Bombers reserves remain unbeaten

Kicking goals: Ethan Ludeman-Palma bagged five majors on Saturday to take his season’s tally to 30 in the Goulburn Valley’s reserve grade competition. He currently sits third on the goalkicking table, behind Seymour’s Max Jones (40) and teammate Jarryd Pertzel (34)
Best on ground: Mitchell Fitzgerald has struck a rich vein of form with Kyabram reserves and, with six rounds remaining, the team is two games clear on top of the ladder. He was best-on-ground in the 94-point win at GV Creamery Oval on Saturday.

Kyabram’s all conquering reserve grade team will need to overcome four of the top six teams in the final six home and away matches of the Goulburn Valley League season to maintain its top of the table status.

With 12 straight wins, including a 94-point win against Tatura on Saturday, the dominant force has Echuca (third), Seymour (fourth), Mooroopna (fifth) and Mansfield (sixth) in its run to the finals series.

Earlier this season Echuca ran the team to within two points, while Euroa finished 27 points behind in the teams’ round seven meeting.

Kyabram’s goalkicking power has assured it of setting its opposition a tough assignment, with Ethan Palma-Ludeman (30 goals from 12 games this season) and Jarryd Pertzel (34 goals from 10 games) leading the way.

The pair is chasing Seymour’s Max Jones, the reserve grade competition’s leading goalkicker with 40.

Palma-Ludeman was kept goalless against Rochester and Tatura the first time round, but has kicked 14 goals in the two return matches.

His five goals on Saturday against Tatura came after a bag of nine against Rochester a week earlier. His next best haul was six against United in round eight.

The St Augustine’s junior, who played with the Bendigo Pioneers in the V/Line Cup in 2017 and kicked four goals in two games, has a season high of 51 goals from 19 games in 2018 for the Ky under-18 team.

He followed that up with 45 goals from 20 games the following season, when he doubled up on several occasions and kicked 20 goals in 16 reserve grade matches in the same season.

Partner in crime Pertzel was missing on Saturday, but he has two bags of six, one of five and a best haul of seven against United when he and Palma-Ludeman kicked 13 of the team’s 16 goals.

Pertzel played two senior games earlier in the season.

Another St Augustine’s product and under-18 star, Mitchell Dodos, has 14 goals from four matches with the reserve grade outfit.

He kicked seven goals in the opening round of the season against Tatura and in round six bagged another six against Seymour.

That Seymour half dozen came after he had already kicked five goals in the preceding under-18 match. Eleven goals in eight quarters, not a bad day’s work.

He kicked two goals on debut with the senior outfit in round eight against United, but has made just the two appearances.

At under-18 level he has 21 goals from eight matches.

Among several highlights of his season were three goals for the GVL under-18 team against the Ovens and Murray.

The Bombers reserves are unbeaten from 12 matches and are two games clear on top of the ladder.

James Scapin’s season high four goals on the weekend contributed to the Bombers’ fifth 100-point plus score of the season.

James Ross was terrific in his second match back from injury, while the team’s most consistent mid-fielder Kaleb Williams regularly cleared the ball from centre bounces.

Williams has played in all 12 wins with the team and, on seven occasions, has been among the best players on the ground.