After a grinding win over the Northern District Tigers in the previous round, the Ulladulla Dockers were determined to further cement themselves as the competition leaders against an enthusiastic Shellharbour Suns this past Saturday at home.
With a long list of unavailable players for both teams, the Dockers were still able to field a positive side enjoying the luxury of an interchange. After a lazy and scrappy warm-up Coach Matthew "do better" Thompson and Captain Adam Clough fired up the group, eager to avoid another slow start.
With the wind behind them to start the match the Ulladulla Dockers took control of the match early on. There was plenty of run and opportunities to use the ball thanks to the newly recruited ruck Luke Russell dominating at the stoppages, continually allowing our midfielders to move forward and pressure the Shellharbour Suns defence.
An early intercept mark from President Craig Chambers got the Dockers on the scoreboard with the first goal of the day, and led to a 6 goal 4 behinds to nil first quarter. It set a dominant trend for the match, the Dockers continued to lift and run with the ball while the back line defence deflected nearly every potential scoring opportunity the Shellharbour Suns had. The Suns only managing 4 points to be scored for the entire match.
The courageous defensive effort was due in large part to Caleb Gleeson, Cody Smith, Matt Geelan, Daniel Peat and Luke Evans across the backs. From that foundation the Dockers controlled the play up the ground and continued to move the ball on their terms. With plenty of numbers around the contests and the boys in purple pressuring everything, the forwards had a field day.
The great teamwork all around the ground allowed Harrison Donahue to move up forward and bag 7 goals with full forward Adam Clough kicking 4 himself. With a satisfying end result the match finalised at 19 goals 16 behinds 130 to Shellharbour's 4 behinds. Players player went 1 point Matt Thompson, 2 points Harrison and 3 points best on ground Luke Russell.
Despite their lack of numbers and having a few players making their first appearances for the year the Shellharbour side never stopped competing and we thank them for making the effort to get a game of footy together.
The women's side were the beneficiaries of a Nowra-Albatross forfeit this week so enjoyed a weekend off. Both Dockers sides have the week off and then face Wollongong Bulldogs at Dockerlands on May 25, be sure to get down and enjoy some Footy!