Swan Districts produced an amazing final-quarter fight-back to beat South Fremantle by five points at Fremantle Oval today.
The Bulldogs looked safe when key forward Ben Saunders kicked truly to give them a 32-point buffer moments before three-quarter time.
But goals to Justin Simpson and Kirk Ugle gave Swans a sniff and they stormed home late, adding another four majors in time-on to snatch a 9.2 (56) to 6.15 (51) win.
Ugle was superb, particularly late in the game, kicking two and finishing with 28 possessions.
Swans didn’t fire a shot in the first quarter as South Fremantle made all the early running.
The Bulldogs held Swans scoreless and restricted their opponents to just two forward 50m entries to take a 27-point lead at the first change.
A small group of livid Swans fans had to be ushered away from the umpires at quarter-time after voicing their displeasure with the whistleblowers’ performance, however, neutral observers would not have noticed the men in orange.
South Fremantle edged further ahead during a hard-fought second quarter but kept Swans in the contest by failing to take full advantage of their dominance.
Bulldogs midfielder Toby Bairstow kicked the first goal of a dour third term and Swans went 25 minutes without scoring before Ricky Cary kicked truly from 50m.
Saunders’ third major gave South Fremantle what looked to be a match-winning lead, but Swans found another gear to storm home in the final 15 minutes.
They hit the front for the first time when Ryan Davis took a mark and converted from 48m at the 28-minute mark.
South Fremantle pushed forward in the dying stages but couldn’t edge back in front.
Graham Jetta (24 possessions), Blaine Noekhorst (26) and Aaron Elari (25) were all prominent for Swans, while Ugle, Cary and Matt Rogers kicked two goals each.
Ashton Hams (27 possessions), Ryan Cook (23) and Saunders (three goals) were amongst the Bulldogs’ best.
Earlier, Swans won both the reserves (26 points) and colts (30 points) games.
|GOALS - SWAN DISTRICTS: Cary, Rogers, Ugle 2; Davis, Jukes, Simpson. SOUTH FREMANTLE: Saunders 3; Bairstow 2; Parry.|
BEST - SWAN DISTRICTS: Ugle, Jetta, Elari, Notte, Blakely, Rogers. SOUTH FREMANTLE: Hams, Cook, Saunders, Bairstow, Sellar, B Verrier.