It is officially time to panic for the Prahran Assumption Football Club after yet another narrow loss this week, falling short to St Mary’s Salesian by 10 points on Saturday afternoon.
The fledgling Two Blues outfit were non-existent in the first quarter and ultimately could not make up for their disastrous start, going down 14.13.97 to 12.15.87.
With a 1-5 win loss scoreline the Two Blues are now eighth on the ladder and in relegation territory, yet have not lost a game by more than four goals.
It looked as if someone forgot to tell Prahran the match started at 2pm with St Marys completely dominating all aspects of the match in the opening quarter, holding the Two Blues goalless to take a 26 point lead into quarter time.
Things looked a lot more promising for Prahran though in the second term, with its pressure and all round intensity lifting a hundred percent from the first quarter.
A Josh Hogarth major five minutes into the second, finally gave Prahran supporters something to cheer about. The Two Blues slowly started getting the game back on their own terms, but a stack of forward 50 entries resulted in just two goals from six scoring shots, a trend that would reappear all day.
Although feeling as though they dominated much of the quarter, Prahran still found themselves 28 points in arrears at half time, two points larger than the quarter time deficit.
Sensing the writing on the wall at half time, Prahran Assumption head coach, Luke Egan, made a change that sent captain, Jack Matherson, one of the league’s premier defenders, up forward to try and create some much needed fire power.
The move was a stroke of genius from Egan. Matherson slotted home a goal barely a minute into the third quarter which sparked some belief into the Prahran playing group.
The Two Blues would continue to play through Matherson for the rest of the quarter as the skipper took a
handful of strong marks off the back of Prahran’s midfield, who began dominating the match thanks largely to ruckman Stephen Conlan, who gave his onballers first use of the footy as well as getting himself into dangerous and smart areas around the ground.
Prahran booted the first four goals of the third quarter to cut the deficit to just four points with plenty of time still remaining in the term. The Two Blues, though, continued to let easy set shot opportunities slip and could not take the lead.
Successive running goals to Scott Gatehouse gave St Mary’s a minor cushion late in the quarter before Gary Puruntatameri majored in the dying seconds to give the Saints a 15 point buffer at the final break.
In a last quarter that seemed to go for an eternity, a combined 10 goals were kicked by either side as the Two Blues tried to make one last charge to steal victory.
It looked as though Prahran were every chance to cause a major upset when they moved the ball deep inside 50 trailing by just 10 points, but a cramping Matherson could not complete a mark and the Saints rebounded the ball, thwarting Prahran’s attempt.
Puruntatameri again kicked truly to finally put the match beyond doubt for the Saints. Matherson,
Conlan and James Musster, who came alive in the second half, were among Prahran’s best.
Young hard nut Jordan Waters was also courageous for Prahran. The teenager’s pressure was outstanding whilst also booting two goals in his first season at the club, since moving to Melbourne from the Gold Coast late last year.
Now sitting at one win and five losses, Prahran face an uphill battle in trying to claim a final’s berth.
With a third of the season already gone, each match now becomes a must win for the Two Blues, starting next Saturday when they face Yarra Valley, a team in which they struggle against, losing both encounters last year.
PRAHRAN ASSUMPTION 0-2 2-6 7-10 12-15 (87)
ST MARY'S SALESIAN 4-4 6-10 9-13 14-13 (97)
Goals: Robbins 4, Cupples 3, Waters 2, Taylor, Matherson, J Hogarth.
Best: Conlan, Anglin, Matherson, Simpson, Waters, Panagiotaros, Musster.
Reigning Premier Prahran Assumption has dropped its last two games after being comfortably accounted for by St Mary’s on Saturday. The Two Blues were gallant for the first three quarters but suffered a final quarter blow out to succumb by 44 points. Jon Rice was serviceable for the Two Blues booting five goals.
PRAHRAN ASSUMPTION 12-6 (78)
ST MARY'S SALESIAN 19-8 (122)