By ZAC MILBANK
SA Country burst out of the blocks to construct a memorable 27-point win against WA Country at the Adelaide Oval on Saturday evening.
Confronting the Sandgropers for the first time since 2019, the Croweaters were spurred on initially by forward Ben Edwards, who booted three of his four goals in the opening term.
Coached by Rick Macgowan, SA earned a decisive 18-point lead by the first change before effectively shutting the visitors out of the contest by half-time with a 36-point advantage.
Having kept WA to just one goal in the first half, SA was fuelled by captain Matt Willson who continued his red hot form which saw him named as the Player of the SA Country Championships earlier in July.
South East midfielder Willson was fittingly awarded the Barry Stringer Medal as best afield for SA while former Adelaide SANFL player Sam Tharaldsen was another strong performer.
Edwards was high among SA’s best players while Zane Montgomerie, Jack Kenny and Murphy Short were also recognised for their positive efforts.
Kicking four goals to SA’s one in the final term, WA restored some respect into the scoreline but by then, the damage had been done after the Croweaters’ commanding start.
SA Country 3.1 7.3 9.4 10.8 (68)
WA Country 0.1 1.3 2.5 6.5 (41)
BEST – SA: Matt Willson, Sam Tharaldsen, Ben Edwards, Zane Montgomerie, Jack Kenny, Murphy Short.
GOALS – SA: Ben Edwards 4, Jaxon Bennett, Matt Willson, Steve Burton, Murphy Short, Shane Ballantyne, Tom Whittlesea.
Barry Stringer Medallist – Matt Willson (South East)
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