By Chris ‘Yeendy’ Yeend
Labrador has fired a massive warning shot to reigning premiers Morningside when it accounted for Palm Beach Currumbin by 22-points in the Reserves Preliminary Final at Labrador on Saturday.
After bolting away to a 27-point lead at quarter-time, the Tigers took every major hit the PBC dished their way to advance to the Grand Final in search of premiership glory after bowing out in the semi-finals last season.
The win for the Tigers was a great reward for their hard effort after not dropping a game during the home and away season and losing to Morningside by a point in the semi-finals. They played like a team possessed and desperate to push into the decider in front of a massive home crowd.
Max Johnston was in remarkable touch as an impact player and turned the game off his own boot with four outstanding goals.
Rhys Coombe backed up his incredible effort against the Panthers the previous week with a commanding display at centre-half-forward, kicking three goals in his best performance for the 2021 season.
As expected, Matt Freeman was at his outstanding best in the midfield and he caused headaches for the PBC engine room who could not put a stop to his hard ball gets and clearances from stoppages. He was a clear stand-out and could not have his influence stopped.
Nicholas Anderson was lively at half-forward and proved very difficult to shut down with his disposals showcasing tremendous efficiency.
PBC closed the gap to 20-points at half-time before being unable to kick a goal in the third term and leaving a margin of 33-points to chase down in the final term with the wind.
Unfortunately for PBC, it wasn’t to be the come-back it had desired and the tremendous work ethic from the Tigers across all four quarters proved too much in the 22-point win.
Labrador 5.4, 8.6, 10.10, 11.14 (70) defeated Palm Beach Currumbin 1.1, 5.4, 5.7, 8.10 (58)
Goals: (Labrador) M. Johnston 4, R. Coombe 3, S. Close 2, C. Baird, N. Stevens 1.
Best: (Labrador) M. Freeman, N. Anderson, R. Coombe, M. Johnston, R. Johnson, C. Baird.
Picture by Cheers Photography