CONNOR Hinkley says his experienced Koroit teammates' familiarity with grand final day helped him settle into his first appearance on the big stage.
The teenage Saint was the only player in red, white and black to feature in his maiden senior decider on Saturday, playing a role on the wing in the club's emotion-charged three-point win over North Warrnambool Eagles.
"I was pretty nervous pre-game and pretty nervous all week," he said.
"They're a great bunch of blokes to play around and the core that have played in all the premierships, they sent me a few messages, helped me out and really got me up for the game."
MORE GRAND FINAL:
Hinkley said it was humbling to play in a premiership team but "not until the siren went did I think we were home".
"I played the last couple of under 18 ones and didn't get over the line so today with the senior boys to get over the line in a really tight one... was pretty good," he said.
Ruckman Jeremy Hausler and defender Dallas Mooney are the only Saints to play in the club's six straight flags.
Have you signed up to The Standard's daily newsletter and breaking news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in the south-west.