League Match Report: Panthers keep Finals hope alive!
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South Adelaide vs North Adelaide
Round 17 - Flinders University Stadium - 18/08/19
Goals: McKinnon, Davis, Wilkinson 3, Fitt 2, Cross, Overall, Karpany, Irra
Best: Karpany, Haines, Davis, Overall, McKinnon, Cailotto
The Panthers keep their finals dreams alive with a dominant 79-point victory over North Adelaide on super-soaked Sunday at Flinders University Stadium.
In what is best described as a team with "21 contributors"; the Panthers put on one of their best performances for the season to set up the 15.9 (99) to 2.8 (20) victory.
South Adelaide managed to keep the visitors goalless for almost three quarters; with the Roosters first goal coming in the twenty-fourth minute of the third quarter.
More importantly; the win sees the Panthers sit just one win behind both fifth placed Norwood and fourth placed Sturt with just one game left.
It did not take long for the Panthers to get on the scoreboard; with Emmanuel Irra (11 disposals and three marks) kicking truly after just three minutes of play.
However, battling against the Roosters as well as the tough conditions; it wouldn't be until the seventeenth minute mark that Malcolm Karpany (24 disposals, five marks and five tackles) would follow up with the Panthers second of the game.
Victor Harbor product, Jesse McKinnon kicked truly just minutes later to join the goal kickers. McKinnon would go on to collect 21 disposals, three marks, four tackles and six clearances in one of his best displays for the Panthers.
In the dying stages; Abe Davis (19 disposals, six marks and 12 hit outs) booted his first of the game to send the Panthers into the first break with a 4.2 (26) to 0.1 (1) lead.
While the forward line was performing well; the backline was also playing brilliantly.
Continuing his standout season was Joe Haines with 31 disposals, eight marks, four tackles and seven rebound 50s.
Also causing headaches for the opposition was Ben Haren who collected 19 disposals, five marks and created plenty of chances with eight rebound 50s.
Coming out after the first break; Joel Cross (15 disposals, five marks and four tackles) kicked truly to give the Panthers their first goal of the second quarter.
Not long later; Davis followed up with his second of the game before Liam Fitt (ten disposals, seven tackles and four marks) got on the board with his first.
Meanwhile, Reece Milsom was busy around the ground, gathering 19 disposals, three marks and four tackles. Also busy was Matt Rose with 24 disposals, five tackles and four clearances.
A booming goal by Davis in the dying stages sent the Panthers into the main break with a very promising 8.5 (53) to 0.4 (4) lead.
The halftime break was at the perfect time; as the players narrowly dodged a hailstorm that rained down during the break.
Braving the tough elements for another quarter; it was McKinnon who open the scoring for the second half with his second goal of the match.
Just two minutes later, Fitt followed up with his second goal of the game as the Panthers continued to make the most of their momentum.
Local product Eamon Wilkinson (12 disposals, five tackles) kicked truly to get his first senior level goal for the Panthers; before a free kick would see the Roosters manage their first goal of the game at the twenty-fourth minute mark of the third quarter.
Wilkinson continued his impressive performance in just his second game; with his second goal of the game in the dying stages of the third to send the Panthers into the final break with a 12.7 (79) to 1.5 (11) lead.
Coming out after the last break for one more quarter in the could conditions; Sam Overall (19 disposals, seven marks and eight tackles) kicked truly to add a goal to his impressive set of stats.
Wilkinson continued his run; with the ball skidding over the line to signal his third goal of the match.
Midway through the last, North Adelaide would manage their second goal of the game before McKinnon could boot his third of the match.
The siren would sound in the freezing conditions to signal the Panthers impressive 15.9 (99) to 2.8 (20) win to keep the Panthers final dreams alive.
Sitting just one game out of the finals with just one game to go; South Adelaide face Adelaide in a do or die clash at Flinders University Stadium on Saturday, August 24 from 2:10pm in what is inspiration leader Bradley Crabb's last home game for the Panthers.
The equation for September football looks like this; South need to win on Saturday and rely on Norwood (who face West Adelaide on Friday night) and/or Sturt (who face Glenelg on Saturday afternoon) to drop points.