* indicates required
With five players returning from the inaugural 2012 team, plus the addition of two former SEABL players, the Geelong Supercats Big V Division 1 Women are gearing up for their second year in the league.
The Division 1 Women structure has changed from a fourteen team, two conference structure, to a ten team one conference structure. The 2012 championship winning Warrnambool Mermaids have dropped out of the competition, while Keilor, Southern Peninsular and Chelsea have been relegated to Division 2.
While stand out player Bianca Cheever has moved to the SEABL side, the Division 1 team picks up quality SEABL players in return in Anna Teague and Jess Watson.
Head Coach Darren Busuttil had this to say about how his team is shaping up for the coming season;
“I think we have a more balanced team for 2013 than we did this year. We’re certainly going to be a bigger side – but across the board - size wise, speed wise and fitness wise we are ahead of where we were at the start of this year. We’re already five weeks ahead – being our first season in Division 1 in 2012, we didn’t even know we had a team until after Christmas, so we didn’t start training until January.
“We probably didn’t have a great first half in 2012, due in part to injury and fitness. We finished really strongly though, we had five wins and one loss in double overtime in the last six games of the season. It will be a tough competition this year with the relegation of three teams back to Division 2. We expect to start the season off well though.”
DEPARTED PLAYERS – Sarah DeGrandi (retired) Bianca Cheever (SEABL), Ashleigh Hatton (not playing), Cynthia Giuffrida (not playing), Ebony Rolph (SEABL/VYC), Gemma Koehler (not playing), Sharon Ford (not playing), Sophie Templeton (not playing) , Suzie Ashford (currently in USA),
RETURNING PLAYERS – Jae Conn, Vicki King, Amy Wormald, Kathy Mallon, Kendyl Collins
NEW PLAYERS – Anna Teague (SEABL), Jess Watson (SEABL), Tash Daffy (VYC), Rebecca Lane (Eltham), Louise Johnson (Altona), Taylor Smyth (Altona)
TO BE CONFIRMED –
A few player departures from the 2012 team have been filled with a returning player who missed the 2012 season due to travel and some other locals and new recruits. Brett Goodgame and Lucas Kenny will not be returning for 2013, while late season fill in Andrew Przybylkiewicz has been named in the VYC side.
Chris Brown comes back after a year off, while Ben Suchanek, a former SEABL player, steps in. Dion Smith comes over from Warrnambool and Jarryd Watene hangs up the footy boots to play basketball in Geelong after playing with the Horsham Hornets in 2011.
Returning from the 2012 Runner-Up championship team are Dane Bow, Steve Wiasak, Simon Evans, Ben McCawley, Ben Scannell and Chris Daniele. One of the stars of last year’s team, Matt Hardiman, is yet to decide if he can commit to the team for 2013, while Michael Lesic and local player Steve Highland are also currently training but not yet committed to the squad.
Head Coach Shayne Bow has faith that his team will once again be in finals contention at the pointy end of the season.
“I think we will be very competitive again. Losing Brett Goodgame hurts, but our pick ups have been very good. I think between Jarryd (Watene) and Ben Suchanek we will cover that loss well. We’re still very hopeful that Matt Hardiman will play again this year – if he doesn’t play then Chris Brown and Ben McCawley will really have to step up in his absence.
“We’ve had a great pre-season so far, and been running some scrimmages, once we come back in January we will have a very big month and really get into the fitness and running,” said Bow.
The Division 1 Men will join the VYC men in a round robin style pre-season mini-tournament in February to play against neighbouring associations Werribee and Altona for the second year in a row.
DEPARTED PLAYERS – Brett Goodgame (retired), Lucas Kenny (retired), Andrew Przybylkiewicz (VYC),
RETURNING PLAYERS – Dane Bow, Steve Wiasak, Simon Evans, Ben McCawley, Ben Scannell, Chris Daniele
NEW PLAYERS – Chris Brown, Ben Suchanek, Dion Smith (Warrnambool), Jarryd Watene (Horsham)
TO BE CONFIRMED – Matt Hardiman, Michael Lesic, Steve Hyland