Wanderers finals chances ended after blowing red-hot start over Kukerin-Dumbleyung

Andrew PritchardGreat Southern Herald
Justin Joyce was named best afield in Kukerin-Dumbleyung's win over Katanning.
Camera IconJustin Joyce was named best afield in Kukerin-Dumbleyung's win over Katanning.

Katanning Wanderers fell short in a thrilling finish against Kukerin-Dumbleyung, losing by seven points to end their finals hopes for the 2020 Upper Great Southern Football League season on Sunday.

The Wanderers led by 14 points at half-time and appeared on track for their first win of season but the Cougars booted eight goals to five in the second half to run out winners at Quartermaine Oval.

The home side booted four unanswered goals in a dominant first term but the Cougars worked their way back into the contest.

The Wanderers could have had the game won at quarter-time if it wasn’t for their inaccuracy, with dominant ruckman Khallon Zilm and midfielders Reece Nicholson, Callum Collard and Braden Crosby giving forwards Mitchell Banks and Caleb Keley plenty of opportunities to score.

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All of this came against a strong north-westerly breeze.

Injuries and a player send-off didn’t help Wanderers’ cause, as goals dried up in the second and third quarters — Wanderers managed only three goals to the visitors’ seven.

Jalen McGee provided a target in the Cougars forward line and Kent Patterson was speedy on his wing while Justin Joyce was influential through the midfield.

Wanderers’ lead was eaten up by the Cougars, who took a six-point advantage into the last term.

Kicking with the breeze, the home side had every chance to grab their first win for the season as Callum Collard kicked two classy goals and with a few minutes to go, it was goal for goal.

On the siren, with the Cougars leading by a point, the game was sealed with a mark and goal from McGee as they prevailed 11.14 (80) to 11.7 (73).

For the victors, Joyce was presented with the match ball for Think Mental Health Round as the best player on the ground.

Tyrone Roe, Laurence Collard along with Nicholson and Keley were named in Wanderers’ best players.

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