The Gold Coast SUNS Academy Under-18 boys team played a hard fought match against the Northern Knights in the Coates Talent League in Melbourne on Sunday.
The dreary cold and wet conditions at the Highgate Recreation Reserve proved too much for the SUNS Academy team suffering a 5.6 (36) to 16.11 (107) loss.
Regional SUNS Academy players Ben O’Brien (Capricornia) and Matthew Evans (Townsville), joined Boston Everitt in making their Coates Talent League debut in the away match.
Everitt, son of AFL legend and Triple M Gold Coast Breakfast presenter Spida Everitt, made a meaningful impact in the squad with two disposals and a mark, capping off a great afternoon of footy with a goal to his name.
The 183cm forward played a pivotal role assisting Jack Stringer to secure the SUNS’ first goal.
Hailing from Central Queensland and learning his trade with the Yeppoon Swans, O’Brien scored a goal on debut with a mark and five disposals under his belt.
Midfielder Leonardo Lombard stepped up with the absence of three frontline players.
The 16 year old commanded the midfield with 30 disposals, six marks, six tackles and four inside 50’s, making opportunities for his teammates within heavy midfield traffic.
William Graham continued his great form with 17 disposals, three marks, four tackles and five inside 50’s, partnering well with Lombard and Jared Eckersley.
Caleb Nancarrow and Campbell Lake also impressed in the slippery conditions.
Nancarrow made a meaningful impact in the ruck with 15 hit-outs in addition to 12 disposals.
Lake’s goal in the third quarter helped to lift the SUNS Academy team, seeing better ball movement and more cohesive moments in the contest.
SUNS Academy young guns Jed Walter, Ethan Read and Jake Rogers were absent from the round 4 clash, fulfilling AFL Academy duties in Mount Barker during the Gather Round festivities in Adelaide.
Northern Knights v Gold Coast SUNS Academy
Sunday, 16th April – Highgate Recreation Reserve
Gold Coast SUNS Academy: 0.0, 1.1, 3.2, 5.6 (36)
Northern Knights: 6.5, 8.6, 13.10, 16.11 (107)
Gold Coast SUNS Academy: Matthew Evans, Leonardo Lombard, William Graham, Caleb Nancarrow, Campbell Lake
Northern Knights: Flynn Riley, Parker Heatley, Charlie Opie, Aleksandr D’Arro, Rohan McKenzie, Charlie Naish
Gold Coast SUNS Academy: Jezz Butler, Boston Everitt, Campbell lake, Ben O’Brien, Jack Stringer
Northern Knights: Adam Galgano, Rohan McKenzie (3), Jack Chubb, Charlie Naish (2), Archie Franklin, Ben Ham, Zak Johnson, Christian Mardini, Flynn Riley, Thomas Sims