FLOWMAN: Medal chances in your league
It’s the time of year when country football leagues consider who is the fairest and best player in their competitions.
This year will see a number of medal counts move from the local town hall or sports club to an online format which may become the norm in the future. Here are our tips for awards across Flow FM SA coverage areas.
Mitchell Gum will poll well from Wirrulla and is a past Mid-West winner. He will be joined in vote gaining by Shaun Miller and Troy Newchurch from Koonibba, Charlie Williams from the Ceduna Smoky Bay Blues and Dom Denton, a former winner who always polls well for Thevenard. Western United have an even mix with Jake Warmington a former winner and Todd Hoffrichter and Tyler Maher likely to score at the count. The winner could come from the dominant West Coast Hawks with Dylan Kelsh, a goal-kicking ruckman and former winner giving umpires cause to take his number for good reason. Cody Colbung is our tip from the Hawks as he has been outstanding both in the middle and kicking 48 goals for the season.
Jess Kenny from Eastern Ranges polls votes and is likely to be near the top of the count at nights end. Ryley Maitland and Reece Rayson play well at Kimba and Joel Fitzgerald leads all-comers with 62 goals for the season. At Ports, Aseri Raikiwasa plays an eye-catching style of football while Wayne Piggott is consistent at Cowell but is unlikely to get to many given their lack of wins. Don’t be surprised if a young gun from Central Eyre United storms into contention, Corey Waters is a star of now and definitely one for the future.
Anyone following this competition knows that the Crettenden brothers are always good vote winners with Michael right up there this year. His teammates Casey Carr and Adam Murnane are likely to be around the mark. Top side, the Cougars have been very even this year with Lochie Paech likely to poll well and star goalkicker Johann Wagner a vote-winning prospect with 82 goals for the season. Ramblers will look to Jesse Rule and Liam Cocks while Lock has been well served by Macauley Glover, Blaze Kay and power forward Trav Beard. Tumby will hope Matt Hartwig caught the umpire’s eye and Mitchell Lawrie has been consistent. Eyre United have not won a match but Luke Forrest and Lachie Gale have been their best. The newcomers, Elliston Districts have some quality in veteran Ross Bascombe, while Matt Williams and Kodi Rosalia have stood out.
Dylan Hewett is a star player and is a favourite to win this year’s medal. At Broughton Mundoora there are a string of other good players who will share it around including Maddy Hayes, Mitchell Gordon, leading goal kicker William Hewett and Braden Allen. Patrick McCarthy and Luke Bowman have kicked goals for Orroroo and will poll votes. Southern Flinders is well served by Will Smart, Koby Millington and Tyson Amey. Crystal Brook has had many winners over the years including multiple titles to Luke Kapitola and North Adelaide player Cambell Coombe. Their best this year have been Millard, Kirk, Nance and the evergreen Luke Kapitola. Jamestown Peterborough will struggle for votes on the night but an honourable mention to Darren Clark. From BMW we are likely to see Alex Kanga poll well and our choice to win it.
Across the wind-swept hills of North Eastern Football, we are likely to see Blake Launer from Eudunda Robertstown poll well along with full forward recruit Justin Hardy. BSR will get plenty of team votes and Luke Hayes and Matt Longbottom at the top of their list. Isaac Moller has been a solid goalkicker. While at RSMU there will be votes for Pat Clarke, Harrison Slee and Micah Vanloon who has polled well in past seasons at Pinnaroo. North Clare will look to Charlie Helbig and Nathan Frances while South has been served well by Charlie Dinning, Shane Ballantyne and former Elliston player Izaac Boylan. BBH has had some good games and Adam Smyth and Brayden Roberts are amongst it. Blyth Snowtown has past winner Ryan Darling polling in a few games but William Pratt is likely to lead the club votes. Last years winner Billy Sandow could go back-to-back for Min Man while big man Charlie Riggs is likely to have given umpires’ reason to write his name.
Malcolm Karpany has starred for Moonta since coming from South Adelaide and is a real show for the Mail Medal. Nicolas Gregurke has always polled well at former clubs Peake and Mundulla and is our choice from Paskeville. He could be joined in polling votes by Charlie Hay at the Cougars, the two Sams from Ardrossan, Pfeiffer the former Murray Bridge Ramblers player and ‘Big Sauce’ Jacobs, the former Carlton Adelaide and GWS AFL player. Southern Eagles have the Barlow Boys, Jack and Mat while Bute has Henry Trenordan and Ben Price who will be among the votes. The CMS Crows will hope goal kickers Adam Jolly and James Moss get votes while Kadina’s Giles Ellis has been good. Wallaroo has not had a great season but their best has been Ben Russell.
