Swans upset Premiers
Swan Districts put in a solid four-quarter effort to beat last year’s WAFL premiers Peel Thunder by 14 points, 15.12 (102) to 13.10 (88), in an entertaining game at Bassendean Oval.
Swans were behind the eight ball before the first bounce with the late withdrawal of key midfielder and ball magnet Rhys Palmer from a knee injury.
Peel Thunder won the toss and kicked with the aid of a two to three-goal breeze, but Swan Districts started better, kicking four goals and restricting Peel Thunder to two. The key forward in the first quarter for Swans was Corey Gault.
Second Fremantle ruckman Sean Darcy went down with a lower leg injury and did not return to the field.
Swans led by a solitary goal at half-time. Jetta for Peel was dominant and Swans’ first-game player William Reidy kicked a goal on debut.
In a dominant last quarter, Swans kicked six goals to Peel’s three, with the lead changing four times. First-gamer William Reidy capped off a memorable first game for Swans by kicking three last quarter goals.
Better players for Swans included Riggio, Blight, Howard, Notte and Hacket. Honourable mention to Nathan Blakely playing his second game back from a knee reconstruction and Reidy.
For Peel, Danyle Pearce was outstanding with 40 possessions, Tucker with 34 touches and Howlett with 24 possessions and 12 tackles.
Swans have now won two from two and will play Subiaco next week at Leederville Oval, which shapes up as the game of the round.
Lions tame Bulldogs
Subiaco put their stamp on the 2018 WAFL competition with an emphatic 58-point win over fancied contenders South Fremantle, 18.12 (120) to 9.8 (62), at Fremantle Oval in their Round 2 clash.
Forward Ben Sokol continued his great start to the season with a five-goal haul as veterans Kyle Horsley, Josh Deluca and Kyle Halligan ran riot over the Bulldogs.
South Fremantle started well and were only two goals down at half-time but Subiaco took control with 11 goals to four in the second half.
Sandover Medallist Hayden Schloithe and ruckman Brock Higgins battled hard for the Bulldogs but they simply couldn’t match the intensity and skill of the Subiaco unit.
Following their crushing win over East Perth in Round 1, Subiaco sit on top of the ladder and take on surprise winners Swan Districts at Leederville on Saturday, while South face a disappointing West Perth at Joondalup on Sunday.
Sharks show some bite
East Fremantle opened their 2018 WAFL account with a hard-fought win over the Perth Demons at Shark Park last Saturday.
Leading from the outset after booting the first two goals of the game, the Sharks withstood a late fight back from the Demons to triumph 13.9 (87) to 11.14 (80) and move into the top five.
Led by a game-high 38 disposals from East Fremantle product Cam Eardley and 34 touches from veteran George Hampson, the home side was able to hold out a desperate Perth side to notch up their first win of the season. Ambrose Ryan led the goal scoring with three goals, with Sean Fletcher and Alex Howson bagging two apiece.
The Demons’ best on the day was Corey Yeo with 29 possessions and nine tackles to go with a goal. Michael Sinclair topped the possession count for the visitors with 30 touches of the footy while ex-AFL player Clint Jones was another valuable contributor with 29 disposals. Cody Ninyette managed three goals from 17 possessions.
The win would be a relief for coach Rob Wiley after his charges fell away late in the game last week against reigning premiers Peel Thunder. For Demons coach Earl Spalding it is back to the drawing board as he tries to conjure up his side’s first win.
East Fremantle’s Reserves were also able to get their opening win of the year with a nine-point victory over the Demons, 11.8 (74) to 10.5 (65).
Unfortunately it wasn’t a trifecta for the footy club, with the Colts suffering a 63-point drubbing, going down 15.9 (99) to 5.6 (36) in what is a shaky start to their title defence after last year’s premiership.
The Sharks face Claremont at Claremont Oval next Saturday, while Perth travel to Mandurah on Sunday to face Peel Thunder.
Royals reverse poor start
East Perth showed a remarkable turnaround after a terrible start to the season last week by defeating arch rivals West Perth at Leederville Oval.
The Royals really needed to show something after a train wreck round 1 with a 119-point loss to Subiaco, and bounced back with a resounding 58-point win 17.10 (112) to 7.12 (54).
Young Eagles recruit Jarrod Brander was strong again, kicking three goals, applying strong pressure and attacking contests with vigour. Fraser McInnes was also prominent, kicking two goals and performing strongly in the ruck.
Stanley Wright and Patrick McGinnity were strong at ground level, giving their outside runners multiple opportunities.
It was harder to find positives for West Perth. Trent Manzone was dangerous at times with two goals and Keegan Knott was opportunistic, kicking two and setting up several others.
Jordan Mills was unobtrusive in defence under immense pressure.
West Perth will be keen to respond next week when they visit Steel Blue Oval to take on Swan Districts, while East Perth have a bye.