Jaydon Cullen’s last-gasp goal saw the Peel Cavaliers colts seal a massive comeback victory over the Northern Suns at Mandurah’s Bendigo Bank Stadium on Saturday morning.
While the game was somewhat of a formality with the two sides battling it out for third place, it didn’t lack for entertainment or flare as Peel overcame a 32-point deficit at three quarter time to post a remarkable 8.11 (59) to 9.3 (57) win over the Suns.
Cullen was the hero in the final minutes, as the South Mandurah boy capped off Peel’s dash at Northern’s lead by converting a set shot to put his team in front for the first time in the match with less than two minutes on the clock.
The Suns tried to make a last-minute dash for a goal to steal the game back but Rockingham’s Zayne Selkirk and Pinjarra’s Craig Milward took some outstanding contested marks to help wind the time off the clock.
But the four quarters was by no means peachy for the Peel boys, as they found themselves staring down the barrel of a belting after coughing up the first six goals of the day.
Kristerfer Ryder gave the Suns two first-quarter goals and another to Michael Wright helped them to a 20-point lead by quarter time.
They bagged the next three early in the second and all of a sudden Peel was in the middle of a drubbing, having posted a sole point and trailing the Suns by 37.
But Mandurah’s Matthew Bennell – who starred with three crucial goals on the day – managed to sneak one in just before half time to give his side something going into the long break.
Their momentum didn’t last though, with the Suns escaping to a 34-point advantage midway through the third, and the game looked done and dusted when Chilton Yarran put them up 40 in the dying stages of the penultimate quarter.
But again it was Bennell, finding a way to will his side back from the brink with another late goal cutting the margin to 32 before the final break.
Peel still didn’t look a chance heading into the final term, but they finally found the rhythm they’d been searching for over the past three days of footy.
Inspired by the likes of Tyler Glands and James Fenton, the Cavaliers mustered all they had with Bennell, Zac Moody and Jaxon Standing all bagging critical goals to cut the lead to just four points with roughly two minutes on the clock.
Then it was Cullen’s turn, and he made the most of the opportunity putting it through the middle of the sticks as Peel claimed a win in the battle for third spot.
Bennell, Fenton and Moody were all named all-stars.
M. Bennell 3, J. Cullen, J. Standing, Z. Moody
K. Ryder 3, C. Yarran 2, R. Poultney, M. Wright, L. Galby, T. Kenny
J. Cullen, T. Glands, J. Fenton, M. Bennell, Z. Moody
T. Kenny, O. McClelland, J. Stacey, M. Wright, T. Collins