SOUTH BARWON football officials say new Swans recruit and former Lorne footballer Lochie Donne is shaping up as a ready-made senior footballer.
The 195-centimetre ruckman, 19, was listed with Colac district club Lorne in 2015 but spent the year playing with the Geelong Falcons.
He averaged 10.9 disposals and 14 hit-outs a game in his 15 games in the TAC Cup this year, ranking among the Falcons’ best players four times.
New South Barwon co-coach James Maas said the Swans were rapt to have the versatile big man on board.
“We met him at the end of last season, he’s just a great bloke,” he said.
“He’s good mates with a few of the boys at the club, like Luke Davis who is another ruckman that he played with at the Geelong Falcons.
“So I think the chance to play with mates was a bit of a drawcard, we made contact with Lochie at the end of the season and we were rapt he was keen to come on board.”
Maas, who will coach alongside club champion Clinton Wells in 2016, said Donne and Davis would hold down the Swans’ ruck duties following the departure of former VFL footballers Darcy and Fraser Fort to South Australian club Central Districts.
“We’ve spoken to Lochie about playing different roles, but given his size we’re likely to play him in the ruck, and possibly up forward as well,” he said.
“He and Luke are only young, but they’ve both been involved with the Geelong Falcons, and that program puts them in good stead for senior footy.
“With ruckmen, they always need a bit of maturing and extra work, but I think Lochie and
Luke are ready-made senior footballers.”
Meanwhile, Maas said that former Colac footballer Meyrick Buchanan was also committed to the Swans for a second year in 2016.
Buchanan, 22, was among the Swans’ best players in five of his seven games this year, in between VFL duties with Footscray.