IN Round 19 of the West Australian Football League (WAFL) Colts competition, Claremont defeated South Fremantle by 78 points at Fremantle Community Bank Oval.
Despite missing talented prospects Cameron Anderson, Isaiah Butters, Jye Clark, Liam Henry, Callum Jamieson and Ronin O’Connor, the Tigers flexed their muscles against a sorry Bulldogs outfit to secure a home final.
It is worth noting that the Bulldogs were missing Darryl Anderson, Ben Pears, and Robbie Woods.
Below were the best players in the game.
#1 Jack Musika
The 2017 WA U16s State Academy member showed that he could be considered one of the better forward-midfield players in this year’s WAFL Colts competition. Against the Tigers, Musika collected 16 possessions, laid five tackles, took four marks, recorded two inside 50s and kicked a goal playing as a half-forward flanker. The highlight of his game came in the first quarter when he was able to gather the ball cleanly between multiple players, and then checkside the ball through for a goal.
#3 Jarrod Salmeri
The Boddington product was solid off the half-back line for the Bulldogs, trying his utmost to repel Claremont’s repeated forward entries. In the process he accumulated 13 possessions, took three marks and laid two tackles, trying to intercept the attacking forays, and also tried to provide adequate rebound from the Bulldogs’ defensive half.
#6 Manfred Kelly
The Fremantle Next-Generation Academy member continued his strong season for the Bulldogs with another solid performance. Against Claremont, Kelly accumulated a team-high 19 possessions, laid five tackles, recorded a team-high five inside 50s and took three marks to be one of the few South Fremantle players to hold their heads up after the game.
#27 Eric Botha
The Booragoon junior tried his heart out for the Bulldogs but it was to no avail. He finished with 18 possessions, seven tackles, six marks and four inside 50s to be one of the better players for South Fremantle.
#42 Nathan Spooner
The Wagin product was outstanding in the ruck for the Bulldogs, toiling hard in an entertaining duel with Steven Miller. Against the Tigers, Spooner gathered a team-high 19 possessions, won 18 hit-outs, took a game-high nine marks, recorded four inside 50s and laid two tackles as he tried to will his team into the contest.
#49 Ira Jetta
Before going off with a shoulder injury early in the third quarter, Jetta showed enough to suggest that he could be considered a gun prospect for WA at next year’s AFL U18s Championships. He finished with 13 possessions, five inside 50s and three tackles, as he rotated between the midfield and the forward line. His neat skills combined with his speed make him a damaging player.
#3 Leno Thomas
The Fremantle Next Generation Academy member showed he has all the traits to become a very good player at the next level with an accomplished performance. Playing as a half-back flanker, Thomas intercepted many of the Bulldogs’ attempts, rebounded with class and used his speed and skill to penetrate the Bulldogs’ defensive zone. A highlight of his game came in the first quarter when he intercepted a South Fremantle attack, played on immediately and found Charlie Malone inside attacking 50. His final stats were 19 possessions and five marks.
#8 Jack Buller
Playing as the centre half-back, Buller was pivotal to the Tigers’ mauling of the Bulldogs. He set up behind the play exceptionally well, helped organise his team-mates, was aggressive with his attack on the ball and man, was strong in the aerial contests, and read the play well to position himself in the right spots. He limited his direct opponent, Jacob Plunkett, to just two possessions and a goal, while he finished with 11 possessions and five tackles.
#11 Kade Lines
The Marist Junior was excellent through the midfield for the Tigers, applying plenty of pressure around the contest and helping set up a host of attacking forays. He gathered 21 possessions, laid six tackles, recorded four inside 50s and took two marks in a dazzling display.
#12 Joel Western
The bottom-age prospect who is also a member of the Fremantle Next-Generation Academy, Western was exceptional against South Fremantle. He finished with 26 possessions, four inside 50s, three tackles, two marks and a goal in a dazzling display. The real feature of his game was his desire to use his pace to burn off his opponents and to help set up many of the Tigers’ attacking moves. Western is shaping up to be one of WA’s better prospects in next year’s AFL Draft.
#14 Jack Cooley
The 2016 WA U15s State Schoolboys’ representative continued his fine season with the Tigers with another dominant outing. He accumulated a game-high 28 possessions, laid seven tackles, recorded five inside 50s and kicked two goals to arguably be best afield. His ability to stand up in a tackle before getting the ball to a team-mate on the outside was very good for someone his age. Could potentially be a gem for a club that picks him up late in the National Draft or as a rookie.
#21 Louis Passera
The 19-year-old was excellent off the wing for the visitors using his speed and skill to carve up the Bulldogs’ defensive zones. He accumulated 14 possessions, took five marks and kicked two goals in a powerful performance.
#27 Charlie Malone
The Scarborough junior showed why he is one of the better small forwards in this year’s WAFL Colts competition with another dazzling performance. Against the Bulldogs, Malone collected 17 possessions, grabbed five marks, laid four tackles, recorded four inside 50s and kicked four goals to be the most damaging player on the ground. His leading patterns, particularly in the first half, were excellent for someone his age.
#32 Logan Young
The 17-year-old showed he could be a potential inside midfield prospect for next year’s AFL draft with a solid performance against South Fremantle. He finished with 15 possessions, eight tackles, three inside 50s and two goals to be one of the more damaging players on the ground.
#36 Steven Miller
The Wembley Amateur produced the best performance of his short career to date for the Tigers. Against the Bulldogs, Miller gathered 14 possessions, won a game-high 29 hit-outs, laid five tackles and recorded two inside 50s to be the best big man on the ground. His ruck craft, mobility around the ground and his competitiveness all stood out in his performance.