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FALCONS MAKE IT FOUR STRAIGHT

Monday, April 15, 2013 - 11:17 AM
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West Perth maintained their impressive start to the season with a dominant fifty eight point victory over Peel at the Arena on Saturday.

It was an even first half but the Falcons fitness and skill level was again to the fore as they ran away with the game in the second half.

It was a tight contest early and it wasn’t until the ten minute mark that the first goal was scored. This went to the Falcons when Marc Crisp received a handball after a bounce down and finished from twenty. “Chippa” has become a regular goal kicker in recent games. The second came shortly after when exciting prospect Matt Johnson bounced and carried the ball before he passed to Matt Fowler thirty out. He proceeded to kick the first of his three for the day. West Perth led by eleven at this stage and was doing best in a scrappy encounter. The next goal didn’t come for nearly ten minutes and it went to impressive recruit Rohan Kerr who read the ball off hands to kick the first of his six for the game. At the twenty five minute mark Nick Rodda kicked accurately from the boundary to give the Falcons the first four goals of the game and a twenty three point lead. Peel had the best of the last five minutes to kick their only two goals of the term and they were back in the game to trail by only eleven at the first change. Scores were 4.3 (27) to 2.4 (16).

Peel continued their good run into the second quarter and kicked the first two to lead by one after eight minutes. One of these was a second to impressive debutant Laine Wilkins. The rest of the quarter was a dour contest but West Perth kicked consecutive behinds to regain the lead before Nick Rodda once again showed his goal scoring ability by kicking his second after some good work by Mark Hutchings and Anthony Tsalikis. The seven point lead was reduced after a goal to Peel’s Kristin Thornton. The Falcons kicked the last two of the term though to have the momentum going into the main break. Nick Rodda kicked his third and Anthony Tsalikis marked fifty out right on the siren. His straight kick was a team lifting goal and gave the Falcons a thirteen point lead; 7.6 (48) to 5.5 (13).

The second half was all the Falcons as they took control of the ball and clearances. Their defensive pressure and running in waves saw them exert tremendous pressure on Peel and the score board reflected this dominance. The game was over after ten minutes during which time West Perth kicked four goals. Rohan Kerr started the run with his second after marking forty out, Matt Guadagnin finished on the run from thirty on a sharp angle, Josh Mellington roved the ball off the pack to kick his first and the run was completed when a series of precise passes enabled Jay Van Berlo to kick accurately from forty. Midway through the term Kristin Thornton kicked his second and Peel’s sixth. Kody Manning was responsible for the Falcon’s final goal for the term when he laid a great tackle which saw the ball spill to Matt Fowler who kicked his second. The lead was thirty seven at three quarter time; 12.9 (81) to 6.8 (44).

The final term was more of the same with the lead out to sixty four by the twenty three minute mark. Rohan Kerr led the way with three classy finishes and Marc Crisp kicked his second. Towards the end of the term Peel kicked two but the last major of the game went to Matt Fowler who kicked his third from forty. He is a beautiful kick for goal. Final scores were 17.13 (115) to 8.9 (57).

Once again there was a lot to like about the West Perth victory. The pressure on the ball and running in waves have been consistent features of the Falcon victories this year. This will be put to the test against competition trendsetters, Claremont, next week. There were a number of best players and they included Andrew Strijk who sets up a lot of play from half back, Chris Keunen whose ruck work continues to give midfielders opportunities, Kody Manning for his hard attack on the football, Jordan Jones who has become a key plank of the back half, Matt Guadagnin for his work around the stoppages and best was Rohan Kerr for his six majors.

Dan Hunt and Michael Pettigrew continued their terrific form down back and are both playing very good football. Congratulations to the Reserves who played a brand of football reflecting the league side to run out easy victors. Best players were Frank Stockley, Trent Manzone, Jordan Mills and best was Drew Rohde who kicked seven. The Colts are also to be commended for their hard fought three point victory. A trip to Claremont next week to play the unbeaten Tigers. Be there to see what should be an exciting match.

BY DARRELL KENT

PHOTOS BY BELINDA TAYLOR PHOTOGRAPHY