Caroline Springs secure key duo

Courtenay Dempsey has joined Caroline Springs.

Tara Murray

Caroline Springs has looked to strengthen its squad with the addition of one of the best local defenders in local footy and a former AFL player.

The Western Region Football League division 1 club has wasted no time in looking to add some key players after one of the club’s best seasons.

Aberfeldie gun Ryan Allan was the first big signing announced by the club and was quickly followed by that of former Essendon player Courtenay Dempsey.

Lakers football manager Marc Raak said the club was excited by these two key signings.

“Getting those two players in will improve our list,” he said,

“To get in the calibre of those two blokes, who have been playing some good footy in the EDFL [Essendon District Football League].

“It will help the 19 to 22-year-olds on our like with football smarts on game day.”

Raak said Allan would provide plenty of flexibility for the side.

Allan was named the full back of the decade in the EDFL. This year he played forward and was named in the forward line in the premier division team of the year.

“Ryan will play both roles,” Raak said.

“He has the flexibility to play either centre half forward or centre half back. It gives us more flexibility at either end.”

Dempsey has been playing with Greenvale in the EDFL since finishing his AFL career in 2016.

Raak said Dempsey could play a number positions but they were looking for him to play a key role up forward.

“He’ll probably play 70 per cent up forward,” he said of Dempsey.

“We want to kick more goals in games and he gives us another focal point in the forward line.

“He gives us more height and it’s pretty good one on one.”

Raak said these two signings showed the people outside the club were recognising what they had been doing.

He said they would look to add one or two pieces to the puzzle.

“A lot are seeing we are heading in the right path,” he said.

“We’ve been climbing the ladder the last three to four years. We were looking at finishing in the top five [and playing finals] for the first time this year, but covid mucked that up.

“People looking at Caroline Springs are seeing the good things on and off the field.”

Raak said not being able to play finals had been a kick in the gut, but at the same time exciting as the club was achieving things they had never achieved before.

He said the group was keen to get training ahead of next season.