Round 11 QAFL Review

By Terry Wilson

Photo: BC Sleep Photography

Searl’s solo goal ices the Cats’ cake

Broadbeach 2.4, 5.9, 10.13, 13.15 (93)
Western Magpies 4.2, 6.3, 8.5, 10.7 (67)

GOALS, Broadbeach: M. Fowler 4, B. Neal 2, N. Kempe 2, J. Searl 1, B. Erickson 1, N. Burton 1,
X. McMahon 1, B. Chadwick 1. Western Magpies: K. Reed 4, J. Goodall 1, D. Mitchell 1, D. Lewis 1, J. De Winter 1, A. Corrie 1, M. Stallard 1.

BEST, Broadbeach: B. Neal, B. Chadwick, S. Watson, L. Nelson, M. Smith, B. Erickson. Western Magpies: K. Reed, L. Winton, R. Harwood, D. Mitchell, R. Easton, M. Davis.

A SUPERB late solo goal from dual club best and fairest Josh Searl capped a gritty win for Broadbeach over the Western Magpies on Saturday.

Searl hammered the nail into the Magpies’ coffin when he set off on a 75-metre run, had three bounces then finished off truly for the Cats to win by 13.15 (93) to 10.9 (69) at Subaru Oval.

Searl has been battling a dodgy hamstring for a few seasons and it was not a surprise to see the tendon heavily iced after the victory, although the former skipper gave the all-clear this time following the decent workout he gave it.

Searl and on-baller Benji Neal were the sparks who lifted the Cats in the third quarter after scores were level at 39 points apiece at half-time.

But even Broadbeach coach Brett Andrews agreed his side was lucky to be in the race after the visitors threw everything at them.

“Really, I looked at it at half-time and thought we were lucky to be in the contest,” Andrews said.
“Physically we were getting outmuscled and we were getting outrun.”

It was during the big break that Andrews rejigged his structure and tactics, pushing Searl to a half-forward role and demanding more around the contests from his troops.

“We had to rearrange the forward line a bit so we put Josh a little deeper,” Andrews said in a move that brought two goals for Matt Fowler (4.3 for the game) in a term of 5.4 to 2.3.

“For sure I was happy to get over the line because we were coming off the bye, we had a few out and it was slippery conditions out there,” Andrews said.

“It was all shaping up as a danger game.”

While Neal and Searl were the game-breakers, the Cats had good service from ruckman Shawn Watson and Andrews liked the effort of James Royes when he was switched on toe prolific ball winner Ryan Harwood.

Like Andrews, Magpies coach Brydan Morgan thought a win was on at the bigbreak, even though scores were level.

“We had them at half-time, I thought,” Morgan said.

“I think their midfield got on top of us and started to overrun us.

“There are some fundamental things we have to fix. Just things around the ball, abut I don’t want to go into detail.

“We’re showing no doubt we can compete with the better teams but if we want to make finals we need to fix some fundamentals.

“We’ve been letting opposition teams stay with us then all of a sudden when we lose momentum we find ourselves five or so goals down.”

The Magpies had stocky on-baller Kale Reed was their best with plenty of possessions capped by four goals.

Defender Luca Winton, Harwood and Drew Mitchell also gave the Magpies plenty of effort.

Demons surge into fourth spot

Surfers Paradise 1.2, 2.3, 7.4, 11.8 (74)
Morningside 1.4, 6.6, 6.8, 9.10 (64)

GOALS, Surfers Paradise: D. Green 5, B. Haberfield 3, J. Graham 1, D. Van De Werken 1, J. Curtis 1. Morningside: M. Serrurier 3, J. Rayner 2, A. Mitchell 1, C. Wearne 1, S. Godfrey 1, N. Beck 1.

BEST, Surfers Paradise: A. Jones, P. Rankin, D. Green, C. Manning, B. Haberfield. Morningside: J. Rayner, C. Wearne, P. Mollison, L. Niland-Rowe, W. Pendlebury.

SURFERS Paradise have jumped to fourth on the ladder after a come-from-behind win against Morningside at Sir Bruce Small Park on Saturday.

The Demons won by 11.8 (74) to 9.10 (64) after they trailed by 27 points at half-time.

Surfers now have five wins for the season and are on 20 points, a win clear of Western Magpies and Morningside, both on 16, but with an inferior percentage to those two sides.

It was the third season in a row that the Demons have beaten Morningside at roomy Sir Bruce Small Park and losing coach Steve Wildschut had no excuses.

“Full credit to them, they worked for the four quarters,” Wildschut said, acknowledging that when Surfers piled on the pressure in the third quarter the game changed.

That term of 5.2 to 0.2 was the killer punch for the Panthers and resurrected an early season problem of  non-four quarter effort.

“I don’t think it was a lack of intent, we just didn’t take our chances,” Wildschiut said.

“We tired at the back end and didn’t quite do enough for long enough.”

As Surfers lifted their intensity the Panthers faded, particularly in defence.

“They lifted their intensity and we just didn’t convert up forward – we didn’t have a clear winner up there.

“Surfers were well set up in defence and they stopped our key blokes very comfortably.”

Surfers coach Brad Moore was delighted with the win, especially after his side looked done and dusted after a poor second quarter.

“Morningside took us to task then,” Moore said, although whatever he worked on in the sheds at half-time came up trumps.

“We started using the ball better and our effort increased as well,” Moore said.

There was no doubt the return of crack defender Brody Haberfield was a key to victory.

And having big Dan Green fire up again with five goals coming on the back of his seven the previous round, was another factor.

Haberfield is usually a specialist full-back, one of the best in the business. But on Saturday he was sent forward for periods, just to get another bigger body to help out the smaller Demons.

