Season 2017 - St Kilda

St Kilda

Coach – Alan Richardson

2016
Points For – 9th
Points Against – 13th

Top 5 Best and Fairest

  1. Jack Steven
  2. Jarryn Geary
  3. Nick Reiwoldt
  4. Leigh Montagna
  5. Jack Newnes

2016 Rising Star Noms

Blake Acres (Round 6)
Jade Gresham (Round 14)

Ins – Nathan Brown, Jack Steele, Koby Stevens, Ben Long, Josh Battle, Ed Phillips, Rowan Marshall,

Outs – Luke Delaney, Tom Curren, Josh Saunders, Brenton Payne, Cameron Shenton, Brodie Murdoch, Tom Lee, Eli Templeton

My Prediction

I dont know what to make of St Kilda. They seem on the way up but they still have older players carrying too much of the load for my liking.

The backline struggled last year and will certainly be happy to add Carlisle and Brown into the mix. They are two walk up starts and probably their two best defenders with Goodard able to be the understudy and also free up Fisher and Gilbert. It will take a while for them to gel and Brown needs to stay fit but we all know how good a happy Carlisle is. Geary and Montagna off half back give them run and good useage.

The midfield looks weak to me. They have some talent at the top end, Steven is great with Armitage and Ross also pretty good. They feel really shallow there ad I dont think the recruitment or Steele and Stevens is going to make much of a difference. They need more speed and they need more class. They next generation is also a little uninspiring with Gresham, Acres and Newnes all good but I am not sure any of them are going to turn into match winners.

The rucks look good with Hickey stepping up and taking the mantle of number one ruck. They have Longer as well who is capable when he gets his chance.

The forward line is set. They have Reiwoldt just finishing his career playing a very high half forward whilst Membrey, McCartin and Bruce make the forward line their own. They have mulitple scoring options and would love Lonie fit and firing as the small option. If they can get enough service from the midfield then they can kick a winning score.

I just don’t know how to rate St Kilda, They finished 9th last year with a relatively young list. They dont seem to have a lot of elite talent but there is still potential for growth. Carlisle is vital for them and should make a difference. I am just really uninspired by them and their list. They are certainly a red hot chance to make the 8 but I just dont think they will. I think somewhere in the 9th - 11th sort of mark is about right for mine.

Saints Best 22:
B: Dempster Brown Goddard
HB: Gilbert Carlisle Newnes
C: Savage Armitage Steele
HF: Billings Reiwoldt Montagna
F: Membrey Bruce Gresham
R: Hickey Steven Ross
Int: Dunstan, Geary, Weller, Acres

EMG: McCartin, Long, Fisher

On paper Saints are a better side than last year. However I don’t have them in my top 8. I actually have them like 12-14th I think.

7th

a burnt dwarf short of the 8

7th

yep. They have a pretty good squad with quite a bit of upside. They need Carlisle to stand up down back though. They should make the 8. Have got a very solid midfield group

Saints Best 22: B: Dempster Brown Goddard HB: Gilbert Carlisle Newnes C: Savage Armitage Steele HF: Billings Reiwoldt Montagna F: Membrey Bruce Gresham R: Hickey Stevens Ross Int: Dunstan, Geary, Weller, Acres

EMG: McCartin, Long, Fisher

On paper Saints are a better side than last year. However I don’t have them in my top 8. I actually have them like 12-14th I think.

Didn’t Sam Fisher retire? I’d reckon McCartin will play FF and Reiwoldt will go to the wing.

And I reckon Gresham will end up very good. Looks special.

Saints Best 22: B: Dempster Brown Goddard HB: Gilbert Carlisle Newnes C: Savage Armitage Steele HF: Billings Reiwoldt Montagna F: Membrey Bruce Gresham R: Hickey Stevens Ross Int: Dunstan, Geary, Weller, Acres

EMG: McCartin, Long, Fisher

On paper Saints are a better side than last year. However I don’t have them in my top 8. I actually have them like 12-14th I think.