Mallala has been strong all year and has many past winners including the boy from Streaky Bay Joel Montgomerie. Will Paynter is our tip to win the medal from the Magpies club. Others to poll well will be Lachie Michael from Balaklava, Luke Barnett from Two Wells, Josh Studham from Hummocks, Joel Holloway at Virginia and Lach Mitchell from Angle Vale. Saul Morelli at Hamley Bridge has been consistently in his club best as has Jayden Watson at United.
Barossa Light Gawler
The best player in the league will win the Schluter Medal. Charlie Molyneux at Gawler Central is a star, but will they have won enough games for him to get some 3 voters. Josh Dodd, the boy from Mannum via Sturt is going to be up there for Kapunda while Riley McFarlane at Tanunda could poll more than the Westhoffs. Andrew ‘Jars’ Jarman will be hoping that Harris Elbrow has the numbers for the Donnybrooks while Angaston will look to early season form from Marcus Borholm who made the State country team to poll some votes. At South Gawler they have had at least 6 players who could be high vote winners including the two Jacksons, Press and Dare along with Patrick White, Steve Burton, Josh Wittwer, Matt Naumann and the well-travelled Dean Cutting. Barossa Districts will see Ethan Gant at the top of their list followed by Leigh Ryswyk. But the action could come from brothers Bentley at Nuriootpa ‘Rover’. With Rolls Royce efforts all season James or Scott Bentley could be polling well. Caleb Lloyd joined the Redlegs from Blyth Snowtown and with big Adam Cockshell will be among their best.
Matt Woolford is likely to lead the way from Renmark while Tim will be up there also. Renmark has been well served by Jack Agostino. Waikerie have an even spread with Matt Spencely and Brendon Moon. Loxton started the season really well and Lachy Evans and Jack Evans good players. Then there is William Gutsche and Jesse Will. Jacob Greiger at Berri is a likely vote winner while North has had Michael Scott and Tyson Kent in their regular best. Barmera Monash has big Mason Middleton back from West Adelaide and he will poll votes.
The highest honour is hard to pick but could come from Bradley Walkley of Sedan Cambrai, Wunkars Lachlan Hampel or Cobdogla’s Tom Eleftheriadis.
The litmus test for Mallee is the Flow FM footballer of the year and this year the votes are led by Patrick Barrett a former winner of both the Mail Medal and the Flow Media Award and our tip. Another winner of both awards is Nathan Brown from Karoonda and he will be high up there again at the count conducted online this year. Peake has a young gun in Mackenzie Pederick and Murrayville recruited well-travelled Geordie Franks, but their best polling is likely to be from Tom Hammond. Lameroo has Jon Wilson and Josh Barrett while Pinnaroo has a set of midfield stars in Rory O’Driscoll, Alex Keough, Shannon Jenner plus the league’s best backman Sam Jordan. And they have tall on-baller Nick Hyde. We will watch closely how 16-year-old leading goalkicker Jayden Ward polls from Borders this year.
KNT is an open field for the Virgo Medal. Club leaders will be William McMurray and Will Schreiber from Keith. Padthaway has regular high polling from Tommy Edwards but Tobin Cox has kicked some bags of goals. Mundulla has had many medalists in the past and this year it could be Jake McGrice. They also have Will Nankivell. Scott Merrett from Penola polls well while Borders Mark Quinn has had a good season. Naracoorte recruited Rory Taggert and he hasn’t let them down. Josh Searle and Curtis McCarthy are Bordertown's best while Kyby has Callum Masters. Kingston SE has been a revelation this year and very even across the board. Tom Rogers, Nathan Davey has been going well and Ben Warner will get some threes. From Lucindale there is Tommy Logan but their best maybe Anthony McCarthy.
The Robe Roosters have been well served by State Country player Tom Wachtel while Kalangadoo has Andrew Stone, Tye McMannus and the goal kicking Michael Kreiger. Ports have Dylan Bromley, Tantanoola Jack Dawe, Glencoe Dylan Childs while Kongorong is well served by Matt Cordy. Mt Burr will see votes against Josh Wallis and Nangwarry may not poll votes but George McWaters is always in their best. Hatherleigh have Jed Telfer and William Chay.
Could a full forward win the medal? Jervois Josh Scott has been magnificent and could get to 100 goals. Then there is Blake Tabe from Mannum, Luke Harrowfield from Imperials, Matt Hartman from Ramblers and Mypolonga has Sam Elliot. Meningie haven’t won much but they are well served by Ben Halliday and Tyler Robinson. But it could just be Tailem Bends year for the Grand Final and Nick Westhoff and Daniel Perks have been star players.
The Mail Medal and League Best and Fairest are country institutions and we look forward to the next chapter in honours for our fairest and best football players.