By Beth Newman
MATCH OF THE ROUND
PALM BEACH v LABRADOR
It took an extra-special effort from captain, Ryan Davey, but the Labrador Tigers defeated Palm Beach, 10.19 (79) – 9.10 (64).
While they were again left to rue some inaccurate kicking, Labrador withstood a relentless challenge from the Lions all day to nab their third win.
Davey’s match earned high praise from both coaches, with Palm Beach mentor, Daryn Cresswell, labelling it the best performance he’d seen in his time in Queensland footy.
Tigers defender, Kurt Niklaus was impressive in the back half as was Will Jacobs, but it was their captain’s performance that made the difference.
Coach, Steve Daniel, emphasised Davey’s importance after the game.
“He’s just a super player and he leads by example,” Daniel said.
“When you name your captains at the start of the year, it’s games like today where you want them to lead by example and he did that.”
Daniel said he was particularly pleased with his side’s fight throughout the match.
“Our back line was super, their back line was super and our midfields are fairly even, but somehow we ended up winning by 15 points,” he said.
“It just came down to grit and determination, there’s not much between these two teams.”
On a sour note for the day, Tigers midfielder Jesse Ridd has a suspected broken hand.
Key defender, Matt Dillon, was again a standout for Palm Beach, keeping Peter Everitt quiet, and then swinging forward to kick two goals himself.
Lions coach, Daryn Cresswell, said pleased with his back line’s performance again.
“Our defence was sensational,” he said.
“The big sign is who kicked their goals and it was their midfielders not their forwards.”
“You don’t win footy when only seven players play their role, though.”
Palm Beach lost the services of Matthew Bilton early, after he suffered a corked calf.
UQ V SURFERS PARADISE
It wasn’t pretty, but it was four points for Surfers Paradise, as they beat UQ 13.10(88) -13.7 (85).
The Demons’ first win of the year didn’t come easily, starting on the back foot as the Red Lions kicked the first three goals of the match.
They trailed by two points by half time, but managed to do enough to get home in a scrappy contest.
Demons coach, Beau Zorko, said the win would inject some much-needed confidence into his side.
“As ugly as it came, as much as we had to scrap, it was great for the guys to get over the line,” he said.
“It’ll do our confidence a world of good.”
Zorko said there was still plenty to work on from the match, but it was a much-improved performance on the opening three rounds.
“By no means did we play well or execute consistently enough,” he said.
“To get over the line was the most important thing and it was great that we could do that.”
Demons captain, Ryan Dienjes, had his best game of the year for Surfers Paradise, while Dylan Armstrong and Daniel Van De Werken also impressive.
UQ had nine individual goal kickers in an even team performance and will look to improve ahead of another winnable match neaxt week, against Mt Gravatt.
MORNINGSIDE v SANDGATE
Sandgate took another step forward in the QAFL, despite their 13.11 (89) – 7.9 (51) loss to Morningside.
The Hawks stayed close to the Panthers, only two goals down at half-time, with their relentless work rate again coming to the fore.
Morningside ran away with a seven goal-to-three second half, but Hawks coach, Rob Dickfos, said the performance gave his side some crucial belief.
“They believe they belong in this competition now,” he said
“We might not be a pretty side but we’ll keep competing and coming.
“It was fantastic. We never gave up at any time.”
Young forward Adam Tipungwuti gave the Hawks some X-factor on debut, while NEAFL player Brendan Forbes had an outstanding game in the ruck.
Dickfos said the side, which has faced a swag of changes in recent weeks with state and NEAFL-aligned players coming in and out, gelled better than they have all year.
“I actually believe it was our best team-oriented game, where everyone worked hard and was appreciative of each other,” he said.
“They bonded together a lot better.”
Morningside forward, Kent Abey, rebounded from a goalless match last week to kick six, while Michael Wyld was good in his first game for over a year.
Panthers coach, David Lake, said his side showed its most complete performance of the season, in the second half.
“They were patient and decisive,” he said.
“We played a fluent brand of footy and made less skill errors than in the first half and in previous weeks,” he said.
MT GRAVATT V WESTERN MAGPIES
The Western Magpies notched a third win, 9.13 (67) – 6.13 (49) over Mt Gravatt on Saturday, but Western Magpies coach, Glenn Humphrey wasn’t sugar coating his thoughts after the match.
After heavy rainfall late in the week, Humphrey said conditions and strong pressure from both sides made the match a scrappy one.
“The game was riddled with mistakes and the wind made it very difficult – it was not conducive to good football,” he said.
“In the end, it was good to get a hard-fought win and we’re looking forward to moving on to next week.”
Ben Jaenke-Cain continued his impressive start to the season with another best on performance for the Magpies, while Drew Mitchell was strong in his return to the senior side and youngster Aaron Yusia-Marcic showed a cool head on the wing.
Both coaches had prepared for a close encounter at Dittmer Park, and Humphrey said it was what they expected.
“There was a lot of pressure around the contest, which contributed to the scrappiness,” he said.
“The fact that we didn’t play well but still managed to win and get the four points is important.”
The Magpies improved on their recent poor starts, against the Vultures, with a three-goal lead at the major break, before breaking even in the second.
Mt Gravatt’s Todd Carbone was strong for his side, while usual contributors Fraser Neate, Joe Murphy and Troy Rogers were among the best.
On a sour note for the Magpies, Matt Davis sprained an ankle early in the third quarter, with the extent of the injury yet to be confirmed.
WILSTON GRANGE v BROADBEACH
Broadbeach put themselves well and truly on the QAFL radar, with a 10.13 (73) – 7.7 (49) win over Wilston Grange.
The Cats trailed by seven points at the first change, but they took advantage of a strong breeze in the second, with a five-goal-to-one term, which proved the difference.
It was an arm wrestle in the second half, as the Gorillas tried to wrangle back the lead, but the Cats kept them at arm’s length.
Nathan Quick was the best for the visitors, while Josh Searl and Taylor Haley kicked two each, in the low-scoring match.
Wilston Grange coach, Matt Trewhella, said the match was disappointing for his team.
“They outplayed us and it was probably better for them than a four-goal win,” he said.
“Our effort in the first half was lacking and they moved the ball well.”
“After half time we improved, but we never really looked in it.”
Wilston Grange captain, Steve Brittain, kicked three for the Gorillas, while Dave Kettle was impressive in the midfield for the home team.
Jordan Roberts is likely to miss next week, after suffering a concussion against the Cats today.
Broadbeach’s performance means they’re unlikely to continue to fly under the radar, sitting in third behind Morningside and Labrador, with a 3-1 record.
Wilston Grange will welcome a handful of players back into their side for their tough round five clash with ladder-leading Morningside.