Two colossal personal performances helped Sturt make it three wins on the trot to begin its 2020 U18 Torrens University Cup campaign.
Double Blues forward Zabien Parker-Boers booted seven goals, while Tom Powell gathered 39 disposals and 14 clearances in a classy 49-point win over West Adelaide at Hisense Stadium on Saturday.
Powell, an AFL Academy SA Hub midfielder, has commenced the season with a bang, leading the league for disposals at the conclusion of three rounds, averaging 34.3 disposals, ahead of Glenelg’s Lewis Rayson, 27.3.
The son of Jack Oatey Medallist and former Crow Matthew Powell, Tom Powell, was awarded the Round 3 Torrens University Cup MVP nomination.
The 180cm midfielder’s ability to break away from stoppages and find space around the ground has gone a long way to helping Sturt to its perfect season start.
Torrens University SA U18 coach Tony Bamford has been impressed with Powell’s form this season, in what has been a breakout year following injury concerns.
“Tom is starting to play some consistent footy at his U18 elite level after having some injury interruption over the past two seasons,” Bamford said.
“He has been used in an inside midfield and half-forward role to great effect so far in his games for Sturt U18s.
“His ability to be very clean with his hands both in congestion and also out in space to set up his teammates has been a highlight so far.”
The game opened with three goals apiece in an evenly-fought first quarter, and both sides registered another two goals in the second as the inaccurate Double Blues took a 5.9 to 5.3 lead into the main break.
After two goals in the first half, Parker-Boers snapped his third at the six-minute mark of the third term to stretch his side’s lead out past two goals.
The Bloods fought back instantly through goals to Tom Rundle and Tyrell Sgroi before Sturt put the foot down to kick nine of the final 11 majors of the match.
At the conclusion of the third term, Parker-Boers had just three goals on the board, but that quickly changed as he booted the final four for the match, coming all within 13 minutes as Sturt began to move the ball freely from end-to-end.
Parker-Boers finished with 7.1 from 17 disposals, also taking six marks in a breakout game.
West Adelaide Hub prospect Bailey Chamberlain was again among his side’s leading disposal winners with 20 touches, as well as finding five clearances, while Rundle and Sgroi kicked three goals each for the winless Bloods.
Five goals from Lucas Schultz and 35 touches from AFL Academy SA Hub prospect Lewis Rayson helped Glenelg punish North Adelaide in a 75-point win at Prospect Oval on Saturday.
After five behinds to start the match, Rooster Matthew Borg found his tall, long haired full forward Adam Heath 40m out who marked and goaled at the 10-minute mark of the first term.
From a North point of view, there wasn’t much to cheer about for the remainder of the game as the home side agonisingly kicked themselves out of the contest, while the Tigers made the most of their chances in front of goal.
Blayne O’Loughlin found 28 disposals around the ground and Jamison Murphy also amassed 26 disposals and six clearances as shining lights for the Roosters, who concluded the match with an inaccurate score line of 2.15-27 to Glenelg’s 16.6-102.
From a Tigers perspective, the season is rolling well and Rayson again showed his worth as a potential 2020 AFL Draft prospect with a 35-disposal, 11-mark and four-tackle performance, while Hagan Wright also found 27 disposals.
Skillful Crows father/son prospect Luke Edwards had 24 disposals and delivered the ball inside 50 on 10 occasions for the Bays.
South Adelaide’s Liam Hamilton bagged five goals as the Panthers led from start to finish in Saturday’s 76-point win over Central District at Flinders University Stadium.
It took just 19 seconds for South to find its first goal as Max Clifton forced the ball out to the scoreboard flank from the opening centre bounce. Hamilton sharked it from a pack and rolled it through from the paint of 50m.
This set the tone for the rest of the morning as the Panthers slammed home six unanswered goals in the first term, including a second to Hamilton at the five-minute mark and two to Phoenix Spicer.
South kicked another three consecutive majors after quarter time before Finn Reed opened the goal-kicking account for the Bulldogs at the 15-minute mark of the second quarter.
2018 Langhorne Creek A-Grade Great Southern Football League premiership player and AFL Academy Hub midfielder Matthew Roberts had another stellar match for the Panthers with 27 disposals, 11 marks and two clearances.
Roberts is averaging 26 disposals for the season to date.
Fellow SA Academy Hub midfielder Jason Horne also had a big day for the Panthers with 26 disposals, eight marks, six tackles and three goals, as did Liam Nye who kicked three goals from 15 disposals.
Hamilton missed his opportunity to cash in on a really big day out, kicking 5.3, but he did find 18 disposals and eight marks around the ground.
Lewis Cowham was Central’s best ball-winner with 21 disposals and nine clearances.
After three tight quarters, Norwood ran away with a five-goal final term to sink Woodville-West Torrens by 39 points at Coopers Stadium on Saturday.
It was a fantastic battle for the opening three quarters with 10 lead changes as the game went goal-for-goal for most of the first half.
The match was filled with star power as highly fancied Eagle Caleb Poulter went head-to-head with Norwood’s Cooper Murley.
The two AFL Academy Hub midfielders each finished with 29 disposals and two goals in a thrilling contest.
Tall forward Finn Heard was the star for the Redlegs with five goals, including three in a rampant final quarter.
Heard’s presence was enormous as he led hard all day and found himself on the end of 10 marks (four contested), kicking 5.4 from his 14 disposals.
Heard leads the competition’s goal kicking after three rounds with 10 goals, equal with Glenelg’s Lucas Schultz and Sturt’s Morgan Ferres.
Sign up to see all the news from around the SANFL each week – directly in your inbox!