WAFL 2022: South Fremantle start to find their groove after second quarter blowout against Perth Demons

Harry GrigsonThe West Australian
South Fremantle skipper Dylan Main celebrates a win over Perth.
Camera IconSouth Fremantle skipper Dylan Main celebrates a win over Perth. Credit: Michael O'Brien

A seven-goal blitz from South Fremantle epitomised why they are one of the in-form teams of the WAFL as they launched themselves into third spot on the back of a third consecutive victory.

The Bulldogs put Perth to the sword in the second and third quarters, booting seven unanswered goals in captain Dylan Main’s return, which was also his 100th game for the club.

Main hadn’t played since round four when he injured his shoulder but made a successful return, kicking a goal from 20 disposals to lead his side to a 12.12 (84) to 6.9 (45) win over the Demons at Fremantle Community Bank Oval on Saturday.

Main was appreciative of his achievement but had already set his sights on another illustrious milestone.

“It’s an absolute honour to play for this club, it’s been a lifelong dream to play 100 games and hopefully soon I can gain lifelong membership,” he said.

The biggest factor in the game was a strong breeze, which helped the Demons get the upper hand early.

Perth had an ideal start kicking with the wind to take a nine-point lead into the first break. But when it was South Fremantle’s turn the screws started to turn.

They booted six goals to none in the second term, with the in-form Jimmy Miller contributing two and Tyson Headland putting forward an early career highlight with a sensational snap on debut.

“It was pretty much do the basics well today, it was very windy, and our midfield competed the whole day, and the forwards took advantage,” Main said.

Bulldogs midfielders Glenn Byron (27 disposals), Haiden Schloithe (26) and Steven Verrier (21) gave their forwards plenty of service.

South Fremantle captain Dylan Main is wrapped up in a tackle.
Camera IconSouth Fremantle captain Dylan Main is wrapped up in a tackle. Credit: Michael O'Brien

Defender Toby McQuilkin was reliable as ever collecting a game-high 31 touches to drive the South Fremantle’s play from the backline.

After claiming their third win on the trot, Main said the team was starting to find their groove.

“We’re starting to string some good performances together and playing with full four-quarter efforts,” he said.

The Bulldogs play winless West Coast next weekend offering a good opportunity to make it four in a row before the mid-season bye.

“Hopefully next week we can bank a win against the Eagles before the bye and give ourselves a good platform to launch from in the second half of the season,” Main said.

Perth coach Garry Moss said the second-quarter blowout was built on South Fremantle’s midfield dominance and silly mistakes from his players.

“They smashed us in contested possession, winning it by 23 in the second quarter and so we just weren’t able to get our hands on it,” Moss said.

“We were also extremely undisciplined giving away 12 free kicks inside defensive 50 with six resulting in goals.”

The loss for the Demons was their fifth on the trot and they are starting to be distanced by the finals-bound teams, but Moss said an inexperienced team will show inconsistent performances.

“We just need to continue to improve and work hard on the track and we just need to get better at our games,” Moss said.

“We had 13 players who have played less than 20 games so we’re going to have performances that reflect that, but we just need to continue to improve as a group.”

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