Im­pe­ri­als hold on in fi­nal term on­slaught

Manjimup-Bridgetown Times - - Times Sport -

THE Im­pe­ri­als have claimed a spot in the 2017 Re­serves Grand Fi­nal af­ter claim­ing a pul­sat­ing four-point vic­tory over Bridgetown in Pem­ber­ton on Sun­day.

In an epic con­test where both sides en­joyed mo­men­tum, it was the Mag­pies who took their op­por­tu­ni­ties when pre­sented to claim a 10.10 (70) to 10.6 (66) vic­tory.

Af­ter an in­sipid dis­play last round, the Mag­pies looked up and about early and through the cen­tre square con­trol rolled for­ward with pur­pose.

Matthew Bor­natici hit a pur­ple patch to kick three quick goals.

The Bull­dogs had to play de­fen­sively and de­spite strug­gling to keep the Mag­pies’ at­tacks un­der con­trol, Mitch Bal­dock, Shane Clancy and Ben Mcalin­den did pro­vide some solid re­sis­tance.

The Bull­dogs had to re­spond to the Mag­pies’ open­ing on­slaught and with good ball use and ag­gres­sion they be­gan to chip away at the Mag­pies’ lead.

Ex­pe­ri­enced cam­paign­ers Danny Schreurs, Dar­ren Tas­sos and Gar­ret Wa­ters set­tled the troops and in the en­su­ing play set up a run of goals from Bal­dock, Mcalin­den and Jack Cowan to even up the con­test.

The Mag­pies’ de­fen­sive unit was un­der siege, how­ever, Tim Clif­ford, Isaac Jones and Jack Ste­wart stood firm to en­sure a slim lead at the break.

As con­test mo­men­tum swung, both out­fits had am­ple op­por­tu­nity to build a lead, but the con­stant pres­sure ap­plied en­sured a num­ber of turnovers.

Fi­nally, Im­pe­ri­als wres­tled some con­trol as Nathan Gran­dini, Brady Adams and Ipsen kicked goals to give their side a cru­cial two-goal buf­fer head­ing to­wards the fi­nal siren.

With the sea­son on the line, both sides hit the con­test with vigour in a pul­sat­ing fi­nal term of football.

The Mag­pies’ de­fence was su­perb with Ste­wart, Adam and Clif­ford keep­ing the Bull­dogs’ pushes at bay and al­though the Bull­dogs con­jured up one last surge, the Mag­pies would cling on to claim a tight vic­tory and a chance at the pre­mier­ship.

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