The Calder Cannons are finally off the bottom of the ladder after a solid performance against the Bendigo Pioneers. The Cannons controlled the game for most of the day, launching attacks from defence and linking through the middle of the ground. The Pioneers closed within a point in the third quarter but couldn’t manage to get in front at any stage.
Curtis Taylor | Fwd | 186cm | 74kg
A Bottom age player, Taylor was dynamic as a tall leading forward. He almost seemed to be involved in every forward foray from the Cannons. He was either marking in contests or throwing himself into packs to produce ground ball opportunities for his Cannons Teammates. Finishing with three goals and a handful of goal involvements , Taylor looks like a player to keep an eye on moving into his draft year in 2018. Athletic, a good mark and a contested ball player, Taylor could be one of the top key forwards in next years draft.
Brad Bernacki | Mid/Fwd | 178cm | 72kg
Bernacki was in everything against the Pioneers. Rotating through the middle and up forward he was a dangerous opponent all day for the Pioneers. He used his pace and footy smarts to advantage. As the Cannons captain, Bernacki simply lead the Cannons from the front. He was dangerous in front of goal, finishing with two majors and he used the ball well. He has the tools to play AFL football and a consistent end to the season will help him with those aspirations.
Ben Caluzzi | Def | 187cm | 89kg
Stationed in the back half, Caluzzi repelled the Pioneers attempts to hit the scoreboard on several occasions. He is a good size and he was very good in the air on the weekend. He generally used the ball well, but more importantly set up the backline with his positioning and willingness to impact high and deep entries from the Pioneers by either marking or spoiling the ball. He looks like he has a good temperament and is another one to watch closely over the last seven games of the season.
Mitchell Kemp | Def | 187cm | 67kg
Kemp was the best player for the Pioneers in the back half of the ground. He is a very good overhead mark and he has some likeable attributes such as his pace. Generally a good user of the ball, Kemp would benefit from making quicker decisions when he has the ball. Occasionally he gets himself into trouble by not ‘pulling the trigger’ quickly. A rebounding defender who trialled for Vic country this year, Kemp has improved his game this season
Bailey Henderson | Wing | 188cm | 75kg
Henderson found himself stationed on the wing for the duration of the game and had some impact. He has a nice turn of pace and uses the ball well by foot and is dangerous near goals. Henderson would benefit from feeding the ball of quicker to teammates and he got himself into a few tough situations by not giving the first option. A good overhead mark, Henderson is developing into a very good player. Some more time forward where he could hit the scoreboard could help him and the Pioneers develop further.
Keelin Betson | Def | 185cm | 89kg
Betson is the ultimate team player and defender. Last years Bendigo Pioneers Best and fairest, Betson throws everything into each effort. He is hardly ever beaten despite giving away height to his opponent most weeks. Often looking out of contests, he somehow manages to still influence them by getting a spoil in and allowing his teammates to run the ball out of defence. Betson is not a major ball winner but impresses with his defensive pressure.
Other notable performers;
Pioneers; Matt Harvey, Darby Henderson, Austin Mertz
Cannons; Patrick Brookes, Lucas Cavallaro, Jacob McNicholl