THE Western Magpies ended the unbeaten run of Wilston-Grange to force a three-way tie at the top of the Pineapple Hotel Cup ladder on Saturday.
The Magpies scored by 17 points in the match of the round at Chelmer for their fifth win of the season.
That victory, added to Sandgate’s success over Burleigh on the Gold Coast, means there are three clubs on 20 points with 5-1 win-loss records after six rounds.
Sandgate (173.5 per cent) have top spot at the moment, ahead of Wilston-Grange (134.2 per cent) and the Magpies (116.9).
By Terry Wilson
AFTER seeing his side go down for the first time this season, Wilston-Grange coach David Martin conceded the Western Magpies worthy winners of the match of the round at Chelmer Oval on Saturday.
Martin was searching for reasons behind the loss – the Magpies scored by 13.24 (102) to 12.13 (85) – which ended the unbeaten run of the Gorillas and left them level with the Magpies and Sandgate at the top of the points ladder.
The Gorillas led 6.2 to 3.8 at quarter-time,. But the writing was on the wall despite the visitors’ handy lead.
“They were way too good,’ he said of the result which showed the Magpies led scoring shots by 37 to 25.
“I think for the majority of the day they dominated. We played catch-up most of the day.
“I could see early the signs were there that maybe we were a bit flat – or they were too sharp.
“We had our chance to get it back in the last quarter but, in the end, if we had won it would have been a false result.
“They (the Magpies) are disciplined and they care about their footy. They play for each other.”
Martin said the Gorillas had played three tough games in a row and perhaps that had a telling effect.
“Did that have something to do with it? I’m not sure. Was the opposition so good they made us look flat?
“At least it gives us something work on/ It shows up some deficiencies.”
The Magpies had 55 inside-50s during the free-flowing affair, and perhaps the only negative aspect for coach Peter McClennan was poor kicking for goal, 24 behinds being a far from satisfactory productivity rate in attack.
“It wasn’t the pressure, we just missed a lot of set shots – blokes who normally wouldn’t miss did miss,” he said.
“Our backline was our major strength the way they rebounded the ball.
“The number of inside 50s was quite amazing – but we just didn’t convert. We could have won by five or more goals.”
A bonus for the Magpies was the return of former St Kilda-listed Ed McDonnell, who was resuming in the seniors after just one game in the seconds.
McDonnell played half-forward, then at half-back .
But it was Peter Kilroy who won best-on-ground honours – his second big game in a row for the Magpies.
Others to shine were defenders Sean Mewing and Will Fozard.
For the Gorillas, none were better than David Tough in the middle, defender Hugh Campbell and small forward Mathew Stevens.