The Magpies have stamped themselves as genuine premiership contenders with a hard fought and gritty win over perennial QAFL powerhouse and 2014 Undefeated Premiers Morningside on Saturday at Jack Esplen Oval.
The Pies kicked the first 4 goals of the match and then saw a Panther fightback late in the first quarter and into the second, with the Panthers pinching the lead leading up to half time, however a composed Magpie outfit created three late goals to create a well earnt 20 point half time lead. A rejuvenated Val Pope, returning from two weeks away due to work was the brilliant architect of two of these goals before Tom Ielasi kicked truely after the half time siren as a result of strong tackle and great pressure from the Magpie outfit.
The Magpies self-belief and hardness at the contest enabled them to answer all the challenges the Panthers threw at them in the second half as they went on to a 20 point victory, winning 12-7-79 to 8-11-59.
The Panthers had given Magpie supporters jitters as they closed to 7 points near time on in the last quarter before Woods second and third goals sealed a well deserved victory.
In a tough, hard fought match with a lot of contested football the Pies were able to out muscle the Panthers. The Pies had over 60 tackles for the match and this was epitomised by Richard Wenham who laid 20 tackles on his own to be the Pies best player. Wenham also won his share of the football to be a strong rebounding defender, especially in the third quarter when the home side pressed hard to get back in the match.
Another hero for the Pies was co-captain Lachlan Woods, who suffered a shoulder injury in the third quarter that looked like ending his day. However, with CHF Tom Michael out of action with an ankle injury, Woods returned to the fray in the last quarter and with virtually only one serviceable arm played deep forward and booted three telling last quarter goals, the last sealing the victory.
However the cost of the victory is that both Woods and Michael will miss several matches due to injury.
Val Pope was superb with his clean ball handling and never wasted a possession whether on ball or up forward, Luke Scott controlled across half back with support from Doug Lawrence, who shut down key forward Kent Abey, a player who has caused the Pies some heartache in the past.
Tim McEvoy enjoyed another fine match working hard behind the ball and directing traffic and Sunday “Sunny” Aneet was a busy player providing plenty of run and carry from a wing.
Whilst not always playing in the same competition, this was the first win against Morningside by a Magpie outfit hailing from Chelmer since 1987.
The Magpies now have seven wins in a row to sit equal second on the QAFL ladder and will have further confidence of ending top team Labrador's undefeated run on the Gold Coast next Sunday.
Glenn Humphrey – Western Magpies
“At the contest, we held our positions really well and didn’t get drawn into the contest and didn’t allow them to get that handball over the top.
“Every time we got it out, we were able to take them apart, and that was one of our aim’s going in, to get it out of the middle of the ground where they liked to play.
“Everyone played their role during the game and that was the most pleasing part.”
Western Magpies 5.0 - 30 | 8.4 - 52 | 9.7 - 61 | 12.7 - 79
Morningside Panthers 2.7 - 19 | 4.8 - 32 | 6.9 - 45 | 8.11 - 59
Best: R.Wenham, D.Lawrence, V.Pope, L.Scott, M.Aneet, T.McEvoy
Goals: A.Dickfos, L.Woods 3, V.Pope 2, S.Copland, J.Williams, L.Scott, T.Ielasi 1