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Yarra Valley Water In Focus 2024 | Scoresby

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By Ryan Long.

 

A fit and firing Scoresby outfit are viewing the 2024 season with great optimism after some promising signs from their 2023 campaign.

 

Senior Coach Craig McKenzie starts his second year at the helm with the Magpies after leading the club to their first senior finals series since 2018, going down to the eventual Premiers, Surrey Park in the Preliminary Final.

 

It’s a strong start to his tenure at a famous and historic club in the EFNL.

 

“For me, pretty happy with the result that we were able to have some success,” McKenzie said.

 

“Especially with the two’s winning and us not going too bad, but at the same time, I’m obviously wanting for more,”

 

“The feeling around the place is really good, it’s almost been a bit of a sigh of relief for them that they’ve managed to steady the ship a little bit and start to feel like there’s some hope to head back in the right direction.”

 

The 2023 season marked the first time Scoresby has played in Division Four.

 

McKenzie recognised that it took some time to get used to the new division, facing clubs that Scoresby had previously never met.

 

“A lot of our research was done by video footage or learning from the first time we played them,”

 

“We had to try and work out where to expose other teams, identify where their strengths are and that took a bit of time to develop as the season went by.”

 

Having previously coached the Under 19’s at Boronia as well as Dalyston, other variables played a factor that impacted McKenzie’s coaching style such as the difference in ground size.

 

“Other than Kilsyth, the grounds in Division Four are tiny, compared to what Division Two was like with Ringwood, Templestowe, Boronia, etc.”

 

“I had to adapt my coaching mindset a little bit on how we play our footy.”

 

Scoresby has been working hard over the last couple of years to restart the club’s Under 19 program as well as looking into a junior program.

 

It’s been a key priority over the last couple of years with McKenzie setting out to build a sustainable program that will benefit Scoresby for the long run.

 

“We can’t wait until we have some level of success and then start trying to build the support network around it, we’ve got to start building the support network as we’re trying to strive for success,”

 

“The reality is, with no juniors, 19’s whether they get up or not, it’s something that can easily fall away if we’re not pushing.”

 

Pre-season numbers have boosted again in 2024 for the Magpies.

 

A memorable premiership in the Reserves last season had both teams playing finals football making for some tough calls. That however hasn’t deterred anyone as the club heads into the new year.

 

“We had near on 15 guys who missed out on the two’s grand final last year and not one single player has put in a transfer for any negative reason,”

 

“All those guys are back at training and pushing to play again.”

 

The club have strengthened it’s list over the off-season, targeting multiple key areas with some ready-made players.

 

The Amin brothers joined the club over the off-season, having been coached by McKenzie previously at Dalyston.

 

Adam Amin, a familiar name with the league, the former Glen Waverley key forward a huge boost to the Magpies’ forward stocks.

 

“You need a goal kicker, you need a finisher,”

 

“We don’t feel like we are, but other clubs would see Ben Bronsgeest as our main man and what else have you got? So we wanted to make sure we’ve got some more profile players that are kicking goals regularly.”

 

At the other end of the ground, Moomen Amin heads to Scoresby after a breakout season in defence at Koo We Rup. McKenzie describes Moomen as a perfect addition to their back half.

 

“When they were telling me some of the guys he was taking on, I just went that’s outrageous, that’s some of the best forwards that are out there,”

 

“We needed him across the line, needed another key Backman that’s going to lock down and shut down some of these better forwards in the comp.”

 

Prolific ball winner Musa Amin completes the trio, adding some extra class to the midfield alongside cousin Sami Kazizada, who’ll bring plenty of versatility.

 

Wantirna South’s Under 19 boys, Hugh Alabaster, Jake Raymakers and Josh King all join the nest, as well as Noble Park’s Cooper Thompson.

 

McKenzie is also looking forward to several of their young players who are ready to take the next step forward, such as Campbell Hastings.

 

“He’s (Hastings) been a little bit in limbo about what sort of role he plays,” McKenzie said.

 

“Is he a ruckman? Is he a centre-half-back? Is he a centre half-forward? We’re excited that we’ve been able to work with him for a consistent season, where he can start to ruck a little more.”

 

Daniel Coulthard is also cited as one to look out for in 2024. Despite missing out on the finals series last year, Coulthard has hit the track hard over the pre-season.

 

“He has been working his butt off,” McKenzie said.

 

“Fit as a fiddle at the moment and looking fresh as a daisy, he’s one to watch, been working really hard.”

 

With a positive culture at the club, and a list that’s set to improve, there’s plenty of reason to believe in Scoresby as one of the main contenders come August/September.

 

“We’re ready, we know exactly what we’re up against and I’ve got no doubt other teams are doing the exact same thing,” McKenzie said.

 

“But we’re quite optimistic about the opportunity this year, we’re fitter than we’ve ever been, we’re moving the ball much cleaner than we were last year, and let’s hope it comes together at the right time.”

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