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Young Ram Heeney in fine form at Championships

Isaac Heeney in action against NT in the 2014 NAB AFL U18 Championships
ISAAC Heeney started his NAB AFL Under-18 Championships exactly as expected, gathering 32 disposals in New South Wales-ACT's strong 81-point win over Northern Territory.

The midfielder, who is tied to the Sydney Swans under the zone academy program, showed why most recruiters see him as a first-round prospect with a standout performance.

Of his possession tally, 19 came to half-time when the game was up for grabs, and he finished with four clearances and six marks in the Rams' 20.14 (134) to 8.5 (53) win at Blacktown on Saturday.

In their opening game of the division two carnival, the Rams were clearly the better side throughout the day apart from the second term, where things were relatively even with Northern Territory booting five goals.

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But that was where it ended, with Territory held to just one goal after half-time as the Rams kicked 10 majors.  

Midfielder Jack Steele was best afield, picking up 32 disposals, seven clearances, 10 marks and three goals in a terrific display.

After a knee injury ruined his 2013 campaign – when he was draft eligible – Steele has enjoyed a consistent season where he has made a knack of kicking goals, collecting big numbers and showing some marking strength overhead.

196cm ruckman Isaac Muller impressed with 36 hit-outs, while Tyler Roos, the son of Paul, played on the wing and found 22 disposals and a goal, offering plenty of drive. Roos is eligible to join the Brisbane Lions under the father-son rule.

Callum Mills, a talented, tough and composed midfielder, continued his excellent season with 25 disposals and two goals.

Mills is not eligible for the NAB AFL Draft until next year but even that appears something of a formality, given he can join the Sydney Swans under the academy system.

Abraham Ankers was Territory's best, finding 36 touches in a dogged display. Ankers missed out on being picked last season but the 173cm prospect again showed he can collect touches with his team under pressure.

Michael Tilmouth-Turner and Marcus Hamilton (16 disposals, two goals) tried hard, while Zane Carter picked up 16 disposals.

The Rams' win followed a comfortable victory for Queensland, which is likely to set up a division two 'Grand Final' between the sides in round three of the championships at Etihad Stadium on July 2.

NSW-ACT                 4.2   10.5       15.9       20.14 (134)
Northern Territory    2.1    7.3         8.5         8.5 (53)


GOALS
NSW-ACT:
Steele 3, Coughlan 2, Fyffe 2, Hodgson 2, Howard 2, Mills 2, Cornell, Davis, Hiscox, Finlayson, Griffiths, Mahady, Roos
Northern Territory: Hamilton 2, Clarke, Dhamarrandji, Holt-Tubbs, Long, Rioli, Tilmouth-Turner

BEST
NSW-ACT:
Steele, Heeney, Carroll, Muller, Roos, Hodgson
Northern Territory: Ankers, Tilmouth-Turner, Holt-Tubbs, Hamilton, Carter

Twitter: @AFL_CalTwomey