Let’s take a quick look back at the Top 10 Hawka Highlights of the Decade from 2010 to 2019, a decade of huge change for Boronia Hawks that will take the Club in to the Twenties in great shape! Apologies to everyone who doesn’t get a well-deserved mention – I’m thinking of you Jess Bolton and Tim Currie! All opinions in this article are those of your Editor and are not the official views of the Club.
10. Lachie Watson’s Mark of the Year in 2016
Lachie Watson has taken a few huge grabs over the journey, but he was immortalised by the sharp video work of Brad Phillips as Watto took the best Hawka mark of the decade and won the EFL Play of the Year. The mark even drew comparisons with the best aerial work of Paul Marshall and Craig Beattie – enough said.
9. Alex McKaige wins 3 Netball B&F’s
Alex McKaige is a double-dipper, playing both netball and footy with the Hawka in 2019, but has taken home three netball B&F’s in four seasons with Boronia Brown in 2016, 2017 and 2019. Alex also took out her first Kellie Newton Medal for the Club B&F in 2019.
8. Lachie McKernan 4 years as Senior Captain
Lachie McKernan joined some of the great champs of yesteryear as he captained the senior men for the fourth consecutive season in 2019. Other notables to achieve this recognition of leadership include N. McNeil 1961-64, P. Harrington 1968-71, Michael Passmore 1991-94 and Peter Farrell 2001 to 2004.
7. Mitch Mellis 3 Junior League B&F’s
Mitch Mellis won EFL Junior League B&F’s in 2011, 2013 and 2014 plus six Junior Club B&F’s. That’s a sure sign of an extraordinary player, which has been borne out in 2019 as Mitch represented Vic Metro, was runner-up in the Eastern Ranges B&F and was signed by traditional powerhouse Williamstown FC.
6. Dean Grice 3 Club B&F’s and 2 League B&F’s
The incomparable Dean Grice won three of his six Bob Henry Medals in this decade and two of his four League B&F’s. It would have been more except for a season with Port Melbourne and a severe knee injury. Gricey also kicked the Hawka’s Goal of the Decade in the storm at Mitcham in 2011 when he played the single best game by a Hawka that your Editor has seen in the last 24 years.
5. Boronia Auskick rebooted in 2018.
Boronia Auskick Centre was rebooted for a new era as it moved to Friday nights at Tormore Reserve for the 2018 season. With a huge 90 registrations that year Auskick Co-ordinator Luke Biddau opened up new opportunities for boys and girls to learn their footy with the Hawks. Samantha Dunkinson took over the role of Co-ordinator in 2019 and took the Centre to a new level of success with increased participation, diversity, sponsorships and accreditation as an All Abilities centre. Auskick has been an outstanding success, bringing back memories of the late 90’s when the Club had over three hundred Auskickers.
4. Inaugural EFL Netball Premiership in 2014
The EFL launched it’s fledgling netball competition in 2014 with only one division, a far cry from the nine divisions in 2019. Boronia was the only club to field two teams due to the outstanding recruiting efforts of Kellie Newton. Boronia maintained it’s edge on the competition by winning the inaugural premiership under the coaching of Matt Bundy. Jess Thomson scored over 400 goals and Steph McNay won the inaugural League B&F. Another Premier Division flag followed in 2017.
3. The One Club Initiative in 2017
In a masterstroke of foresight, planning and co-operation, the Club’s Senior President, Kristan Wood and Junior President, Ellisa Schmidtke, worked together to unite seniors and juniors under the banner of ONE CLUB – the newly named Boronia Hawks Football Club. This provided the Club with a seamless pathway from Auskick to Junior Footy to Youth Footy to Senior Footy and eventually Veterans. Despite all the administrative challenges of integration, the Board and Committees worked hard and achieved a truly unified Club.
2. Women’s Footy
It all started in 2017 when two girls, Demi Thomas and Brynie Kinniff, turned up to our Junior Registration Day and signed up to play Women’s Footy. Next we needed to find a coach and, after many possibilities, Club Legend Ray Lacey stepped forward for the Hawks once again with Senior President Scott Nicholas as assistant and eventual Co-Coach.
Nine “possible” players attended the first training session and a few months later fourteen players then turned out for the first practice match – a somewhat discouraging loss by 185 points, all part of the learning experience. But the girls loved it and the word soon spread as new players kept turning up to join a truly inclusive, supportive and fun team environment. Goals were rare and the first win didn’t come until August 2018, but the excitement was infectious and created a whole new feeling around the Club.
More girls, goals and wins followed in 2019 as the Hawks launched two teams for junior girls. The Under 16’s even enjoyed premiership success as a merged team with Knox. Women’s football is booming and Boronia is moving to two senior teams in 2020 and is also hoping to increase our participation for junior girls to keep growing the Club’ female footy program.
The Number 1 Hawker Highlight of the Decade – The 2018 Triple Premiership!
The 2018 season had been reasonably successful, with seniors, reserves and under 19’s all making the finals. The pundits around the Club said the seniors were a rough chance despite Ringwood’s dominance; the Two’s were our best bet; and the 19’s would need a huge turnaround to overcome Heathmont and Waverley Blues.
We got off to a rough start in the first week with the One’s putting in a shocker against Scoresby and the 19’s getting soundly beaten by Waverley Blues. Then it all turned around …… the three Hawka teams progressed to the Triple Header Grand Final Day with six wins in weeks 2 and 3 of the finals series. The 19’s just scraped in for a tilt at the flag with a three point thriller over Heathmont.
The 19’s were now on fire and Craig McKenzie’s boys set the benchmark for the whole Grand Final day with a nail biting 5 point win over the favourites in the Grand Final. The astute Craig Brockley ensured that the D Squad did not let a golden opportunity slip and recorded a convincing 20 point win over the strong and experienced Scoresby. The stage was now set for the seniors and they delivered in spades, with team lifting goals inspiring both the players and the large crowd of Boronia’s faithful supporters. A sixteen point margin at the end saw the previously undefeated Ringwood being outgunned by a tremendous team effort that started with the planning from coach Matt Clark and his brains trust. A memorable day for the Hawka, with the first triple premiership since 1969.