Both teams started hard with the bulk of the quarter being scrappy play. Howe seemed to be a good match for Darling and took an outstanding mark which slowed the Eagles play. De Goey put the first goal on the board for Collingwood. Beams was fast and creative out of the centre and the Pies produced a nice running game. Stephenson gave a tidy pass to Cox in front of goals, but the angle was too tight for Cox to add to the board. Phillips was effective in defence and Greenwood showed his aggression with a strong tackle. At this stage Collingwood controlled the game. Mihocek worked hard for the ball and Pendlebury was in the thick of play. A dangerous tackle led to the first goal for the Eagles. De Goey goaled again after a tidy feed from Beams. Mayne was on fire and Moore showed his athleticism with a run and bounce. Adams used some fancy footwork and gave De Goey a shot at goal. Cox earned a shot at goal after a free went his way and made good on it. Cox also proved to be a good deterrent as the Eagles took a shot for goal. By the first break the Pies led by 10 points.
The Eagles showed determination early and scored the first goal of the second quarter. The Pies attempted a reply with a point by Mayne and then Mihocek responded with a goal. West Coast slowed the game to their pace and started to dictate play. They were rewarded with a goal. This put the Eagles in the lead for the first time in the game and the Collingwood defence had a group huddle to reassess tactics. Taylor Adams delivered the much-awaited goods by delivering a great pass to Treloar giving Collingwood another goal. The Eagles were quick to goal again. At this point in the game the umpiring debacle happened, and Phillips was the patsy. The Eagles capitalised and scored a goal. Cox added another point and Treloar goaled very late in the quarter leaving the Pies with a 9-point deficit at half time.
Parts of the Collingwood defence appeared to be overwhelmed with the Eagles pressing on. Sidebottom produce some great defensive work and got on with his job. Great team work and vision from Phillips saw a nice chip to Sidebottom in front of goals giving him his first goal for the game. De Goey added another point late in the third term as the Eagles continued to dictate.
The final term saw the Pies momentarily take control as the quarter began and Josh Thomas put his 6 points in for the team. Clever play by Ryan gave West Coast another goal. Mihocek gave his all and Taylor Adams was an absolute stand out in the centre. Beams produced a late goal that gave Collingwood a more respectable score on the final siren.
Final Score Pies 11 10 76 Eagles 15 8 98 Eagles by 22 points
Collingwood had some good passages of play but, allowed West Coast to dictate the style of play and get inside their heads. Footy is a game of psychological warfare and this week we did not win. When Collingwood played their style of play and stuck to their game plan it worked. Chipping the ball around the defence end brought them unstuck and some poor decision making was very costly indeed. Collingwood underestimated the intelligence of West Coast and their ability to not only read the play but redesign the play. The Pies went from playing a very proactive, productive style of play to reactively chasing the ball. These are all things that can be fixed through training and confidence building. Taylor Adams was outstanding upon his return and is a no brainer for next week.
About the umpires, sigh! It seemed that the umpires barely used their whistles at all in the first quarter making it scrappy and letting a lot of calls go. There were definitely a few free kicks in there for both sides. The mess with Phillips was all on that umpire. Up to that point each time there was a penalty the umpires would name the side that had been awarded penalty not just point and by all appearances, in this instance, the penalty went to Phillips. Upon re-examination of the footage so too thought most of West Coast. A 50-metre penalty just added insult to injury and confused absolutely everyone on and off the field. I’m hoping that it didn’t affect Tom Phillips' confidence and that the AFL makes an effort to explain both calls.
The constant changing of the rules is confusing the players and frustrating the fans. The AFL needs to make a genuine effort to explain the rule changes to players and the fans (after all, the ticket sales pay wages for players and umpires). Too many changes are making it a different game and there is a lot to be said for the simplicity of the old rules. Sure, I’m all for eliminating dangerous tackles and anything that genuinely endangers a player but let’s not turn it into American football because that’s a different game and not the game we love. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
Looking forward to next week’s game. Go Pies!
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Hi, in a nutshell I love my Pies, Collingwood Magpies that is. I have loved the Black and White since I was 8 years old. I also love my AFL, AFLW and Netball. These are my thoughts on each game and to me it's Pretty Black and White.