Haberfield, older brother of midfield gun Cassidy, finished with three goals, including two priceless six-pointers in the tense final term, the second being the game clincher.

Yet is was young Alby Jones, a former Gold Coast Suns academy member, who was best for the Demons, playing strongly on a half-back flank.

“He was fantastic for us with his run and carry with speed,” said Moore.

Paddy Rankin, Green and Connor Manning were others who stood tall for the winners.

For Morningside, Wildschut said very much in-form Campbell Wearne was best. He also had wraps for small forward James Rayner and Peter Mollison in the ruck.

Coming up next weekend for Surfers is a trip to Sandgate while Morningside are up against Broadbeach.

Stubbs kicks seven in Dittmer Park return

Mt Gravatt                              4.5,  11.8,  15.9,  16.11  (107)

Wilston Grange                          2.3,  4.6,  5.7,  6.12  (48)

GOALS, Mt Gravatt: S. Stubbs 7, K. Baker 2, B. Telford 2, N. Morgan 1, R. Estall 1, J. Green 1, Nash 1, M. Hart 1. Wilston Grange: N. Dickson 2, L. Mason 1, R. Thomson 1, C. Luers 1, K. Ross 1.

BEST, Mt Gravatt: S. Stubbs, F. Neate, J. Huddy, C. Murphy, T. Carbone, K. Baker. Wilston Grange: H. Warren, J. McMahon, J. James, S. Gribble, R. Thomson, A. Hughes.

MT Gravatt are relishing the prospect of having two key forwards working in tandem for the remainder of the QAFL season.

The Vultures beat cross-Brisbane rivals Wilston Grange by 16.11 (107) to 6.12 (48) at Dittmer Park on Saturday in a match highlighted by the return of talented forward Sam Stubbs.

Cleared from Victorian country club Wodonga only on Friday afternoon, Stubbs did not miss a beat in his return to the Vultures, finishing with a haul of 7.4.

Now, with Jordan Bain set to return from injury, the Vultures will boast some awesome firepower up front.

“It was a really good win and it was god to have Stubbsy back,” coach Daniel Webster said.

On Bain’s date of his comeback from a pinched nerve in the lower back, Webster said there will not be any issues at selection time to see who holds down the major role up front.

“Hopefully Jordan will be able to train this week but there is not a selection problem having both of them there,” Webster said ahead of a big program coming up with successive away matches against Western Magpies and Broadbeach.

“They’re different types and give us flexibility.”

Wilston Grange continue to battle on bravely under an enormous injury load and Webster gave credit to the way the Gorillas fought on to the finish.

“With all their injuries they’re short at both ends of the ground, they lack that depth at either end of the ground,” he said.

“They still have a good midfield and they have two good ruckmen (Nathan Dennis and James McMahon).”

Best for the Vultures were Stubbs, Frazer Neate, Jarrod Huddy and Chris Murphy while for the Gorillas none worked harder than Hamish Warren, McMahon, Jack James and Sam Gribble.

Big Jack comes back with a bang

Palm Beach Currumbin: 7.5, 14.7, 18.14, 29.18 (192)
Sandgate: 3.0, 7.2, 8.4, 8.4 (52)

GOALS, Palm Beach Currumbin: J. Anthony 10, J. Holland 4, T. Cornish 3, J. Burge 2, R. Mayne 2, A. Dawson 2, Z. Harrison 1, S. Callahan 1, T. Ellard 1, Z. Callinan 1, T. Thynne 1, B. Askey 1. Sandgate: J. Nelis 3, J. Taglieri 2, A. Fabian 2, B. McElligott 1.

BEST, Palm Beach Currumbin: T. Thynne, T. Cornish, J. Anthony, D. Neuhaus, J. Harrison, Z. Harrison. Sandgate: J. Harding, Z. Buechner, J. Nelis, K. Dennis, J. Taglieri, B. Hogan

IT took just 15 seconds in his comeback game for former AFL player Jack Anthony to stamp his authority at Salk Oval for Palm Beach Currumbin.

After keeping everybody guessing when he would be over ankle issues, the former Collingwood and Fremantle big man kicked 10.6 as the Lions trounced undermanned Sandgate by 29.18 (192) to 8.4 (52).

Even in the absence of three of their “A graders” in Josh Woolley, Jesse derrick and Jarryd Douglas, the Lions were way too good as they chalked up their ninth win of an unbeaten season to date.

Anthony stood up to the plate as full-forward and simply dominated.

“He was good,” was an understated comment from coach Chad Owens.

“He’s so strong, he’s smart, he knows where to lead and he knows when to lead.”

In defence of the Sandgate backliners, Owens pointed to statistics that aided Anthony.

“I reckon we had 70 inside 50s, at least, and that makes it hard for someone to defend on a player like Jack,” he said.

Surprisingly Owens revealed he was concerned that the Salk Oval clash was shaping as a danger game given the talent drain.

But as things turned out he never had a second of worry after the Lions kicked five of the first six goals.

Clearly the Lions had sufficient depth to cover for their losses.

“I thought we had strength in every line and we thought our bench players gave us a lot of run,” Owens said.
After leading 7.5 to 3.0 at quarter-time, seven goals to four in the second term put the game out of reach and it was a final term of 9.4 to nil that completed the rout.

Tom Thynne won the nod as best for the Lions, ahead of, naturally, Anthony, on-baller Tyler Cornish and defender Dale Neuhaus, who was used on Aspley-listed James Nelis.

In the Sandgate camp their best were Braydan Harding, Zach Buechner, and Kian Dennis.

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