TOUGH TUSSLE: BITS Saints' Surreal  Norriss  tackles Brothers' Brandon Waine as Ryley Schofield watches on during the AFLX Capricornia Challenge competition.
TOUGH TUSSLE: BITS Saints' Surreal Norriss tackles Brothers' Brandon Waine as Ryley Schofield watches on during the AFLX Capricornia Challenge competition. Jann Houley

AFLX excites as Swans continue dominance

AUSSIE RULES: Yeppoon Swans have transferred their recent dominance in the AFL Capricornia competition by taking out the inaugural AFLX Capricornia Challenge at the weekend.

The Swans won three of their four preliminary games, including by 100 points against a fatiguing BITS Saints, on the way to the final where the Swans defeated Glenmore 81-10.

BITS' men had their moments during the hybrid pre-season competition - which has seven players per side and is played on a rectangle ground at Rockhampton's Ryan Park - managing one win with a youthful side.

The Saints' women also recorded one win, with Maddi Bishop taking out the women's player of the day award.

 

AFLX Cap Challenge: (L to R) BITS' Maddie Bishop and Yeppoon's Georgia Kane
DOMINANT: BITS Saints' Maddi Bishop and Yeppoon's Georgia Kane. Jann Houley

Men's coach Jake Mostert said the Swans came home with a wet sail, improving where others faulted.

"Some of their guys had to work but were able to come for the afternoon games so they had quite a few numbers and were relatively fresh throughout the day," Mostert said.

"We were definitely competitive with them in the first part of our game but they ran away with it in the second half.

"Our guys had already played three games and were done and dusted, we had a couple of injuries and borrowed a couple of lads from Brothers to help us out with the Yeppoon game which was great."

 

AFLX Cap Challenge: (L to R) BITS' Trent Millar and Brothers' Daniel Trinca
AFLX Cap Challenge: (L to R) BITS' Trent Millar and Brothers' Daniel Trinca Jann Houley

Mostert was focused on performance rather than results but was pleased with what his young charges produced during the win against Brothers.

"I told the lads at the start it wasn't about winning or losing, it was about playing the brand of footy we want to play," he said.

"That included being smart with our decision making, being competitive around the contest and not being lazy.

"I thought we did that really well and over half our team consisted of some top under-17 kids looking to have a go at the next level this year, so it was a great opportunity for them to come up and they did really well."

 

AFLX Cap Challenge: (L to R) BITS' Tyson McMahon, Lachie Scott and Mitch Webster
AFLX Cap Challenge: (L to R) BITS' Tyson McMahon, Lachie Scott and Mitch Webster Jann Houley

Carrying a back injury likely to keep him out for the 2019 season, player/coach Mostert was unable to take the field.

He said the seven-a-side format allowed him to home in on key coaching areas ahead of the opening round of the AFL Capricornia season on March 30.

"It's a very open field so you use that to your advantage," he said.

"We didn't have a huge bench, rotations were quick, you've got a very small window of opportunity to recover and you're back out there.

"You couldn't really hide, sometimes in games the ball might spend two or three minutes down in one area and you get a good chance to have a breather, but this wasn't the case."

AFLX Cap Challenge: (L to R) BITS' Kaila Kirkwood, Marissa Cross, Sophie Ure and Yeppoon's Tamara Creamer
AFLX Cap Challenge: (L to R) BITS' Kaila Kirkwood, Marissa Cross, Sophie Ure and Yeppoon's Tamara Creamer Jann Houley

Mostert praised the performance of Bishop.

"She reads the game really well and has a stinking right boot - a good 35 to 40 metres - which is uncommon in the ladies comp and she can kick on the run and hit a target," he said.

"When she gets the ball there's a good chance it's going to another BITS jumper or she can be within range of goal whereas other ladies might be looking for a handball.

"Her footy brain as well as her skill really helps her dominate on the field."

GRAND FINALS

Men: Yeppoon (81) def Glenmore (10)

Women: Panthers (23) def Glenmore (18).

Players of the Day

Cameron Squires (Glenmore) and Maddi Bishop (BITS).