WESTERN Magpies have taken over as top dogs in the Pineapple Hotel Cup after a big win over Springwood at Chelmer Oval on Saturday.

By Terry Wilson

The Magpies were just too classy and strong for the gallant OPumas as they surged to victory by 14.17 (101) to 6.8 (44).
The win put the Magpies on top of the points ladder heading into a crunch against Sandgate next weekend.
And, as Saturday’s scoreboard suggests, the Magpies were one or two goals per quarter better than the Pumas.
The Maggies had some of their big gun up and about, particularly former St Kilda-listed defender Ed McDonnell, fellow running defender Will Fozard, big forward David Hamill (five goals) and midfielder/Forward Ben Heffernan-Roper.
They were all standouts on a heavy ground which was chopped up after the curtain-raiser.
But the Magpies still managed 14 goals in the tough conditions, so it was a reasonably pleasing effort for coach Peter McClennan.
“I thought our first half, particularly the second quarter, was very good,” said McClennan.
“But I was not happy with the last quarter because we fell away and started bombing the ball into the forward line.”
Springwood coach Paul Opbroek accepted some blame for the loss as the Pumas struggled to kick a competitive score against a side renowned for its running ability.
Opbroek revealed he went with man-on-man tactics which, he conceded, did not work out exactly the way he had planned.
“We tried something different but it didn’t come up,” said Opbroek. “In the second quarter, in particular, things went haywire and we had too many players ball-watching.
“But I was reasonably happy with the second half.”
It was in the second term that the Magpies kicked five goals to nothing, which sounded the death knell for the Pumas’; hopes of an upset.
Best for the visitors was on-baller Matthew Hockley, who was in there mixing it with the classy Magpies brigade around the contests.
Fellow on-baller Mark Thompson was also in the thick of the action throughout and Chris Veneman added drive from a half-back flank.

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