By Gary Stocks
The O’Rourke Realty A-Grade team consolidated its position in the top five with a solid, if unspectacular, victory against Mt Lawley at Hamer Park on Saturday.
North Beach started strongly, had to content with an energised fight-back from the Hawks and then push hard in the final term to claw their way to a two-point win.
It was always going to be a tough day at the office against last year’s runner-up who were looking to remain in finals contention and with so much on the line it deserved to be a contest which went down to the wire.
The triumph was again built around the work of ruckmen Alex Hack and Dave Martin, a combination that is fast becoming a serious weapon, while Jackson Harwood finished off the hard work further up-field with three goals.
Again Ryan Underwood led the defence brilliantly along with skipper Anthony “Chooka” Ingham, while Jason Hall was also lively in attack.
The Credent Financial Services A-Reserves remained unbeaten after a solid 23-point victory.
Never seriously threatened, they played with their trademark high work rate with midfielder Mark Chamberlain, ruckman Liam Vardy, defender Alex Billi and utility players Ned Melvin and Marc Welsh also making strong contributions.
This week the Beach faces an important challenge against North Fremantle and coach Michael Pratt will be looking for his troops to respond to that situation and reserve some of its best football against a respected and capable opponent.
Unfortunately, the Nuchange Phil Scott Colts did not respond to the challenge against fifth placed Mt Lawley on the weekend, losing by 11 goals in a disappointing performance.
Coming on the back of two impressive performances which secured consecutive wins there was a high anticipation that finals prospects would be kept alive, but Mt Lawley was simply more desperate, hungry and polished and the Beach were never in the contest.
The Tuck Plumbing Brett Jones Colts suffered a six-goal defeat against one of the premiership favourites, Fremantle CBC, and while victory was the target at least they achieved a level of credibility in the performance.
Ruckman Cameron Huggins, tall utility player Will Hooper, defenders Rhys Messenger and Jacob Fitzroy as well as wingman Jack Galvin all worked hard and were prepared to put their shoulder to the wheel.
The Townley Group D1-Grade consolidated a spot in the top two with a convincing six-goal victory against Whitford.
The Beach started confidently and were never headed during a dominant performance which was built around the defensive out-put of Shane Duckworth, a five-goal haul from forward Jordan Kickett and some important midfield drive generated by Jamie Cosgrove, Josh Stott, Daniel Wheeler and Reece Burns.
The Clipstar D1-Reserves put up a fighting effort against the Warriors, but in the all-important third quarter, could not match their opponents.
Despite a spirited performance, the Beach went down by 10 points. Paul Cavanagh, Scott Brown and Ronald O’Neill were in good touch for the Tigers.
The E2-Grade played a match under lights against Cockburn Lakes and while they won by two points, they generally failed to shine.
Jason Cole kicked three of his team’s four goals on the way to a 4.4-4.2 victory which did not impress coach Peter Panagopolous. Aside from Cole, Josh Stretch and Damien Pike were solid throughout.
North Beach 2.2 6.7 7.10 10.15 75
Mt Lawley 1.1 4.3 8.6 11.7 73
Goals – North Beach: Harwood 3; Hall, Hack 2; Palm, S Pearce, Bandy 1.
Best – North Beach: Underwood, Hack, Martin, Ingham.
North Beach 3.2 5.3 8.5 11.5 71
Mt Lawley 0.1 2.4 4.5 7.6 48
Goals – North Beach: Potts 2; Welsh, Mead, Chamberlain, Foreman, McComiskie, Turner, Vardy, Wilson, Smith 1.
Best – North Beach: Chamberlain, Vardy, Billi, Welsh, Melvin.
Phil Scott Colts
Mt Lawley 14.7 (93) def North Beach 3.6 (24)
Brett Jones Colts
Fremantle CBC 9.13 (67) def North Beach 5.4 (34)
North Beach 3.1 7.1 9.2 13.6 84
Whitford 1.1 4.6 6.6 7.7 49
Goals – North Beach: Kickett 5; Burns, Morling 2; Hogg, Traeger, Missikos, Wheeler 1.
Best – North Beach: S Duckworth, Kickett, Cosgrove, Stott, Wheeler, Burns.
Whitford 1.0 3.3 6.5 7.5 47
North Beach 2.1 3.3 4.4 5.7 37
Goals – North Beach: Smith 2; Luck, Brown, Cavanagh 1.
Best – North Beach: Cavanagh, Brown, O’Neill.
North Beach 4.4 (28) def Cockburn Lakes 4.2 (26)
Goals – North Beach: Cole 3.
Best – North Beach: Cole, Stretch, Pike.
By Gary Stocks