By Tricia Mifsud

Northern Football Netball League division one is proving a challenge for Whittlesea Eagles, who were handed a 75-point beating by Bundoora on Saturday.

Whittlesea had five individual goalscorers contribute to their total of 36 points, while Bundoora’s Sam Lloyd booted eight goals, and Jesse King kicked four towards the Bulls’ 111 points for the afternoon.

Eagles head coach Blair Harvey said a mix of poor ball movement, a lack of confidence and four of the five members of the team’s leadership group being sidelined with injuries were all contributing factors to the loss.

“We’ve got some injuries to our key players – four out of five of our leadership group – but we just have to keep positive. Our ball use needs to be a lot better though,” he said.

“Blake Watson, Mitchell Andrews and Xavier Dimasi really stood up and were good contributors, we just need to be hungrier overall.”

With players forced to the sidelines in 2020, this year is proving a challenge for the Eagles.

Blair said his team was only ‘one win away’ from a growth in confidence.

“We are internally pushing for the win. It was a big adjustment [moving into division one] but they boys were aware that was going to be the case,” he said.

“I think some people just thought [the transition] would happen naturally, and haven’t done the work they needed to go into division one.”

Blair said the playing group truly believed it was good enough to be in division one, but the side was not producing the quality of football it knew it could achieve.

Meanwhile, Whittlesea’s women celebrated their first win of the season in the NFNL women’s grading, defeating Banyule 61 to 19.

In division three of NFNL, a goalless first term contributed to Kilmore’s 44-point defeat at the hands of South Morang, going down 41 to 85 at Mill Park Lakes Reserve.