Peel Thunder lose game after late goal by South Fremantle

Peel Thunder’s Jason Carter gives chase to South Fremantle’s Zac De San Miguel in their clash on
the weekend. Pictures: Jon Hewson
Peel Thunder’s Jason Carter gives chase to South Fremantle’s Zac De San Miguel in their clash on the weekend. Pictures: Jon Hewson

A LATE goal from former Fremantle midfielder Nick Suban helped South Fremantle steal a last-minute three-point win against Peel Thunder at David Grays Arena on Saturday.

Overcoming a 20-point deficit in the third term, the Thunder would ultimately fall short, finishing 11.5.(71) to the Bulldogs 10.14.(74).

Jackson Merrett and Jason Carter put pressure on Daniel Cabassi.

Despite fledgling Fremantle player Bailey Banfield kicking the opening goal, the Bulldogs’ physical grunt and intensity resulted in them taking an 11-point lead at quarter-time.

Stern words from coach Cameron Shepherd at the break spurred Peel to lift its intensity, with quick ball movement through the midfield allowing the Thunder to feed the ball to the forward line, matching South Fremantle’s goals for the quarter.

Jason Carter applies the tackle to Steven Verrier.

Peel defender Jordan Boullineau said the midfield stepped up in the second half, led by the experience of teammates Jackson Merrett and Harley Bennell.

“(Merrett’s) a really good general, he points us in the right direction and he’s a good voice out there while playing,” he said.

“He always provides that run and carry.”

Peel’s tenacity showed, with back-to-back goals from Fremantle forward Cameron McCarthy securing them the lead.

Off the back of Shepherd’s encouragement to stay with the workload and push hard at three-quarter time, the maintained momentum through the backline and midfield saw McCarthy open the final quarter with his third goal.

A tight defence line was crucial for the Thunder to hold its lead.

Hugh Dixon and Zachery Strom battle for control of the ball.

Boullineau said defender Traye Bennell was invaluable to the backline.

“He helps out the young boys like myself and provides that really good spoiling defence when we need it,” he said.

Having taken a pummelling in the midfield all day, Banfield kicked truly to increase the Thunder’s lead by 10 points.

Peel’s Lloyd Meek goes for the big mark from behind.

Desperate, South Fremantle inched their way back point by point, before Suban kicked the winning goal.

With four points in the game and an unsuccessful attempt at goal from outside 50, the Thunder lost its last chance to seize victory.

A spectacular smother from South Fremantle’s Jacob Dragovich shut down a forceful kick from Fremantle midfielder Lachlan Schultz on the siren.

Boullineau said the Thunder would come out stronger when they face Perth, who are fourth on the ladder, on Saturday at Lathlain Park.

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