The measure of a good team is how it responds to a challenge.
When a bouyant Yarra Valley kicked the first three goals of the match against a hesitant Prahran Assumption at Toorak Park on Saturday the alarm bells sounded. The top of the ladder Two Blues were momentarily rattled, but they steadied and posted the next six goals of the match. What seemed likely to be tight match changed slowly at first and then became a torrent of goals for the home team. A quarter-time lead of three points ballooned to 25 points at half-time, 42 by three season.-time and ended with a resounding 58 point win. Yarra Valley did not help its cause by conceding a rash of 25m penalties as their frustration grew.
This was the Two Blues best display of the season. The ball movement was swift as players ran in waves and the passing was in the main pin point with key forwards Josh Hogarth (four goals) and brother Ged (three) gleefully on the end of the silver service delivery.
Eric Kuret and James Musster, ably supported by Paul Donahoo and Trent Rogers, showed again they are without peer as the best midfielders in Division 2,while in defence John Stocker was a stand out with his long clearing dashes and Tom Freeman proved again what a class act he is. The Two Blues did not have a poor player and are clearly improving as the season progresses with Will Brereton an example as he turned in his best game for the club. The only low light was the first quarter injury to wingman Tom Quinn.
The Two Blues journey to Garvey Oval to take on resurgent Old Paradians next Saturday.
PRAHRAN ASSUMPTION 3-4 8-10 13-13 18-20 (128) d YARRA VALLEY 3-1 5-3 7-7 10-10 (70)
Goals: J Hogarth 4, G Hogarth, Kuret 3, Sleight, Simonetta 2, Maya, Leske, Adams, Williams.
Best: Kuret, Stocker, Adams, Musster, T Freeman, J Hogarth, Donahoo.
The reserves notched another win last Saturday against a valiant Yarra Valley to hold second place on the ladder, trailing to ladder leader West Brunswick by percentage only.
A close first quarter saw five scoring shots a side in what looked like the start of a tight contest. By the second term however, the engine room of the Two Blues started to kick into gear, with the likes of Tom Marmo and Michael Bremner combining in the middle to dominate the clearances and provide plenty of scoring opportunities.
Yarra Valley, having conceded five goals in the third term, were unable to capitalise on their own inside 50's thanks to a solid defensive effort headed by Aidan James Dodson, managing just 3 goals.
By the final quarter the Two Blues had the luxury of putting the cue in the rack due to their high work rate and superior fitness, providing a 38 point buffer by three quarter- time. Inaccuracy in front of goal compared to three straight for YV was not enough to allow them back into the game, finishing with a 35 point victory.
PRAHRAN ASSUMPTION 13-10 (88) d YARRA VALLEY 8-5 (53)
Best: Digs, Marmo, Doddo, Spider, Brem, Evo
PRAHRAN ASSUMPTION 5-8 (38) lost to RICHMOND CENTRALS 8-8 (56)