League Match Report - Round 15 - South Adelaide vs North Adelaide
League Match Report
South Adelaide vs North Adelaide
Round 15 - Hickinbotham Oval - 21/07/18
Goals: Fitt, Kreuger, Szust, Heaslip, Aurrichio 2, Fields, Rankine, Brooksby, Cailotto, Whittlesea
Best: Hunter, Heaslip, Noble, Aurrichio, Davis, Brooksby
South Adelaide breathed new confidence into their finals aspirations with a 41-point win over North Adelaide at Hickinbotham Oval on Saturday afternoon.
The Panthers were made to work for it by a resilient Roosters outfit, but pushed their way to a 15.11 (101) to 9.6 (60) victory thanks to a strong final term.
The hosts had to ward off a North Adelaide fightback in the third term, but controlled the last and by the time reliable defender Alex Cailotto leaked forward to bang home his first goal of the season in stoppage time it was party time in Noarlunga
The win gives Jarrad Wright's men some breathing room in fifth position on the ladder. The Panthers now hold a two-game and percentage buffer over Central District and West Adelaide in sixth and seventh respectively.
Post game, Wright was particularly proud of the team performance that put the Roosters away.
Often reliant on the brilliance of stalwarts Joel Cross, Nick Liddle and Keegan Brooksby, it was the Panthers youth that shone the brightest and lead the charge against North.
Sent back to the Reserves last week, Adam Hunter and Mark Noble were instrumental in leading the League side this week.
Hunter continues to evolve as an inside midfielder. He played an important role shutting down the Roosters dangerous skipper Max Thring, holding him to 10 touches and minimal impact, while amassing 25 touches and eight clearances of his own.
Meanwhile, the run and carry of Noble (27 possessions) and inside grunt of Ben Heaslip (23 and two goals) and Abe Davis (29 touches and 10 clearances - both game highs) were also key to the win.
Nothing could separate the sides through the first term, as the Panthers importantly matched their opponents against the breeze.
With the wind at their backs South began to create a buffer in the second term.
With Brooksby and Alex Aurrichio teaming up well in the ruck, the Panthers steadily worked their way on top at the stoppages. By the afternoon's end the hosts would win the contested ball 145-109 and stoppages 43-30, which would prove key against the usually free-flowing and high-scoring Roosters.
A six goal to one term would see South head into the rooms with a 33-point advantage.
However, it would be the Roosters who got out of the blocks the quickest after the major break.
Alex Spina got the visitors on the board within a minute before young gun Connor Rozee added another shortly after.
The Panthers did steady through 100-gamer Matt Rankine, but North would kick the next three to cut the lead back to nine.
However, big Aurrichio coolly slotted his second late in the term and the lead would remain at three goals at the final change.
In the last South came home with a wet sail with the wind literally at their backs.
Both sides started hesitantly, but South soon worked their way on top and kicked four unanswered goals by the time Cailotto sealed the win deep into stoppage time.
The Panthers next challenge will be the ever ominous trip to Alberton to face Port Adelaide this Saturday, July 28 from 2.20pm.
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