During 2007 Knox Junior Football Club was faced with the challenge of finding a ground to play most of their junior matches in 2008, as one of the Knox grounds was being redeveloped. Knox President, Brett Kenny made contact with Brad McNay, the Lysterfield Auskick Co-ordinator, to try and organise home games to be played at Lakesfield Reserve in Lysterfield.
Lakesfield Reserve was reserved for use by Rowville Junior Football club and was used infrequently. Knox Council were persuaded to re-allocate the lease to the Knox Junior Football Club to play games at Lakesfield in 2008.
Brad was more than willing to allow the use of the ground by Knox but was also looking to establish a football club playing out of Lakesfield Reserve. Between Brad and Brett the seeds were sown for the creation of the Lysterfield Junior Football Club.
The Auskick program in Lysterfield had been very strong with good numbers. However, the kids then went off to play with various other local teams.
Discussions were held with the EFL (Eastern Football League) on the progression and development of the Lysterfield teams under the guidance of Knox Junior Football Club. Brett and Bradís discussion meant that Lysterfield would also field an U9ís team in 2008 with a view to introduce a new team every year. After 3 years Lysterfield would need to then demonstrate to the EFL that it had the capacity to form a football club under its own identity. Brad took a role on the Knox Committee as the Lysterfield Co-ordinator, a position he held for 3 years (during the formation period).
There was significant interest from Lysterfield Auskickers to play U9ís football in 2008. Brad McNay took on the role of the inaugural coach and Steve Ketzer (now inaugural Lysterfield President), took on the role of Team Manager. The team list filled to capacity quickly, with 26 willing boys signing up for the U9ís football team. Fielding only 15 players with 5 reserves meant that 6 players sat out each week. The team was moderately successful for their first year of competitive football.
Season 2009 saw two teams fielded, U10ís and U9ís. Brad continued coaching the U10ís and Steve coached the U9ís. Many of the Under 9 eligible boys played up in the U10ís and saw them take on the rigors of tackling etc.
Work commenced with a small group of people in preparation for the formation of a new footy club (preparing lists and brainstorming ideas and having preliminary discussions with the EFL on the requirements of forming a football club).
On 19th October 2009 a meeting was held with parents, Knox Junior football Club President, Murray Grimston and Knox Senior Football Club Committee Member, Wayne Adams to discuss working towards creating Lysterfield Junior Football Club for season 2011.
At the meeting Wayne and Murray both spoke about the dynamics of a footy club and the work required. Wayne spoke not only about Knox Junior Football clubís desire for Lysterfield success but the need for the Senior Football Club to retain the link with Lysterfield as a feeder club for the Knox Senior Team. There was a unanimous vote from those at the meeting to forge ahead with forming a footy club to play from 2011.
In Season 2010, three teams were fielded at Lysterfield. Brad took on the job of coach for the Under 11 team. It was the first season the boys were playing for premiership points and finals, but unfortunately, after a great start to the season, we were unable to maintain the momentum and failed to make the final five. Steve took on the U10ís Ė about 7 boys who played U10 last year and fronted up again with the balance coming up from U9. A very successful season having 12 positive results for the team (no scores kept in U10) and also won the 1st trophy for Lysterfield the U10 2010 Lightning Premiers. Mark Edwards was the U9ís coach who also had a terrific season with 12 out of 12 positive results for the season, and the development hallmarks future successes in the coming years.
On 27th April 2010 a formation meeting was called and the club president, Murray Grimston, again spoke to the Lysterfield parents to explain the significance of what was to be undertaken and the necessity of volunteers to make the venture work. After going through the formalities of incorporation the election of office bearers was called.
President: Steve Ketzer
Vice President: Don Coulthard
Secretary: Robin Phipps
Treasurer: Brad McNay
Football Manager Dean Arundell
Accreditation /Registration Greg Crawford
Sub-committees, including Marketing and Sponsorship, were formed. Since the inaugural meeting the committee and sub-committees have met many times and put the foundations of the footy club in place.
An exhaustive process was undertaken to develop the colour options for the jumper and also a name for the club. This included invitations to submit designs and names from club members and the broader public. A shortlist of designs was voted on by the members and the design submitted by Jordan Good (an U10ís player) was selected as the best design and the name chosen was LYSTERFIELD WOLVES.
The colour selection process was a little more long winded as it required final sign-off from the EFL. The current design of the wolf on the front of a grey and teal jumper was formally adopted by the club and accepted by the EFL in November 2010.
As the club ventures out into 2011 the Lysterfield Wolves will be maintaining a few traditions that Knox have established Ė the club nights and also the ANZAC medal, will be key components of the club. As club president, I hope that the when Knox and Lysterfield meet on the field, the occasion can be marked in a significant way. Maybe a trophy or something significant to play for can be established to continue the history between both clubs. (The Kenny McNay cup has a ring to it?)
Lysterfield will continue to build links with the Knox Seniors with a view to creating a pathway for players as they move toward senior football in the years to come.
Finally, we would like to acknowledge the foresight and efforts of Brad, Brett and the Knox Junior Football Club to make the Lysterfield Junior Football Club a reality, and also the ongoing support that Brett and Murray have given over the last three years and for the support of their committees.