Saints secure three PMG boys in the 2012 AFL Draft: White (26), Saunders (43) and Pierce (75) along with elevating Sam Dunell to their senior list.

Saints acquire young mix of position players

St Kilda has used its six selections at the 2012 NAB AFL Draft, held at the Gold Coast Convention Centre on Thursday 22nd November, to acquire a young mix of position players heading into season 2013.

The Saints used their first pick, number 24 in round two to draft 18 year old AIS-AFL Academy member Nathan Wright, a medium defender recruited from Dandenong Stingrays/Berwick. At 185cm, Wright is a courageous player with break-away pace and impressed in his four matches at the 2012 Under 18 championships, where he averaged 14.8 disposals.

With their second selection, St Kilda chose tall forward Spencer White from the Western Jets in Victoria at pick 25.

With an exceptional leap and strong overhead marking ability, the 18 year old left footer this year kicked 35 goals 12 behinds for the Western Jets. At the Draft Combine, White was explosive in the power testing and recorded a lightning fast 2.89 secs in the 20m sprint and also took out the Running Vertical Jump test with a jump of 100cm.

St Kilda’s last two picks of the second round went to athletic, left footed medium defender Brodie Murdoch from Glenelg at pick 40 and medium midfielder Josh Saunders from the Geelong Falcons at pick 43.

Possessing pace and agility, Murdoch joins his sibling at the elite level, after older brother Jordan was recruited to Geelong in last year’s NAB AFL Draft. A strong overhead with a tremendous work ethic in games either at half back or half forward, Brodie impressed at this year’s NAB AFL U18s, with the 187cm forward averaging 12.2 disposals, 4 marks and 2.4 tackles in 5 matches for SA.

With terrific run and carry and speed / endurance combination, 182cm Josh Saunders tested strongly at the State Draft Combine recording a 14.10 beep and 2.96sec 20m sprint time.

In round four, with pick 75, the Saints went for exciting young ruckman Lewis Pierce. Recruited from the Dandenong Stingrays and residing in Mt Eliza, 18 year old Pierce is known for his endurance and ability to cover the ground.

Providing a tall mobile target, Pierce has also shown an ability to play forward and be effective up the ground. Possessing strong leadership and solid football character, 202cm Pierce played in 4 of 5 games for Vic Country at this year’s NAB AFL U18 Championships Mt Eliza.

At pick 90, the Saints promoted mature-aged midfielder Sam Dunell to the Primary List, who was the first Saint to be selected in last year’s NAB AFL Rookie Draft after impressing for the Bendigo Bombers. Dunell was temporarily elevated in July and managed five AFL games in his first season between rounds 16 and 20.

St Kilda List Manager, Ameet Bains said “Overall, we are delighted with the spread of talent we have acquired at this year’s draft. We have managed to draft players who have shown an ability to play in different parts of the ground, which we feel will give us depth and flexibility within our list over the coming years.

“Having secured three mature aged players within the trade period, we feel these five talented draftees will complement our previous acquisitions” Bains said.