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Wickham Wolves hold off strong Falcons challenge

Tom ZaunmayrPilbara News
Tyler Lockyer cleans the ball up around the contest, pursued by several Falcons backs.
Camera IconTyler Lockyer cleans the ball up around the contest, pursued by several Falcons backs. Credit: Picture: Tom Zaunmayr, Tom Zaunmayr.

Wickham Wolves etched out a scrappy 16-point victory over the Falcons last weekend to hold their spot on top of the 2018 league ladder, 9.13 (67) to 6.15 (51).

Coming off a 26-goal performance the previous week, the Wolves hit their straps early again, piling on four quick goals to open the game.

Jeremy Regan booted three goals for the Wolves.
Camera IconJeremy Regan booted three goals for the Wolves. Credit: Tom Zaunmayr.

Jeremy Regan (three goals) led the charge with two easy majors in front of goal to have the Wolves ahead 25 to two at the first change.

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Having had few chances to run with the ball in the first term, the Falcons lifted after the break.

The visitors’ agile midfielders worked hard around contested ball and began to win a few clearances to get the ball up to their forwards.

Nelson Ansey flies high to bag the mark in front of goal.
Camera IconNelson Ansey flies high to bag the mark in front of goal. Credit: Tom Zaunmayr.

There was also more pressure applied to the Wolves.

Space was shut down out wide as several Wolves runners were crashed over the boundary trying to find a target in front of goal.

The Falcons gave themselves more chances but could not finish, heading into half-time behind 7.3 (45) to 2.6 (18).

Raymond Taylor was hard to catch down the right wing.
Camera IconRaymond Taylor was hard to catch down the right wing. Credit: Tom Zaunmayr.

It was a different game in the third term, as a big-hitting and free-flowing game became bogged town in tight contests in centre field.

The Falcons managed just two scoring shots, while the Wolves’ seven shots mostly sailed in for behinds. That left the window open for a Falcons outfit desperate to get some points on the ladder.

The visitors stepped up a gear in the final term as they began to turn the screws on the ladder leaders.

Falcons' forward Sheldon Nelly finds space in the left forward pocket.
Camera IconFalcons' forward Sheldon Nelly finds space in the left forward pocket. Credit: Tom Zaunmayr.

Entries into the forward 50 were coming thick and fast, and tiring Wolves defenders struggled to hold their men.

Four more goals came for the Falcons’ in the final term, but eight behinds cost them a chance of challenging for the win.

In the reserves, the Wolves leapfrogged the Falcons to the top of the table with a come-from-behind 10.3 (63) to 7.7 (49) win.

The Falcons had limited posession in the first quarter.
Camera IconThe Falcons had limited posession in the first quarter. Credit: Tom Zaunmayr.

Having led at every break, the Falcons fell off the mark in the final term. The home side pounced with four unanswered goals to claim top spot in both divisions for Wickham.

Jordan Coppin led the scoring with three goals for the Wolves.

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