Football: Hedland derby to be a ripper

ALEX MASSEYNorth West Telegraph

South Hedland Swans moved into third place on the North Pilbara Football League ladder at the weekend, recording a 43-point victory over Dampier.

With Karratha Kats going down to Rovers, Swans seized the opportunity to grab third place and set up a mouth-watering Hedland derby this Friday night.

Storming out of the gate, Swans essentially had the game won at quarter time after booting six opening quarter goals to one to hold a 31-point advantage at the first break.

Continuing on their merry way in the second, South Hedland piled on the misery for Sharks as Troy Ugle’s side held a commanding eight-goal lead at the half.

With sharpshooter Kurtis Geary, five goals, firing on all cylinders, Swans withheld a mini Sharks revival in the third term to post an impressive 18.14 (122) to 12.7 (79) win. Geary was well supported by Morris Coppin, Christian Wise and Nick Minett who all snagged three majors while Damien Casson (three goals) led the way for Dampier.

Port Hedland bounced back from a tough loss to Falcons the week prior to post its first win in Karratha for the season against Kats. Needing to get the four points to retain top spot after Wickham forfeited against Falcons, Rovers answered the bell in the best possible way – grinding out a tough 29-point away win.

Close all night, neither Kats nor Rovers could string together multiple goals in the first half, with the away side holding a slender 9-point advantage at the main break. The second half delivered uncompromising, finals-like football with Rovers able to skip away in the final term, booting five goals to three.

Tristan Myers was a stand-out in attack for Hedland, kicking seven majors, while Matthew Virgo, Layton Cooper and Dean Dixon were among Rovers best in the 13.14 (92) to 9.9 (63) win.

The victory leaves Port Hedland two points clear of Falcons in the battle for the minor premiership while Kats have now slipped to fourth.

In reserves action, Kats inflicted Rovers second successive loss with a 10.7 (67) to 6.7 (43) victory while Swans got off the bottom of the ladder with a 46-point win over Dampier.

Get the latest news from in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails