Hawks steal away win
The Augusta Margaret River Hawks have come from behind to beat the Eaton Boomers by three points 12.9 – 81 to 12.12 – 84 at Glen Huon Reserve on Sunday.
Hawks full forward Ricky Cary kicked his fifth goal from outside fifty with less than a minute to go to give the Hawks an unlikely away win.
The last-minute heroics from the Augusta Margaret River big man was set up by a stellar performance from Hawks wingman Matthew Jukes and returning vice-captain Lincoln Adams.
Boomers centre half-forward Brandon Jetta almost sealed victory for the home team with two last quarter goals thanks to strong marking and accurate kicking, also finishing with five goals.
But Augusta Margaret River found another gear with centre Seve Grantis and Jake Rodgers creating opportunities on the outer wing thanks to some strong tackling and hard running.
The game started with a finals like intensity as both sides tried to assert their authority but it was Eaton who kicked the first two goals with Dale Alcock South West Football League leading goal kicker Jarrod Humphries a constant threat for the Boomers.
But the Hawks hit back through strong marking forwards Mitch Payne and Ricky Cary going into the quarter time break only seven points down despite a slow start.
The Boomers continued their quick spread in the second term extending their lead to 10 points at half time due to well-organized midfield work from Ethan Maguire and Josh Bowe.
Augusta Margaret River’s inaccurate kicking was again an issue in the third quarter kicking three goals six to two goals two despite gaining midfield ascendancy through Hayward Medallist Mitch Lynn winning multiple clearances.
When Humphries kicked his second goal towards the end of the third quarter scores were locked at 58 a piece with the stage set for a thrilling final term.
Boomers wingman Jarrad Fazioli kicked the vital first goal of the last quarter but a smart squaring kick from Hawks forward Braden Smith saw Mitch Payne bring the margin back within a kick.
The game looked over after Jetta kicked his fifth from fifty out on a tight angle but the Hawks never gave up as Jukes kicked a miraculous set shot from the boundary in front of the home crowd to give the Hawks faithful some belief heading into the final minute.
The Boomers won the next centre clearance before the Hawks defence switched the ball to the wing when Hawks co-captain Ben Gerrans hit Cary on the fifty who looked to pass it off but steadied to kick the sealer.
Augusta Margaret River Coach Matt Jamieson said the nerve racking win was a testament to his players resolve despite leaving their run to the dying stages.
“I was worried we would run out of time like last week but we were able to get more run off half back and get it into Ricky’s hands which was great and it shows the boys want to make something from our season so now hopefully we can finish strong,” he said.
“We’ve had moments against the top teams and we’ve been really good on the inside but lapses in concentration have hurt us. Today we had more run for longer with Seve Grantis and (Matt) Jukesy working hard on the outside which allowed us to get our game going.”
Jamieson was proud of his player’s performance under pressure but said everyone was needed to play their role.
“We’ve got to make sure we’re mentally tough to hang in for four quarters.”
Eaton Boomers Coach Brent Maguire said his team was disappointed to lose another close game.
“We’ve lost four or five games now by less than a goal which proves we’re not far off the pace of the top teams,” he said.
“We’ve got to stay as positive as we can and build a bit of momentum by being brave.”
“We weren’t as clean as we were at the beginning of the year and we need to be more unselfish allowing the players in the best positions to take marks and use the ball well.”
Augutsa Margaret River now return to Gloucester Park on Saturday against Collie Bounce down is 2.30pm.
Goal Kickers: B. Jetta 5, J. Humphries 2, J. Fazioli, E. Maguire, M. Kings, G. Jetta, C. Gadecki
Best Players: M. Kings, B. Jetta, J. Bowe, E. Maguire, B. Gregory, B. Page
AUGUSTA MARGARET RIVER FOOTBALL CLUB
Goal Kickers: R. Cary 5, M. Payne 3, M. Jukes 2, H. Taylor, T. McDonald
Best Players: R. Cary, M. Payne, M. Lynn, L. Adams, S. Grantis, M. Jukes
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