LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON: Bobcats share special moment
IT’S NOT every day you see a father and son out on the sports field together, but the Maclean Bobcats had no less than five duos take the field in a division 3 match on Saturday.
Third grade coach David Jeffrey said it was a very special moment for the club.
“It doesn't happen very often. I’m not sure if it’s even been done before at all,” Jeffrey said.
“The senior men all finally had their kids come of age and we had the opportunity to build a team around them.”
While at the more relaxed end of North Coast Football competition, Jeffrey said the division 3 side plays an important role in the development of youth at Maclean.
“That’s what third grade is all bout, the juniors coming through and the seniors teaching them a thing or two,” he said.
“I’ve been coaching third grade for years, to see own son come of age and play alongside the other four father, son duos was pretty special.”
Jeffrey had to resist playing the specific team earlier in the year as he rotates the younger players through the system, but on Saturday he knew the time was right to make it happen.
“We have to filter junior players into the squad throughout the season. A lot of the younger guys want to play so we like to give them all the opportunity,” he said.
“Every weekend we’ve probably had two or three of them out there with their fathers, but I just thought it’d be great getting them all in together.”
Maclean have surprised a few this season, sitting in second place behind Westlawn Tigers and Jeffrey said it was largely due to the strong youth involvement.
“As a whole the third grade team is doing really well. Being second is not really something we’re used to,” he said.
“We’re doing really well and it’s to the credit of all the young kids coming through. Our junior coaches are training them well and the injection of energy is providing fresh legs which really helps us older guys.”
Team goalkeeper Rod Menzies shared the moment with an image of what was almost a complete squad made up of fathers and their sons, on Facebook.
“A nice moment and it’s got to be some kind of record but yesterday we were lucky enough to have five pairs of fathers & sons play alongside each other in the one team,” Menzies’ post read.
With little to cheer for off the field in 2020, the Lower Clarence community expressed their delight with the rare occurrence.
“OMG that is an extraordinary story and what a privilege to share that occasion with your child. Priceless!”- Debrah Novak
“Our town and sports clubs just happen to do that. How good is it?”- John Nilon
Former marketing guru at The Daily Examiner, Pete Smajstr was one of the father, son teams, with his son Jack Smajstr stepping up to senior football in 2020.
“It was tremendous to be part of it mate,” Smajstr said.
Maclean’s men’s division 3 north side will have their eyes on the prize as finals football draws near.