Finals came early for the Augusta Margaret River Hawks Year 9s last Saturday, as Gloucester Park hosted a huge showdown of football.
The Year 9 Hawks hosted top of the ladder Dalyellup in what was billed as the game of the season and a must-win for the hometown team to guarantee a home preliminary final.
The last time the teams met, Dalyellup conquered the Hawks by 59 points, but last weekend brought on a hard contested physical match that required a massive team effort to deliver the Hawks' biggest win for the year, with leading goalkicker Mitch Miller securing 6 goals.
Team spokesperson Renae Cassidy said the skill and physicality of the game was at a level above the young players' years.
"After years of playing against each other throughout juniors, this year the boys united as one and stepped up to represent Augusta-Margaret River in the South West League, and have been a supportive tight-knit team, which comes from the amazing effort of the coaching group and all the wonderful support of the parents who help out each week.
"We have such a huge support network in this footy club and it shows from the determination and hard work that the boys put in every training and even more so every game.
"The boys would not be at this level if it wasn't for the dedicated, supportive coach Mark "Gribo" Graham, and assistant coaches Greg "Fish" Fisher and Steve "Cass" Cassidy.
"The amount of time and effort that Gribo has put in to coaching the junior footy and youth footy over the years is outstanding, and such a privilege to have someone that steps up year after year in our footy community.
"The boys really showed their appreciation to the coaching staff by playing their hearts out in the biggest game of the season so far, and has put AMR Hawks on top of the ladder with a guaranteed home final against Dalyellup on August 31.
"Come down and support this talented team. Good Luck for finals AMR Hawks!"
Final scores AMR 10.15-75 to Dalyellup 3.6-24.