Laguntas put up strong fight

LAGUNTAS_27439_KGIThe Laguntas suffered a 45-point loss at the hands of Port Academy at Richmond’s Punt Road Oval on Saturday morning.

The Laguntas Program is a joint-initiative between Richmond’s centre for Indigenous youth, the Korin Gamadji Institute (KGI), and AFL Victoria.

The Laguntas side was packed with talented footballers aged between 15 and 18, who mostly hail from Victoria.

Port Academy raced out of the blocks and denied the Laguntas scoring opportunities, eventually securing victory 15.10-100 to 8.7-55.

Port took less than 90 seconds to slot through the opening goal of the day, then Daimon Barrow quickly responded with a second major.

A classy passage of play from Aiden Domic set up the Laguntas first score of the day, with Ben Bowden converting the six points.

The Laguntas struggled to get the ball inside their attacking 50 as the visitors applied relentless pressure.

Daimon was lively in the opening term and bagged another goal, helping his side secure a 28-point lead at the first change.

The opening term set the tone for the remainder of the match, as Port quickly added two goals to its score in the second quarter.

The visitors were given too much space in their attacking 50 and capitalized, extending their lead to 61-12 at the main break.

The Laguntas ironed out a few creases in the third-quarter as they looked more polished with the ball.

They added a further two goals to their score, but Port continued to assert its authority and piled on four majors.

With a 65-point lead at the final change, Port held on to its momentum in the fourth quarter.

However, the Laguntas showed plenty of fight in the dying stages of the match and outscored the visitors 24-13 in the final term.

The Laguntas squad spent four days at the Richmond Football Club – completing a number of development activities, as well as football training and recovery.

Laguntas coach and former Brisbane backman Chris Johnson, who has mentored the side for the past four years, said his squad was filled with new and bottom-age participants.

“Their ability to come together at such short notice, team structures, team plays in a short amount of time,” Johnson said.

“A number of times today, when we played to our structures we were good, the times when we weren’t good we didn’t.”

Derek Smith was lively for the Laguntas, alongside Aiden Domic, Ben Bowden and Kyle Thomas.

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