DENNINGTON utility Jordan Scott believes an off-season in the gym was the catalyst for his promising start to the football season.
Scott, 20, has been one of the surprise packets for the unbeaten Dogs in 2014, finding the ball on a wing at will during the opening fortnight.
He added another string to his bow by spending time in the ruck last weekend and could again be a key factor against South Rovers at Dennington today.
Scott, who spent time with Merrivale and Koroit before arriving at Dennington last season, said he was pleased with his early season efforts.
He put the improved showing down to spending up to four days a week in the gym during the summer — a routine which has become a “hobby”.
As a result, Scott weighs 87 kilograms, to go with his 184-centimetre frame. He was a lightly built 75-kilogram runner this time last year.
“In the off-season I just do gym three to four times during the week, just weight training,” he said.
“I don’t do much running, it’s more cross-fitness to keep the fitness up and then have a solid pre-season.
“I’ve definitely put on a lot more weight, which has definitely helped. You don’t have to hang out the back, you can go in a little bit harder for the ball.”
Scott grew up in Western Australia before shifting to Warrnambool in his teens. He followed mates to Dennington and played in the Dogs’ losing grand final side last year.
Memories of the 50-point defeat to Panmure remain fresh and Scott is forthright in describing his performance as “fairly average”. But the loss — which came after a barnstorming run to the decider from fifth spot — is hardly motivation for player or club.
“That was last year,” Scott said.
Scott, a systems operator at Wannon Water, said the Dogs’ unbeaten start under new coach Ben Parkinson was encouraging.
He said Parkinson, who replaced Darcy Lewis in the role, had given the side a fresh outlook — something which could prove invaluable. “He’s definitely been a big influence,” he said.
“Darcy is a great coach but Ben has come from outside the club, he’s given us a new look,” he said.
“I think that’ll help us a lot, having an outside coach, a fresh face.”
As for his own ambitions, Scott said he would be happy if the Dogs could replicate their 2013 run — but with one noticeable change.
“It’s more the team goal to make finals and have a good finals series. I think (with) personal goals in footy, you start thinking about yourself a bit more,” he said.