Together We Stand Tall



VFL Round 7 Match Report

May 13, 2024
VFL Round 7: The clouds were dark, and the wind was fierce at DSV Stadium as the Seagulls returned home to face Essendon on Mother’s Day eve. Within seconds Jayden Davey scored for Essendon.

Williamstown vs Essendon

11th May 2024

By Jaryn Makepeace, Williamstown Media

The clouds were dark, and the wind was fierce at DSV Stadium as the Seagulls returned home to face Essendon on Mother’s Day eve.

Within seconds Jayden Davey scored for Essendon, his long boot assisted by the wind. The relentless wind deterred Williamstown from opting for long kicks, thus calling for short, precise ball movement. Essendon brought the pressure and were using the wind advantage, scoring three goals early before Williamstown’s first. The Seagulls finally broke through at the 26th-minute mark with a dribble goal by Brodie McLaughlin. As Williamstown began to gain momentum, Essendon were able to kick a goal off the back of a free kick against Aiden Bonar. Once more, Will Fordham and Riley Collier-Dawkins, our consistent ball-winners, were prominent in the midfield.

A minute into the second quarter, the Seagulls set up for their second goal attempt and Nick Ebinger was able to put it through. Shortly after, Jack Toner capitalised on an Essendon turnover, narrowing the lead to seven points. Inaccurate kicks inside 50 prevented the Seagulls from capitalising further. Luke Parks was proving to be an impenetrable barrier in the backline, filling a crucial hole in the absence of Finn O’Dwyer due to injury. However, the Bombers gained momentum and secured three consecutive goals in the second quarter, extending their lead to 26 points. This lead didn’t stand for long, as Will Fordham nailed a nice set shot. Finally, Williamstown found success in hitting a target inside the 50, with Corey Ellison slotting a much-needed goal. Toby Triffett halted a race down the forward line with a well-executed tackle on Luamon Lual.

Essendon opened the scoring in the third term, only to be swiftly countered by Jack Toner, who not only secured the centre clearance but also delivered a magnificent goal. The Bombers quickly responded with two consecutive goals of their own. Jovan Petric then contributed with his first goal of the match. Meanwhile, Luke Parks maintained his stellar performance in intercept marking from the first half into the second. Riley Collier-Dawkins’ number on the back of his guernsey was obscured by mud, a testament to his relentless pursuit of contested possessions. Williamstown was under immense pressure due to Essendon’s constant forward entries. As the three-quarter time siren blared, Essendon led 10.11.71 to 7.8.50, with Williamstown set to have the wind advantage in the final quarter.

The fourth quarter commenced and Nick Ebinger executed a blind turn to deliver a superb drop punt between the goalposts, capitalising on Essendon’s missed opportunities to seal the game. Despite trailing by 17 points with eight minutes remaining, Williamstown remained resilient under pressure. Momentum shifted as the Seagulls scored their second consecutive goal, with Corey Ellison expertly slotting a check side kick. Brodie McLaughlin, after a quiet three quarters, stepped up to kick his second goal from the edge of the centre square, narrowing the deficit to three points. Nick Ebinger stole Corey Rich’s possession and secured his third goal. A free kick in the goal square handed Essendon back the lead briefly. Nevertheless, a swift series of handballs from the midfield set up Darby Henderson to respond and reclaim the lead for the Seagulls. Henderson swiftly followed up with another goal, extending Williamstown’s lead to 10 points. As the final siren sounded, Williamstown emerged victorious by 11 points, securing their sixth win of the season. Once again, the Seagulls showcased their resilience with a remarkable comeback in yet another thrilling encounter.

Final Score

Williamstown: 13.12.90

Essendon: 11.13.79

Goals: Nick Ebinger 3, Corey Ellison 2, Jack Toner 2, Darby Henderson 2, Brodie McLaughlin 2, Jovan Petric 1, Will Fordham 1.

Best Players: Will Fordham, Riley Collier-Dawkins, Nick Ebinger, Luke Parks, Toby Triffett, Aiden Bonar.