Another full weekend of games ahead, on what should be a much cooler one, but humid and wet. Should be interesting to see how this affects some teams.
Main photo by Barend Photography
Under 16’s Saturday 29th January @11am – Sydney Pargeter Reserve, Endeavour Hills
South Eastern Predators (0-1) V Western Crusaders (1-0)
The Predators had a disappointing start to their season with a big lead chopped down, and an eventual loss. They will be looking to get the first W but face a strong outfit in the Western Crusaders. Coach Will Pipe and assistant Dennis Battistella look to have this outfit gelling already. Apparently they have a RB to watch out for in the future.
PREDICTION – Predators 12 DEFEATED BY Crusaders 34
Under 16’s Saturday 29th January @11am – Hendy Street Reserve, Corio
Geelong Buccaneers (1-0) V Croydon Rangers (0-1)
A slow start ended up being a great win for this bunch of kids from Geelong. They face a Rangers side coming off a disappointing loss to the Crusaders.
PREDICTION – Buccaneers 24 DEFEAT Rangers 12
Under 19’s Saturday 29th January @1230pm – Sydney Pargeter Reserve, Endeavour Hills
South Eastern Predators (0-1) V Melbourne Uni Royals (0-0-1)
The Predators have their own struggles on offence, with issues of giving the QB time and opening up wholes for the RB’s. The ONLY girl in Armani Laumua might need to play in under 16’s and under 19’s again. She was super strong in playing 2 games last week in the heat. Something I respect and hope she has recovered from it.
The Royals, although short on playing numbers were very VERY impressive. Some great talent on both sides of the ball (they played both ways). The cooler weather will be in their favour and I see them winning their first game.
PREDICTION – Predators 6 DEFEATED BY Royals 36
Under 19’s Saturday 29th January @1230pm – Hendy Street Reserve, Corio
Geelong Buccaneers (1-0) V Croydon Rangers (0-0-1)
Geelong surprised everyone but themselves, with a decisive victory over the more fancied Predators. They will face a strong Croydon Rangers outfit coming of a surprising split point game after trailing 24-14. The Rangers no doubt have talent, they just need to play better. Nilsson to Nilsson is the combination of the Rangers future but teams know this already. RB France Lien is also one to watch. Hard running and not scared to take a hit.
PREDICTION – Buccaneers 22 DEFEAT Rangers 18
Division 2 Sunday 30th January @1030am – Ross Straw Field Pavillion, Parkville
Northern Raiders (1-0) V Western Crusaders (0-0)
The Raiders had low numbers that look to improve with some players returning from Covid issues. A good hard-fought win over the Wolves last week. Will Coach Jenkins suit up again? Let’s hope he does as Crusaders DIV 1 coach, Craig Wilson, will be suiting up for this clash. One to watch will be Crusader WR Massimo Albanese, who is a jet and has good hands..
PREDICTION – Raiders 24 DEFEATED BY Crusaders 30
Division 1 Saturday 29th January @4pm – Sydney Pargeter Reserve, Endeavour Hills
South Eastern Predators (1-1) V Western Crusaders (2-0)
What I thought would have been a “Vic Bowl preview” has now become a “let’s see how good the Predators really are” kind of game. A very impressive win last week after the disappoint of week 1. Brad Furgeson and Prince Coleman take on their old team mates in what could be a classic matchup. I give the Crusaders the edge due having a number of options at the Running Back position. Something the Predators struggled to contain when they faced the strong running game of the Buccaneers in round 1.
The Crusaders are the Crusaders. They just get stronger and stronger as the years progress. They have a number of Defensive Lineman so they are never weaker as the game goes on. Their DB’s are solid and FS Mark Padula is in a class of his own. After shaking off the cobwebs and nerves, look to see Matthew Krul improve in the air. We know he can scramble and may need to with DE Lachlan Haynes trying to take him down. That’s if he can get past the solid Offensive Line the Cru have.
PREDICTION – Predators 14 DEFEATED BY Crusaders 34
Division 1 Saturday 29th January @4pm – Hendy Street Reserve, Corio
Geelong Buccaneers (2-0) V Warriors Gridiron Club (0-2)
Arch rivals don’t come any bigger than the Geelong Buccaneers and the Warriors Gridiron Club. With a history of Vic Bowl defeats at the hands of the Warriors, the Bucs look better placed this year to lay some punishment on their foes. The Bucs running game, with FB Daniel Tinitali will be the big difference here. The guy runs like Derrick Henry and loves to land a blow on the defenders on his way to scoring. RB Daniel Barnett has also been great, averaging about 80yds rushing a game in 1.5 games. I see the Warriors defence having issues with the powerful Geelong O Line. The Warriors don’t look anything like they used to, and that’s concerning for the rest of this season. Don’t underestimate them though.
PREDICTION – Buccaneers 40 DEFEAT Warriors 14
Division 1 Sunday 30th January @2pm – Ross Straw Field Pavillion, Parkville
Melbourne Uni Royals (0-2) V Croydon Rangers (1-1)
Not the ideal start for the Royals who had to forfeit game 1 due to COVID reasons and last week forfeited again at half time, due to not lodging a team sheet and playing unregistered players. Not a good look for the club. So, we will actually get to see them in FULL action on Sunday afternoon? Fingers crossed.
The Rangers called upon QB Jared Stegman to fill that role while their starter waits for a broken arm to heal. Back up QB Joshua Long is unavailable for the next few Sunday games. Stegman looked rusty due to only having 1 training session with his new team mates. We know Stegman can throw and scramble, something he did a lot of last week against the scary Crusaders D Line. He did find a connection with TE Anthony De Benedictis and WR Christian Toy. He needs to find one with star WR James Fountain if they’re going to outscore the Royals here.
Don’t know what to say about the Royals for the sheer fact I haven’t seen them play a full game as yet. We know they have a young man mountain at QB in Declan Ramage and a fast paced, magic handed WR in Jacob Kerin. We need to see that connection often if they’re going to win. The Defence looks ok but got beat by the Bucs far too easily last week. This is a very tough one to split.
PREDICTION – Royals 24 DEFEAT Rangers 23
GVision highlights will be posted here http://facebook.com/okpsports
Division 2 – Northern Raiders V Western Crusaders
Division 1 – Melbourne Uni Royals V Croydon Rangers
Gridiron Victoria LIVESTREAMS here https://www.facebook.com/gridironvictoria
Game 1 @11am – Under 16’s South Eastern Predators V Western Crusaders.
Game 2 @1230pm – Under 19’s South Eastern Predators V Melbourne Uni Royals
Game 3 @4pm -Division 1 South Eastern Predators V Western Crusaders.