GALLERY: BITS kids step up in spirited win v Panthers
AUSSIE RULES: On the back of a crop of emerging young guns, BITS Saints won their first game of the AFL Capricornia season at BITS Oval.
The Saints surged from behind in the final quarter to win 10.17 (77) to Panthers' 9.10 (64) with youngsters Ryan Shanks, Caleb Lusty, Liam Croft and Jack Keleher all instrumental in the win.
Powerhouse small forward Danny Clay kicked big goals in big moments, beanpole Ky Hull was superb in his new role in defence and Brendan Edwards was desperate as ever across half forward with two goals.
"Our pressure on the ball carrier has been excellent and we've been working on getting numbers to the contest, minimum of three," proud BITS Saints coach Jake Mostert said.
"I thought we had pressure at every contest and just didn't give them any breathing room to run or hit a target."
Panthers booted the first goal of the game by the classy Joshua Ketchup before Saints' captain Danny Conway got one back from a centre clearance.
A brace of Kale Oxenham majors had Panthers with a 13-point lead at quarter-time.
But the move of Brendan Clarke proved a master-stroke by Mostert and his coaching staff.
Shanks booted a goal which put the hosts ahead at half-time.
The game opened up in the third term and when a clever Clay tap set up Matt Dickenson for a goal, BITS had a nine-point lead.
Some ill-discipline and dubious umpire calls gifted goals to Sam Gudgeon and Dylan Heaslip while Panthers' captain-coach Michael Kreun started to have a big influence in the game.
With a big home crowd behind them, BITS held Rocky Panthers goal-less in the final quarter.
Back-to-back majors to Clay and the man they call 'Sherman' in Edwards sealed a memorable win.
Mostert lauded Hull's game in defence.
"It's the best I've seen him play in a couple of years, marking footy's in defence and kicking and hitting targets...yes really impressed," he said.
"We sort of tried to push him forward last year, but with the loss of Jack Grainger, we had that really big hole at centre half back.
"We didn't really have anyone, but when a guy is 200cm it makes a big difference and I thought he was probably one or two differences."
BITS have a tough away game against Glenmore Bulls on Saturday.