Sydney University’s Division One men’s Australian Football team completed their giant-killer end-of-season run with a nail-biting 53-52 win over Pennant Hills Demons in the 2015 Grand Final at Henson Park on Sunday.
The Students had 13 scoring shots at goal in the season decider and kicked eight majors, while the Demons were left ruing what might have been after landing seven goals from 17 scoring shots.
Sydney University went into the finals campaign with a 10-8 record after finishing fifth at the end of the season proper.
They started their magical finals run with a 71-56 win over Macquarie University in the elimination final and backed that up with a 48-43 win over UTS Bats in the semi-final. The Bats had won both round matches during the season.
The semi-final win earned Sydney University a preliminary final against Balmain Tigers, the 2015 minor premiers who had also defeat the Students in each of the round matches. But Sydney University rose to the occasion to post a 61-53 result and secure a grand final berth against the Demons.
In the tightest of grand finals, Pennant Hills led 9-8 at the end of the first quarter. Sydney University retaliated by kicking three goals to two in the second quarter to lead 27-22 at the main break.
They kicked four goals to two in the third quarter to establish a 51-36 lead going into the final term, and that’s when the game took on another twist.
While the Students were kept to two behinds in the fourth quarter, the Demons kicked another two goals and four minors to finish a point in arrears as the final hooter sounded.
Christopher Kendrick landed two of Sydney University’s eight goals, with Gary Burch, Michael Carey, Andrew Holmes, Nik Dale, Andrew MacPherson and Christopher Browne contributing one each.
Sam Zikman landed three for the Demons, with Thomas Abbott, Anthony Brawn, Robert Watts and Jason Clarke also posting goals.
The Students had some solid contributors across the forward line in Sam Ryan, Michael Higgins, William Pearse, Dominic Vincent and Aaron Hawkins, while the Demons were well served by Adam Smith, Tim Scoular, Ted Widmer and Lachlan Vile.
Sydney University also won the Division Three title with a 67-49 win over UTS Bats in the season decider, while the Division One women’s side lost the grand final 40-26 to Newtown Bombers after finished the season proper as minor premiers.
And in the North East AFL national competition, Sydney University made it through to the preliminary final where they bowed out to Northern Territory Thunder. Aspley accounted for Thunder 81-80 in the Grand Final.
Sydney Men’s Premier Division One – Grand Final
Division One: Sydney University 8.5: 53 (Christopher Kendrick 2, Gary Burch, Michael Carey, Andrew Holmes, Nik Dale, Andrew MacPherson, Christopher Browne) d Pennant Hills Demons 7.10: 52 (Sam Zikman 3, Thomas Abbott, Anthony Brawn, Robert Watts, Jason Clarke) at Henson Park on Sunday.
Sydney University: Sam Ryan, Michael Higgins, William Pearse, Dominic Vincent, Aaron Hawkins, Christopher Kendrick.
Pennant Hills Demons: Adam Smith, Tim Scoular, Ted Widmer, Thomas Abbott, Sam Zikman, Lachlan Vile.