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Pierce wins Frankston B&F

Michael Ryan  September 10, 2018 2:35 PM

Saints ruckman Lewis Pierce's VFL form has been rewarded with the Frankston Dolphins' Best & Fairest. - St Kilda Saints,Lewis Pierce

Saints ruckman Lewis Pierce's VFL form has been rewarded with the Frankston Dolphins' Best & Fairest.

He showed that he’s definitely up to the level AFL-wise in those last three games.

St Kilda ruckman Lewis Pierce has capped off a stellar season in the VFL by winning the Frankston Dolphins’ 2018 Best & Fairest on Saturday night.

An unconventional arrangement saw Pierce ply his trade for rival club Frankston this year, instead of representing the Saints’ VFL affiliate Sandringham, to play more time in his preferred position as a ruckman.

The deal was facilitated by newly-signed full-time coach Adam Skrobalak, whose part-time duties as ruck coach at the Saints in 2018 were complemented by a senior coaching position at Frankston.

READ: Pierce, Ross fight on

Having previously played a compromised role as a ruck/key forward behind either Billy Longer or Tom Hickey, Pierce has revelled in his opportunity this year to compete as the No. 1 ruckman at Frankston.

Averaging over 41 hit-outs per game, Pierce proved to be one of the premier rucks in the competition, despite his side winning just two games for the year.

The 203cm big man featured in the Dolphins’ best in all but four games in the VFL this year, before injuries to both Longer and Hickey meant he was elevated to play the last three games of the season for the Saints.

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From left: Adam Skrobalak, Lewis Pierce, Rowan Marshall

Skrobalak said Pierce’s more singular focus playing in the ruck for Frankston had developed his game significantly.

“Lewis had really solid form in the VFL,” he said.

“He showed that he’s definitely up to the level AFL-wise in those last three games.

“He proved he can get his hands on the ball at AFL level and in the VFL, but he needs to cover the ground to get to more contests, so he can have more influence from there.”

Pierce will look to improve his athleticism in the off-season and add to his current tally of four senior games in 2019.