K rock Football

Falcons snap eight-game losing streak

GEELONG Falcons broke through for a drought-breaking seven-point win over Tasmania in a NAB League thriller at North Hobart Oval on Saturday.

Momentum swung several times during a tense last quarter before a late goal from Chris Seymour sealed the Falcons’ second win of the season.

Charlie Sprague kicked three goals and Max Annandale bobbed up with two in the final term to help secure the Falcons’ 8.8 (56) to 6.13 (49) victory.

“I’m just really proud of their effort,” Falcons coach Luke Daffy said.

“Throughout the year, not once have they arrived back at the club in a negative mood or really flat.

“They’ve just been such a positive group, always looking forward, and I think there was a little bit of relief (to get the win), but they were just really excited.

“We made coming over to Tassie a bit of a mission for us. It was time to spend together, and we tried to find our best footy and play it consistently.

“To get a win out of it was really exciting for them as a group moving forward into the end of the year.”

Geelong started well and was in front at every change, but was forced to survive a late challenge from the hosts, who snatched the lead midway through the final term.

Annandale brought it level with his second goal before Jack Sarcevic laid a strong tackle and put the Falcons in front again with a behind from the resulting free kick at the 20-minute mark.

Seymour settled the contest when he slotted a clever snap shot from the forward pocket with two minutes left.

“It was a real slog,” Daffy said.

“We played some really good footy in the second term and then in the third term they really challenged us and got the game on their terms around the contest.

“But the last quarter was the bit that made me really proud of the group.

“They were challenged, and they were behind a couple of times, but they just continued to grind it out.

“After being in those situations a lot of times this year, we’ve been challenging the group to learn from those experiences.

“Today was the first time they’ve really showed that they could take responsibility for it, and they got the job done.”

Oliver Henry (23 disposals) and Noah Gribble (15) were strong contributors for the Falcons as they registered their first win in two months.

Co-captain Jesse Clark returned from Vic Country duty and stood out with 20 disposals in his first NAB League match since May.

Outstanding tall defender Cam Fleeton stood firm in the backline, and ruckman Henry Walsh battled strongly in the air.

The Falcons will now aim to finish their season on a winning note, taking on Dandenong Stingrays at Bendigo’s Queen Elizabeth Oval on August 18 before completing 2019 with the Wildcard Round.

Twitter: @shayne_hope

GEELONG FALCONS  3.1, 5.4, 5.6, 8.8 (56)

TASMANIA DEVILS  2.4, 2.5, 4.11, 6.13 (49)

Goals; Geelong Falcons: C. Sprague 3, C. Seymour, M. Annandale, K. Rayner, J. Clark, A. Hildebrandt

Tasmania Devils: J. Lane 2, J. Rand, P. Walker, J. Callow, J. Menzie

Best; Geelong Falcons: O. Henry, C. Sprague, C. Fleeton, J. Clark, N. Gribble, H. Whyte

Tasmania Devils: O. Davis, J. Rand, S. Banks, O. Shaw, J. Lane