The Western Magpies prevailed in a tough battle with UQ on Saturday, celebrating the clubs 'Black & White Night' with their 6th win on the trot and consolidating 3rd spot on the ladder after grinding out a tough 61 point victory over the UQ Red Lions at St Lucia on Saturday.
A Magpie outfit featuring no less than 3 sets of brothers in the lineup, managed to weather the storm after UQ came out firing with a ferocious attack on the footy, as they hunted a potentially vulnerable Magpie outfit. UQ dominated the early inside 50's, but were held at bay by strong defensive efforts from the Magpie back six.
Once the onslaught slowed, the Magpies started to get on top mid way through the second quarter with three quick goals, including 2 long range efforts from in form half-back, Matt Davis. This generated some breathing space at half time with a 27 point lead, which was gradually extended with some inaccurate kicking until the final siren, with the conversion rate robbing the side of a larger winning margin.
The half back like of Chris Hunt, Doug Lawrence and Matt Davis were a superb defensive wall, and with Luke Mitchell chiming in for some telling contests from the back pocket, the defensive unit repelled the early UQ attacks before the midfield rotations of Tom Ielasi, Ben Jeanke-Cain, Drew Mitchell, Richard Wenham and Tim McEvoy started to get on top to give the Pies more possession, and driving the footy goalward.
Ielasi and McEvoy both enjoyed their best games for the year, with strong attacks on the contested ball, while Brady Allen was also in good form through defence and in the midfield.
The backline had a great day as a unit, restricting the opposition to just 5 goals for the afternoon. In the end, the Red Lions side had no answer to the Magpie 'Band of Brothers' - with Sean & Tim McEvoy, Drew & Luke Mitchell, Brodie & Riley Easton all playing their role.
Up forward, Alex Dickfos added a further 5 goals to his season tally, now reaching 27 for the season including 18 in his last 3 outings, but will need to keep his radar on in coming weeks.
The Magpies now face 3 crucial matches in a row, starting next week with second placed Morningside where the boys will be keen to go 1 goal better than the 2 point loss in Round 1. Following this, the Pies will get a further stern test of their premiership credentials as they meet ladder leaders Labrador and 4th placed Wilston Grange.
Coach Glenn Humphrey:
Things went really well for us today.
“It was very tight, they got a lot of numbers around the football but our blokes just stuck with their task and started to open it up.”
“Our bigger bodies got them in the end. Our midfield went really well today.
“The litmus test is over the next couple of weeks now. We have Morningside, Labrador and then Wilston Grange. We will know exactly where we are at.”
Western Magpies 2.2 - 14 | 7.9 - 51 | 11.13 - 79 | 14.17 - 101
UQ Red Lions 0.4 - 4 | 3.6 - 24 | 3.8 - 26 | 5.10 -40
Best: T.Ielasi, B.Allen, M.Davis, D.Lawrence, R.Wenham, C.Hunt
Goals: A.Dickfos 5, M.Davis 2, B.Allen, T.McEvoy, B.Easton, S.Copland, T.Michael, T.Ielasi, D.Mitchell 1