Kangas win vital against Magpies
North Albany’s hopes of a top-two finish were given a much-needed boost after overcoming a slow start to dismantle a battling Denmark-Walpole by 56 points at McLean Park on Saturday.
The vital win kept the Kangas only two wins and percentage from top two sides Mt Barker and Royals heading into the bye. The Magpies booted the first two goals of the match, but the Kangas added nine of the next 11 majors after responding to a quarter-time spray from coach Craig Dew.
Taking a 29-point margin into half-time, the Magpies found some momentum through the efforts of midfielders Ryan Gaerth and Kaden King-Davies, and when Tyler Stone booted his fourth goal, the margin was back to 24 points.
But the Kangas closed out the third term with a 38-point margin and secured their fourth win of the season with a dominant final term.
But the win came at a cost, with key midfielder Jack McPhee suffering a corked thigh in the second quarter and failing to play out the contest.
Dew said he believed McPhee would be fit for the Kangas’ next contest against Albany, predicting a host of players to return from injury and 2010 Kleemann medallist Kris Ericson to make a long-awaited comeback after encouraging signs in the reserves.
Dew said the win essentially without McPhee and fellow key Matt Orzel was pleasin,g with youngsters Taj Williams (four goals), Jesse Wynne (three) and Jack Steel (three) contributing 10 goals between them. “We couldn’t afford to drop this and go two games behind Railways and essentially three behind the top two so it was a real important game for us,” he said.
“To their credit it was a must win game for them so they came out pretty hard but I always thought we could outrun them if we kept running with good young kids in the side
“They gave us that real run it was pleasing.”
Magpies coach Matt Candy believed his side could still play finals despite slipping three games adrift of the top four and predicted key forward Shayne Zanetti would return to the line-up in July after a foot injury.
“We have our moments of brilliance and we work so hard and then we let it go so quickly,” he said.
“We are not going to give up on finals; we are not that far off the mark.”
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