MRS Property Match Report Round 18: vs Port Adelaide
MRS Property Match Report
South Adelaide vs Port Adelaide
Round 18 - Alberton Oval - 21/08/21
Goals: Fitt 4, Wilkinson 3, Cross 2, Broadbent, Freitag, Heaslip, Overall
Best: Haines, Fitt, Broadbent, Skinner
A costly slow start sees South Adelaide fall to Port Adelaide by 13 points during a nail-biting clash at Alberton Oval on a sunny Saturday.
With the sun shining down on the SANFLs oldest rivalry, the Panthers attempted to pounce late on the Magpies but couldn't hold onto the lead and instead suffered an agonisingly close loss, 13.6 (84) to 15.7 (97).
Impressive up forward for the Panthers was Liam Fitt, who added 4 goals to his season tally. Bryce Gibbs, 31 disposals and 7 clearances, and Matthew Broadbent, 29 disposals and 10 clearances, were also standouts in the blue and white.
With a spot in the finals on the line, the Panthers struggled out of the box early.
A Ben Heaslip goal, that came 3 minutes into the opening term, was the Panthers only major score for the first term—which saw them enter the break trailing, 1.1 (7) to 5.2 (32).
However, the Panthers quickly turned things around in the second term and, with the breeze at their back, got things going early with an Eamon Wilkinson goal.
Some great forward pressure by Fitt, which ended in a chase down tackle, helped keep the ball in South's forward half as the Panthers began to chip away at the deficit.
12 minutes into the second term, the Panthers went end to end and Joel Cross was able to find Fitt—whose much-needed goal helped build up some momentum.
Then, Fraser Turner almost scored a goal of the year contender, but it fell inches short. Luckily, Fitt was able to soccer it safely across for a major score.
With Sam Skinner remaining steadfast in defence, he was able to intercept a Power Reserves rebound which gave the Panthers a nice look inside 50—which was finished off by a Cross goal.
In the dying stages, Wilkinson's second goal of the game brought the halftime deficit to just two points.
Port Adelaide opened the scoring after halftime, but Fitt was able to reply with his third major of the match. Then, Cross stepped up with the lead-taking goal.
However, the lead was short-lived as the Power ring in struck late to take the lead for the Magpies—and from here they broke the door down with 4 goals in 7 minutes.
Too make matters worse, the Panthers lost Reece Milsom late into the quarter to injury, which ruled him out for the remainder of the match.
Facing an 8.5 (53) to 11.5 (71) deficit at the final break, Sam Overall gave the Panthers the perfect start with a goal just 49 seconds in.
Just 6 minutes later, Broadbent then gained possession out of the stoppage and quickly snapped a goal to bring the lead within striking distance.
Then Wilkinson collected the ball and, with a thumping kick, brought the lead to within a single straight kick.
Continuing his dangerous display up forward, Fitt gained possession in the pocket and, after dodging and fending off opponents, did a soccer-style cross to Damon Freitag who marked it dead in front of goal.
Just 10 minutes into the final term, Freitag's goal put the Panthers into the lead.
The Panthers pushed to bump their late lead to double digits, but a costly free-kick saw Port rebound—but a desperate spoil by Hayden Sampson halted Port's chance of a set-shot.
Within the same minute, Jason Horne-Francis and his desperation was also on display as he tackled an opponent directly in front of goal-saving the Panthers from a certain score.
With the scores tied, some forward pressure by the Panthers saw the Magpies fumble which allowed Fitt to push through and kick a much-needed goal.
However, 2 goals within 2 minutes broke the game open in the home sides favour. Then, a free-kick out of the centre all but sealed the Panthers fate, who ended up falling to a bitter 13.6 (84) to 15.7 (97) defeat.
South Adelaide will now have the weekend off before they face West Adelaide in a do or die clash at Flinders University Stadium on Saturday, 4 September, from 2:10pm.
|Tags:SANFLSenior FootballSenior Match ReviewsPanthers Football|