Round 9 Hostplus SANFL Snapshot – Saturday

The Eagle's Luke Thompson marks under pressure at Adelaide Oval on Saturday. Photo - Peter Argent


A powerful second half buoyed by an ascendant midfield propelled Adelaide to a 23-point win over Woodville-West Torrens at Adelaide Oval.

The Crows trailed at the first two breaks before outscoring the Eagles 8.4 to 3.3 after half-time to consolidate third position on the Hostplus SANFL League ladder.

Best-afield Harry Schoenberg (33 disposals, 10 marks, 10 clearances) was a brute through the centre-square, where fellow AFL-listed players Matt Crouch (32 disposals, one goal) and Sam Berry (23) also thrived.

Adelaide’s 43-19 advantage in clearances was a telling factor, which became more pronounced as the match wore on.

Tariek Newchurch booted four goals, captain Matt Wright added three and Patrick Parnell led a strong backline.

Shane McAdam marked his return to the field by taking two terrific marks, soaring athletically over Nathan Studham in the second quarter before showing immense courage to take a contested grab while being crunched by Luke Thompson late in the fourth.

Newchurch booted the first three goals of the match before the Eagles responded with the next six to lead by 22 points.

The Crows had big edges in every statistical category early but their untidy finishing was in contrast to the Eagles, who made every post a winner.

The Eagles led by seven points when Jimmy Toumpas goaled on the cusp of half-time before they were eventually inundated by Adelaide’s sheer weight of numbers.

Elliott Himmelberg goaled in the opening minute of the third stanza and Wright went one better, crumbing a goal 16 seconds into the fourth as the Crows ran riot from the centre bounce.

For the Eagles, James Rowe (28 disposals, eight tackles) was thrown onto the ball and bounced back strongly after being heavily tagged a week earlier against Port Adelaide, while Luke Beecken (27 touches, 11 rebound-50s) performed strongly in an often besieged backline.

Adelaide’s Shane McAdam attempts a one hander in front of Eagle Max Litster. Photo – Peter Argent

Port Adelaide’s AFL-listed talent rose to the occasion as the Magpies closed to within percentage of the top five with a 23-point win against fifth-ranked Central District at Alberton Oval.

Five unanswered goals either side of three-quarter-time helped Port turn a slender one-point lead into an insurmountable 35-point buffer before the Bulldogs added two late ones to minimise some of the damage.

Mid-season pick-up Quinton Narkle, best-on-ground in last week’s nail-biting loss to the Eagles, shone again with 33 disposals, eight inside-50s, six clearances and a goal in his second SANFL appearance.

Orazio Fantasia, in his second game back following a quad strain, was a constant threat in attack, booting four goals from his 18 touches.

Jase Burgoyne, Trent Dumont, Power captain Tom Jonas and Ryan Burton were all prolific performers as Port showcased superior depth and quality down the stretch.

The Magpies had all the play early, booting the first three majors with Ollie Lord looking especially dangerous.

Central awoke from its slumber to kick the next three but the Dogs found themselves down by 12 points at quarter-time after Fantasia slotted his second.

Large stretches of the second period were played on Central’s terms but Port hung tough and actually extended its lead to 15 at half-time.

Three majors in succession to Hugo Munn, captain Jarrod Schiller and Aiden Grace saw the Bulldogs pinch all the momentum and move to within a point just before time-on in the third.
Fantasia goaled against the grain to give the Magpies a nine-point break at three-quarter-time before the home side shot clear in the fourth.

Fantasia’s fourth goal ensured Port’s foot remained on Central’s throat before Narkle’s six-pointer a minute later put the result beyond doubt.

Harry Grant (36 disposals, eight tackles, six clearances) continued his career-best form surge with another fine performance in the midfield for the Bulldogs.

West Adelaide continued its progression as one of the Hostplus SANFL League’s big improvers, shutting out North Adelaide by 29 points at Hisense Stadium.

The Bloods’ midfield stood tall when it mattered while their backline was simply supreme, holding the Roosters goalless from the 16th minute mark of the second quarter onwards.

Attacking defenders Callum Park and Tom Morrish combined for 52 disposals and 19 rebound-50s, full back Josh Ryan snared 14 marks among his 19 touches, and regular backman Sam Frost floated forward to boot the first three goals of his young career.

Meanwhile, Joel Stevens (27 disposals, seven clearances), Michael Mattingly (20 touches, 11 tackles, one goal) and Josh Ryan (20 possessions, eight tackles) expertly fed off the ruck dominance of brawny Dylan Bramich (17 possessions, 27 hit-outs, six tackles).

North opened with two goals in the first two minutes and dominated the clearances 11-4 in the first term as West took a while to warm to the task.

Acting Bloods captain Isaac Johnson got the home side on the board in style, blazing successfully from beyond 50m.

Johnson’s effort kickstarted a string of three straight majors for the hosts, who trailed by one point at quarter-time.

Roosters livewire Keanu Miller outdid Johnson with an even better goal, bombing a 60m beauty to the southern end in the second stanza.

When Keenan Ramsey goaled in the 16th minute of that quarter and with prime mover Harrison Wigg (20 of his 28 disposals coming before half-time) finding plenty of the ball and Campbell Combe (35 touches, eight tackles, seven clearances) influential in the clinches, North was up by two points and ready to inflict some damage.

But West wasn’t willing to accept it.

Teenage goalsneak Dylan McCormack slotted two majors in the space of a minute to give the Bloods a 10-point buffer at half-time.

Frost bobbed up for two majors in the third term as the hard-running home side moved ahead by a commanding 30 points at the last change, the Roosters becoming stagnant and indecisive.
The fourth term was a defensive, goalless grind, which suited West just fine.

North had 13-6 inside-50s for the term, only to be denied time and time again by some elite defending from the Bloods.

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