After a 7 month hiatus, football hit Chicagos shores again Friday night and Lincoln Square hit Lincoln Park even harder. After several days of classic trash talk between the two teams, everyone was on the edge of their chairs as they awaited the first bounce.
The Tigers, with the aid of a good 3 goal breeze got out to a flyer with new Australian recruits Matt and Paul justifying the money and time the Lincoln Square power brokers spent on securing their services with numerous centre clearances that repeatedly put the Piranha defenders under pressure. Mullis had the job of trying to contain Burgman and Palmer battled hard on a dynamic, refreshed Hoyt whilst a rampant Ambrosino seemed to run free, his pace a huge headache for first year coach Kastilahn whose headaches only got worse. Burgman opened the scoring with a lovely mark and goal brought about by a magnificent mark, spin and delivery by the former Kookaburra in Biggs. Ambrosino added two more and Hoyt chimed in with his first as the Piranhas failed to to penetrate the staunch Tiger defence led by Bradley and a very impressive Thorneloe.
Quarter time: LS 5. 5. 35 v LP 0.1.1
MacGlashan was licking his lips as the Piranhas started to hit back with the breeze in the second. With Jezza giving him 100 pounds and 6 inches and Tony Modra look alike Travis getting more of the ball and delivering well to the big man, the Piranhas started their come back. Big Al helped himself to 3 very handy goals as the Piranhas closed the gap. With Hayes starting to get on top and Kastilahn running hard out of defence and being ably supported by Fenton who is obviously enjoying married life a bit more than most and with Morgan and Ehlers stemming the free flowing nature of the Tiger on ballers the Piranhas got to within 17 points before Hoyt chimed in with his second to push the half time difference to 23 points.
The Burgman and MacGlashan show continued into the third with the 2 veterans going toe to toe and goal for goal. Burgman added three more and was basically unstoppable whilst big Al got himself one also as he continued to cause the Tigers headaches. Ambrosino snapped a ripper to extend the margin before Hayes’ kicked goal of the day, a pearler on the run from 40 which lifted Piranha spirits. At the orange break, Lincoln Square was keeping the pesky Piranhas at bay by 35 points.
The last quarter saw the wind die and the Tigers take control of the game as the undermanned Piranhas surrendered to Bryan Hoyts will as he ran riot up front. With Burgman taking most of the attention from the Piranha defenders and a seemingly limitless flow of opportunities coming from the dominant Tiger onballers, Hoyt was able to slip in for his third and fourth to put the game beyond the gallant Piranhas. Biggs marked strongly and kicked truly to put the game to bed as the Tigers ran out winners by 59 points kicking 14.16:100 to Lincoln Parks 6.5: 41.
For the Tigers it was a dream start as they won all over the ground and Burgman, with questions about his health coming into the game managing to escape unharmed. The win sets up a classic game next week when the Tigers take on the Wrigleyville Rhinos in what should be a cracker of a game with plenty on the line. Look for the big match ups in the middle with Wolfe on Matt and Ambrosino on Paul which will go a long way to determine the winner of this. Drake is in line as the next sacrificial lamb to take on the red hot Burgman while an interesting match up will be Bradley on the ever dangerous Scott Anderson. If Ryder turns up, he could get Hoyt and there are still question marks over the Rhino el capitan’ Millers availability. This one is harder to pick than a broken nose! For the Piranhas though, it was a case of to small and too injured again. A backline under constant attack was always going to break but they did a sterling job and Kastilahn, while disappointed with the loss of both the game and gun recruit Starick with an ankle injury, has much to look forward to with several players due to come back and a great game out of first gamer Doug.
|Goals||Tigers: Burgmann (5), Hoyt B (4), Ambrosino (4), Biggs
Piranhas: MacGlashan (4), White, Hayes
|Best||Tigers: Burgmann, Hoyt B, Case, Thornloe, Meyer, De Jong
Piranhas: Hayes, Kastilan, Malcolm, Ehlers
Next week: Lincoln Square play host to reigning Metro Premiers Wrigleyville. 6pm at the corner of Lakeshore and Waveland. Don’t miss this game.