GNFL Round 6 wrap: Railways cement top spot on ladder with 36-point win against Rovers

Derek GoforthGeraldton Guardian
Jack Cocking of Railways takes a contested mark.
Camera IconJack Cocking of Railways takes a contested mark. Credit: Justine Rowe Around the Traps

Railways and Rovers came into their contest on Saturday both feeling confident and looking to claim top spot on the GNFL ladder.

On a perfect day for footy, the Blues hosted the Demons at the Recreation Ground, with Railways coming away the winners in an entertaining match.

The Blues got the best of the centre play and managed to make the most of their drives forward to win 13.12 (90) to 8.6 (54).

Railways started flying from the whistle, with the first point on the board 30 seconds from the bounce. The first quarter showed intensity from Railways, but consecutive behinds highlighted their early missed opportunities.

After a slower start, Rovers scored on their first opportunity with a fine goal from Shannon Cox who took a strong mark followed by a controlled kick between the posts.

Farren Parfitt scored his first two in quick succession, putting a big smile on coach Ian Comben’s face.

Railways managed to stem the flow, with a goal from Alex Newton straight from the pack and off his boot.

Cox ensured Rovers kept a lead going into the break, and quarter time saw Rovers leading 4.3 (27) to 1.7 (13).

Railways came back with renewed vigour, kicking the opening three goals of the second term and putting the Demons under real pressure. Jack Cocking took time to get on the board, but did so with a great strike, giving Railways their sixth of the afternoon.

Despite a rally from the Demons, half time saw Railways reverse the score line, going in as leaders 7.10 (52) to 7.3 (45).

The teams could not be separated in the third quarter, with the ball bouncing from one defence to another. Chris Scott shone for Rovers, ensuring Railways had to fight for every mark. Rovers couldn’t add any goals, compared to Railways’ two for the quarter.

The Blues extended their lead going into the final period 9.10 (64) to Rovers 7.5 (47).

The final quarter saw more of the same, both teams having moments of great play but Railways getting the best of their marks. The Blues showed their superior fitness in the latter stages.

Koby and Beau Simpson for Rovers and Riley Zimmerman for the Blues were simply outstanding for all four quarters.

The final whistle saw Railways victorious, but the 36-point difference didn’t reflect the skills and determination from Rovers.

Ultimately however, the Blues showed just a little more class later in the game. Six goals to one in the second half saw Railways comfortable winners.

Cox kicked three goals for Rovers and Parfitt kicked two before he was injured.

For Railways, Newton kicked four, Antonio Priolo three, Elliot Delaney two and singles from Johny Narkle, Tristan Simpson, Jack Cocking and Jesse Adamini.

Joe Ugle was important for Rovers as was Chris Scott, with the Simpson brothers doing their best to keep Railways at bay.

Railways ebbed and flowed, with Jesse Adamini seeming sluggish for his usual high standards. Corey Clark and Ben Saunders made the most of their opportunities.

The Blues’ defence were the stand outs, snuffing out Rovers’ forward movement, with Tom Rowe and Zimmerman rocks for their side.

Meanwhile, Brigades defeated Chapman Valley 18.14 (122) to 7.6 (48) at GBSC Sports Park on Saturday afternoon.

Kim Schofield, Izac Ronan, Dale Williamson, Fraser Ismail and Kristerfer Ryder were instrumental in their side’s 74-point win.

GNFL leading goalkicker Williamson bagged himself seven goals while Schofield chipped in with four.

In the final game of the round, Mullewa claimed their first win of the season, downing Northampton by 15 points, 9.12 (66) to 7.9 (51), at Mullewa Town Oval on Sunday afternoon.

The win lifts Mullewa off the bottom of the ladder, with Chapman Valley relegated to last at present.

Rovers have dropped to third, Brigades have lifted to second, while Northampton and Towns sit fourth and fifth.

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