By Jeremy Richards
It was a proud moment for Woodside and District captain Ryan Foat on Good Friday, when he became the first player in the club’s history to reach the 100 games milestone.
And at just 23 years of age, the young ruckman still has a lot of football ahead of him.
Foat, who began his football playing career as a junior with the DWWWW Allies, said it wasn’t difficult to don the old blue and white jumper for the Wildcats.
“I’ve been a Geelong supporter all my life. I always looked up to players like Joel Selwood and Harry Taylor,” Foat said.
“On a local level, Travis Ronaldson and Mark Collison were also a great inspiration to me.”
In the Good Friday seaside showdown, the Wildcats defeated Yarram by 63 points in a blistering performance, with Foat playing a crucial role in the team’s victory.
Foat dedicated the win to his father, Greg, who died 18 months ago.
“It would have been great if he was here. I still wear his number 8 jumper. He was a great bloke.”
Greg Foat played more than 300 games for the former Woodside Football Club, including the 1974 premiership. He also won the best-and-fairest for the club that year.
Ryan, the youngest of six siblings, has taken on the responsibility of managing his family’s 2,500-acre sheep farm.
“My mother Jenny is very active with the Woodside club and four of my sisters play in the A grade Netball team,”he said.
The entire Foat family has been extensively involved with the rebirth of the Woodside and District Football Netball Club and its continued existence.
In 2010, Ryan won the NGFNL under-18 best-and-fairest and was named captain of the Team of the Year.
He has also been named in the senior NGFNL Team of the Year for the past three seasons.
He won the senior best-and–fairest award at Woodside three times, including back-to-back in 2014-2015.
Foat spent two seasons at Maffra in the Gippsland League in 2012-2013 and played in the 2012 grand final, which the Eagles lost to Sale.
The Wildcats have never tasted finals success in the NGFNL, but going by the Good Friday demolition of Yarram, 2016 may just be the year Woodside and District contends for finals glory.
“I’d love to play finals for Woodside,” Foat said.
“We have a lot of quality young players coming through the ranks. It would be great to be there in September.”
Categorised in: Woodside FNC
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