Big wins after mid-season break
A rejuvenated Dampier Sharks continue their mid-season ascendancy of the North Pilbara Football League ladder after thrashing South Hedland Swans in their NAIDOC Week round 10 game last Saturday.
Playing in front of a home crowd at Windy Ridge Oval, the thirdplaced Sharks looked confident and in control for most of the game as they kicked away to win by a 79point margin, 17.11 (113) to 5.4 (34).
The first quarter began as a tight on-field contest and looked like it could shape up to be an even game, but it was not long before the Sharks started to break free and find their momentum.
They gained enough steam to kick six goals for the quarter as the Swans struggled to get their hands on the ball and only managed one point.
From there, it was much the same for the rest of the game, with the Sharks kicking another 4.6 in the second quarter to establish a 55-point half-time lead and extend the margin in the second half.
Swans tightened their defensive pressure early in the last quarter and succeeded in slowing down play, resulting in a low-scoring final term for both sides, but by then the damage had already been done.
When the final siren sounded, Dampier were the winning side.
It was a very different story in the reserves match, in which the sides played a nailbiter that was decided by two points in the final minutes.
A tight game throughout, there were only points in it at quarter and half-time, before the Sharks broke away and kicked to a threegoal lead by the end of the third term.
However, the Swans refused to say die and wrested the game back from them in a determined and dominant final-quarter effort, winning 8.6 (54) to 8.4 (52).
The game also marked the debut of new Sharks guernseys featuring an indigenous art design by Roebourne Art Group artist Loreen Samson, which was custom-made for the NAIDOC Week round and worn by the club’s league and reserves players.
Dampier Sharks president Russell Turner said the jumper design, which depicted a Ngarluma story about sharks, birds and fishing, strengthened the message of NAIDOC Week among the players, fans and the wider community. “We’ve seen it in the AFL and other clubs have done it — the Swans did it last year when we played them up there, so we thought we’d have a go this year,” he said.
Wickham Wolves also wore custom-designed guernseys for the NAIDOC round in their game against Karratha Falcons, showcasing an indigenous design by Cassandra Halden.
Dampier Sharks' Guy Langdon stays ahead of a South Hedland Swans pack.
Swans' Jermarl Daly runs down a stray ball.