WAFL round 22…
Due to a work commitment in the city I didn’t see any WAFL action this weekend. What I did see was a number of happy West Perth supporters at Fremantle Train Station and, a little later, Falcons coach Bill Monaghan and his entourage emerging from the Norfolk Hotel in Fremantle presumably after a couple of drinks to celebrate securing second spot on the ladder. It was all nicely old fashioned.
In the big one at Bassendean the home teram trailed Claremont at each break but got home with late goals from Joel Houghton and Ryan Davis to keep their hopes alive. Tallen Ames kept in-form Beau Maister quiet in an important performance for his team and the skilful Aaron Elari was again good for Swans. Ian Richardson kicked four goals in his best game of the year for the Tigers and Corey Yeo was good in the midfield. Claremont will play finals if they can beat West Perth at Joondalup next week.
Swan Districts 9.14 (68) Claremont 7.15 (57)
At Fremantle Oval West Perth fought off the plucky home team in what I hear was an entertaining encounter. Matthew Fowler kicked six goals for the Falcons, Nic Rodda was good in defence and Aaron Black seems to have returned to his Sandover Medal form. Ashton Hams and Kyle Hams were outstanding for the Bulldogs along with promising ruckman Josh Branchi.
West Perth 12.13 (85) South Fremantle 9.8 (62)
There was drama at Lathlain Park where Peel’s Zac Clarke required on-field assistance from team mate Paul Duffield and trainers from both teams after appearing to go into a fit after a head knock – he was carried from the ground on a stretcher but didn’t need to go to hospital. Perth led by 17 points at quarter time but the inaccurate Thunder gradually took control. Josh Ballard was outstanding for Peel and looks the type who could succeed in the AFL, Duffield’s experience was important and Gerald Ugle kicked three goals. Todd Stevenson kicked four goals for the Demons, Callum Walley got three and Aidan Tropiano had another good game.
Peel 14.16 (100) Perth 13.9 (87)
Top team Subiaco crushed East Fremantle who haven’t won a game since Steve Malaxos resigned as coach and Brad Dodd took over. Chris Phelan and Kyal Horsley were strong for the Lions and Matthew Boland kicked four goals. Ryan Lester-Smith had another good game for the Sharks.
Subiaco 16.17 (113) East Fremantle 5.6 (36)
The ladder: Subiaco 64; West Perth 52; Peel 48; East Perth 44; Swan Districts 40; Claremont 36; South Fremantle 32; East Fremantle 20; Perth 8.
There’s something riding on every game next Saturday. Claremont will go to fifth is they beat West Perth due to a superior percentage to Swan Districts – expect lots of black & while love for the Falcons. Peel will secure third place and the double chance by beating South Fremantle at home. East Perth will get to third if they beat Subiaco and Peel loses. And Brad Dodd is chasing his first win as a senior coach when East Fremantle host Perth is a game that will give one of the bottom two something to cheer about as they head to the garden.