By Gary Stocks
If the footy goods had a heart, North Beach would farewell its home of the last 49 years with a clean sweep against Wesley Curtin at Charles Riley Reserve.
The day started well enough with the Nuchange Phil Scott Colts producing an outstanding display which puts it right in the finals frame and then the Credent Financial Services A-Reserves produced a sublime performance to make it two from the two.
And the O’Rourke Realty A-Grade team was more than competitive in the match against the ladder leader in the opening term before the dream was spectacularly shattered. A string of indiscretions which resulted in a frustrating succession of 50 metre penalties and opposition goals saw the game swing beyond reach.
Wesley Curtin were focused and clean with their ball skills and won 12.13 (79) to 4.6 (30).
It was a disappointing performance from the Beach, who were expecting so much more out of a game that marked the last fixture at the ground before the precinct is redeveloped with an expansive community centre and a re-configuration of the ovals.
Trailing by just seven points at quarter-time, when the Beach did not get reward for effort, the series of indiscretions saw the Tigers trail by 35 points at the main break, with the game effectively over. In all, the epidemic of 50 metres penalties against reached 16.
Co-captain Beau Witheridge, in his 150th game, was outstanding for the Beach, along with ruckman Kyle Cranley, wingman Steve Bandy and defenders Tim Langsford and Adrian Clarke.
With the Beach cramming in all of its home games in the first 13 rounds of the season, it will now face the challenge of solidifying its third position on the ladder with the last five matches being played away.
The A-Reserves were in sublime form and careered away to a dominant 90-point win – 20.3 (123) to 5.3 (33).
In control from the outset, the Beach had 22 strong contributors and simply overwhelmed the opposition with their class, commitment and skill execution.
Captain Jacob Griffiths continued his rich vein of form with five goals, while Mark Foreman also finished with a handful of majors.
So many of those scoring opportunities were set up by a hard-edged midfield led by Matt Power and Michael Taylor, while Lee Brooks was outstanding in defence along with the ultra-competitive Liam Vardy and Micky Bryan.
The Phil Scott Colts pushed closer towards the top five and have within a win of that position with some outstanding performances in the last five or six weeks. Their pressure on the ball carrier and system out of defence were evident in a convincing 28-point win – 10.8 (68) to 6.4 (40).
The Tuck Plumbing Brett Jones Colts unfortunately slipped a run down the ladder to seventh after losing to Wesley-Curtin, who were on equal points, by 11 points. The Beach fought hard, but simply could not muster consecutive goals often enough to bring scoreboard pressure to bear.
The Cabling Network Solutions D1-Grade, however, scored an important win against Wesley-Curtin at South Oval.
On the back of that convincing 69-point win, the Beach has vaulted over Wesley-Curtin and is now right in the frame for a top three finish, particularly given it has the highest percentage of any team in the competition.
The Hybrid Linings D1-Reserves are also within sight of a top three finish with five games remaining after an important win against Wesley-Curtin, who were level on points going into this fixture.
A 46-point victory has them sailing along nicely and they were always in control of this game.
Michael Bramley and Saxon Graham were lively up forward with three goals each, while Adam Gangemi, returning to the club, kicked two.
Wallis, Carter, Tony Mirabile and Cam Alco were also in good form.
The Express Bins E2-Grade played a night fixture at Morris Buzzacott Reserves, and lost by 22 points to Fremantle CBC.
Details O’Rourke Realty A-Grade
Wesley-Curtin 2.3 6.8 10.10 12.13 79
North Beach 1.2 1.2 2.3 4.6 30
Goals – North Beach: Wilson 2; McComiskie, Harwood 1.
Best – North Beach: Witheridge, Cranley, Bandy, T Langsford, Clarke.
Credent Financial Services A-Reserves
North Beach 4.0 9.2 13.3 20.3 123
Wesley-Curtin 1.1 2.1 5.3 5.3 33
Goals – North Beach: Griffiths, Foreman 5; Bowdell 2; Bowering, Cownie, Hack, Power, Tindale, Cunningham 1.
Best – North Beach: Power, Griffiths, Foreman, Brooks, Taylor, Vardy.
Nuchange Phil Scott Colts
North Beach 10.8 (68) def Wesley-Curtin 6.4 (40)
Tuck Plumbing Brett Jones Colts
Wesley Curtin 5.1 9.3 12.7 13.10 88
North Beach 4.1 6.3 9.4 12.5 77
Goals – North Beach: Huggins 3; Mairata, Orr-Young 2; Tincknell, Ownen-Collins, Forslind, Spies, Holton 1.
Best – North Beach: Forslind, Spies, Holton.
Cabling Network Solutions D1-Grade
North Beach 6.0 6.7 10.10 13.12 90
Wesley Curtin 0.0 0.0 1.0 3.3 21
Goals – North Beach: Kickett 5; Hogg, Potts, Darling, Carter, Collins 1.
Best – North Beach: Schofield, Sajich, Luck, Cheetham, Duke, Coillins.
Hybrid Linings D1-Reserves
North Beach 3.3 5.5 6.8 11.13 79
Wesley Curtin 1.2 1.2 1.9 4.9 33
Goals – North Beach: Bramley, Graham 3; A Gangemi 2; M Gangemi, Ammon, Cosgrove 1.
Best – North Beach: Wallis, Carter, Mirabile, Alco, Bramley, A Gangemi.
Express Bins E2-Grade
Fremantle CBC 11.5 (71) def North Beach 7.7 (49)
#Full details will be published for all grades as they become available.