Respectable looking side that. I’d probably move past Gilbert though, bring in Stevens and push savage back

About ten saints players played every game last year, they had a very durable list last year. I think mccartin will at least play 13+ games again but have roo, bruce abd membrey ahead of him as key talls. Last year i thought mccartin would have passed membrey.

i think Gresham and Billings will both be very good players.

Should be jack steven in midfield by the way not kobe stevens.

McCartin would’ve passed Membrey if not for his glass jaw

Im not sure how fit he is, but it looked as though he could only play well in the first halves. Then went missing second half.

Im not sure how fit he is, but it looked as though he could only play well in the first halves. Then went missing second half.

A lot would be to do with the games he missed due to concussion
He’ll never be on Riewoldt levels of aerobic capacity, more along the lines of Hawkins or a ruckman

Yet another fantastic write up AB. Jade Gresham, however, is one the Saints have every right to be excited about. Will be a gun.

I can’t see it with them.

Old player still carrying them.

And if your relying on Carlisle to be your saviour you are in trouble.

I can't see it with them.

Old player still carrying them.

And if your relying on Carlisle to be your saviour you are in trouble.

This so much.
Seem to be everyone’s darling this year, all I hear is how the Saints will make the 8 easily.
They won’t make it IMO, too much reliance on Nick and a overrated bunch of kids. As for Carlisle hopefully he breaks down by round 2

18th

Severely underating them here IMO. Midfield is good and their youth have shown far more promise than you give them credit for. Gresham, Newnes, Ross and Acres are a very good quartet. Whilst I rate Steele highly and Billings has been written off prematurely. Add in Armitage and Steven and you would be happy with that. They’ll make the 8.

They average a wooden spoon every 4.5 years. Should go ok in 2017, but in realty they’re just 44 games from bottoming out again. Not concerned about them one iota.

They have shown a fair bit of promise over the last 2 seasons but they always fail to deliver. Pretty much the story of the club. They will fulfill similar expectations this season. They will be in the mix for the finals right up until the last couple of weeks, then fall down yet again.

Backline - 6: Backline was the issue last year, big chasms lay in the key defensive stakes. Nathan Brown was a good signing, he’s strong in the contest although can get caught out on the lead, his ability to match up on the better forwards this year will be a vital inclusion to the side, and allow Carlisle more freedom. We all know what Carlisle is capable of and perhaps is best role will be the marking, rebounding defender. We all know he’s laconic but with both Brown and Carlisle in the defence is already boosted and helps solve a few of their biggest issues. Dempster will stall be called on to play above himself, last year he was thrown to the wolves trying to play on some big forwards so it will be a welcome relief for him to have some KPP help, allowing him to focus on forwards more his size. Gilbert too will still be getting important roles down back, last year getting called on to plug holes across the field which he did OK with. Both Gilbert and Dempster are good enough players but not good enough to restrict the best forwards, which is why Brown and Carlisle are important to the structure of the side. Both you’d think would only have a few years left so finding replacements is important. Geary is a good player and will benefit from some support, he gave consistent support playing on some good players but perhaps didn’t give the same drive that they expected him to last year. Too much run was left to Montagna ,who was excellent with a ton of link-up play he remains one of their best users down back. With Gilbert, Dempseter and Montagna you’d think only 2 of them max will play past this year. Roberton gave some class down back, but it’s players like him and Savage that went missing when the side went off the boil. Savage provides good shut down roles but like Geary didn’t give as much the other way as they needed. Overall a composed backline, but they need to starting developing some younger talls to give support. Hugh Goddard has struggled so far in his career and Nathan Freeman can’t get on the park but injuries permitting they have a bit to work with.

