It was considered to be a mini elimination final when Harvey Bulls hosted Augusta Margaret River at the Harvey Oval on Sunday afternoon, but the elimination occurred in 27 minutes, as the Bulls blitzed the Hawks before a very small crowd.
The opening term would see Harvey kick eight unanswered goals with a strong breeze to the Southern End and an amazing first term, where the Hawks found it hard to even get their hands on the football.
After an initial period where the ball went from one end to the other, Tyson Powell would take a strong one on one mark to kick the opening goal. Matthew Bennell scored shortly after and it was evident how far the ball was carrying with the breeze. Brad Holmes kicked his only goal for the match at the twelve minute mark of the opening term and it already evident that the Hawks were in trouble. Hawks coach, Matt Jamieson was imploring his team to run with the ball as scoring to the Northern end had been difficult all day.
Jacob Pickett allowed for the breeze beautifully aiming almost at the right behind post, to notch up the Bulls fourth, before Tyson Powell snapped his second as play entered time on. Powell goaled again off the ground, to make it 37-0, and when Sam Lewis snapped from 50m out, with the ball sailing at post height the Bulls faithful were in raptures. To cap off a magnificent first term, Evan Hill kicked the Bulls eighth goal just before the quarter time siren, with the ball almost exclusively in the Bulls half of the ground.
The Hawks had the use of the wind in the second term, but Harley Bennell strolled into an open goal to at the commencement of the quarter to make the margin 56 points. Matthew Bennell snapped truly a minute later, with the Hawks still yet to score and 62 points in arrears. Oscar Armstrong eventually kicked the opening goal for the Hawks at the eight minute mark, but a defensive error proved costly shortly after, gifting Andrew Haydon a goal from close range. Gary Moss would kick the Hawks second nearing half time, but the Bulls still outscored the visitors despite the strength of the wind.
The second half was not quite as brutal as the first, but the Hawks for the second time in the match were kept score-less in the third, as the Bulls kicked a further four goals. The final quarter did see the Hawks pepper the goals, but unlike Harvey who were accurate, Augusta Margaret River managed one goal five behinds. The final margin on 97 points was the Bulls biggest win over Augusta Margaret River, and their highest score.
Harvey were close to full strength and looked sharp with some precision passing, and despite being in the bottom half of the ladder after a first half of the season plagued with injuries, the Bulls are definitely not out of contention to make the five.
Andrew Haydon was presented with the Indigenous game ball for being the best player on the ground, with Tom Wood, Lloyd Beever and Matt Bennell all playing well. Linc Adams was again a shining light for the Hawks and he worked tirelessly all day in a back line that was bombarded from start to finish.
After the Nutrien Ag bye, the Bulls will host Eaton at Harvey Oval, while the embattled Hawks will host Carey Park.
Harvey Bulls 8.2.50 11.3.69 15.8.98 19.10.124
Aug Marg River 0.0.0 2.4.16 2.4.16 3.9.27
Goals: Harvey Bulls – Matthew Bennell 4, Evan Hills 3, Tyson Powell 3, Sam Lewis 2, Jacob Pickett 2, Lloyd Beever 1, Harley Bennell 1, Andrew Haydon 1, Brad Holmes 1, Christian Tirli 1. Augusta Margaret River – Oscar Armstrong 1, Brett Dobson 1, Garry Moss 1.
Best: Harvey Bulls – Andrew Haydon, Thomas Wood, Aaron Jovanovic, Matthew Bennell, Lloyd Beever, Dylan Marino. Augusta Margaret River – Lincoln Adams, Matthew Bannister, Oscar Armstrong, Kane Oldham, Jonah Brooks, William Hadley.
Ground: Harvey Oval
Umpires: Aaron Andrews, Braden Surrall