West Perth have let the competition know they’re not going to drop out of the premiership hunt without a fight by defeating ladder leaders Subiaco by 10 points this afternoon.
A bit of luck got Falcons home against Peel last week but their win over the Lions at Medibank Stadium was one built on hard work and determination.
The match was tight all day, with the margin sitting at less than a goal for most of the final quarter until an intercept mark and goal from Kody Manning in the dying minutes sealed the 14.12 (96) to 13.8 (86) win for the Falcons, securing their position in the top four going into the State game bye.
Aaron Black was important through the midfield for the visitors, with Nick Rodda’s four goals vital to the result.
Subiaco were well served by midfield generals Jason Bristow and Kyal Horsley.
Matthew Boland gave Subiaco the perfect start with a strong one-on-one mark and goal in the opening minute, but West Perth answered with two of their own through Chris Keunen and man mountain Marcus Adams.
Bristow’s hard work around the stoppages was giving the Lions plenty of drive, and would eventually see them finish narrowly ahead in inside 50s for the quarter, but Andrew Strijk was foiling every second attack, mopping up across the Falcons’ half-back line and sending the ball back from where it came.
Their defensive rebound had the Falcons approaching the first break with a reasonably comfortable lead, but goals to Bill Fetherstonhaugh and Boland in the final few minutes brought the margin back to a single point.
Subiaco took ownership of the ball early in the second half, with ruckman Frank Stockley dominating the hit-outs and skipper Kyal Horsley reaping the benefits of that domination in the midfield.
Three goals in a row to George Hampson, Boland and Horsley looked to swing the match in the home side’s favour, but the visitors soon lifted to meet the challenge.
The Falcons flooded back into the game leading into the half-time break, with Andrew Krakouer’s first goal, handed to him via a free kick 10 metres out from goal, putting them back in the lead by three points.
The third quarter was a scrap and threatened to be the first goalless quarter of the season until Clancy Wheeler was booked for striking Rodda off the ball in the forward line, handing Rodda his fourth of the match.
Steven Potente and Adams followed up with another to majors in the dying stages of the term to give West Perth a 22-point lead.
Subiaco had one more charge left in them, and came back within five points after two final-term goals to Boland.
However a clever snap from Adams three minutes into time on gave the Falcons a handy cushion to see out the game.
|GOALS - WEST PERTH: Rodda 4; Adams 3; Potente 2; Browne, Keunen, Krakouer, Tsalikis, Manning. SUBIACO: Boland 5; Yarran, Halligan, Fetherstonhaugh 2; Hampson, Horsley.|
BEST - WEST PERTH: Black, Kerr, Rodda, Strijk, Hunt, Jones. SUBIACO: Horsley, Boland, Bristow, Twomey, Hampson, Stockley.