In what is effectively the penultimate round prior to the first half of matches being completed, the win will set up the victor for the second half of the season.
Next round Valley Wolves have the bye while LTU take on the rampaging Parkville Panthers, meaning the Round 8 clash between the teams will bear plenty of significance for finals aspirations. LTU’s success has largely come off the back of a superb shooting season from towering goal shooter Liam Killey.
He helped them get over the line against Ariels in Round 7. Charlotte Crook and Elias Kafritsas are others who have performed strongly this season. For Valley Wolves, Alastair Punshon will have his work cut out for him against Killey but has proven his talent in goal keeper, while Nat Billings and Brayden Pastore are a dangerous shooting combination.
In other matches, fifth placed Melbourne Quakes have the bye as the top three clash between Geelong and Altona Falcons shapes as a massive clash. Less so in terms of finals calculations, seventh placed NNE Vipers will eye off their third win of the season up against the winless Eastside Sonics coming off a Round 7 bye, while Parkville Panthers take on Ariels on Court 2.
In the 17 and Under competition, WDNA and Peninsula Waves lock horns again – after the Waves drew with WDNA a few weeks back – while St Therese looks to continue its strong season up against the fourth placed Darebin. In the 14 and Under division, Melbourne Up & Comers will test themselves against St Therese, while WDNA takes on TBC on Court 1 from 6pm.