Montrose Football Club
On 7 September Montrose Football Club, the Demons, achieved its long-held dream of victory in division 2 of the Eastern Football League (EFL) grand final. The victory secures the club its rightful place in the best metropolitan footy competition in Australia: division 1 EFL. This was the team’s third grand final appearance in a row. After two heartbreaking losses, the club was determined not to let this opportunity slip. Led by playing coach Brett Johnson, captain Dean Stephen, ruckman Andrew Haining and forward Billy Schilling, the mighty Demons jumped to a three-goal lead over rivals Mooroolbark in the first quarter and were never headed, running out 28-point victors. In a great season for the club, the reserves and under-13s also secured premierships, and the under-17s competed in the grand final.
It took the club and the community several years of blood, sweat and tears to achieve this wonderful outcome. Terrible facilities were demolished and replaced by the Ken Dowling Pavilion, which is the envy of the EFL, and the ground was resurfaced. The club grew stronger, attracting terrific players and coaching staff, but it never lost its strong connection to the local community. I have been proud to support Montrose over many years, and I cannot wait to see the club compete in division 1 next year. Congratulations to senior president Greg Gardoll, chairman Rob Ewart, junior president Gary Felstead, club legends Chris and Ken Dowling, and to so many others I cannot possibly list them here. Well done to them all. The heartbeat of the Montrose community is at the Montrose Recreation Reserve and in particular at the Montrose Football Club.