Gazette sports preview: Cockburn City ready for tough game, South Freo looks to consolidate top spot plus more


South Fremantle’s Ben Saunders co-leads the WAFL goalkicking with 31. Picture: Declan Byrne
South Fremantle’s Ben Saunders co-leads the WAFL goalkicking with 31. Picture: Declan Byrne

WAFL Round 15

SOUTH Fremantle can consolidate top spot with a big win over East Perth at Fremantle Oval tomorrow.

The hosts should enter in confident mood, having beaten the Royals by 40 points at the same venue earlier this year.

The Bulldogs hold first position from the chasing Subiaco by less than one percentage point.

The Lions battle the league’s bottom team Swan Districts at Leederville Oval, so a big Bulldogs win will be needed to remain top dog.

Ben Saunders and Mason Shaw will be keen for another big weekend.

The pair is in great form, with Saunders co-leading the comp for goals with 31 after booting six last week.

Shaw is in fourth with 26.

East Fremantle captain Jamie McNamara says the club is hungry to stop its recent slump with victory over West Perth at Joondalup Arena tomorrow.

The Sharks have lost their last two matches to fall away from the competition’s best sides.

“It’s going to be a good challenge for us,” he told the Sharks’ website.

“The boys are even more hungry to go out and turn things around.

“We had a good chat amongst the group and we got it out of our system a little bit.

“That’s what good about these guys; we’re not shying away from what went wrong and glossing over things.”

SBL Round 16

Two finals contenders will battle it out when Cockburn hosts Rockingham Flames tomorrow night.

The Cougars are on a seven game winning streak and hold a near perfect record at Wally Hagan Stadium, where the match will take place.

The sixth-placed Flames have won their last two and will not be daunted by the tough away trip.

Rockingham has five away wins this season, to go with three losses.

Lakeside can snap a 12-game losing streak when it takes on fellow strugglers Goldfields Giants at Kambalda Recreation Centre tomorrow.

The Giants are on a bad run themselves, losing their last 10.

In the women’s division, the Cougars could find themselves inside the top eight with victory against Rockingham.

The Cougars have lost their last two and remain outside finals contention on percentage.

Lakeside will have no chance to consolidate sixth because it has the bye.

Hockey

Fremantle Hockey Club’s league men team will be looking to snap a three game losing streak when it takes on Hale this weekend.

Having already lost 4-1 to the fifth placed Hale earlier this year, the Magpies need to turn their fortunes around to stay in the finals race.

They have a double header this week, with their postponed round two match against Westside Wolves rescheduled for Thursday.

For the promotion 1 women, with just one point separating the Fremantle team on top of the ladder from second placed Southern River, every game has more importance than the last in the Magpie’s quest to keep top spot.

On a five game winning streak, Fremantle will be looking to extend that to six when it takes on fifth placed Whitford.

The two teams have gone head-to-head already this season for a 1-1 draw, with this fixture expected to be just as tough.

The game will be held at Perth Hockey Stadium tomorrow from 3.30pm.

The league men take on Hale straight after from 5pm.

The men also play Westside on July 7 from 8pm at Lemnos Field in Shenton.

Soccer

Fresh from its upset 1-1 draw against ladder leaders Bayswater City last week, Cockburn City will be taking a bit of form and a lot of confidence into its round 15 match against Stirling Lions this weekend.

Their opposition is not easier from last week, with Stirling sitting comfortably in third while Cockburn struggle in ninth.

Cockburn will be hoping for a better showing then the last time it met the Lions, who comprehensively won 7-2.

The locals will need big games from leading goal scorers Angel Andres and Harry O’Brien to beat the Stirling defence, who have only conceded 18 goals for the season, the second lowest of any team in the NPL WA competition.

Cockburn takes on Stirling at Macedonia Park from 3pm tomorrow.