NPFL grand fi­nals teams de­cided

Pilbara News - - Front Page - Peter de Krui­jff

With 14 shots at goal in the last quar­ter, the Dampier Sharks turned the ta­bles on the Wick­ham Wolves in an up and down game to de­ter­mine who would con­tinue on to the North Pil­bara Football League grand fi­nal.

Down two points head­ing into the last, it was all Sharks the last 25 min­utes of the match, with a 6.8 to 0.1 kick­ing ef­fort putting them up 14.14 (98) to 8.9 (57), seal­ing their spot to com­pete for the premier­ship.

How­ever, it was a case of another game and another knee in­jury for the Sharks with Jar­rod O’Meara go­ing down in the last quar­ter.

O’Meara (two goals) had been a good tar­get through­out the match with his high­light play a left footer on the run from the side­line near the left front pocket.

The ball swerved from right to left to right and through the sticks.

Wolves won the toss and elected to kick with the breeze, which was more of a howl­ing wind, at the start of the game.

It was a gritty Sharks side that came into the half-time break on top though, with a three-goal lead.

The Wolves needed a big third quar­ter and de­liv­ered with five goals to take the lead go­ing into the last.

Ben Malarski and Claude Tay­lor from Wolves both kicked three while Eric Bed­ford added two of his own as their team’s only three ma­jor scor­ers.

Sharks spread their scor­ing over 10 dif­fer­ent play­ers with David Wal­ley, Lay­ton Cooper and Jason Cox all kick­ing two.

Sharks’ Christo­pher Bai­ley played a top match, tag­ging this year’s joint De Grey medal win­ner Tim Renton.

While it was a sad note for the Wolves to end their sea­son on, the team played tough through­out and also built a good sea­son with a re­turn to the fi­nals af­ter miss­ing out last year.

The Sharks will now travel to South Hed­land this week­end to take on the Swans in game that could go ei­ther way.

Sharks haven’t beaten the Swans at their home ground all year, but as the Swans proved in Dampier two weeks ago, any­thing can hap­pen dur­ing the fi­nals.

Pic­tures: Peter de Krui­jff

Dampier Sharks’ James Rhodes gets his head over the ball.

Dampier Sharks’ David Wal­ley cel­e­brates a goal.

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