Kennedy kicks 11 in Eagles rout but ban fear for LeCras
Josh Kennedy celebrates his perfect 10. He added one more goal for good measure. Pic: Getty Images

West Coast forward Mark LeCras is in danger of missing weeks after being reported for a high bump in the Eagles’ dominant 111-point win over Greater Western Sydney at Patersons Stadium this afternoon.

The report was the Eagles’ one blemish in a game which saw spearhead Josh Kennedy kick a career-high 11 goals as the side played themselves back into form against an undermanned Giants.

The 30.8 (188) to 12.5 (77) win was the first time the Eagles had kicked 30 goals in a game in the club’s history.

LeCras was less than 10 minutes in to his first game back from a broken arm when he collected Giants midfielder Will Hoskin-Elliot late and high in a crude challenge.

The umpires were quick to put him in the books after a round which has seen contact more heavily scrutinised than ever before, and the Eagles will face an anxious wait to hear what penalty the match review panel dishes out tomorrow.

Kennedy’s bag of eleven goals straight was the undisputed highlight of an afternoon which saw the home team register 12 individual goal-kickers and correct their recent inaccuracy in front of goals.

The win breaks a four-game losing streak for the Eagles and sees them go into next week’s bye sitting seventh on the ladder.

Men of the moment ... Mark LeCras and Josh Kennedy. Pic: Sharon Smith/WA News

The Giants were already coming into the game without their best forward in Jeremy Cameron, defender Curtly Hampton and midfielder Adam Treloar, but the circumstances became much more difficult when Nick Haynes, one of their only tall defenders to make the trip west, was subbed out with an ankle injury after five minutes.

The Eagles made the most of their opposition’s damaged defence as Kennedy kicked the first goal of the game from a free kick and used the confidence it brought to finish the quarter with three majors, two from long range and one using his famous stuttering approach.

Matt Priddis and Jack Darling joined in as well, helping the Eagles take a 24-point advantage into the first break.

The Eagles were bullying the Giants on the scoreboard and in the inside-50 count, but around the contest the young side were being far from outplayed.

Toby Greene, who had kept Luke Shuey relatively quiet, signalled his side’s intent with a goal from the 50 metre line less than one minute into the second term.

No stopping Josh Kennedy. Pic: Sharon Smith/WA News

The Eagle answered back through LeCras and two from Kennedy, who registered his fifth goal of the game with a mongrel floater which somehow travelled over the line untouched.

The visitors weren’t prepared to roll over and launched an entertaining comeback, kicking three of the final four goals of the half.

However the difference in inside-50s was always going to hurt the visitors and West Coast’s 10-goal third quarter was enough to break the young Giants’ backs.

SCOREBOARD

WEST COAST 5.211.5 21.530.8188
GWS1.26.29.312.577
GOALS - WEST COAST: Kennedy 11; LeCras 4; Darling 3; Cox, Cripps, Hutchings 2; Priddis, Wellingham, Shuey, Naitanui, Gaff, Selwood.

GWS: Hoskin-Elliot, Smith 2; Giles, Greene, Phillips, Tomlinson, Palmer, Lamb, Hunt, Kelly.
BEST - WEST COAST: Kennedy, Priddis, Rosa, LeCras, Selwood, Cox.
GWS: Ward, Greene, Tomlinson, Smith, Kelly.
INJURIES – GWS: Haynes (ankle)
REPORTS: LeCras (WC) for rough conduct against Hoskin-Elliot (GWS) in the first quarter.
UMPIRES: D Margetts, J Mollison, R O’Gorman
CROWD: 29, 391 at Patersons Stadium.

The West Australian

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