Western Magpies confirmed their Premiership Favoritism with a sensational last quarter against Wilston Grange at Sunlinc oval.
By Terry Wilson
Gold Coast Bulletin
Considering the wet ground the game was played at a very high standard with plenty of hard hitting action.
The Gorillas led at every change holding a 22 point buffer at the last break but the Magpies had plenty left in the tank blasting 7 goals to 2 in the final term to run out 16.11 (107) to 14.14 (98) winners
Magpies Coach Peter McClennan said, “we made a lot of unforced errors and went away from our game plan, it wasn’t until the last quarter that we started to get first use of the ball out of the centre and capitalize on our inside 50’s.”
“Players like Chris Mihalopoulos, Greg Lavery and Ben Heffernan-Roper lifted their game, Matt Thompson and Anthony Corrie were really hard at the footy and converted their chances,” McLennan said.
Gorillas coach David Martin lamented the fact that his players just couldn’t get their hands on the footy in the last term.
“The Magpies are a good, tall; running side and when we lost Danny Campbell, who had roved well all day, in the final term it through our balance out of whack. We started to use the footy poorly and paid the price.” Martin said.
Best performers for the Gorillas were Lee Smith, Andrew Mills, Mack Penny and Daniel Brittain
McClennan said, “We are looking forward to the break next week and with players like, Val Pope, Will Fozzard, Reid Dobson, Ed McDonald and James Rozynski just about ready to come back from injury, I’m happy with where we are at the moment.”
Mayne coach Mitch Ferguson should think of changing his name to “Merlin” after the Tigers pulled “a rabbit out of the Hat” with their 1 point come from behind victory over Maroochydore at Everton on Saturday.
“I must admit I got stuck into the guys at ¾ time and everyone of them stepped up when it counted, a few close decisions went our way but that’s footy. Tom Falconer was outstanding the way he took control of the centre bounces and gave us first use of the ball, “said Ferguson.
The Roos took control after the first break and by the last change had built up a handy 16 point lead, the Tigers fought back and by midway through the last quarter had drawn level but Maroochydore rallied kicking a couple of quick goals. Mayne came back and with less than a minute left to play, with scores level Caleb Brown kicked a point from a long way out and the Tigers managed to hang on.
“We had our chances, “said Maroochydore coach Roger Delaney. “For most of the game we played well our one on one game was working well and the players were handling the ball well, however at the start of the last quarter Mayne took control of the centre and we lost our way for a while.”
“The breaks seemed to go against us but full credit to Mayne it was a high standard game and they grabbed the chances when they presented themselves.” Delaney said.
The win means that Mayne still have a chance to squeeze into the finals but they must win all their remaining games.
Best for the Tigers were, Tom Falconer, Taylor Murtha, Tom O’Malley and Andrew Housego while for the Roos Jarrod Raun, Jack Gale, Kane Tyson and Riley Manfield all stood out.
IT has been a long, long time since Springwood won four matches on the trot.
Coach Tony King recalls it was in 2006, when the Pumas were captain-coached by Troy Moncur, that they last won three in succession.
“But I’m not sure about four in a row,” King said after Springwood brought off an upset by beating Surfers Paradise by 11.10 (76) to 8.10 (58) at waterlogged Lowe Oval on Saturday.
Even without key mid-season signing Albert Proud (sliced finger), the Pumas showed huge spirit to spring the surprise, one that put big question marks over the ability of Surfers to have any say in this year’s finals action.
But the result was no fluke. Springwood simply outdid the Demons in tough going.
After the Pumas broke the game apart with a third term of 5.1 to 2.4, King praised each and every one of his warriors, who were led superbly by Michael Grose on a wing, half-forward Jacob King and full-back Matt Hopkins, who played on Korey Fulton.
“It was just an absolute team effort from start to finish,” King said, before explaining what changed things after half-time.
“We had double figures inside 50s in the second quarter but couldn’t capitalize. After that we made sure we maintained the belief and we landed six in the third quarter.”
