It was a great day for Victor Harbor to usher in the new season, perfect weather, the first game of the year, the first match watched from the new clubrooms and against Strathalbyn, who had helped out so much with the development.
With a 134 year old cub hosting another marking their 140th anniversary the scene was set for a tough 2019 opener.
The contest was fierce all day around the fall of the ball with Victor doing most of the attacking early, but squandering chances in front of goal.
It was the visitors, however, who scored against the flow when O'Grady kicked the first of his four for the day on the run and began a spurt of three in three minutes for the Roosters.
Alleway opened his account deep into time on for Victor's first, but the margin was returned to 14 points when Marc Elliot goaled from the pocket after the siren. The home side had a far better second term with three goals from Alleway, Hewett and Ross.
New players Schubert and Yeomans were finding their feet and beginning to have an influence while McKay was having a solid contest opposite Mahains in ruck.
Simounds showed his trademark strength and skill when on the end of a long Hutchinson pass to score one back for the visitors, who now found themselves two points down at the main break due in part to Victor's woeful 4 goals 10 behinds. Strathalbyn were far more efficient going forward scoring 5-2 for the half.
A very even third quarter with three goals each saw Victor's lead only increase slightly, the skill level and pace had not dropped off from either side with the ball being the only objective.
Sam Basham began to assert some authority with a couple of goals, Sam Elliot and Weetra were fierce on the bottom of the packs and Bramley's run from half back was as free flowing as his hair. It was anybody's game at the last break with the Roos up by four points.
Victor burst out of the blocks with three quick majors to open the last to follow a rare miss from Strath at the other end.
There was still heaps of time left and Roosters playing coach Price led the way with three goals off his own boot that sent a shiver through the Victor supporters who were wondering if they were about to pay for their inaccuracy inside 50.
The final siren finally sounded at the end of a 10 goal, 34 minute term to see a dour Victor Harbor hang on by 7 points against a fast finishing and very accurate Rooster outfit. Final scores were Victor Harbor 12-16 to Strathalbyn 13-3.
Best for Victor Harbor were McKay in ruck, Weetra, Bartlett and Sam Basham with five goals and coach Alleway led from the front booting three majors. For the Roosters, O'Grady and Price booted four, Stirling, Mahains, Joe Slattery and Sam Elliot all did their best.