The Western Magpies consolidated second place on the QAFL ladder with an 11 goal win over Sandgate at Lemke Road on Saturday.
The Magpies had one late change with Matt Hockley coming into the team for Sam Copland who was ill.
The Pies were challenged by a more enthusiastic Hawks team in the first half and only led by 8 points at half time, flattering the Pies. The Pies gradually got on top in the third quarter and then ran away with the match in the last to win 19.17-131 to 9.10- 64.
The Magpies were guilty of overuse of the football in windy conditions in the first half and turnovers with poor hand and foot disposal blighted the Pies performance. Sandgate were also running harder and outworking the Pies but they let the Pies off the hook with inaccurate kicking into their forward line.
Three quick goals in broken play mid way through the third quarter sparked the Magpies and they dominated the final quarter and a half, booting 11 goals to 3 and 8 last quarter goals to end the game with a comfortable victory.
Tim McEvoy, reinvigorated by his week off, was the Pies best player with plenty of possessions in midfield as well as working hard to help out in defence and then link with the forwards. Drew Mitchell continued his Syd Guildford nomination form with another 30 disposal game in the midfield rotations and his brother Luke also played well as he enjoyed the freedom of a midfield role in this match.
Dom Beer was tireless in ruck, Ben Jaenke-Cain also won plenty of the ball and helped mop up in defence and Sunny Aneet did some good things on a wing on his return to the side.
Alex Dickfos found it hard to get into the game in the windy conditions in the first half but was better after half time when the wind dropped to finish with 4 goals and Val Pope also booted 4 goals despite being off the ground for some time with a leg knock. Pope was pushed forward after half time and his footy smarts came to the fore.
Luke Scott was his consistent self across half back and when moved forward in the last quarter showed his versatility with 4 strong marks and one goal.
Matt Thompson was also good in attack and he finished with 3 goals and had another 3 goal assists.
The Magpies host last placed UQ at Chelmer on Saturday but the students are finishing the season strongly and pushed ladder leaders Labrador on Saturday, had a comfortable win over in form Broadbeach the week before and pushed Grange hard the week prior to complete a high quality 3 weeks of footy for the students.
With Broadbeach upsetting Morningside on Sunday, only an extremely heavy defeat can cost the Magpies a double chance and they may wish to rest a few sore players, but will still need to be at their best against a Red Lions team keen for a finals bound scalp to complete their season
The selectors have a difficult task this week with the availability of Callum Carseldine, Richard Wenham, Matt Davis, Sam Copland, Aaron Maricic and Jae Humphrey, all who missed the Sandgate game.
Western Magpies 2.4 - 16 | 5.9 - 39 | 11.14 - 80 | 19.17 - 131
Sandgate Hawks 2.4 - 16 | 4.7 - 31 | 7.8 - 50 | 9.10 - 64
Best: T.McEvoy, L.Mitchell, D.Beer, d.Lawrence, D.Mitchell, B.Jeanke-Cain
Goals: A.Dickfos, V.Pope 4, M.Thompson 3, J.Heard, L.Woods 2, L.Mitchell, R.Easton, T.Michael, L.Scott 1