Disappointed Surfers coach Beau Zorko did not mince words.
Zorko did not exactly drop the `S’ word as in soft but he may as well have said it.
“To put it plain and simple, Springwood wanted to win more,” he said.
“When the going was tough they had more players willing to put their heads over the football than we did.
“We did not have enough players with the intestinal fortitude to play the game the way it had to be played in the conditions.”
Clearly the Demons have to toughen up to stay in the hunt for the finals, something that looked attainable a fortnight ago but now is in big doubt with an away game against Noosa coming up next.
They dropped from fourth to seven on the ladder after Saturday and Zorko agreed.
“I don’t really want to look at the ladder, but in all honesty we do not deserve to be in the five at the moment,” he said.
On baller Tayler Rolfe, midfielder/half-back Jacob Clark and midfielder Ryan Dienjes were three Demons who did not disgrace themselves.
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SANDGATE clawed their way back into the top five after beating Burleigh by 15.11 (101) to 10.8 (68) at Bill Godfrey Oval on the Gold Coast.
And, apart from the obvious joy at grabbing four precious premiership points, Sandgate playing coach Ben Long was relieved to have finally made it through a match without losing any of his players to injury.
“We actually finished with 22, I can’t remember the last time that happened,” Long said.
Another pleaser was the scoring consistency of the Hawks, who had quarters of four, four, four and three goals.
“I thought Burleigh were good,” Long said. “It was a hard, solid, wet game and we probably took our chances better than they did.”
A highlight for the Hawks was the senior’s debut of 17-year-old Lincoln Simmons, who found himself starting at centre half-forward after a team-mate originally designated to the role arrived at the ground late.
Pat Walton across the half-back line and small forward Will Bradley also stood out for the Hawks, who are now right back in the finals race.
Ahead of the Hawks is a derby against Mayne, as well as a match against Noosa.
“I reckon we have to win two of our last three to get there,” Long said.
Burleigh coach Zane Doubleday, a surprise starter out on the field, blamed inexperience for his injury-depleted side losing.
Doubleday said he spent a lot of his field time trying to get youngsters to run to the right positions.
“I was pleased with the effort but again the execution and decision-making was not the best when it counted,” he said.
“We didn’t adjust to conditions as the ball got heavier and we tried to do too much with it.
“And the experienced guys from Sandgate were much cleaner.”
Best for the Bombers were stand-in captain Nathan Sullivan in on ball and forward line roles, rover Matt O’Brien and half-back flanker Zac Tschirn.
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NOOSA’S double premiership coach Wayne Fletcher had a contrasting view to his Coolangatta rival Neil McKay for reasons behind the 2011 champions’ kicking an extraordinary number of behinds in their match at Len Peak Oval on Saturday.
While McKay thought pressure from his battling defenders was behind Noosa’s final tally – the Tigers won by 10.29 (89) to 2.3 (15) – Fletcher put it down to a combination of conditions and skills dropping off at times.
“Both ends of the ground were heavy and it was hard for players to keep their footing,” Fletcher said.
“That contributed to it (the behinds) but the execution could also have been better.
“Still, we had 39 shots on goal in torrid conditions, although it would have been nice for the players to get better rewards for their efforts.”
Coolangatta were very competitive early, keeping Noosa to 1.6 for the first term and scoring 1.0 themselves although that goal came from a 50m penalty.
After that the Blues rarely threatened the Noosa defensive zone, yet coach McKay was far from displeased with the effort.
“We were competitive all day, that was the great thing,” he said. “In previous games we’d go for quarter and a half, then our intensity would drop right off and people were questioning whether the white flag would go up.
“Our challenge was to give a four quarters effort – and that’s what we got.”
Noosa were spearheaded by on baller-forward Brett Duke, the 2011 grand final Ray Poulter Medallist, Dominic Waterman at both half-forward and half-back, and midfielder Tom McKittrick.
Full-back Matt Boughton, Papua New Guinean Stanis Susave and Andrew Haines were best for the Blues.