Peel too tall an order
PERTH DEMONS COME UP SHORT
PERTH were competitive against a much taller Peel side, with the Thunder eventually shrugging off the Demons to win by 13 points in overcast conditions at Lathlain Park on Saturday.
Perth went into the match lacking height, especially in the backline, with key defenders Brent Latch and David Johnson being late withdrawals.
The home side started well with youngster Todd Stevenson kicking the first goal at the five minute mark, and then bouncingthrough another.
Aidan Tropiano along with key midfielders Dene White and Liam McKenna were all picking up important touches as the Demons looked sharp early in the match.
The Thunder kicked a couple of quick goals half way through the term, but with late goals to Brett Wolfenden and McKenna, Perth took a 17 point lead into quarter time after kicking five goals five to two goals six.
The second term saw the match change completely with the Thunder taking control in the ruck through Zac Clarke before he left the ground injured, having the luxury of playing talls Craig Moller and Jack Hammath both up forward to good effect.
Peel added four goals to Perth’s one major right on the siren when Callum Walley snapped truly to lead Perth by 11 points at half time.
The second half again saw Peel jump out to a handy four goal lead as former Demon Brendon Jones was damaging along with Clancy Pearce.
To Perth’s credit though they really lifted their work rate during the time-on period of the third quarter, which saw clever goals to Walley and Edmonds.
Perth drew level with their more fancied opponents at three quarter time with the match now up for grabs.
The first goal of the last term was always going to be vital and unfortunately for Perth fans, it was Peel through big man Hammath that hit the scoreboard first.
The Thunder kicking to the scoring end seem to have all the answers and were finishing the better again kicking consectitive majors to open up a three goal lead.
Close to time-on Peel captain Jones kicked a great 50-metre running goal to seal the match for the visitors.
Perth managed a couple of late majors with Wally kicking his 4th and promising youngster Marshall Jones his first, but the fightback came too late as Peel hung on to win by 13 points.