Development Team Clinches Three-Peat
Williamstown's Development team have pulled off a third straight Development League premiership after defeating Box Hill Hawks by a golden point in Saturday's Development League Grand Final.
In a tight tussle which saw both teams trade leads throughout the day, both teams were level at what would have been the final siren. The game then continued on in 'sudden death', with the first team to score to be crowned premiers.
With the ball going end to end in a frantic final two minutes, Jake Owen marked on the half-forward flank and was able to kick the winning behind, clinching an 8.13 (61) to 8.12 (60) premiership for the Seagulls.
It was the third straight Development League premiership for Williamstown against the same opponent on each occasion. Incredibly, this is the second time in three years that Williamstown have won the Development League premiership by a 'golden point', demonstrating the even nature of the two teams over that time period.
Jake Mckenzie was awarded the medal for best on ground after an impressive display of football off the half-back flank.
Putting his body on the line time and again for his teammates, while also being able to kickstart many Seagull attacks from defensive 50 by using his run and carry was crucial in his team's victory.
He was well helped by Taylor Hine who was played admirably often under extreme duress from the Box Hill forwards, while Jake Owen presented well up forward and delivered in the clutch with his late-game heroics.
Williamstown's engine room consisting of Jake Greiser, Jacob Chisari and Sean Hetherington were consistent across all four quarters and were able to weather the storm whenever Box Hill's midfielders began to assert themselves. The latter, Hetherington, was also able to hve an impact on the scoreboard by kicking three crucial goals in what was a low-scoring game.
The third straight premiership was great reward for first-year coach Shane Joyce and his players, who peaked at the right time during the finals after some setbacks late in the season.
With three straight flags under the team's belt and plenty of talented youngsters filling the club's development side, there appears no reason why the Seagulls can't challenge for a fourth straight premiership in 2016.
Williamstown: 8.13 (61)
Box Hill: 8.12 (60)
Goals: Hetherington 3, Casley, Curtis, Merlo, Monk, Bewley.
Best: Mckenzie, Greiser, Hetherington, Owen, Chisari, Hine.
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