Magician Matt’s historic trick

August 08, 2017

Matt Perri celebrates his 100th goal of the season.

MATTHEW Perri made Leitchville-Gunbower Football Club history on Saturday, becoming the first player since the club was formed in 1995 to kick 100 goals in a season.

Leaving his team one last goal for 2017 — the flag.

Perri’s milestone came in another Bombers’ smashing, this time demolishing finals-bound White Hills by 126 points at Tint-A-Car Oval.

The gun full-forward kicked eight goals in the win and brought up the century figure late in the contest, mobbed by all of his teammates in celebration.

LG coach Matt Hawken said Perri’s achievement, which came after some late drama, was huge for the club.

‘‘It was a good bit of theatre; he was on 99 goals early in the final term, he snapped one home but the umpire called it touched, he hit the post and took a mark before the umpire took it off him,’’ he said.

‘‘Twenty minutes into the last his good mate (Daniel Couwenberg) passed one to him about 30m out.

‘‘It was really enjoyable to celebrate, and he was happy to get it out of the way.

‘‘He’s outstanding, he gets plenty of attention every week from the opposition and gets the best defender. He’s not a traditional lead-up forward, but his goal craft is right up there, he creates goals out of nothing.’’

A brilliant team performance, Hawken said the display showed his side hitting new heights at the right time of the season.

‘‘It was probably our best four-quarter performance of the season; it was really hard to pick our best players, we had plenty of good, strong contributors,’’ he said.

The Bombers looked far more superior from the opening bounce, only wayward kicking costing them a bigger lead in the first quarter with 5.7 (37) in the term good enough for a 29-point lead.

White Hills found two goals in the second but still struggled to limit the powerful LG line-up, and trailed by 50-points at half-time.

The Demons played men behind the ball to try and suffocate LG’s dangerous forwards, but they couldn’t do enough to stop its multiple weapons.

LG’s stellar defence continued to shut out opponents, the Demons unable to trouble the scorers in the third quarter while the Bombers piled on the damage at the other end with 7.6 (48) to lead by 98 points at the final break.

And again showing a strong ability to run out games, they added another six goals in the last, conversion in front of goal, put down in part to the blustery conditions, the only issue as they won 23.24 (162) to 5.6 (36).

Perri’s eight led the scoring up forward, Tim Lincoln’s four also important as the Bombers won by more than 100 points for the seventh time this season.

But captain Couwenberg was named the side’s best for a dominating display including three goals.

The Bombers made four changes from the side that smashed North Bendigo last weekend, most notably Logan Prout and Brady Hore who were called up to play for the Bendigo Pioneers.

Cameron West and Liam Guinan made senior debuts in the game, both impressing the coach in their first outings.

Hawken found it difficult to pick best players, but said Brad Ladson, Couwenberg and Lincoln had been superb, with defensive trio Hoby Bussey, Ryan Prendergast and Mitch Bruns also on form.

LG sits second on the ladder with just a game against Lockington-Bamawm United to come before finals.

It would be unlikely the Bombers move from second, needing more than a 22 per cent swing to steal top spot from North Bendigo if both teams win as expected.

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