Young Lions coach Mark Mellish will look back on 2018 with pride despite falling at the final hurdle in Sunday’s decider.
Mellish admitted he was “frustrated” with the 2-0 loss to Lake Albert but said his side acquitted themselves in what was for many a first ever senior grand final.
“I think that played a big part it in, you know, cause Lake Albert have been there before and know what they're doing whereas most of our boys haven’t played a final like this before,” Mellish said.
“I actually gave it to them for the first time all year at half time because they weren’t playing like I know they can but it wasn’t nerves or anything … probably just experience.”
Mellish nevertheless paid tribute to his players after enduring a “pretty steep learning curve" in 2018.
“If somebody had told me that we would dominate (Lake Albert) for half of a grand final, I’d take that straight away.”
“Credit to Lake Albert, it’s tough to go through a season undefeated. I didn’t think their goals were necessarily great goals but they’re a team that knows how to wins games and that’s the most important thing.”
In a day that saw a healthy Lions support group travel to see both the first grade men and women’s sides compete in a grand final, Young’s soccer community are set to enjoy a bright and successful future.
“It’s important for us to support each other. We're trying to build up that club culture and having the boys come out to watch the girls and vice versa is a big part of that,” Mellish said