Club History

2008 – Club beginnings

To encourage boys to continue playing football after U17’s, the decision was made to establish a separate St Mary’s Senior Football Club.

The decision was made following concerns from AFL Victoria about the lack of boys from the St Mary’s Junior Football Club that went on to play at a senior level.

Previously, St Mary’s Junior Club players were encouraged to continue their careers with Watsonia Football Club or Old Paradians but this had been unsuccessful, and 68% of Colts players did not continue on to Senior football.

“When we realised, not only did we believe we owed it to these kids to provide a direct pathway for them to continue playing football, we believe we had an obligation to do so,” he said

Tom Chapman, First St Mary’s Senior Football Club President, quoted in Leader Newspaper

2009 – St Mary’s Senior Football Club is founded

The first St Mary’s Senior Football Club team

“The boys eventually run out winners 17.23. 125 to 2.2.14 and thoroughly enjoyed their first rendition of the theme song, linked arm in arms and with genuine emotion and grins over every single face. Their camaraderie and mateship is evident and we hope enduring throughout the years ahead.”

Tom Chapman, First Club President, quoted from the first club newsletter “Burra Banter”

28 January 2009: St Mary’s Senior Football Club officially became part of the Northern Football League at their Annual General Meeting following a unanimous vote. The home ground was Kelynack Reserve (Whatmough was not in good enough condition) and the club started with one team – Under 19s.

18 April 2009: The Under 19s had their first game, coached by Ian Carey, and defeated Keon Park by 111 points (125 – 14). To celebrate, the club hosted their first function at Whatmough Park.

Under 19’s after one of their first few games

The Under 19’s celebrate after winning in Round 2!

25 April 2009: Round 2 and the Under 19’s win again! The defeated Watsonia 80-52 and are top of the ladder!

September 2009: Under 19’s finish 6th on the ladder – an impressive ranking for the club’s very first season!

2010The Club starts a Senior team

March – April 2010: The Under 19’s team expands with new players from the Junior Club, and the club forms its first senior team – a year ahead of schedule!

11 April 2010: U19’s play their first game of the season and the Seniors play their inaugural game in Division 3 of the NFL, coached by Kym Irvine.

30 May 2010: St Mary’s launch a Reserves team after an influx of players.

4 July 2010: Seniors have their first win ever, defeating South Morang by 73 points (123 – 50)!

September 2009: U19’s play finals for the first time. The club also has its first NFL Best & Fairest Winner, Dillon Ronalds.

“We couldn’t get everyone to fit into the rooms, it was jam-packed after the game. Everyone was very proud of the boys and what they’ve contributed. It was fantastic.” Tom Chapman, First Club President, quoted from Leader Newspaper after the Senior team’s first win

2011 – The Club starts a Netball team

April 2011: The Club created our first netball team. The team of eight had an incredibly successful first season, being undefeated until losing by one point in Round 11.

September 2011: Senior’s finish second on the ladder, making it to finals in only their second season – four years earlier than expected!

2012 – Welcome to Whatmough

In 2011 Whatmough Park officially became our home ground, after stints at Ford Park and Kelynack Reserve due to the poor condition of Whatmough.

“Being back at Whatmough Park gives our players and members the feeling of belonging in that we have a place to truly call home.”

Tom Chapman, First Club President, quoted from Leader newspaper

This year, the club continued to grow with the addition of a second Netball team.

All our football teams and one Netball team made it to finals, with the Under 19’s participating in our first ever Grand Final!

2013 – First Premierships

September 2013: Both Netball teams won a Premiership – the club’s first ever Premiers!

2014 – First Football Premiership

September 2014: Under 19’s take home the Club’s first ever football Premiership! They defeated Hurstbridge by 22 points at Preston City Oval.

“It was a huge moment for us to get out first flag. To see the look on people’s faces, the people who started the club, was fantastic and quite memorable.”

Ben Joyce, Under 19’s Coach 2013, quoted from Leader newspaper

2016 – First Reserves Premiership

Our Reserves team win their first Premiership in Division 3! Kicking off a chain of success over the next few years!

They defeated South Morang at Whittlesea Showgrounds. The team trailed by 8 points a three quarter time but came back in the last quarter and won 57-53.

2017 – The Reserves win again!

The Reserves win their second Premiership in Division 3! Making them back-to-back winners!

2018 – Success, success and more success!

The Seniors take home their first Premiership and the Reserves win their third Premiership in a row!

2019 – Netball teams shine!

This year we had three Netball teams with two of them taking out the Premierships in their Sections. St Mary’s 1 won in Section 2, and St Mary’s 2 won in Section 4.

2020 – The pandemic takes over

We were geared up and ready for a big season, unfortunately the competition was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

2021 – The big return to sport

With all our games and events postponed last year, we were excited for a big year in 2021. While we got to play some games and host some events in between lockdown, eventually the season had to be cancelled on 9 September by the NFNL.

2022 – We’re back!

After two years of waiting, our teams were back and better than ever but none more than the women’s team. In a historic first for the club, our women were the minor premiers and made the Grand Final!