Falcons Tough It Out

Monday, May 27, 2019 - 9:41 AM by Darrell Kent


West Perth looked in trouble on a number of occasions on Saturday but they managed to dig deep and record a well-earned five point victory against Peel. A brilliant third quarter appeared to set up a Falcon victory but a fight back by Peel in the final term saw the game go down to the last minute of the game. It was a terrific victory.

Peel hit the scoreboard early thanks to a clever goal from Blair Bell deep in the pocket. It was the dangerous forwards first of three for the game. The only West Perth goal for the quarter came at the five minute mark. It was a very clever goal by Mike Lourey who was contesting a throw up in the goal square. He managed to throw his foot at the ball on the way down and put it through. Peel had the best of the rest of the quarter but the Falcon defence held tough and restricted the visitors to just two more majors. As a result they led by ten at the first change; 3.0 (18) to 1.2 (8).

Peel continued to have the better of the contest in the second term and scored the first two in quick time to take the lead out to twenty two. One of these went to Harley Bennell who had an impressive return to football. In this sort of form it won’t take him long to break back into the Dockers team. A Mitch Peirce pass hit Andrew Strijk on the chest forty out. He kicked the first of his three. There was little score board action until the twenty two minute mark when Bennell kicked his second after a free. The lead was now twenty three. Two minutes later a clever snap, under a lot of pressure, by Kris Shannon narrowed the margin but Peel kicked one more towards the end of the quarter. As a result, they led by a very hand twenty one points at the half time break. The scores were 7.1 (43) to 3.4 (22). The job was well and truly in front of the Falcons.

The third quarter by West Perth was as good as you could hope to see. They dominated having the first six scoring shots and as a result had turned the deficit into a ten point lead midway through the term. “Strijky” got the ball rolling from the square after receiving a handball and then Keegan Knott used his pace to advantage to break free and finish accurately. At the ten minute mark Tyler Keitel took advantage of a fifty metre penalty to finish from forty and he then followed up with a “speccy” at the top of the square. It was a strong mark and he duly kicked his second. Keegan Knott then had the advantage of another fifty metres and his second from the square saw the lead out to ten in what was an inspiring seventeen minutes of football. Peel big man, Lloyd Meek, kicked his second to narrow the margin but that was to be their only score for the quarter. Trent Manzone finished the term with two majors to give West Perth a sixteen point margin at the final change. It was a wonderful quarter of team football. The scores were 10.5 (65) to 8.1 (49).

The roles were reversed in the last term and Peel dominated the first twenty minutes. They had nine unanswered scoring shots and as a result led by eight going into time on. They were all over West Perth before the late revival started with a behind to Andrew Strijk. His long kick from fifty, after marking, was touched on the line. Shortly after he scored his third after marking forty out. The Falcons now trailed by just one and it looked as though the game would finish this way as the clock ticked towards the thirty minute mark. Mitch Peirce, who was best on ground, then marked seventy out but he was dealt with by his Peel opponent and he received fifty metres. This took him to within twenty. He went back and slotted it to give West Perth a five point lead. The ball went back to the centre and it was bounced. There was a scrimmage and as the ball was thrown up the siren went. It was certainly a close call but the Falcons prevailed and recorded an important five point victory; 12.6 (78) to 11.7 (73). The win keeps the season alive.

West Perth fans should be really proud of the efforts of their side. They were entitled to be beaten on a number of occasions but they showed real grit to snatch the victory. It is some recompense for the narrow three point defeat that the team suffered against Peel in the first game of the year. Best players for West Perth were Tyler Keitel, Aaron Black, Ben Delaporte, Blake Wilhelm and best was Mitch Peirce. Ben Delaporte battled hard against much bigger opponents and Blake Wilhelm has come back into top form. His dash out of defence was a pleasure to watch.

The Reserves continued their stellar form with a commanding fifty-eight point win.  There was a lot to like about the Reserves 15.15 (105) to 6.11 (47) victory. Peel kicked five goals early in the first term but only one more for the game. The Reserves are playing very good football and are in second spot on the ladder. Best players included Mitch Antonio, Brayden Antonio, Jack Burke and Tom Boyes. There are several players pushing for League selection.

The Colts were defeated by a narrow two-points. The scores were 9.4 (58) to 8.12 (60). While the team didn’t get the win, it was a great game of football and the side fought it out right to the final siren. They are still in the top five. Best players were Heath Chapman, Ewan Brazier, Liam Martin, Tyron Hindmarsh and Callum Johnson.

A big match against the old enemy on WA Day at Leederville Oval on Monday awaits in Round 8. Ensure you get along to cheer on the Falcons in what should be a ripper contest.