The Northern Bullants were overrun by a fast-finishing Frankston in Thursday night’s practice match at SkyBus Stadium.
Frankston’s accuracy combined with some hard running in the final term ensured they finished 13 points to the good, but there were several positive signs for the Ants, who led at two quarter breaks and rested several senior players in the last quarter.
“I felt for three quarters our contest was really good,” assistant coach Perry Meka said.
“We dropped off a little bit in the last quarter as they started to get a little bit of run off half back and scored off the back of that.
“There were some really good signs – we took a few guys off at half time who are some of our key players, but our young guys stepped up, which was really good. They just didn’t take hold of the moments, there were a few moments in that last quarter where we had the footy but we just turned it over.
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“That’s something we can work on – we’re back at Preston on Monday, so it’s something we get to work with.”
The work during the week shouldn’t be an issue, as Meka describes the players as ‘a coachable bunch’, committed to learning week-to-week and putting their work into practice on game days.
“When we took off Billy Murphy and Paul Ahern, who are strong VFL footballers, we then put a young Harry Kennedy in the midfield, who was great, and young Lachie Wilson, who went inside and played a role for us,” he continued.
“It just meant we didn’t have that big body in there that Frankston is renowned for.
“There are some positive signs. There was some feedback to us after the game from the opposition that our contest was amazing, which is a big tick to what our DNA is. We want a contest every week. If we can just brush up on a few things with our structures, particularly forward of the footy, we can be better.
The Bullants have one final practice match against the Box Hill Hawks on Easter Saturday before preparing to tackle Williamstown at Preston City Oval in round one on Sunday 18 April
Northern Bullants 2.2 5.5 7.8 8.9 (57)
Frankston 3.0 4.0 8.0 11.4 (70)
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