Tigers preavil in the mud to book grand final place
Railways have progressed to their first grand final in three years after surviving a tough slog against North Albany to emerge 14-point winners in today’s second semifinal at a wet and muddy Tigerland.
Both sides didn’t risk hamstrung forwards Zak Hortin and Luke Cameron in the first week of the finals but the Tigers made the most of their early chances to kick four first-quarter goals.
The Kangas through their own inaccuracy trailed by 11 points at the first change but took the lead when they kicked the first three goals of the second term.
A late Rory Gibbs major pulled the margin back to four points at half time but a high-pressure third term saw the Tigers break things open.
Captain Bodhi Stubber put his side in front and then goals from Tom Wolfe and Dylan Schorer helped the Tigers open up a significant 16-point lead by the final break.
When Jayden Scott snuck his second goal home early in the last, the margin was the most it had been all day at 21 points and from there they were able to stifle the Kangas in attack to prevent any hope of a comeback.
Jacob Hobbs pinched one back for the Kangas but it was too late as they were left to rue their chances in front of goal, going down 6.12 (48) to 9.8 (62).
The Tigers win was full of merit as ruckman Shane Braimbridge had a day to remember with a telling display around the ground while midfielder Joel Want was again influential around the heavily congested stoppages.
Schorer and player-coach Craig Frost were also strong contributors as the Tigers booked their place in the decider, played at their home ground in a fortnight.
Jack McPhee started superbly for the Kangas but hamstring tightness after half time limited his impact while Michael Trevenen, Marcus Trevenen and Williams (two goals) were among their best players.
In the minor grades, Albany earned a direct path to the colts grand final after downing Royals by 16 points as rain poured down for virtually the entire four quarters.
Brock Anning (two goals) and the Alforque brothers, Henry and Henrick, were terrific as their side finished winners 5.7 (37) to 3.3 (21).
The Lions however won through to the grand final in both the reserves and sixteens after beating the Kangas and Sharks by 23 points and eight points respectively.
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