HISTORY - SENIORS
The Goodwood Saints Football Club was established in 1985, when Goodwood Football Club and St. Raphaels Football Club amalgamated.
The club commenced in A4. We immediately earned promotion to A3 by reaching the grand final. The result was an unfortunate loss to Glenunga by 10 points.
In 1986 the Saints finished 6th but under the guidance of coach Trevor Ash the club improved to win the 1987 A3 premiership. The premiership was achieved with a 79 point belting of Brighton High Old Scholars at Thebarton Oval. The Club consolidated its position in A2 finishing 8th in 1988 and 7th in 1989.
1990 proved a standout year for the Saints. The side lost only one game in the season under coach Warren Ploenges culminating in a grand final victory over Gaza by 37 points. Rover David Whelan won the A2 association medal and Stuart Wells booted 128 goals for the season (including 15 goals against Brighton High Old Scholars). The club had reached A1 in just six seasons after the amalgamation.
The club was promoted to A1 SAAFL in 1991 and has remained in A1 for the next 20 seasons. No other club has remained in the top division in this time.
The club finished in 3rd position in 1991 and 1992, 5th in 1993 but slipped to 8th position in 1994.
With the arrival in 1995 of coach Brenton Honor the club firmly set its sights on the A1 premiership. Following disappointments in both 1995 (6th) and 1996 (4th) Honor extracted the maximum from his squad in 1997 and the Saints came away with the ultimate, the A1 premiership.A desperate battle at Adelaide Oval against PHOS Camden saw Captain Chris Slee and Honor lift the shield for a deserved 7 point victory. Desperate defender Peter McCarty a stand out in a best on ground performance.
In 1998 the Saints, under Captain Jason Goodes, finished second in Honor's last year at the helm losing to Broadview in a disappointing Grand Final at Adelaide Oval..
1999 saw Paul Page take over as playing Coach with David Shaughnessy the new Captain . A bright year was shattered with a 1 point grand final defeat. Rover Mark Ryan won the Alan Statton medal as best on ground in the grand final.
Season 2000 saw the Saints slip to 5th, followed by 8th in 2001 in Page's last year at the helm.
Keiran Sporn took over in 2002 but the Saints were only able to improve slightly with a 7th place finish.
Another change in coach saw Trevor Hill take over in 2003 and with Travis Beinke as Captain the side improved to a 4th place finish.
2004 saw the Saints return to the Grand Final tasting defeat by 7 points. On a positive note, 18 year old Cameron Wood became the Saints first AFL draftee. With the best wishes of all the Club, the young ruckman was taken at pick 18 in the 2004 draft by the Brisbane Lions after impressing as an All Australian at the Under 18 National Championships.
In 2005 David Bartel took over the Captaincy. His fine season was rewarded with the Eric Pfitzner medal as the Best & Fairest player in the Division 1 competition. From 5th position the Saints beat allcomers and were rewarded with a deserved premiership on the back of a 35 point victory over GAZA at Adelaide Oval. Bartel's outstanding season continued winning the Alan Statton medal as best on ground in the Grand Final.
In Season 2006 the Saints struggled at times but improved late to finish the minor round in 4th position. Trent Mills had taken over as playing coach and in an amazing display the team progressed from the Elimination Final to the Grand Final once more. An outstanding team display saw Bartel raise the cup once again after a fantastic 47 point victory. Centre Half Forward Matthew Earl was a deserved Alan Statton Medallist.
2007 saw the club aim for three consecutive premierships. Trent Mills continued as coach and David Bartel as captain. The side won 14 minor round games and the focus was set toward the grand final. After losing the second semi final the side exacted the ultimate revenge on GAZA two weeks later winning the grand final by 57 points. David Bartel won his second Allan Statton Medal for best on ground.
2008 was to be another history making year for the Saints with the side becoming the first in SAAFL history to win four consecutive Division 1 premierships. The side finished the home and away season as minor premier by the narrowest of margins and earned a week off at the start of the finals campaign. The second semi final was played against Salisbury North at Goodwood Oval with the Saints moving straight into the grand final with a 16 point victory. The grand final was to be a rematch with Salisbury North. This time the margin was 29 points as coach Trent Mills and captain David Bartel held the premiership cup for the fourth consecutive year. Mark Demasi was dominant in the grand final kicking five goals to be named the Allan Statton medalist.
