SOUTH LAUNCESTON made a successful start to its NTFA experience with a big 134-point victory over George Town in their opening division 1 clash at Youngtown yesterday.
Former North Launceston TSL player and Bulldogs recruit Darren Crawford kicked 11 goals for his new club in a standout effort up forward as the Bulldogs opened up the game with their run and spread in the second half to run out easy winners, 27.15 (177) to 6.7 (43).
Another Northern Bombers recruit, Leigh Harding, booted four goals and was another good player, with Jake Laskey on a wing, Stephen Heppell and Nick Denholm down back earning the praise of South coach Aaron Viney.
"It was a very scrappy first half today and I think we had them by about four goals at half-time, but they came out and had a real crack, as we expected them to," Viney said.
"That caused us to turn the footy over a bit, and our skills weren't that good and we were sloppy early and didn't play the brand of footy we wanted to, but credit to George Town, who applied good pressure.
"After half-time we started to hit a few targets and our skills improved, and we linked up and found space and moved the footy a lot quicker, which created holes inside 50, and Darren Crawford was able to get on the end of a few - so it was a really pleasing second half."
Viney said the Bulldogs' two ruckmen kicked five goals between them swapping in the forward pocket, and the resting onballers kicked nine goals between them, which made for a good spread of goalkickers.
"Laine Cleaver, who was a late inclusion who came in last night, played well, and we had a good spread of contributors today," Viney said.
"It was a game we needed and we have done a lot of work, and there was a lot of talk about us over the preseason, and it was nice to get out on the park and have a run together. I'm pretty happy to come away with the win that we did."Adam Zanevra kicked two goals for the Saints and was their best player.