THE West Coast Eagles put in a spirited and competitive performance but ultimately Claremont proved too good to come away with the 27-point win at Revo Fitness Stadium on Saturday.
Claremont needed the win to maintain pace with Subiaco at the top of the WAFL ladder following the Lions' thumping of Perth on Thursday night to open Round 9 of the 2021 Optus WAFL Premiership Season.
The Tigers ended up getting the win they were after but they were made to work significantly harder for it than they might have expected against the winless Eagles.
West Coast came out ready to put in a strong showing and they even doubled the scoring shots of Claremont in the opening quarter, but they couldn’t kick inaccurately while the Tigers could to lead by five points by quarter-time.
It was another five goals from Claremont in the second quarter but West Coast was sticking with them and managed to kick another four goals themselves to limit the lead of the Tigers to 11 points by half-time.
Claremont added another two goals to one in the third quarter, and then two more goals to one in the final term with the Tigers running out 14.9 (93) to 9.12 (66) winners.
The result improves the Tigers to a 7-1 record on the season after the opening nine rounds while the Eagles are 0-8 but this could have been their best showing of the season to date.
Jack Buller kicked another two goals from seven kicks and six marks for Claremont with Callan England, Jake Patmore, Alex Manuel and Cameron Anderson all managing two goals as well.
Jye Bolton is in a remarkable run of form and the dual Sandover Medallist and four-time Simpson Medal winner was simply unstoppable in the midfield for the Tigers. He amassed 49 possessions, 12 marks, six inside 50s and a goal in remarkable performance.
He wasn’t the only huge ball winner on the day for the Tigers either with Bailey Rogers racking up 37 possessions and 12 marks, Kane Mitchell 30 disposals and nine marks, Ryan Lim 30 touches and four tackles, Ben Edwards 26 possessions and five tackles, and Jared Hardisty 20 disposals.
Lachlan Martinis was back to his brilliant best creating out of the back-line with 36 possessions and eight marks while Oliver Eastland was strong in the ruck again with 20 disposals and 28 hit outs.
Kieran Hug kicked three goals for the Eagles from 18 possessions and five marks while Cooper Nitschke added three goals from 16 touches, six marks and four tackles.
Just days after being selected by the Eagles in the AFL mid-season rookie draft from West Perth, Connor West lined up for West Coast in the WAFL against Claremont and was outstanding in the midfield with 29 possessions, eight inside 50s, seven tackles, six marks and a goal.
Hamish Brayshaw also had 26 possessions for the Eagles, Mark Hutchings 24, Joey Deegan 22, Ben Johnson 20 and Zane Trew 19.
Claremont is back in action next Saturday at home to Peel Thunder while the Eagles have the bye before playing Subiaco at Leederville Oval on Saturday June 19.
OPTUS WAFL PREMIERSHIP SEASON – ROUND 9
CLAREMONT 5.0 10.2 12.6 14.9 (93)
WEST COAST EAGLES 3.7 7.9 8.11 9.12 (66)
CLAREMONT: Goals – Buller, England, Patmore, Manuel, Anderson 2; Edwards, Bolton, J Hardisty, Barton.
Best – Bolton, Rogers, Martinis, Mitchell, Eastland, Edwards, England, Lim.
WEST COAST EAGLES: Goals – Hug, Nitschke 3; West, Brayshaw, Paunich.
Best – West, Brayshaw, Hug, Deegan, Nitschke, Trew.