Round 18 League: Tigers Overrun By Falcons

Monday, August 12, 2019 - 12:23 PM

By Dan Scamozzi 

It felt like it had been coming, but Claremont’s 44-point loss to West Perth at Claremont Oval in round 18 serves as a timely reminder that the Tigers need to be stronger for longer as they aim to finish the home-and-away season strongly and have an impact in the finals.

After narrowly prevailing against Perth and Peel Thunder in rounds 16 and 17 on the back of efficient but sporadic football, the Tigers, who led by 18 points in time-on in the third term but conceded 10 unanswered goals from that point onwards, were completely overrun by the slick and fitter Falcons who prevailed 16.8 (104) to 8.12 (60).

The loss leaves the Tigers with plenty of work to do and sees them drop to third position on the ladder behind second-placed South Fremantle, who they face in round 19.

Tenacious defender Jack Lewsey, who is given the weekly task of stopping the opposition’s best small forward, won best player and the players’ player award after restricting former Tiger Keegan Knott to just two marks and one goal, while fellow defenders Dec Hardisty and Bailey Rogers were also prominent.

Co-captain and midfielder Kane Mitchell (six tackles, one goal) recorded a game-high 36 disposals in another tireless performance, while fellow midfielders Dec Mountford and Rylie Morgan both laid seven tackles.

Ruckman Jeremy Goddard won a game-high 52 hit-outs, while forwards Ian Richardson and Jack Bradshaw both kicked two goals.

Meanwhile, defender Lewis Daisley, who had been in outstanding form for the Reserves, made his debut after replacing Dylan Smallwood (ill).

The Falcons were well served by midfielders Aaron Black and Shane Nelson, and the powerful Rudy Riddoch, while Liam Tedesco negated Jye Bolton.

Bradshaw, Tom Ledger, Oliver Eastland and Tyron Smallwood joined Daisley as inclusions to the team, as the Tigers kicked to the southern end of the ground in the opening term and drew first blood after Tom Lee converted a spearing pass from fellow forward Matt Palfrey.

Bradshaw then converted a kick inside 50m from Mountford before Alec Waterman snapped the Tigers’ third goal to give them a 19-point lead, before the Falcons replied with the next three goals to level the scores at quarter-time.

With the Tigers +9 in contested disposals, coach Darren Harris praised the team’s connection and communication but implored them to tidy up their handballs and turnovers.

An intercept mark from Rogers at half-forward resulted in co-captain Richardson kicking the Tigers’ fourth goal in the second term before the Falcons replied with consecutive majors.

A second goal from Bradshaw gave the Tigers a three-point lead at half-time before Riddoch reclaimed it for the Falcons early in the second half, before Richardson kicked his second major after being set up by Palfrey.

Palfrey then converted a kick to full-forward from Bolton before Mitchell finished off some strong work and a handball from Lee to give the Tigers an 18-point lead, before the Falcons slammed on five unanswered goals in time-on to take a 13-point lead at the final change.

Harris urged the Tigers to “play to win”, however, the Falcons ran all over the hosts in the final term as they kicked another five unanswered goals to record their ninth win of the season.

The Tigers will aim to rebound when they face the Bulldogs at Fremantle Community Bank Oval in round 19.

CLAREMONT 3.2 5.6 8.10 8.12 (60)

WEST PERTH 3.2 5.3 11.5 16.8 (104)

GOALS

CLAREMONT: 2 I. Richardson, J. Bradshaw, 1 K. Mitchell, T. Lee, A. Waterman, M. Palfrey.

WEST PERTH: 4 A. Strijk, 3 C. Chalmers, 1 A. Black, M. Lourey, L. Tedesco, S. Nelson, K. Knott, R. Riddoch, T. Keitel, B. Delaporte, C. West.

BEST

CLAREMONT: J. Lewsey, D. Hardisty, B. Rogers, K. Mitchell.

WEST PERTH: R. Riddoch, L. Tedesco, A. Lynch, T. Moulton, T. Keitel.