Magpies stun HBL

Jackson Lavell-LeeBusselton Dunsborough Times
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Busselton midfielder Zac Pethybridge wins the footy ahead of two Lions players in a best on ground performance last week
Camera IconBusselton midfielder Zac Pethybridge wins the footy ahead of two Lions players in a best on ground performance last week Credit: Jon Gellweiler/Jon Gellweiler

Busselton sit equal top of the SWFL ladder on points after a stunning one-point win over reigning premier Harvey-Brunswick-Leschenault at Brunswick Oval on Saturday.

Given little hope against a side that had lost just one game in 25 appearances, the underdog Magpies were hungry to prove themselves, ensuring the star-studded HBL side were pressured at every turn.

Despite leading by 17 points at quarter-time, the Lions appeared to lack their usual potency and were eventually run down by the Magpies, who broke free on several occasions during a tense final term.

Lions coach John Baggetta said the game was a “non-event” but was adamant the Magpies were still the better side on the day.

“Take nothing away from Busselton,” he said.

“They applied themselves with effort throughout the day but it (the game) was pretty much a non-event.” Despite the backhanded compliment the Magpies remain in second spot on percentage and will host league leaders Bunbury at home on Sunday.

Busselton coach David Lewis said the game would be won and lost in the midfield with a strong focus on contested football and defensive running.

“They’ve also been the stingiest backline in the league so our forwards have to make sure we function well,” he said.

Bunbury are coming off a tough five-point loss to Collie, their first of the season.

The Eagles broke the tight contest open in the third quarter with some bone-crunching tackling forcing the Bulldogs to second guess their attacking game style.

The Magpies will be well served by maintaining the accountable inside football that has seen them surprise the rest of the league and become the Cinderella story of 2020.

A mouth watering match up between Two favourites for the Hayward medal Busselton’s Ethan Maguire and Bunbury’s Jesse Gribble will match up in the centre square while the Magpies backline will look to blanket Bulldogs mercurial goal kicker Jordan Adamson-Holmes.

“We pride ourselves on contested footy and we believe we’re very strong in that area,” Lewis said.

“We’ve noticed Adamson-Holmes has gone through the ruck and wing over the past few weeks so wherever he goes we’ll have a suitable match up for him.”

All eyes will be on Sir Stewart Bovell Park at 3pm on Sunday to see who will become the new premiership favourite.

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