R12 Preview: Blue Ribbon Cup


Round 2, 2019: Box Hill Hawks 16. 4. (100) defeated Sandringham 8. 11. (59) at Marvel Stadium.

The Box Hill Hawks will be determined to get back on the winners’ list when they take on Sandringham for the Blue Ribbon Cup on Saturday.

Box Hill fell short to Essendon by 10-points in a nail-biting contest at Windy Hill last Saturday. Although the Bombers led at every change, their lead was never greater by more than two points. Luke Meadows gave the Hawks the lead in the final term, but goals to Mosquito and Houlahan in time on ensured the hosts held firm to victory.

After winning it’s last two games, the in-form Sandringham fell to Werribee by 24-points last Sunday. The Zebras fought back from an 18-point deficit at half-time, to trail by only a goal at the final break. However Sandringham could only manage two goals to Werribee’s five in the final quarter.

Box Hill will be buoyed by a return to Box Hill City Oval, a happy hunting ground for the Hawks this season where they defeated Casey, Coburg and Williamstown by an average of 44 points.

The reigning premiers will take confidence from comprehensively defeating Sandringham by 41-points in their Round 2 clash at Marvel Stadium. Although evenly poised at half time, an eleven to four goal second-half blitz, led by four goals to Nathan Boucher and three goals to Jackson Ross sealed the deal. It was an extremely efficient performance from the Hawks, who posted 16 goals from 20 scoring shots and 49 inside-50s. Box Hill will be looking for more of the same scoring potency this week, having only reach 100-points in one match since (Coburg R4).

Sandringham Skipper Brede Seccull has been in impressive form in his debut season at the club, averaging 23 disposals, four marks and six tackles per game. Seccull led from the front all day during his side’s Round 11 defeat, gathering 25 possessions, four marks and four tackles. He looms as an critical player in Sandringham’s engine room again this week, and will be expected to line up on Box Hill midfielders Luke Meadows and Harry Jones.

In-form Hawk ruckman Marc Pittonet is enjoying a stellar run of form in the VFL this season. The big man amassed another 21 disposals, four marks, three tackles and 50 hitouts in Saturday’s defeat to Essendon in his return to Box Hill. Pittonet’s performance was rewarded with a VFL team of the week selection, and he will be full of confidence in coming up against Sandringham’s Sam Rowe or the returning Billy Longer.

Former Box Hill Captain David Mirra impressed yet again last week, gathering 23 processions and eleven marks to continue his outstanding season. Mirra has been typically resolute in defence, averaging 22 disposals and eight marks from his five games this season, with his vital leadership and experience proving his greatest assets in an otherwise youthful back six.

As it stands, Sandringham’s loss to Werribee on the weekend ended its two game winning streak, with the Zebra’s sitting in seventh position on the VFL ladder.

Meanwhile Box Hill’s inconsistent season, losing three of its last four games, finds it slide to ninth position.

Undoubtedly the result of the match this Saturday looms as pivotal in shaping the top eight of the VFL competition, as the season enters its second-half.

Although only winning one of its last four match’s, Box Hill Assistant Coach Torin Baker is remaining optimistic, affirming the side’s close losses have been a great opportunity to learn and grow collectively as a youthful team.

“We’ve been close in the last five games,” Baker said.

“We are really excited about the fact that we are having great, close games of footy.

“We are going to keep practicing and learning how to win. We are not seeing these close games as a negative, but alternatively as great growth for our players.

“We were strong last time against Sandringham, but we know it’ll be a good tussle again this week.”

Get down early for another Hawk’s double-header!

Hawthorn’s VFLW team will be aiming for four wins on the trot, when they take on the fourth-placed Sandringham on Saturday at Box Hill City Oval at 11.50am.

Entry is free to VFLW. Entry is free for Hawks members to the VFL. Anyone who arrives to the VFLW match prior to half time will gain free entry to VFL.

The Blue Ribbon Cup was established in 1999 in memory of Victoria Police members Sergeant Gary Silk, and Senior Constable Rodney Miller who were lost in the line of duty at Moorabbin in August 1998. To pay our respects, for all police officers, players and on-field officials will wear reflective blue and white chequered arm bands and conduct one minute of silence before the game.


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