Round 8, 1915
Melbourne vs Essendon
Saturday 12 June
Melbourne win by 19 points
Goalkickers: Jack Huntington 3, Bill Allen 2, Jack Brake 1, Harry Brereton 1, Jack Doubleday 1, Bill McKenzie 1, Roy Park 1
Roy Park (also with University)
Melbourne's strong start to the season continued, but their first win over Essendon since 1910 was played the cloud of tragedy. Players wore black armbands as a tribute to Joe Pearce, the former defender who was killed in the Gallipoli landings in April. He was of one the first VFL players to lose his life in the conflict.
In a rare occurence the Reds went into a game as favourites, and despite a slow first quarter where they conceded five goals into the wind they didn't disappoint. Essendon's kicking for the rest of the game was terrible, adding just 1.9 more. Despite this they still led by seven points at three quarter time before the home side rattled home with a 4.4 to 0.2 final quarter.
Essendon were far from full strength. Almost unable to field a full 18 they had to throw a player into the side at the last minute who was suffering from flu. The showed up late, and their slackness meant the match was finished in semi-darkness.
The game had been of a poor standard in the first half, but it hadn't stopped the sides from scoring nearly half the goals in the match before the long break. Essendon might have had more goals in the third quarter with better kicking, and failed to take their chances again in the last. Leading early in the final term it took a lucky goal off the ground to give Melbourne the lead, and while the visitors tried hard but couldn't penetrate the Fuschia defence and lost.
McKenzie and Lowell were prominent in the midfield. Brake, George, Hassett and Allan were also good. The forwards were disappointing, compared to their performance in a week before anyway, but the other players took up the slack and Melbourne's hold on a spot in the top four strengthened going into the bye.
Ex-Essendonian Jack McKenzie was best, along with Bill McKenzie and Hassett.
Argus - 14/06/1915
Winner - 16/06/1915
Sporting Judge - 19/06/1915
Football Record - 1915