IT took three quarters for Peel Thunder to shake East Fremantle in a low-scoring contest at East Fremantle Oval, but the reigning premiers kicked the only five goals of the last term to win by 36 points.
The Sharks and Thunder managed just seven goals between them in a first three quarters of the game that had little to write home about.
The game was still up for grabs at the last change, though, with Peel only leading by seven points.
Peel kicked away with five goals to nil in the final quarter, to end up winning 9.12 (66) to 3.12 (30).
The win improves Peel to third position on the ladder with a 7-5 record.
Zac Dawson’s name might not scream key forward but he is doing a solid job creating a contest in attack for Peel and he kicked two goals from 15 possessions, seven marks and six inside-50 entries in Saturday’s win.
Matt Taberner had a solid afternoon too with 17 disposals, eight marks, 15 hit-outs and two goals.
Rory O’Brien turned out to be the leading goalkicker in the game, leading Peel to the win up against his former team.
He kicked three goals to go with 23 possessions.
Luke Strnadica was given the role as number 1 ruckman with Sean Darcy’s call-up to Fremantle and with Aaron Sandilands, Jonathon Griffin and Zac Clarke sidelined through injury.
Strnadica had a good performance up against both Matthew Watson and Cameron Symonds, finishing with 17 disposals, nine marks and 25 hit-outs.
Peel’s defence was solid, led by Ethan Hughes, who had 26 possessions and nine marks.
Taylin Duman also had 18 disposals and 10 marks, Ryan Nyhuis 19 touches and five marks, Garrick Ibbotson 24 possessions and six marks, and Sam Collins 15 touches and eight marks.
Peel will host Claremont in a potentially fascinating contest next Saturday.