UNDER STRENGTH RESERVES SHOW GRIT
The Western Magpies Reserves, with 9 outs to the side that won last week, battled gamely before going down to the second placed Palm Beach-Currumbin on Saturday.
The Pies also felt the brunt of having only 20 available players as they tired late in the third quarter and into the last
The Pies went down 12.8-80 to 4.12-36, but despite the scoreline showed grit and determination beyond what was displayed in some of the earlier rounds when undermanned.
In fact the Reserves effort was in complete contrast to that of their round 5 clash when the Pies looked disinterested and were defeated by 98 points by the same opposition--this time all players played with a lot of spirit and but for inaccuracy in front of goal may have come close to victory.
The match was still a tight contest until late in the third quarter when PBC booted 4 late goals to open up a comfortable lead at three quarter time.
Young ruckman Geoff Gibb played his best game for the Pies despite close attention bordering on illegal head high contact--he wears his hair in a top knot and it was often tugged by Lions players as they ran past--illegal and a free kick but was ignored by the local umpires. Gibb ignored this attention to play well.
Rhys Bridge gained form across half back where he seems to play his best football and this will have pleased the Pies selectors who highly rate the young defender. His form dip looks to be short-lived.
Todd Billing played his usual consistent game across half forward as did half back Gabe McKinnon who always gives his best and gave run out of defence.
Youngster Josh Burton also had his best game for the Pies on half forward and took some good marks and onballer Blake McClennan continues to push his Senior credentials with another consistent ball winning match. Jake Heard was busy and did some good things and with a few more matches under his belt to build his fitness after injury interruption, will also be a player who could return to Senior action later in the year.
The Pies will take on fellow mid-ladder team Wilston Grange on Saturday and if they have any hope of a late charge to the finals need to win this match--the Pies are still only 4 points and percentage outside the five.
Best: Gibb, Bridge, McClennan, billin, McKinnon, Burton
Goals: Billing 2, Heard, Unknown 1