FIVE rounds into the season of the Men’s A-Grade competition from Water Polo WA to close 2020 and it’s the South Fremantle Bloods undefeated but UWA Flotsam and Port Colts are breathing down their necks with plenty of players in outstanding form.
COVID-19 has had a significant impact on most areas of life across the world in 2020 but to the credit of everyone involved, the A-Grade competition from Water Polo WA has started this season without a hitch and we are now five rounds into it.
The teams are taking a well-earned rest this weekend ahead of the second half of the season leading into the Grand Final being held on Saturday December 12, and it’s been an exciting and high-quality five weeks of water polo so far.
The results have seen Melville team the South Fremantle Bloods go through undefeated following five matches so far.
But they are only narrowly ahead of fellow Melville side the Port Colts and then UWA Flotsam. Both those teams sit on 4-1 records after the five rounds so far.
Triton has played some good water polo with a strong experienced line-up too at times over the opening five rounds with two wins and three losses while the Melville Sharks also sit at 2-3 after five matches.
Then there are the UWA City Beach, UWA Rangers and Dolphins teams who have all recorded one win across the opening five rounds of the season.
There are plenty of players who have delivered standout performances over the opening five rounds of the season as well, and in a goal scoring sense none have been better than Luke Pavillard of the South Fremantle Bloods who has scored 22 goals already.
Matt Oberman from Triton is next best with 16 goals while Luca Altieri (Port Colts) has 15 goals, Jeremy Carbone (Dolphins) 14, Florian Naroska (Triton) 14, Cody Smith (Port Colts) 13, Nick Elphick (South Fremantle Bloods) 13, Philip Salter (UWA Flotsam) 13 and Tim Putt (Triton) 11.
But don’t forget those setting up the goals who are playing well this season and then those in The Cage, including Damian Williams (South Fremantle Bloods), John Hedges (Port Colts), Harry Konowalous (UWA Flotsam) and Luke Quinlivan (Triton) who are all doing impressive things to try to keep those goals out.
Round 1 of the A-Grade season got underway back on Saturday September 12 at Bicton Pool with the Bloods starting well defeating fellow Melville team the Port Colts 10-7.
Nick Elphick starred for South Fremantle with five goals while Luca Altieri scored three for the Colts.
The Melville Sharks opened their season as well with a 16-10 victory against Dolphins with Rio Olympian Joel Swift delivering five goals for the Sharks and Peter Bruce three. Ben Colliss and Kieran Bayles delivered three goals apiece for Dolphins.
It was an exciting high-scoring affair to open the season at Beatty Park as well with the UWA Rangers beating Flotsam 14-12.
Campbell McAullay, Riley Maurich and Ben Marshall all scored three goals each for Rangers while Nick Hughes finished with four for Flotsam, Philip Salter three, Matt Hughes two and Tom Sangster two.
Triton also opened up their campaign with a 21-7 Round 1 victory against UWA City Beach. Tim Putt scored five times for Triton, Florian Naroska four, Zoltan Ridzyk two, Brett McGhie two and Matt Oberman two. Fraser Davis hit two of the seven for UWA City Beach.
Then in Round 2, things got underway at HBF Stadium with UWA Flotsam defeating Triton 12-5. That saw three goals each from Sam Dobney and Andrew Ford for Flotsam while Salter and Oliver Davis added two.
At the same venue, it UWA City Beach scoring a 15-10 win against the Rangers. Scott Lilleyman scored four times for City Beach, Tyler Fazio three, Andrew Barber two, Lachie Emanuel two and Taz Williams two.
Will Marshall and Menno Talbot scored three goals each for Rangers, and Riley Maurich two.
And at Bicton Pool in Round 2, the South Fremantle Bloods were too good for Dolphins winning 20-3. Luke Pavillard dominated with seven goals with Nick Elphick adding three, Jordan Lake two, Tobias Muir two and Alex Gunnell two.