The 2008 grand final was a sweet success for Demasi and Bartel who had earlier in the week shared the Division 1 Eric Pfitzner Medal as the best and fairest players in the Division 1 competition. The first time two team mates had shared this prestigious award.
The 2009 season loomed as the most challenging for many years with Mills now a non-playing coach and Bartel remaining as captain. The competition was extremely close all season and the A Grade side was unable to establish any real momentum throughout the minor round.
In the most evenly fought competition for many years the side eventually finished the minor round in second position after being defeated by Henley in the last minor round game. Finals are a different challenge however and after defeating Tea Tree Gully in difficult conditions at Goodwood Oval a young Saints side outlasted premiership favorites Henley in the 2nd Semi Final. The grand final against Henley at Thebarton was a tight struggle but the determined Saints extended their winning sequence to an unprecedented 5 consecutive Division 1 premierships by running out 19 point winners.
The Saints remained competitive in 2010 however a disappointing second half of the season saw the Saints limp into the finals in 3rd position. Despite defeating Salisbury North in the qualifying final the side lost consecutive finals to eventually finish in 3rd position.
Club champion David Bartel stepped down from the club captaincy at the end on 2010 and was replaced by Matthew Illman for the 2011 season. At the halfway point of the season the Saints were on top of the ladder but a slide in form saw the Saints finish the minor round in 3rd position. Despite a rally from the Saints to reach the second semi final back to back finals losses saw the Saints loose the preliminary final and finish the season in 3rd position for the second consecutive year.
2012 saw the Saints seeking redemption but finishing with a disappointing if not unlucky 3rd. Injuries to key players in the finals held back the clubs charge and despite a terrific season from B&F winner Kris Vanderloo another Preliminary loss was the end result. Club Champion and 5 time Premiership Captain David Bartel called an end to his illustrious career at the end of the season as a life member and one of the clubs greatest ever players.
Season 2013 started promisingly but a loss to Salisbury North in the Preliminary Final saw Trent Mills' side end with a 3rd place finish for the 4th year in a row. At the end of the season Coach Mills was made a life member of the club after 9 years as a coach. On a positive note the B grade, under coach Darryl Spencer, picked up the Div 1 Reserves premiership.
The start of 2014 was highlighted by the recruiting of former Richmond star Shane Tuck. The excitement generated around the league with recruiting a player straight from the AFL was great for the competition but also great for the Saints playing group as a whole. And what a season they produced. Tuck won the club Best & Fairest as the A grade and B grade went through the minor round undefeated and despite a hiccup on 2nd Semi Final day both finished strongly to defeat ROCs on Grand Final day. New club Captain Simon Brooks raised the Cup with Coach Mills to break a 4 year A grade Premiership drought. To cap off a memorable season both the C grade and u18s won premierships to complete a clean sweep for the senior football department.
2014 also saw the naming of a new Club Legend. Craig Kirkbright rose to this level in what became know as the Year of the Kirk. A function was held at Morphettville Racecourse in honor of Kirky to celebrate this fantastic achievement.
Season 2015 started promisingly for the Saints and hopes were high for a successful season. The A grade finished the minor round in second position and a strong 2nd semi final victory saw the Saints into the Grand Final. In a dour struggle the Saints trailed at 3 quarter time but unleashed a 5 goal to Nil last quarter to defeat Payneham Norwood Union by 28 points. Coach Mills and Captain Brooks lifted the Cup to provide the club with our 8th Division 1 premiership and back to back flags. Ruckman Mark Paget was rewarded with the Allan Statton Medal for best on ground and Shane Tuck was outstanding all day. The C grade produced a memorable finish to the season winning the flag for the 2nd consecutive year also.
The year finished on another positive note with juniors Riley Bonner (main list) and Will Snelling (rookie list) drafted by the Port Adelaide Power in the AFL. A fantastic achievement by both with all at the club wishing them every success.
The Saints 2016 season never really got going as we tried for three premierships in a row. A dissappointing season saw us finish in 8th position. The positive aspect was a number of young players getting a taste of Div 1 footy and the B grade getting a taste of grand final day action despite not being able to take home the big prize. Club champion Anthony Dempsey played his 200th game for the club during the year.
The highlight of the year occurred at presentation night where stalwart Craig Scott became the fourth person to be elevated to Club Legend status. A huge achievement which Craig celebrated by putting his hand up for the President’s role in 2017. A terrific club man and a very deserving recipient.