The SUNS might have fallen agonisingly short of a memorable win but Senior Coach Stuart Dew says his side will take plenty from Saturday evening’s narrow defeat against Melbourne at Heritage Bank Stadium.
The SUNS took the contest to the Demons from the opening bounce in a draining encounter that went right to the wire.
While deflated by the result, Dew says it was a great indication of what his side can produce.
“It burns because of how proud I am of our group. If we show that much effort, competitiveness, and heart then that’s all we can ask,” Dew said.
“You’re going to win some of those games but tonight we didn’t. Not sure we could ask much more in terms of effort from our players and that was the message after the game.
If you don’t get confidence from a performance like that, and the ability to continually come back when we dropped two or three goals… we kept at it.
“That’s a serious contender we played and pushed right to the line.
“It’s our job to make sure that we decompress after tonight and get back going again which has been a strength of our – to reset and go again.”
No player got his hands on the ball more than Noah Anderson who amassed an incredible 37 touches, including 17 contested, to go with 10 clearances and a game-high three goal assists in a dominant midfield display.
It was the third time the 22-year-old has reached 30 disposals already in 2023 who has solidified his position as one of the league’s top midfielders.
“He was doing this last year and I feel like everyone is a bit slow to the party,” Dew continued.
“Noah is just an unbelievable competitor. His footy IQ and his ability to find space and read the game is as good as I’ve seen in my time in coaching at a couple of different football clubs.
“I feel really lucky to be his coach. It’s hard to put words on it and measure too because a lot of the stuff is off the ball and organisation.”