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Brigades blow Railways off track while Northampton deals Royals’ finals credentials a huge blow

Jake Santa MariaGeraldton Guardian
Thomas Fleming celebrates after getting one out the pack
Camera IconThomas Fleming celebrates after getting one out the pack Credit: Jake Santa Maria

It was billed as the game of the round between last year’s one and two but the gap between the two teams looked cavernous as Hawks routed last year’s minor premiers by 75 points on Saturday.

The Hawks burnt the Blues at their home ground 15.10 (100) to 3.7 (25) as Brigades made it three straight victories.

Before the match, both teams locked arms and stood in silence to honour the passing of Jeff Tubby, former Railways president and life member laid to rest on June 8.

Tubby was a long-time member of the club, coming over with his sons Chris and Nathan in 2001 and serving as president from 2007-2009 and again in 2019-2020. He was made a life member in 2019 and will be sorely missed by his family, his club and the GNFL.

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The Blues roared at the opening bounce with Blake Bunter finishing a good chain of handballs to snap out of the pack and open the scoring.

Hawks responded off the boot of Jack Deschamp after being set up by Jamie Ryder before Jayce Price put Railways back in front.

Without brother Kristerfer, Jamie slotted straight into the small forward role and kicked his first before captain Kim Schofield stepped up after a strong grab to kick the Hawks’ third.

From there the Hawks got on a roll, kicking the next three to make it five straight with Thomas Fleming, Kaiden Dann and Jayden Schofield all slotting one through to lead 6.4 (40) to 2.2 (14) at the end of the first quarter.

The Hawks kicked the opening two goals of the second to make it seven straight goals before Dion Anthony, who was moved up forward after spending the first quarter down back, finally broke the Hawks’ run with his first with a great snap.

But that was the final goal the Blues would score all afternoon as Brigades would kick seven unanswered goals to run out 75-point winners.

While the Blues had come into the match undefeated they had not played in two weeks and have only played three games this season and it showed.

Railways fought hard, particularly in the third when they kept Brigades to just one goal but the Hawks were far more polished.

They were immense in the air taking in multiple strong marks and Railways found it hard to hit their targets under the Hawks pressure.

Dann finished with three goals, including a couple from tight angles, with Fleming also slotting three as Jordan Obrien and Jamie Ryder finished with two.

Out in the Valley, Northampton bounced back from an underwhelming couple of rounds with a seven-goal final quarter to down the Royals 17.14 (116) to 10.8 (68).

These two sides had played out a thriller when they met in round one and the first half was a high-quality affair.

Harry Taylor returned for his first game since round three but it was Flynn Dillon who once again got himself in the headlines with six goals in a commanding performance.

The Royals had taken a slender four-point lead into half-time with strong ruck work from Tristan Jacques and Richard Bartlett and Lawrence Evans providing plenty of run-through half-forward.

But after the main break, the Rams began to get on top with a four-goal-to-one third term.

Jaden Poletti, Jamie Williams and Kye McVee were all starting to get on top in the midfield as Dillon was dominating up forward.

Trailing by 18 points, the Royals were still a chance but seven goals to the Rams in the final quarter quickly put any notion of fightback to bed as the Royals fall outside of the top four.

At Greenough, the Rovers overcame an early scare against Mullewa to win their third game in a row.

The Saints jumped out of the blocks with a four-goal first quarter to be surprise 26-9 leaders as Leon and Gregg Galby were dominating early.

The Demons responded in the second term but inaccuracy let the Saints off the hook as they kicked 3.8 in the quarter with the Saints still leading by four.

But the weight of numbers was always going to break through with the Demons kicking six goals to one in the third term to take control of the game.

Despite their waywardness, Rovers eased home 14.18 (102) to 10.9 (69) with three each to Tirstan Simpon and Jack Delane, while Gregg Galby finished with five goals in a losing cause.

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