Morningside 15.11 (101) def. Western Magpies 10.12 (72)
Labrador 10.11 (71) def. Surfers Paradise 6.9 (45)
Mt Gravatt 15.10 (100) def. Palm Beach Currumbin 10.9 (69)
Sandgate 16.7 (103) def. Wilston Grange 7.3 (45)
The sweet taste of victory
It’s been a long time between drinks, but the Hawks broke their drought on Saturday with a massive win over Northside rivals Wilston Grange.
Inspired by fresh inclusions into the lineup, namely Brendan Forbes and Cody Stacklberg, the Hawks came out all guns blazing and lead the contest at every change. The dam wall broke in the last quarter, as the Hawks piled on nine goals to three, running away with the contest 103 to 45.
Defender Matthew Allman ran the ball out of defense all day, hitting up targets with a sturdy pass and setting up the Hawks attack. Also down back, youngster Cody Stackleberg was important, getting under the packs and gaining yardage with clearing kicks from tight, contested situations.
The Hawks tackling pressure was up from recent weeks and they moved the ball up the ground with more precision than they’ve managed earlier in the year and the results showed on the scoreboard.
Gorillas young gun Harry Milford continues to be a shining light up forward and bagged two majors, though spearhead Matthew Trewhella was held goalless. Jack James battled away through the middle of the ground, pressuring the opposition when he didn’t have the ball and using it well when he did.
Grange appear to be finding it difficult without their inside bulls, Mark DeSousa and skipper Steve Brittain, while the departure of Brent Moloney has left a big hole.
Going into the clash these two finals contenders were evenly matched and that’s the way it played out on Saturday. Both sides staked their claims in the final quarter but it was Morningside that managed to capitalize late in the game, piling on the last three goals of the match.
Kent Abey was again the hero in the last quarter, bagging three to go with his six for the match. This haul takes Abey to 13 goals in three games, showing his impact for the Panthers has been huge since his return.
Co-captain Matthew Logan continued his run of good form at the back end of the season, providing some much needed composure around the ground, while at half back Matthew Serrurier played a blinder, amassing disposals and hitting targets.
Magpies Gareth Crawford and Tom Ielasi were influential through the midfield, finding the ball and moving it forward, while Jakob De Winter ended the game with three goals.
Cat and mouse
It’s a well-known QAFL phenomenon, being beaten by the Tigers. It starts with a brief moment of hope at the beginning of the contest, as the scoreboard makes the champs look gettable, just for a little while, then the momentum starts to change. If you didn’t know any better, you might say they like to toy with their opposition.
Surfers Paradise will know the experience all too well after Saturday, getting close at stages but ultimately not being able to match it with the reigning premiers. Late in the third quarter the Demons trailed by only 14 points, a slim margin by anyone’s standard.
Brody Haberfield was terrific on the day for the Demons, intercepting at times in front of a leading Barry Hall, who ended up with four goals for the Tigers. Bryce Retzlaff now sits well clear on top of the goal-kicking table after bagging another three for Labrador, taking his total for the year to 42.
Thompson Smith showed he can be a second target for the Demons, taking some solid marks and hitting the scoreboard with two goals. Smith becomes increasingly important as the season goes on, as the Demons can be a little ‘Greeny’ conscious with their ball movement at times.
Running on empty
Credit, as they say, where credit is due; and Mt Gravatt deserves plenty of plaudits for their round 12 performance against second-placed Palm Beach Currumbin. The Vultures on-ballers, the likes of Zach Stone and Joe Murphy were tenacious and gathered plenty of the footy, but it was the Mt Gravatt defensive pressure that stood out.
Also drawing attention, was a monster tall forward by the name of Andrew Smith, playing his first game for the season for Mt Gravatt and slotting six goals. Smith is the tall the Vultures have been crying out for this season, to give Sam Stubbs a chop out and provide a target for the long kick inside 50. Similar to Broadbeach’s Mitch Brewer, Smith looks just about ‘un-spoilable’ on the lead.
After three losses on the trot now, it has to be conceded that Palm Beach is severely hampered by missing personnel. The absence of forwards Jarryd Douglas and Mitchell Johnson hurts in the forward half, while Thomas Thynne would be a welcome return to the midfield. Perhaps the biggest hole is left by star midfielder and last year’s Grogan medalist Jesse Derrick, not only his he great in the air and a ball winner around the ground but he’s their skipper and organizer.
Jason Burge and Tyler Cornish are playing good footy in the absence of their teammates, but need some support around them to go up another level.
By Sean Melrose