Bulldogs hit back to win again over the Falcons

Tuesday, April 17, 2018 - 2:10 PM by Chris Pike
SOUTH Fremantle shook off a slow start to continue their strong form at HBF Arena and winning a seventh straight win against West Perth winning by eight points on Sunday.
 
Coming off the 58-point loss in Round 2 to Subiaco on the back of the opening round bye, falling 24 points by quarter-time on Sunday against West Perth wasn’t what South Fremantle was after.
 
But the Bulldogs responded with four goals in the first nine minutes of the second term and that set the stage for a tight contest the rest of the way.
 
The lead changed hands seven times alone during the third quarter but South Fremantle would kick the game's last three goals to take away the 15.6 (96) to 13.10 (88) victory.
 
South Fremantle has now won seven straight matches against West Perth as a result of the win.
 
The Bulldogs also continued to enjoy their trips to HBF Arena. They have now won 18 of their 27 appearances at the Joondalup venue including seven of the last eight as a result of the eight-point victory.
 
West Perth has now lost its past two matches since beating Claremont at home in the opening round.
 
South Fremantle had the bye in Round 1 before losing to Subiaco by 58 points at Fremantle Community Bank Oval in Round 2 so after making the past two preliminary finals, they are now on the board in 2018.
 
Sandover Medallist Haiden Schloithe proved the difference between the two teams with his ability to handle the ball cleanly, avoid being tackled and then his use of the ball was a class above than just about all the other 43 players on the field.
 
Schloithe finished with 28 possessions, five marks, five tackles, three inside-50 entries and four goals in a performance reminiscent of what he delivered in 2017 on the way to the Sandover Medal and club fairest and best award.
 
Ashton Hams spent most of his time forward for South Fremantle and kicked three goals to go with 18 touches and six marks while Ben Saunders also kicked three goals from seven kicks in a good battle with West Perth's Jordan Mills.
 
Blaine Johnson and Matthew Parker had their moments in attack for the Bulldogs too, booting two goals each.
 
Shane Hockey racked up 29 possessions to go with nine marks in the midfield for South Fremantle with Nick Suban gathering 22 disposals, Ryan Cook 22 and captain Dylan Main 18 to go with eight marks and four tackles.
 
Steven Edwards gave good drive for the Bulldogs off half-back with 18 possessions and eight marks with Blayne Wilson finishing with 18 disposals, five marks and five tackles.
 
South Fremantle was down a man early when Jarrod Parry injured an ankle while Tom Vandeleur struggled through the second half too.
 
It was a hot start by the Falcons started with a goal to Rudy Riddoch to get the ball rolling. By the time Tyler Keitel also kicked truly and Riddoch added a second using the outside of his right boot to checkside it home, the Falcons were up by those three goals.
 
South Fremantle got its only major of the first term thanks to Blaine Johnson, but West Perth responded through Keegan Knott and then Kody Manning to lead by 24 points at the first change.
 
Knott's effort was a spectacular snap from the boundary after having to jump the fence following taking the mark while Manning delivered a trademark effort bursting through defenders to kick truly on the run.
 
South Fremantle had some work to do by quarter-time but responded in the best possible way with goals to Ashton Hams, Haiden Schloithe, Hams again and then Matthew Parker in the opening minutes of the second term to claim a one-point lead.
 
The Bulldogs still managed to lead by a point heading into half-time before West Perth regained the lead to open the second half when Trent Manzone kicked truly inside 45 seconds. The Falcons' advantage was then 12 points when Luke Meadows goaled as well.
 
But South Fremantle answered with three goals in five minutes to Ben Saunders, Parker and Schloithe to be up by five points again at the 13-minute mark.
 
It was then goal for goal the rest of the third term as the lead continued to change hands. Conal Lynch, Jay van Berlo and Keitel all put West Perth back in front after South Fremantle goals to Johnson and Saunders.
 
But a goal on the siren for the Falcons to van Berlo put the home team eight points up. They regained a nine-point advantage with Keitel kicking his third at the nine-minute mark of the last quarter too.
 
But South Fremantle responded with goals to Saunders and Mason Shaw, before Schloithe sealed the win on the siren with the Sandover Medallist booting his fourth of the day.
 
The day started on Sunday at HBF Arena with a thrilling reserves contest with West Perth ending up winning 12.6 (78) to 10.16 (76).
 
South Fremantle got on top through the second and third quarters before appearing to have opened up a match-winning lead halfway through the final quarter.
 
But West Perth kept coming and with a five-goal last term capped off with Mitch Antonio goaling after the siren when he marked in the goal square, they stormed home for the two-point victory.

 
Brandon Donaldson kicked two goals for South Fremantle to go with 22 possessions and five marks.
 
Kyle Russell finished with 23 disposals as well for the Bulldogs, Jake Florenca 23, Zac Dent 21, Trent Reed 21, Josh Collard 20, Travis Abbott 19 and Daniel Cabassi 19.
 
The colts contest took place at HBF Arena on Saturday afternoon with West Perth winning another nail-biter, beating South Fremantle 8.9 (57) to 8.6 (54).
 
South Fremantle's colts kicked away in the second quarter with the only four goals to lead by 25 points at half-time.
 
But by West Perth had closed the gap and levelled scores before the Falcons kicked three goals to two in the last term to win by three points.
 
Lachlan Feeney kicked four goals for South Fremantle and Eric Botha two.
 
Kyle Hamersley racked up 36 possessions for the Bulldogs, James Russell 20, Tom Blechynden 20, Jack Musika 18, Manfred Kelly 18 and Michael Redman 17 to go with seven tackles.
 
South Fremantle will try to string consecutive wins together against East Fremantle at East Fremantle Oval in the now annual Anzac Day Derby. The Bulldogs have won on their last eight appearances at Shark Park.
 
SOUTH FREMANTLE 1.2 6.4 11.5 15.6 (96)
WEST PERTH 5.2 6.3 12.7 13.10 (88)
 
SOUTH FREMANTLE – Goals: Schloithe 4; Saunders, Hams 3; Johnson, Parker 2; Shaw.
Best: Schloithe, Hockey, Suban, Cook, Hams, Parker, Edwards, Wilson.
WEST PERTH – Goals: Keitel 3; van Berlo, Riddoch 2; Meadows, Manzone, Lynch, Knott, Moulton, Manning.
Best: Nelson, Black, Strijk, Hamilton, Keunen, Keitel, Shannon.