Thunder short circuit in loss to Eagles

Monday, July 8, 2019 - 4:52 PM by David Bubb

The West Coast Eagles have defeated Peel Thunder by 48-points in a wet and frustrating affair at David Grays Arena.


The Eagles kicked away in trying conditions in the second half to run away winners 10.16 (76) to 3.10 (28).  


Returning Captain Ben Howlett said it was a disappointing afternoon from start to finish.  


“You never like to lose a game of football, it was probably just our effort which wasn’t there today,“ he said. 


West Coast got off to a fast start kicking two goals in the opening 10 minutes, however Peel were able to control the remainder of the quarter to prevent the margin from increasing. 


At quarter time Thunder coach Cameron Sheppard called for his players to be more aggressive around the ball and match the Eagles’ running power. 


Peel responded in the second quarter kicking two of their three goals for the day and laying 25 tackles to West Coast’s 23. 


The Eagles managed to slightly increase their quarter time lead in the second term, however Peel were right in the game heading in to half time. 


The third quarter saw West Coast kick four goals to Peel’s one despite the Thunder having three more inside 50s. 


Ben Howlett said Peel struggled to make the most of their opportunities in the front half.


“They got us out the back quite a lot from when we were going inside 50 and they were able to bounce back and slingshot against us,” he said. 


Inaccuracy was costly for Peel, kicking more than three times as many behinds as goals for the day. 


Ben Howlett said the Thunder will look to return to the style of play that has been successful for the team this season.  


“We need to get back to our trademark football, and that’s our effort and pressure which is what we’re good at and known for,“ he said.  


Howlett impressed in his first game since round one, collecting 21 disposals to go with nine tackles. 


Jackson Merrett (20 disposals and a goal) and Taylin Duman (24 disposals and 11 marks) were also among the best for the Thunder.


The loss sees Peel fall out of the top five with six games remaining in the home and away season. 


The Thunder travel to Leederville to face eighth placed East Perth on Saturday, July 13.