Round 20 Match Report: Hawks Down Dolphins

The Box Hill Hawks edged closer to securing finals football on Saturday, completing a wire-to-wire victory over Frankston at SkyBus Stadium.

The result takes the Hawks to sixth on the VFL ladder through 20 rounds, a game and percentage ahead of ninth-placed Richmond and a further two points clear of 10th placed GWS.

The win – a third in succession – sets up a grandstand finish to the Hawks’ home and away campaign, with the Club set to host Geelong and Sydney at City Oval in the coming weeks.

Clint Proctor’s men won every quarter against the Dolphins, setting up the 51-point win with a powerful finish to the first quarter.

The returning Hugh Beasley won the toss and elected to kick with the aid of a very slight breeze, but a well organised, hungry Frankston kept the contest goal-less through 15 minutes.

The deadlock was eventually broken via a moment of class and improvisation from second-gamer Kai Windsor, who met Luis D’Angelo’s kick to centre half forward, picked his opponent’s pocket in mid-air, gave himself some space once he’d hit the deck and launched a superb right-footed kick goal bound from just outside 50.

It proved the catalyst for a 13-minute spell that netted five more six-pointers – comprised of singles to Jack Saunders, Ed Phillips and Jackson Callow, while former Dolphin Ben Cavarra bobbed up with two of his own – to give the visitors a buffer they wouldn’t surrender. 

Not even the latest of late goals to Frankston’s Brodie McLaughlin could take the sheen of a thoroughly professional first term.

While the conditions did favour kicking to the Young Street end of the venue, it didn’t feel worth more than one or two goals – but we couldn’t be sure until the hosts had their turn.

McLaughlin kicked his second after eight minutes of the second quarter, before Fergus Greene cancelled it out with his first. It was a case of far, so good for a Box Hill outfit wary of their hosts with the wind at their backs.

Liam Reidy edged the Dolphins closer shortly after, before Liam Shiels, Tom Phillips and the imposing Callow laid on three goals in quick succession. 

Taine Barlow kicked Frankston’s third of the quarter as time expired, but the Hawks could be well pleased following a first half they’d controlled for large parts.

The third term was a slightly more subdued affair, but the Hawks stretched their advantage thanks to Saunders and Greene’s second goals of the day sandwiching an effort from Frankston’s Josh Begley.

Box Hill’s third and final major came via the impressive Max Ramsden, who rucked and played key forward to great effect throughout the day.

Hawthorn’s mid-season draft pick presented strongly all afternoon, competing well in the air and at ground level, finishing with 20 disposals, 12 hit-outs, five marks and three clearances.

The contest played itself out in an even final 30 minutes, with both sides kicking three goals for the quarter.

Callow and Cavarra each kicked their third goals of the day, a fine reward for their individual efforts, while Windsor kicked his second – for the second game in succession, mind – to help his side win the term.

Callow was named the Hawks best for his 19 touches, team-high eight marks and three goals. The key forward was a physical presence in the contest all afternoon and the best big man on the ground.

The quality, hardness and experience of Liam Shiels was undeniable from the off, as the triple-premiership Hawk racked up 27 touches, a game-high 10 tackles, equal game-high nine clearances and a goal.

While the Hawks lost clearance by five, they managed to win centre bounce clearance by six – due in no small part to the four won by Shiels.

Cal Porter continued his fine season with a typically hard-nosed, hard-working display. Playing largely inside, Porter compiled a team-high 28 touches, took five marks, won four clearances and drove his side inside 50 on two occasions.

Run and creativity was provided by Saunders and Ed Phillips, who both won a place in Box Hill’s best on the back of fine displays.

Saunders’ two goals were complemented by 16 touches, four marks, three inside 50s and two tackles; while Phillips controlled the width of the field and linked up all afternoon to finish with 21 touches, four marks, two clearances and a goal of his own. 

But to suggest the win was on the back of those efforts alone does the 23-man squad a great disservice.

Having lost Mason De Wit and Brady Grey to positive COVID tests during the week, Box Hill secured the 51-point win thanks to the efforts of young and old – relatively speaking, of course.

The leadership of Dan Howe, Damian Mascitti, Tom Phillips, Stu Horner, Fergus Greene, Ben Cavarra, Vincent Adduci and skipper Hugh Beasley was key in supporting their developing teammates.

It allowed the likes of Ramsden, D’Angelo, Windsor, Max Hall, Max Walton, Liam Coghlan, Dave Brinker-Ritchie, Fionn O’Hara and Charlie Beasley to flourish and contribute to a strong team performance.

Best: Callow, Shiels, Porter, Saunders, Ramsden, E Phillips

Goals: Callow, Cavarra 3, Greene, Saunders, Windsor 2, E Phillips, T Phillips, Ramsden, Shiels

Disposals: Porter 28, Shiels 27, T Phillips 23, E Phillips 21, Howe 20, Ramsden 20, Callow 19

Box Hill




16.8 104





8.5 53

The Hawks continue their push for September football next Saturday afternoon against old foe Geelong at Box Hill City Oval.

Similar Posts