Three developing Hawks competed in Saturday’s first Young Guns match of 2018.
This weekend’s match, staged at Avalon Airport Oval, is the first of three similar contests to take place this season, with each VFL club able to nominate five players aged under 21 to participate.
In the absence of Development League football the matches are an opportunity for those coming out of TAC Cup to remain on the radars of AFL recruiters.
First year players Nathan Boucher, Geordie Nagle and Ned Reeves turned out for a Metro representative team, with each contributing a goal and impressing as their side defeated Country by 27-points.
Box Hill scout Glenn David was in attendance and was full of praise for the Hawks contingent.
“Ned really came alive when given the opportunity to ruck, showing good tap and body work.
“Whether at the centre bounce or around the ground he gave his mids plenty of opportunity and first use.
“He shows terrific potential as a ruckman and will only benefit from working and developing in a good program.”
Geordie Nagle, who arrived at City Oval following a Best and Fairest win at the Sandringham Dragons last season, has made work rate his trademark throughout pre-season and the early stages of the season proper, and was full of run on Saturday afternoon.
“Geordie had a great start and had his first touch only moments into the contest. Playing mainly across the backline, he had a few stints in the middle and was right in the game.
“His ability to get himself to the right spots, to either receive or dish off a hand pass, was a highlight, as was his willingness to present as an option when teammates had the ball.
“He showed great vision and clean hands throughout the contest, and even kicked out from full back on a number of occasions.”
Boucher, a talented cricketer during his school days, was named as his side’s best player.
“Nathan started on the bench and was ready to go when his chance came.
“He showed terrific leadership on and off the ground, where his voice was a constant source of support for his teammates.
“He was able to get to a number of contests throughout the day and, like Geordie, was able to find space on the spread and create an option for those in possession.
“From what I saw, if he were used a little more he’d have had an even greater influence on the result.
“He played mainly midfield, but also had stints on the wing and across half-forward. He worked hard to take the attacking position at stoppages and a highlight was when he combined with Ned at the stoppage for a clearance.
“Used his two-way running all afternoon and capped a great day with a beautiful running goal in the last term.”
The next Young Guns game will take place on May 26 at North Port Oval, with the third and final match at the same venue on June 30.