Jaguars on the improve

Jacana continues to show signs of improvement (Jamie Morey Photography)

Tara Murray

Jacana is banking the small wins in the Essendon District Football League division 2 competition.

The Jaguars, who withdrew their team midway through the 2019, have been working hard ever since to get the club back up and running.

After losing by on average more than 200 points last season, the Jaguars have reduced the gap this year.

Coach Glenn McIntyre said they were happy with the progress they were starting to see.

“We are starting to gel as we get more and more senior games into the young fellows,” he said.

“They’re coming on really quick and there is that progress and development.

“We just need to stay patient and stay the course.”

McIntyre said outside about half a dozen players, the average senior game total for the group was 10 games.

He said most weeks the side that was taking to the field with two-thirds of the team under the age of 21.

“Once they have 50 to 60 games of senior footy it will be really good.

“We just need to hold on to the kids, that is the challenging thing. We just need to be patient and let them develop in their own time.”

McIntyre said the group of guys who had come across from Strathmore, as they sought senior opportunities, had really shown a lot of promise, playing some good football.

Ben Gough, Ryan McConnell, Ben Robertshawe and Bayley Overend are some of those who have impressed him.

McIntyre said each week for the group it was about focusing on the small wins.

In their last match against Northern Saints, the Jaguars kicked their highest score since coming back into the competition.

Their average losing margin has dropped the last month, while they won a quarter against Burnside Heights.

“We do break it down by quarters,” he said. “We’re trying to win quarters, but it’s more about looking at the development of the young kids.”

The Jaguars had a bye on the weekend, with no games due to the Queen’s Birthday long weekend.

McIntyre said the second half of the season was continuing to focus on what they had been doing.

He said the rise of ladder leaders Keilor Park, which was in a similar position a couple of years ago, shows what can be achieved.

“The margins have decreased the last three weeks or so,” he said.

“We kicked six goals [against Northern Saints]. We need to reassess and look at kicking five to six goals every week.”

McIntyre said anyone who was interested in playing was welcome to come down to the club.

With the club not having any juniors, they don’t have that pathway coming through.

He said they were hoping to get some form of juniors up and going in the coming years.

The Jaguars face Oak Park on Saturday.

In other matches this weekend, Greenvale hosts Keilor in premier division, while in division 1, Craigieburn plays West Coburg, Sunbury Kangaroos host Tullamarine, Roxburgh Park will travel to Hillside and Westmeadows faces Moonee Valley.