Round 1 Match Report

A new-look Box Hill Hawks began their 2021 campaign on Sunday afternoon, going down to a strong Casey Demons outfit by 51-points.

Sam Mitchell’s 22 included 15 men who’d never before donned the brown and gold, with a blend of ex-AFL, Hawthorn-listed and developing VFL-listed talent among the fresh faces.

In the first match for points at City Oval since August 2019, the Hawks would concede the opening goal of the contest before responding via the boots of Damian Mascitti and Emerson Jeka – who would both finish the game with three majors apiece.

Casey would rally to close the quarter out the stronger, kicking four goals on the bounce to lead by 21-points at the first change.

The efforts of Ned Reeves, who finished with a game-high 41 hit outs, and Jai Newcombe, who recorded 19 disposals and a team-high 6 inside 50s, were the encouraging elements of a tough second quarter for a Hawks outfit looking to find a foothold in a contest which was slowly slipping away.

Despite goals to Jeka and Greene, it was the visitors who found another gear. The dangerous twin towers of Sam Weideman and Ben Brown proved a handful for the manful defence of Michael Hartley, Mason De Wit, James Blanck and Stuart Horner, and kicked 10 majors between them.

Having entered half-time separated by 43-points, Mitchell and his coaching group backed their charges in to turn things around.

Despite a better start to the third term from the Hawks, the Demons again found the goals easier to come by.

Two quick six-pointers blew the game wide open, and the arm wrestle that ensued thereafter suited a Casey team enjoying scoreboard superiority to the ground.

After toiling hard for little reward, Box Hill’s lone highlight of the quarter came when Fergus Greene produced a superb overhead contested mark and goal, his second, but come three quarter time the margin had ballooned to 66-points.

The final term was undoubtably Box Hill’s best of the match. In fairness, some of the sting was gone, but the Hawks finished the game in the right spirit and with the right attitude.

Jeka and Greene booted their third goals of the day, whilst Damian Mascitti kicked his second and third majors of a half-forward cameo.

Jai Newcombe continued to toil inside the contest, Lachie Bramble accumulated the last of his team-high six clearances, Cal Porter & Trent Mynott worked hard for their team, whilst the run of Ed Phillips never wavered.

Sadly, come the final wash-up, it wasn’t the brown and gold’s day.

Box Hill




10.7 67





17.16 118

Jeka, Greene, Mascitti 3, Brooksby

Disposals: Hartley 20, De Wit 19, Bramble 18, Newcombe 18, E Phillips 18, Horner 16, Mynott 16, Porter 16

Best: Newcombe, Hartley, Mascitti, Maginness, Porter

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