WEST Perth failed its first test in its toughest four-week stretch of the season with a 35-point loss to league leaders South Fremantle on Saturday.
Following the defeat to the Bulldogs, the third-placed Falcons face East Fremantle (fourth) this weekend before games against Peel (fifth) and East Perth (sixth) in a month of fixtures that will give a strong indication of the side’s premiership credentials.
West Perth was equal at half time but finished with a 16.6 (102) to 9.13 (67) loss to the Bulldogs at Arena Joondalup.
A six-goal third quarter from the visitors was the decisive factor, with the hosts scoring just one point for the term.
Former Falcons co-captain Luke Tedesco earned life membership, playing his 150th game for the club after being a late inclusion for Laine Rasmussen.
The absence of injured key defender Nick Rodda proved to be a costly one for West Perth.
With the Falcons down one of their best big men in defence, South Fremantle spearhead Ben Saunders dominated to boot six goals.
Andrew Strijk kicked four majors for the Falcons, while midfielder Shane Nelson had 40 disposals.
The Falcons face the Sharks at Arena Joondalup on Saturday.
The players will wear a replica of the 1941 club guernsey in celebration of the 75th anniversary of West Perth’s premiership over East Fremantle that year.