NPFL grand finals teams decided
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.
Dampier Sharks’ James Rhodes gets his head over the ball.
Dampier Sharks’ David Walley celebrates a goal.