Midfield - 7 : I disagree with some about their midfield. I think their midfield has a good core of young players that would excite their fans with perhaps them being an absolute star or two short, they would like a few “B” graders to become A. Jack Steven is their main man, he took his game to another level and was a sneaky chance for the Brownlow despite some heavy tags. He was let down by a few of his mates, Armitage is a good player that had a below average year. He struggled with knee injuries that meant he was only serviceable, I think now that he’s fit he should be a good reliable strong midfielder for them capable of gathering 30 possessions regularly. Newnes is a good player that could take that next step and they’ll need him to if they’re going to be a threat. He’s probably their most consistent player in an up and down year and they need guys like Newnes to lift and give some top end support to Steven. Ross is another like Newnes that they hope can take the next step, Ross had his breakthrough year being strong through the midfield but now the task will be to take the next step, he’s a prolific ball winner that could be a star one day as you look at him and think he doesn’t have many assets but like Jobe is smart with the ball and wins a lot of the ball. Acres and Billings are probably both the Saints’ next two potential stars. Acres has good pace and showed heaps in the last half of the year, winning a rising star and showing some great signs, Billings too looks like he could be special but hasn’t quite pieced together anything consistent, he spends his time so far between midfield and back and has played some special games and some quiet ones, with little inbetween. Billings is the one they’re banking on becoming their “A” grade talent at some stage over the next few years. Koby Stevens and Jack Steele are useful inclusions, Stevens was a gun in the first half of 2015 until he got injured and then found himself in and out of the side last year for the Dogs despite playing decent football, whilst Steele is talented but never found a spot on the GWS’s senior list so he’ll get his chance to find his feet, it’s too early to see how he’ll turn out just yet. Jade Gresham is a young draftee that had a good first year, he was handy throughout the year being too young to have too much of an impact but he had some good moments so you’d expect he’d be a player of the future. Gresham along with Dunstan & Ben Long should get plenty of chances to break in to the side during the year. Overall a good reliable core they have but I’m feeling they need a few to take the next step to help Steven and perhaps need a dash of pace that they found since losing Lovett.

Rucks - 8 : I think they’re well set here. Hickey overtook Longer and was basically one of the best few rucks in the league by the end of the season, he had a ripping last half of the year. Longer struggled in the VFL unable to break into the side and I wouldn’t be surprised if he looked for more chances elsewhere next year. Holmes even played a few games which was more than Longer. Overall they have a top ruck and a few good backups and that’s all you need.

Forwardline - 7.5 : I think it’s probably their best aspect of the side. I’m not sure if Riewoldt is a high forward or wing but you could argue both, he’s still a class player even despite slowing and will again kick goals or provide a presence in the midfield. I’m not sure Bruce has come on as they planned, but everyone knows he can kick a bag. Membrey was an outstanding find and almost their best forward all year. Kicked some big bags and went from fringe to first picked such was his rise, it’ll be interesting to see if he can back it up. McCartin is frustrating as he is talented, with injuries and concussions dominating amongst some occasional brilliance of strong marking and goal kicking. The Saints are looking to him to settle into a full forward role to help replace Riewoldt and need him to find his feet consistently soon. Throw in the talent of Billings and a forwardline of Riewoldt/Membrey/Bruce/McCartin/Billings will be dangerous. Mav Weller also established himself as a good shut down forward who managed to kick some goals although Jack Lonie & Minchington struggled playing the small forward role. Lonie kicked 3 goals in his last game and Minchington did the same in the year but neither found a spot to nail down despite both having the talent. It’s probably one of the better forwardlines they’ve had for a few years.

Predicted Finish - 6th - 8th: Always hard to pick teams like the Saints. Finished 9th last year and have a ton of room for improvement but you often find teams going backwards before the go forwards once again. I think with the natural improvement in their list along with Carlisle and Brown helping to address a backline weakness they should make finals.

CB…
Hugh Goddard is a KPB. He did his knee (for memory) last season. This is his third year. He was tracking very well until the injury.
Struggling wouldn’t be the word to best describe him.

Otherwise. A good summary.