WAFL 2022: Subiaco secure first win of the season with thrilling one point win over East Perth
It took a behind in the final 10 seconds of the game to secure it, but Subiaco belatedly scored their first win of the 2022 season.
A Max Walters minor score handed the Lions a thrilling one-point victory against East Perth at Leederville Oval, with the 12.12 (84) to 12.11 (83) win halting the reigning premiers’ worst start to the season in almost 30 years after a 0-3 opening.
The Royals were the victims of Subiaco’s inspired effort in a battle of the co-tenants, making the most of their momentum and overcoming periods of struggle throughout a titanic arm-wrestle.
East Perth kicked three of the final four goals of the match before Thomas Medhat kicked a behind to level the scores at the 28-minute mark.
Both sides had opportunities to go forward in a frantic final two minutes but Subiaco won possession and found space out the back, with Walters needing only to score with a snap around his body.
The breakthrough win also took dual superhuman efforts from forward pairing Brandon Matera and Ben Sokol, with the former kicking five goals in the first half and the latter adding a quartet of his own in the second half.
Sokol kicked three of his goals in a herculean final quarter, including a crucial one with seven minutes to play.
Former Docker Stefan Giro was a prime mover through the midfield, finishing with 32 touches, while Lachlan Delahunty (21 touches, 17 hitouts) and Leigh Kitchin (12 touches, 10 tackles) were also influential.
Hamish Brayshaw led the Royals with 31 touches and six tackles while athletic forward Sebit Kuek kicked four goals.
Eight goals were kicked in total during a titanic third quarter as both sides wrestled for ascendancy.
Subiaco kicked the opening three goals of the quarter to take back the lead as Matera kicked his fourth of the match.
Sokol and Kuek traded goals midway through the term but from there East Perth stormed into the final break, kicking three unanswered goals.
Matera had the chance to bring the margin within a kick with the final shot of the quarter but hit the post, leaving the margin delicately poised at six points.
Subiaco applied plenty of scoreboard pressure early. Lewis Putt and Matera combined to kick the first three goals of the match as the Lions forced and capitalised from East Perth turnovers.
Christian Ameduri got the Royals on the board just before the quarter time siren but an animated East Perth coaching cohort demanded improvement at the first break.
And the Royals did exactly that, Nick Robertson and Kuek kicking two goals apiece to storm ahead in the second quarter as Subiaco struggled for momentum.
But East Perth could have been further in front if not for some awry kicking, and were ultimately made to pay.
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