News DEMONS GET HOME IN A THRILLER
DEMONS GET HOME IN A THRILLER
Posted on 13/08/2012
By Mark Thornber
Round 21, Perth v East Perth
Medibank Stadium, Saturday 11 August 2012
Perth 5.4 8.7 10.10 19.12 126
East Perth 5.1 12.2 14.6 17.7 109
Perth recorded one of their finest come from behind victories in recent years as they stormed home to kick 9 goals in a scintillating display of football to beat East Perth by 17 points in a thriller at Medibank Stadium on Saturday.
The Demons kicked first to the City end of the ground and scored a goal within the first 30 seconds as Simon Donovan ran into an open goal. The match was being played at a very fast tempo in the early stages.
Leon Davis followed down his opponent to snap Perth’s second major as the Demons looked full of run. Fremantle Docker Nick Lower was dominating the centre clearances along with Captain Ross Young with ruckman Rob De Jongh who was rucking well.
The Royals kicked a couple of quick goals as their height was a causing a concern in the forward line through Ruckman Paul Johnson and Zac Clarke. Donovan kicked the next 2 goals for Perth as they again opened up a mini break.
The Royals responded though and after a high scoring term resulting in 10 goals Perth held a narrow lead of 3 points after kicking 5 goals 4 to 5 goals 1 at quarter time.
The second term slowly saw the Royals take advantage in the ruck as Perth were forced to pinch hit with Aaron Zucconi when De Jongh went off the ground. Suddenly now winning the clearances met the Royals were providing their forwards with plenty of scoring options as they started to put some real scoreboard pressure on the Demons.
Now leading by 4 goals and with the match fast becoming out of the reach of Perth Young kicked a fantastic running goal and this was soon followed by another from Bevan who marked strongly in the goal square.
East Perth responded just before half time to take a lead of 19 points into the main break. The third quarter tightened up as both sides’ found scoring difficult in the first 10 minutes of the term. After an accurate first half in front of goal the home side started to miss their opportunities still allowing Perth to stay in the match.
Davis now playing permanently up forward kicked Perth’s 9th goal. Every time though the Demons tried to close the margin the home side steadied with a goal of their own. Young playing a great game booted a late major on the run just before three quarter time as the home side led by 21 points.
The last quarter saw Perth start well with both Tunbridge and Lower converting from set shots. With the margin now only 12 points a real cause of an upset looked likely. However the Royals responded with the next 2 goals of the match with the second coming from a 50 metre penalty.
Now in front by 24 points at the 15 minute mark even the most loyal of Perth supporters would have thought an East Perth victory was likely. Perth hit a real purple patch especially through Alistair Smith who was on fire in the middle of the ground and continually pumped the ball deep in Perth’s forward line with his raking left foot.
Leeson calmly slotted Perth’s 13th goal and this was soon followed by another to Brennan Stack after a blistering pass from Davis. Fraser McInnes, who was held, booted another goal for Perth as the margin now was reduced to only 7 points.
After another long Smith clearance from the centre this time from Lower wingman Michael Florio ran onto a loose ball and cleverly snapped a goal to reduce the Royals lead to 1 point.
The match was now into time on and with the small crowd on the edge of their seats the game was suddenly up for grabs with the Demons storming home with the momentum of the match. Perth’s backline stood firm as they again cleared the ball out. The time clock was now at the 24 minute mark and Davis swooped on the ball and bounced through a fantastic goal from 50 metres to put Perth in front by 5 points.
Perth had all the run with Smith, Lower and Young all dominating the centre clearances and kicking long into attack. Stack picked up the ball on the half forward flank and spotted Davis unmanned in the goal square who again snapped to bring up his 4th goal and now a lead of 11 points.
In an amazing turn around Perth were simply unstoppable and certainly playing their best football of the year as they started to slow the match down with surely only minutes remaining. Donovan iced the match when he kicked his 4th major at the 30 minute mark and the siren soon sounded to record an amazing win by the club by 17 points much to the delight of the Perth faithful.
Perth had kicked 9 goals to 2 in the last term including the last 7 goals in the space of 15 minutes to snatch an absolute thriller. The win was certainly a great team effort and the class of the 3 left footers in Lower (34 Possessions), Smith (27) and Young (26) were simply match winning efforts especially in the exciting and tense last quarter.
Davis and Donovan provided the spark up forward with 4 goals each and Paul Bevan was a consistent player throughout the match. The win made it 3 out 3 for the club as the Colts and Reserves also won confirming they will be playing finals this year.
Next week Perth plays Claremont at Brownes Stadium.
Goals: Davis, Donovan 4, Tunbridge, Young, Leeson 2, Bevan, McInnes,
Best: Lower, Young, Alistair Smith, Bevan, Tunbridge, Davis.
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