CLASSIC COMEBACK CRUSHES CARDINALS
Ten goals from Tim Clarke (pictured left, socks up and satisfied) and a spirited revival all around the ground saw the Old Xaverians run out comfortable winners in the Old Firm clash against Old Scotch at Barkers Road today.
The Xavs started sluggishly and were immediately challenged by the Redmen's key forwards. The visitors led at the first break, mastering the conditions early, and extended their lead to 13 points at the half.
But for the efforts of Nick Serafini and Tim Clarke, who had already banked five of the team's six goals, the margin would have been wider.
There was no mistaking the mood of Xavs' coach Barry Richardson at the half, as he demanded a better effort from his charges.
Two quick majors from Scotch to extend their lead to 27 points would not have improved his mood.
There was a buoyancy about the Cardinal outfit and among their faithful. Surely this would be the day when their recent nightmare run against the Xavs would end.
Not so. A Xaverian team at full throttle is an irresistible force and just shy of the half way point in the third stanza, they pushed the accelerator to the floor. Deficit gone: seven goals, and a lead established through some great work from Bowen, Colbert, Arnold and omnipresent Clarke.
Only a siren that blew four and a half minutes early (triggered by some remote device it seems) halted the deluge. Still, the uncanny X men were 17 points to the good at lemon-time and there was little from the Reds' demeanour to suggest that the game held another twist.
Kicking into the breeze into the final term, the Xavs recommenced their onslaught and kicked further away. Clarke kicked his ninth and much to the chagrin of the crowd, eschewed another ping in favour of a pass to a team mate.
On the bench, Mark Graham, who leads the league in scoring assists from inside the goal-square, was having none of it. He returned to the field, got on the end of a great string of possessions, ambled to the ten and punched it to a grateful Turtle, who dribbled it through to reach double digits.
The haul is the first handful for a Xavs small forward since Dan Richardson's bag against the Unicorns in the Elsternwick fog in 2002. The Xavs will return to those environs next week, their form happily rediscovered, and seeking to play four quarters at full tilt against Old Ivanhoe.
OLD XAVERIANS 3.6 6.8 13.9 20.11-131
OLD SCOTCH 4.2 9.3 11.4 13.6-84
Goals: Clarke 10, Arnold 3, Bowen 3, Colbert 2, Beardsley, Graham
Best: Clarke, Serafini, Arnold, Scanlan, Colbert, Beardsley
AROUND XAVIER NATION
The Xavs established an early ascendancy over Old Scotch and then smashed last year's runner-up with an eleven goal blitz in the final quarter.
OLD XAVERIANS 21.8-134
OLD SCOTCH 3.4-22
Goals: D. Rush 4, C. Larkins 3, T. O'Meara 3, D. Higgins 3, N. Corcoran 2, J. McDonnell 2, S. Doyle, J. Pasceri, P. Ryan, H. Murphy
Best: T. O'Meara, H. Murphy, D. Tehan, L. Ginnivan, L. Harry, J. Pasceri
The Menages won a tight one over Old Melburnians, who trotted out a familiar face but tired body (name of D Landrigan) in an attempt to wrest the ascendancy from Wazza's Warriors. It didn't work.
OLD XAVERIANS 7.6-48
OLD MELBURNIANS 6.9-45
Goals: R. Benson 2, M. Labrooy, P. Purcell, D. Quinn, J. Richards, M. Fletcher
Best: R. Ford, T. Silk, M. Fletcher, P. Purcell, M. Roache, R. Speekman
The Green Hose did the business against Scotch, winning by 21 points.
OLD SCOTCH 9.8-62
OLD XAVERIANS 12.11-83
Despite woeful goal shooting, the Arsenal of Theocracy rolls on with a comfortable win at Bulleen.
MARCELLIN 1.3 3.3 7.4 7.4-46
OLD XAVERIANS 2.5 4.12 6.17 11.25-91
Goals: S. McDougal 3, P. Cain 2, H. Whiting, L. Daniher, K. Desouza, A. Ryan, C. McMahon, M. Romanin
Best: J. Spragg, T. Grigg, D. Farley, J. Overland, K. Desouza, P. Doyle
Maulers (U19 2s)
Tommy Maule's boys celebrate Pat Halpin's 21st with a thumping result.
NOBS/ST PATS 3.2 3.3 6.5 7.6-48
OLD XAVERIANS 4.1 8.5 11.9 17.14-116
Goals: G. Grigoriadis 3, D. Follacchio 3, P. Kelly 2, A. Torre, L. Guirguis, T. Cougan, M. Dynon, B. Melvin-Smith, T. Curtain, L. Dimattina, M. Henderson, C. Perkins
Best: D. Follacchio, L. Guirguis, L. Dimattina, M. Henderson, A. Torre, A. Youssef
CHICAGO IS HIS KIND OF TOWN!
RALPH RETURN REMOTE AS BURGER BOY PUSHES OFF PIE PURSUIT
Chicago-based Michael "Ralph" O'Shaughnessy, a Croc Rock pioneer and survivor, who has been for years threatening to write the definitive story of that great social movement, will not be returning to Melbourne anytime soon.
O'Shaughnessy's local agent, the haberdasher Scott "Scooter" Denison, confirmed this in the early hours of Saturday morning. "Ralph was the international candidate for the Collingwood Football Club's CEO job, but I have advised the President of that club that we won't be proceeding to the negotiation stage," said Mr Denison.
The name of O'Shaughnessy, a Bill Denton winner in 1998 and a senior executive with McDonald's, is regularly raised in conjunction with high-level sporting positions in Australia.
"We've seen a succession of positions where his name has come up, gigs at the AFL, ARU, FA, but there's not enough in them to entice him back. Admittedly, he has shown significant interest in taking up the CEO's position at Old Xavs, but the money was just a little short," said Denison.
O'Shaughnessy's name has also been linked to the Chicago Rush, the reigning ArenaBowl champions.