Northern Heat hit the ground running

In the words of Glenn Frey from the Eagles, “The Heat is On”!

The Northern Heat representative AFL program made a return on Sunday 4 November after several years in hiatus, comprising the best under 17 players from the North Coast, North West, and Northern Rivers regions.

The program exists to extend the representative pathway for the players of the three regions and provide them with a further avenue to build their game ahead of making the full time transition into senior footy.

Matt Anderson, Coach of the Northern Heat, said that the effort at the first outing was very impressive. “We know from data out of National Championships that individual players average around four minutes in possession of the ball across an eighty minute match. The rest of the time they have to be able to run, shepherd, tackle, communicate, and support their team mates so our session focused on what needs to be done when we don’t have the ball.”

“With fantastic support from SCU Sport Science staff we were able to use GPS units to measure the boys efforts which showed that across our session the players ran up to eight kilometres at a maximum speed of 34 kilometres an hour. This is comparable to the efforts of players at National Championships and highlights the fact that our players have the capacity to go further in our game.”

The next session for the players is in Armidale on 24 November where they will have the chance to work with the former strength and conditioning coach of the Sydney Swans. The program continues into 2019 and will culminate with a match against a team from the Gold Coast.

Details of the squad are below:

Joel Ashby (Grafton Tigers)
Kade Bagnall (Grafton Tigers)
Hayden Baker (Gunnedah Bulldogs)
Jack Barwick (Byron/Coolangatta)
Jake Benson (Coffs Breakers)
Coen Chambers (Coffs Breakers)
Morgan Dunn (Walcha/New England Nomads)
Liam Fitzpatrick (Casino/Lismore Swans)
Ed George (Tamworth Swans)
Ben Gibbeson (Coffs Breakers)
Charlie Goodlet (Byron/Coolangatta)
Marraki Kilpatrick (Port Magpies)
Tom Maher (Gunnedah Bulldogs)
Lachie Martin (Inverell Saints)
Will Mozzell (Inverell Saints)
Oli Rojo (Byron/Palm Beach Currumbin)
Ethan Sekac (Pottsville/Coolangatta)
Jordan Sue-Fong (Inverell Saints)
Jasper Thomas (Gunnedah Bulldogs)
James Vallender (Tamworth Kangaroos)
Evan Whitty (Grafton Tigers)
AJ Williams (Casino/Lismore Swans)
Jack Winning (Pottsville/Coolangatta)