In a battle of Melville teams at Bicton Pool to close the round, Port Colts won a thriller 10-8 against the Sharks. Alex Petrov scored four times for the Port Colts and Luca Altieri two with James Fannon scoring five times for the Sharks.
Round 3 began at HBF Stadium with a battle of the UWA teams with Flotsam defeating City Beach 13-6. George Ford hit four goals for Flotsam, Tom Sangster two and Nick Hughes two while Andrew Barber and Lachie Emanuel added two goals apiece for City Beach.
Also at HBF Stadium it was a thumping 27-5 win for Triton against the Rangers. Matt Oberman put in eight goals for Triton, Florian Naroska six, Griffin Woodhouse two, Jay Tigchelaar two, Lewis Putt two, Brett McGhie two and Tim Putt two.
The Round 3 action at Bicton Pool saw a big win as well for the Port Colts as they beat Dolphins 26-10. Cody Smith was dominant with 11 goals for the Colts with Harry Bruce adding six, Luca Altieri three, Timothy Goh two and Clancy Neesham two.
Jeremy Carbone battled hard against the tide for Dolphins to score four goals.
It was a tighter affair to close the round in the clash of Melville teams with the South Fremantle Bloods prevailing 9-6 against the Sharks.
Gunnell and Pavillard scored two goals each for the winning Bloods while it was all single scorers for the Sharks.
Round 4 also got underway at HBF Stadium with the Dolphins breaking through for their first win of the season, defeating the UWA Rangers 11-8. Carbone scored another six goals for Dolphins, Christian Hoad three and Ben Colliss two. Maurich scored three times for Rangers.
UWA Flotsam also came away with a 17-5 victory against the Melville Sharks. George Ford hit another four goals for Flotsam, Sangster three, Salter two, Andrew Ford two and Mitchell Barns two. Patrick Dart scored three of the five goals for the Sharks.
The afternoon’s competition at Bicton Pool got underway with a tremendous contest that saw the Port Colts beat Triton 14-13. Altieri scored five goals for the Colts, Jordan Kremers-Taylor four, Clancy Neesham two and Cody Smith two.
Oberman hit four goals for Triton, Zoltan Ridzyk three, Brad Mercer two and Tim Putt two.
The South Fremantle Bloods kept their winning run going beating UWA City Beach 18-3 also at Bicton Pool.
Pavillard put in another seven goals for the Bloods, Alastair Bruce four, Muir three and Elijah Neesham two. Ollie Sheldrick scored twice for UWA.
And in the Round 5 action last Saturday afternoon, it got underway at Bicton Pool with a 17-6 victory for UWA Flotsam against Dolphins. Salter scored five times for Flotsam, Barns four, Andrew Ford two, Nick Hughes two and Sangster two.
Christian Hoad and Carbone scored three goals apiece for Dolphins.
Then also at Bicton Pool, the Melville Sharks came away with a 16-8 victory against the UWA Rangers. James Fannon scored four goals for the Sharks, Joel Swift three, Josh Douglas two and Luke McManus two.
Menno Talbot managed to score three times for the Rangers and Will Marshall two.
And finally for the day at Bicton Pool, it was a tight affair that saw the Port Colts end up victorious 13-11 against UWA City Beach.
Clancy Neesham ended up with four goals for the Port Colts, Kremers-Taylor three, Harry Bruce two and Altieri two. Fazio and Charlie Emanuel also scored three times each for UWA.
There was the one men’s game that took place at Beatty Park as well with the South Fremantle Bloods winning a cracking contest 16-14 against Triton.
Nick Elphick finished with five goals for South Fremantle, Pavillard five and Elijah Neesham three. Mitchal Ainsworth scored three goals for Triton, Naroska three, Tim Putt two, Ridzyk two, McGhie two and Oberman two.
Following the weekend off following the opening five weeks, Round 6 of the A-Grade competition takes place on Saturday October 31 with two games at HBF Stadium with UWA Flotsam playing UWA Rangers before UWA City Beach takes on Triton.
Then at Claremont Pool, Dolphins play Melville Sharks and the Port Colts take on the South Fremantle Bloods.