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Crows see off South

Max Phillips  April 16, 2017 6:54 PM

Crows SANFL co-captain Hugh Greenwood speaks to the team before the opening bounce

Crows SANFL co-captain Hugh Greenwood speaks to the team before the opening bounce

Adelaide has claimed another nail-biting SANFL victory by downing South Adelaide by six points on Easter Sunday at Encounter Bay Oval.

One week after defeating Sturt by two points, the Crows held off a fast-finishing Panthers outfit 13.12 (90) to 13.6 (84) to remain unbeaten after two rounds of SANFL action.

Adelaide pulled 26 points clear with the opening two goals of the final term before South stormed back, piling on four of the next five goals to almost snatch victory.

It followed a heated third quarter which featured four lead changes as the two teams traded goals in an entertaining duel.

A late mark and goal to Reilly O’Brien at the 17-minute mark of the final quarter was enough to keep the Panthers at bay and secure the Club’s second SANFL win of the season.

It capped off a stellar performance from Adelaide's young ruckman. O’Brien was awesome in the air with four big contested marks and 21 hit-outs, but also made a big impact around the ground laying seven tackles and earning three clearances from 15 disposals.

Fellow talls Harry Dear and Elliott Himmelberg provided strong focal points up forward for Adelaide and combined for six goals.

Dear, 20, threatened to tear the game apart. The 198cm Crow competed aggressively all afternoon and hauled down six marks, but was unable to get full reward on the scoreboard. He finished with 3.7 next to his name, including four behinds in the opening term alone.

The hunger of Adelaide's towering talls pleased Crows SANFL coach Ryan O'Keefe most after the match.

"Our big boys did really well and set the tone for us today," O'Keefe said.

"When your big men are throwing their weight around and competing, the rest of the team feeds off that."

While undefeated, O'Keefe's first two wins as coach have come from a combined total of eight points.

"No one told me it was going to be this tight every game!" he said.

"It's pleasing for the boys to get the 'W' under so much pressure in both games and it shows the maturity of the group."

SANFL stats: Round Two v South Adelaide

Brad Crouch continued his impressive comeback from a pre-season hamstring injury, collecting a match-high 31 possessions and 11 clearances in another strong midfield display.

Laser left-footer Harrison Wigg was sublime, particularly with his rebound work off half-back. The 20-year-old worked tirelessly to gather 30 possessions, seven marks and a game-high seven inside 50ms.

Dean Gore burrowed in all afternoon, laying eight tackles and booting the first goal of the game in impressive fashion out of a stoppage.

Midfielder/forward Myles Poholke showed glimpses of his huge potential to slot two important goals from 15 possessions.

Young backman Tom Doedee emerged from his first game of the year unscathed, but first-year midfielder Jordan Gallucci sustained a calf injury in the second term and was unable to continue.

South Adelaide also had its own injury issues with Abe Davis, the older brother of Crows draftee Ben, sidelined by an ankle issue.

Adelaide confronts Central District at My Money House Oval next Saturday afternoon as part of the SANFL’s ANZAC Round commemorations.

4.5   7.8   10.11   13.12 (90)
SOUTH ADELAIDE   3.2   6.3   9.4   13.6 (84)

Himmelberg 3, Dear 3, Poholke 2, Gore, Jarman, Wittwer, Beech, O’Brien
South Adelaide: Overall 4, Seccull 2, Barnes 2, Haren 2, Rankine, Fields

Dear, O’Brien, Wigg, Crouch, Gore, Murphy
South Adelaide: Overall, Rose, Gotch, Liddle, Rankine, Seccull, McMahon

Adelaide: Gallucci (calf)
South Adelaide: Davis (ankle)