Monteath’s haul powers Bulls to victory

Tim EdmundsAlbany Advertiser
Mt Barker's Joel Gray.
Camera IconMt Barker's Joel Gray. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser, Laurie Benson Albany Advertiser

Mt Barker spearhead Kym Monteath staked his claim for selection in the WA State Country squad after a match-winning nine-goal haul sank Royals by 31 points at Centennial Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

The former East Fremantle forward, who has booted 15 goals in his last two appearances against the Lions at Albany’s home of football, proved the difference when it mattered the most.

At one stage Monteath had booted five of his team’s first seven goals in the first half and had a hand in another, outclassing defenders Ryan Flick and Trent Nesbitt.

The Bulls’ 30-point lead at half-time quickly became 42 before the Lions enjoyed their best period of the encounter either side of three-quarter-time with the next four majors.

Royals' Trent Nesbitt breaks out of the back line.
Camera IconRoyals' Trent Nesbitt breaks out of the back line. Credit: Laurie Benson/Pictures: Laurie Benson, Laurie Benson Albany Advertiser

The Lions trimmed the margin back to 18 points after youngster Rivah Bocian marked and goaled as the Bulls showed signs of fading in similar a fashion as they did when they faced Albany a fortnight ago. But the class of Monteath and fellow veteran Nic Chidgzey ensured the Bulls would regain their momentum, booting the next four majors of the match to kill off the contest.

While Monteath’s haul in front of a State selector could lead to higher honours, the performance of impressive youngster Joel Gray would not have gone unnoticed by the umpires.

The 19-year-old could be the unlikely leader for the Kleemann Medal after six rounds, while rebound defender Tyron Miller was allowed to do what he liked across half-back, with his efficiency by foot leading to countless forays forward.

Ruckman Daniel Henderson and understudy Daniel Parker in a new role controlled the air around the ground.

The Lions were beaten in the middle of the ground despite the pace of their youth looking dangerous at times.

Versatile midfielder Cameron Smith and defender Corey Ward continued their consistent seasons to be the best for Lions, who missed significant experience without veterans Ryan Kinnear, Mitch Curnow and Andrew Ruck.

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