Round 5 Reserves: Tigers Claw Past Demons

Monday, May 6, 2019 - 4:18 PM

By Dan Scamozzi

Claremont’s Reserves recorded their fourth consecutive win after scraping past Perth by five points in a strange and scrappy game at Lathlain Park in round five.

The 10.9 (69) to 9.10 (64) triumph was far from straightforward, with both teams guilty of turnovers and poor decision-making.

The win leaves Claremont as the only undefeated team in the competition, and included an even spread of 10 individual goal kickers.

Midfielder Jake Anderson (team-high 23 disposals, team-high seven tackles, game-high eight inside 50s, one goal) produced a brilliant performance to finish as Claremont’s best player and win the players’ player award, with fellow midfielder Ben Edwards (19 disposals, one goal) providing fine support.

Full-forward Eddie Simpson (one goal) gave the Tigers a great target and contest in the forward line and ruck, while small forward Isaac Barton (four tackles, one goal) starred with his work rate and pressure.

Defender Addison Dew made a promising return from injury in his first game of the season, while Josh Robbins and Jaymi Spinner-Mainstone made their debuts.

Jake Murphy (one goal) and Harrison McCracken both played their first games since the final round of 2017, with Murphy’s goal late in the second term providing one of the highlights of the game.

Murphy, McCracken, Dew, Robbins and Spinner-Mainstone came into the team for Tom Ledger (League), Anthony Treacy (League), Ben Rushforth (wedding), Jake Stergiou (back tightness) and Jack Monaghan, as captain Jesse Laurie elected to kick to the southern end of the ground in the opening term.

Chris (CJ) Oakley was rewarded for his courageous attack on the ball across half-forward with a free kick in the early stages of the opening term before briefly leaving the field, before hardworking centre half-forward Kaiden Gilbert kicked the first and only goal of the term after splitting the middle from a tight angle.

The Tigers’ seven-point quarter-time lead also resulted from some fine efforts from debutant Spinner-Mainstone and a great start from the busy Barton, with coach Brayden Duckworth lauding the latter and imploring the team to kick the ball long and deep.

However, it was all Perth for the majority of the second term, as the Demons slammed on four consecutive goals in 20 minutes to take a 17-point lead, before Oakley won a free kick for a great tackle inside 50m and Nick Winmar converted for the Tigers.

Murphy then finished with aplomb before being mobbed by his jubilant teammates, as the Tigers closed to within four points of the Demons at half-time.

A desperate tackle from wingman Josh Bennett inside 50m allowed midfielder Rylie Morgan to snap truly and reclaim the lead for the Tigers early in the second half, before the Demons kicked consecutive goals.

Edwards then finished with aplomb from the pocket on his non-preferred left foot, before some nifty work and a pass from the prominent Barton set Corey Mitchell up for the Tigers’ sixth goal.

A late goal from Simpson gave the Tigers an eight-point lead at the final change, with Duckworth lauding the team’s pressing inside 50m and imploring them to finish the game strongly.

The busy Anderson made the Demons pay for a turnover when he kicked the opening goal of the final term to extend the Tigers’ lead to 14 points, before the skilful Cooper Nitschke split the middle from the pocket.

Perth’s Marshall Jones replied for the hosts, before Barton produced a great chase and tackle inside 50m which led to a free kick and saw the hardworking Tiger kick the team’s 10th goal.

Late goals from the Demons mattered little, as the Tigers extended their unbeaten start to the season to remain on top of the ladder.

The Tigers will aim to record their fifth consecutive win when they host Peel Thunder at Claremont Oval in round six on Saturday week.

Meanwhile, Claremont’s Colts suffered a 32-point defeat against Perth, 10.4 (64) to 3.14 (32).

CLAREMONT 1.3 3.5 7.7 10.9 (69)

PERTH 0.2 4.3 6.5 9.10 (64)

GOALS

CLAREMONT: 1 J. Murphy, N. Winmar, R. Morgan, E. Simpson, K. Gilbert, C. Mitchell, J. Anderson, C. Nitschke, I. Barton, B. Edwards.

PERTH: 4 M. Thompson, 1 J. Payne, M. Jones, B. Johnson, C. Penny, B. Piggott.

BEST

CLAREMONT: J. Anderson, B. Edwards, E. Simpson, I. Barton, A. Dew.

PERTH: J. Payne, M. Henderson, C. Sing, M. Thompson, D. Baldwin-Wright, A. Davis.