The Jets met the LA Sharks in San Pedro for the first time since last years grand final, and the Sharks got the revenge they were looking for with a 22 point win. LA fielded a very experienced side with a lot of handy Aussie players, so it was always going to be difficult for the relatively inexperienced OC boys. But the Jets worked hard and stayed in the game for three quarters before coming home strongly in the last to put the wind up the Sharks.
Speaking of wind, it was worth 4 goals to the team that had the advantage of the breeze however both sides worked well into it also. The Jets had the breeze in the last and finally got on top of their opponents, and but for a few costly misses could have stolen the game. Considering the difference in experience between the sides it was a good result for the Jets who played hard and never looked like throwing in the towel.
The Jets had a definite height advantage over the Sharks but the windy conditions nullified this somewhat, and it was the smaller running brigade that did a lot of the work. Scott Leal led his side superbly and was OC's best despite some close attention from the Sharks, finishing with 4 goals. He was well supported by Seb Aguiari and RJ Meza who both continued their good form of recent weeks; their chasing, tackling and never-say-die attitude kept the Jets in the game all day. CHF Tyler Mounce found the going difficult and had to get used to the extra attention from the opposition, but finished well with a great last quarter and shows good signs for a key forward.
The Jets were not found wanting for effort but in the end were over run by a side that at one stage had 10 good Aussies on the field in a 12 a side game. The fact that they were very competitive is an encouraging sign for the OC group, and the mostly American side showed they are not far away from a far more experienced opposition. The experience was valuable and the club knows what it needs to do to continue the improvement and development.
Sharks: 3.4, 4.3, 4.1, 1.0 - 12.8 (80)
Jets: 1.1, 2.0, 3.1, 3.2 - 9.4 (58)
Goals: Leal 4, Saunders 3, Meza, Mounce 1
Best: Leal, Aguiari, Meza, Oroke, Saunders.