SWAN Districts started strongly against the finals-bound Peel Thunder at Steel Blue Oval on Saturday in the inaugural Pride Game held at the Bassendean venue, but the Thunder ended up overpowering the Swans in a 12.11 (83) to 10.13 (73) victory.
However, despite the loss there was again a lot to like from the black-and-whites and reason for optimism looking towards the 2024 WAFL season.
While it was Peel who was the team needing the win to secure a finals spot, it was Swan Districts who had the better of the start to the contest and after a string of three behinds, they finally kicked the first goal thanks to a crafty snap from Ryan Kemp.
Swans then had the game’s first two goals when Josh Cipro kicked truly. Peel did get on the board thanks to Ben Middleton, but the black-and-whites finished the opening term with another goal to Lachlan Riley to be in control leading by 15 points at quarter-time.
The Thunder did make a better start to the second stanza with a couple of early goals to Josh Corbett and Brody Wemm.
When Max Knobel kicked another, the Thunder were in the lead, but Swan Districts answered with a quick couple of goals from Jesse Glass-McCasker and Cipro.
It was Peel’s turn to get momentum back heading into half-time with late goals to Corbett (two) and Middleton, which saw the Thunder leading by 11 points at the main break.
Corbett then opened up the second half kicking his fourth goal of the game for Peel before Wemm added a second, and Middleton a third as the visitors blew the lead out to 28 points.
The Swans hung in and closed the third period with a couple of goals from Max Chipper and Sam Fisher to narrow the gap to 14 points by three quarter-time.
Early goals in the last quarter to Corbett and debutant Reece Torrent then put Peel back out to a 26-point lead.
That was enough to secure the win despite Swans kicking the game’s last three goals to Riley, Jackson McLachlan and Chris Jones to close the final margin to 10 points.