Reporting on the footy news in western Canada, MyK Aussie brings us the following.
In the 2nd game of the year between the two Calgary-based teams the Bears won convincingly by approximately 30 points. After Marlborough Park, a full size Aussie Rules Footy playing field, was flooded a week ago and could not be mowed the Calgary footy crews had to again revert to the Rugby fields on Sheppard Rd in the South East of Calgary.
In game 3 of the 07 season the Vancouver Cougars 18.26.134 hammered the Burnaby Eagles 4.2.26 despite some inaccurate kicking. The scoreline is even more remarkable considering the Eagles had won the first two games played this year.
On an absolutely beautiful day for footy, the
Washington Eagles (8)
racked up their third win of the year defeating Eastern Australian Football
League powerhouse the
Demons (6). It was
a big day out for footy in Washington DC. The game was played at Carter
Barron Park in bright sunshine and low humidity and a light breeze. Things
kicked off with a free
Kids clinic which was
followed by a little league game and an Ausball game allowing both parents and
kids to get a kick at the same time. After the preliminaries, the Eagles
and the Bombers headed out for the ball up, while kids, parents, and supporters
headed back to their fold up chairs and hamburgers from the grill.
Saturday is a make or break day for six of
Top 10 teams. Probably the biggest game of the weekend occurs in
Washington DC's Carter Barron Park, where the 8th ranked
Washington Eagles take on the 6th ranked
Demons. The BW Eagles are coming off a triumphant home and home series
against the 10th ranked
Tigers, taking them to the top of the
unofficial league ladder. A win on Saturday against one of the power
house sides of USFooty
would probably cement the Eagles position in the top 5 and put them on the road
to a Division 1 birth at the USFooty National Championship Tourney. This
will be Boston's first game of the year and it will be on the road, but the
Demons will need to get the win if they are going to hold on the Eastern
Australian Football League Championship. The NC Tigers have had a rough
start with three losses including the most recent to the
Philly Hawks for
EAFL points. Big Jason Heathcote's young chargers have to be at their best
when they host the third ranked
Magpies. Like the Demons, the Maggies are on the road for the first
game of the year.
This summer, my seven year old son and myself are introducing a new concept in
junior sport to Arlington, VA and the Washington DC area. We call it
Saturday Morning Footy. In many ways there is nothing new at all about
Saturday Morning Footy. I myself started playing Footy (aka Australian
football) on Saturday mornings in 1977, thirty years ago! Of course, in
1977 I lived in Ringwood East, an outer suburb of Melbourne Australia and the
program was run by my best friend's dad. The name itself comes from
Arlington's very successful junior basketball program called Saturday Morning
Basketball. Like Saturday Morning Basketball, Saturday Morning Footy will
begin with three weeks of "clinics" to teach the skills and rules (although
there will be a lot of fun games along the way), and the last two weeks will
consist of "matches" between the designated teams.
The 2006 USAFL National Champions, the San Diego Lions play their first official US Footy match for 2007 this Saturday, June 16th at Doyle Park, La Jolla, California. They will be taking on a combined Arizona Hawks/Las Vegas Gamblers side. We also wonder if it's time for USFooty to introduce a new tradition.
Canada's national Australian Football team, the Northwind, are in full swing with training sessions and trial games against Canadian club and combined sides. First up this Saturday 16th June is strong Ontario AFL team the Toronto Dingos. A highlight will be when they blow across to the west for an international invitational series in Vancouver against the US Revolution and the Japan Tsunami. They'll also play the touring Australian Convicts in October in what will be a very busy year for the Canadian squad, which started early with a match against the US in Texas in January.
Northwind's 2007 schedule can be viewed on the AFL Canada website here.
Washington Eagles (8th in our US poll) 109 points handily defeated the
Carolina Tigers (10th) 25 points. The game was played at the
fields in Poolesville, MD. Poolesville lies in the hart of Maryland's
horse country past the grand mansions of Potomac and DC's northeastern
suburbs. While it was definitely hot, there was none of the
humidity that DC is famous for.
The Kelowna Cup was a very successful day for footy in Canada held last weekend Sat June 2. The Alberta Canadians won for the second year in a row defeating the BC Canadians. The BC Footy Aussie guys defeated the Calgary Aussies convincingly. Mark Block Canada's national team head coach was there and he was impressed, we may see some fresh talent heading to the Northwind squad for their upcoming clash with the US Revolution team later this year.
As the 2007 season starts to build up some momentum in the US, we take a look at what is going on with some of the clubs in the western half of the Nation - with the Denver Bulldogs playing exhibition games, the Arizona Hawks kicking off their inter-regional season as well as getting women's footy going, and movements in US Military footy in the Middle East and California.
Australian football’s involvement in the global scene (at least seriously), has only occurred in the past two decades. We are gradually seeing more exhibition matches played on foreign soil and higher participation levels outside of Australia – the figure of around two thousand players for the United Sates is not huge, but when you consider this was only a few dozen ten years ago, it is impressive growth. Other nations like South Africa have similar levels to the US, but they are expected to skyrocket into the tens of thousands in a few years time.
We're familiar with expat-Aussies trying to convert the locals, but with all these new markets comes an interesting possibility – players learning our great game outside of Australia and outside of their own homeland. WFN sought out all the clubs in the USAFL (and managed to get responses from most of them) about whether on not they had any non-Australians and non-Americans on their list, who they were, and how they had stumbled across our great game.