The fifth round of the Portland Australian Football League has come and gone and, despite an inspired third-quarter fight-back, the Power couldn’t make it two wins in a row, succumbing to the Brewers, 10.10 70 to 6.9 45. It was a warm and humid day at Northgate Park, the first match after Memorial Day, and both sides were down a touch on numbers compared with the previous match.
Right from the get-go, the Brewers jumped ahead. Though it was another hard-fought match with plenty of offense for both sides, the Brewers got the goals in the first quarter, kicking 4.1 for 25 points compared to just five behinds for 5 points for the Power. The goals continued in the second quarter, as the Brewers and Power each put two goals on the board and the score ended 6.4 40 to 2.6 18. The goals were only coming from a small group of players on Sunday — the Brewers’ forward Kyle Easton and rover Nathan Weinstock, and the Powers’ captain Peter “Pele” Blundell and forward Scott “Mitts” Hager, returning to Portland for the first time since last year’s PAFL Metro Grand Final.
The Power dominated in the third quarter, holding the Brewers to just two points in the period while kicking 2.3 of their own. The Power were driven from the back, as Jason and Brandon Snider controlled the ball from the back-line and rover Jacob Gawlista, Blundell and Hager became influential in the forward area. The fight back made it anyone’s game after three quarters, with the Brewers clinging on to just a three-point lead and the Power ready to battle.
However, luck was not with the Power as the Brewers replied to the third-quarter blitz right as the final period started. The Brewers had eight more kicks on goal, scoring 4.4 for the period and putting the game away. Blundell and Hager each got their third goal of the game for the Power but it wasn’t enough; the Brewers’ defense was stout enough to thwart the Powers’ final advances. Brewers midfielders Weinstock and captain James Begg continued to control possession in the fourth quarter, battling in the middle with the Powers’ Gawlista and Ben Hargrave.
The loss drops the Power back to the basement of the PAFL with a 1-3 record. The Brewers and Naturals will meet in the next PAFL Metro game on Sunday, June 19 to break the deadlock at the top of the table. After the next Metro comes the Portland Steelheads’ invitational tournament on Saturday, June 25, including the Steelheads, the Seattle Grizzlies, and Golden Gate from San Francisco. This will be the first test of the Steelheads’ combined squad drawing from the Brewers, Naturals and Power, and promises to be a great day for footy in Portland.
1st Quarter: Brewers 4.1.25 v Power 0.5.5
2nd Quarter: Brewers 6.4.40 v Power 2.6.18
3rd Quarter: Brewers 6.6.42 v Power 4.9.33
Final: Brewers 10.10.70 v Power 6.9.45
Kyle Easton 4, Nathan Weinstock 4, Martin Coventry 1, Jared Klingsporn 1.
Brewers Best on Ground:
Nathan Weinstock, Kyle Easton, James Begg, Martin Coventry
Peter Blundell 3, Scott Hager 3
Power Best on Ground:
Peter Blundell, Jacob Gawlista, Ben Hargrave, Brandon Snider