Kangas dish out a thumping but comes at a cost

Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
North Albany's Jack McPhee and Royals' Henry Hodge fly for a mark.
Camera IconNorth Albany's Jack McPhee and Royals' Henry Hodge fly for a mark. Credit: Laurie Benson

North Albany ensured they will face Railways in the Great Southern Football League second semifinal in a fortnight after embarrassing Royals by 123 points at Collingwood Park on Sunday afternoon but the win came at a cost.

A brilliant nine-goal first quarter set up the Kangas’ emphatic victory, which guaranteed them second spot and a finals double chance but injuries to key linkman Alec Haskins and forward Luke Cameron soured the result.

Cameron and Haskins both came off before half-time with hamstring injuries while a goal square stoush between Ray Padfield and Corey Linthorne will see Padfield also miss this week’s dead rubber against Mt Barker.

Both Linthorne and Padfield received yellow cards for their involvement, and as a result Padfield will be suspended for one game as a result of his third yellow card of the season.

Royals' Brayden Parker runs from defence.
Camera IconRoyals' Brayden Parker runs from defence. Credit: Albany Advertiser

Kangas coach Craig Dew said it was mixed emotions after the game, with Cameron likely to miss the second semifinal.

“That (first term) was the best quarter of footy we’ve played since I’ve coached the group,” Dew said.

“But then injuries to Cameron and Haskins.

“Cameron, you’d think, is 21 days like most hamstrings and Haskins was more tight in the hamstring but we’ll take no risk.”

The Kangas were superb in a clinical first term as they piled on nine goals and rarely allowed the ball into the Lions attacking half.

A 57-point margin blew out to 85 points after the Kangas kicked the only four goals of the season and it was 14 goals in succession when skipper Graham Ross goaled to start the second half.

Royals' Poch Amores gets his kick away as North Albany's Ray Padfield moves in.
Camera IconRoyals' Poch Amores gets his kick away as North Albany's Ray Padfield moves in. Credit: Albany Advertiser

Lions youngster Joel Flick finally weaved through traffic to boot his side’s first of the game as a direct reply to the Ross major but it meant little on a dark day as they were thrashed 1.4 (10) to 19.19 (133).

The game replicated the Lions’ horror second semifinal result in 2017 when they kicked only one goal at Collingwood Park against the Kangas and lost by 82 points.

Despite the heavy loss, the Lions still sit in fourth place and will play Denmark-Walpole this week with a finals berth on the line but coach James McRae said they must move on quickly.

“There are two clear favourites at the moment in Railways and North Albany,” McRae said.

“We are a long way behind.

“Maybe in the back of the guys’ minds, they know we have to win next week but I thought we’d be a lot closer.

“Full credit to North Albany — when they open you up and get their tails up, it’s very hard to stop.”

Jack McPhee was outstanding all day for the home side and was well supported by midfielder Matt Orzel, wingman Alex Pearce and Michael Trevenen, who all kicked two goals and won plenty of the ball.

Taj Williams finished with four majors and Nathan Komene was another strong target up front, kicking 3.3.

The Lions were best served by Poch and Cent Amores and Corey Ward also battled manfully.

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