Match Report - Texas Cup Round 1 @ Dallas - May 7th 2016

This week's Match Report is by Coach Ricko ~

The city of Dallas had been a buzz recently with the current success of the Stars in the NHL. It was now a chance for the city’s sports fans to focus their attention on the equally popular sport in Texas, Aussie Rules Football. The 224 day wait since the last Texas Cup game felt nearly as long as the lengthy drive up I-45 well past Dallas, to the normally sleepy suburb of Allen. Today the car park was full with families packing the ground and the curators had prepared an oval in magnificent condition, to standards rarely seen in the USA. Once the under 5’s soccer curtain raiser came to a close it was time for the main event, Texas Cup footy. A warm and windy day was certainly going to test the strengths of all three teams.

The Houston Lonestars came with a squad of 32 consisting of plenty of youth and enthusiasm, eager to show the country what they can do on the big stage. The starting lineup consisted of a two-third majority of Americans, showing great signs for the future of the club as well as more than likely pleasing Donald Trump. Houston welcomed two players for their first game, “Big Bad” Bobby Sears and young gun Nik “The Hammer” Hammond. Special mention must be made to “The Hammer” for managing to get his way out of Saturday school detention to be available to play his first game. Houston also fielded 11 first year club players and also added returning fan favorites Glenn “Sarge” Sergeant and Nick “Masterclass” Maass.  

Game 1 - Houston vs Austin

Houston Lonestars


Austin Crows


 Austin came out of the blocks strong and capitalized on the Lonestars’ slow start. With a couple of regulars absent, the backline was undersized but held up strong with Austin delivering the ball inside 50 to their taller targets on a regular basis. Vice-captain Chris “Plays the Field” Fielder, Sean “Sweaty” Smyth and Captain Matt “Sparkles” Stevens fought hard to minimize the damage on the scoreboard. The Lonestars made plenty of rotations through the bench with Rob “Soapy” Sudbay and Andrew “Blanket” Craig providing great assistance to the under siege backline.

The second half saw a change in momentum and it was the Lonestars’ turn to attack. With plenty of run through the middle from Jesse “Iron Man” Carcamo and former local boy Zach “Dieeeeeesel” Davis, the Lonestars engine room got going. The Austin boys were rattled and “Fertile” Blake Hodson copped a black eye from their frustrations. This inspired the Lonestars to find another gear and push for an unlikely victory. There was great pressure up forward from Earl “The Irishman” O’Callaghan, Matt “Where’s the Party at?” Parton and “The Hammer” and the Lonestars were able to sneak in a couple of goals. Unfortunately time ran out and the Crows won by 18 points. Well done to “Plays the Field” for earning a MOFHAT and ‘Sweaty” for being judged best for Houston.

Goal Kickers: Nik Hammond 1, Bren Mahoney 1

Best: Sean Smith, Chris Fielder, Blake Hodson, Matt Stevens, Bobby Sears, Zach Diesel, Jesse Carcamo

MOFHAT: Chris Fielder

Game 2 - Dallas vs Houston

Dallas Magpies


Houston Lonestars


 The final game of the day saw the Lonestars go up against a strong Dallas line up. This game mirrored the last and it was the Magpies piling on the early pressure. First year players Ahmed “Armor” Omar, Mike “Monners” Monahan and the Dave Brigade: Dave “El Hombre” Restrepo, Dave “Red Hair” McNair and Dave “Fit Dave” McVay worked hard but the Lonestars faced a large deficient at the break. 

The second half saw the experienced players get their hands on the ball and move it quickly into an open forward line. Well lead by Vice-captain Tom “Sam’s Brother” Donnelly in the ruck, “Fertile” and Brendan “Money Man” Mahoney in the middle, and “Big Bad” running loose in defense, the Lonestars were able to find some form late in the day. Although the Lonestars outscored Dallas in the second half, the Magpies won by a few goals. Well done to “Armor” for collecting a MOFHAT for his hard attack and second efforts on the ball and “Sam’s Brother” for being awarded best for Houston with a strong display in the ruck.   

Goal Kickers: Bobby Sears 2, Blake Hodson 1

Best:Tom Donnelly, Bobby Sears, Bren Mahoney, Dave Restrepo, Mike Monahan, Ahmed Omar

MOFHAT: Ahmed Omar

After-Match Festivities

The All-Comers game was a late scratching from the day’s fixture and that meant the Lonestars were able to focus their full attention on the after party festivities. The new look boat race leadership team consisting of Supercoach Phil “The Boss” Harford and new captain “Iron Man” undertook a comprehensive audition process that saw “Monners”, “Big Bad”, “Soapy” and “Iron Man” himself suit up against an over confident Dallas team. After an even start, the sharp Houston outfit finished strong and easily accounted for their weaker opponents, claiming the victory by one and a half legs. The anchor “Soapy” even felt the urge to complete the designated backup beer as well which sent a chilling message to any future challengers. The Magpies took the next couple of hours to rally their troops and the much anticipated re-match took place in front of a large crowd out the back of an inner city Dallas bar. Although a tighter contest, the Lonestars again showed their class and took the win with a full four quarter effort. This performance sent shockwaves throughout the country across social media as the Lonestars continue their push for USA dominance.

Although the on-field results weren’t what the Lonestars were looking for, it was a great learning experience for the many new players participating in their first Texas Cup tournament. This weekend puts us in a great position to keep building on the hard work put in by all during the past few months and to keep working on the structures and team rules being implemented at training. Thanks to all players and supporters who made the trip to Dallas and thank you to everyone who contributed to making the weekend a success. We all look forward to the next game in Austin on May 21.