Eagles overcome Saints
The West Coast Eagles have consolidated their spot in the top eight, holding on to defeat St Kilda by 8 points at Optus Stadium on Saturday.
The Eagles led for the duration of the match but had to work hard to keep the Saints at bay late, young forward Max King dominant with six goals but not enough to get his team home, West Coast prevailing 14.10 (94) to 13.8 (86) in front of 43,657 fans.
The Saints spearhead booted three goals alone in the final quarter to close the margin to seven points with two-and-a-half minutes remaining.
But grand final hero Dom Sheed again stepped up in the big moment, nailing a goal on the run from 40m to seal the match.
Sheed finished with 32 disposals, seven clearances and two goals in a standout display, while Tim Kelly (26 disposals, four score assists, one goal) was influential when West Coast made their move in the second term.
The result improved West Coast's record to 10-8, while St Kilda dropped to 8-10 and facing a major battle to secure a finals berth.
West Coast led by 28 points at halftime and 25 at the final change, and the damage would have been more if it wasn't for King.
The 21-year-old saved his best for the final term, booting three goals from three powerful marks to give West Coast an almighty fright.
But West Coast held tough, with Sheed's goal on the run giving the home side enough breathing space to see out the win.
Saints midfielder Zac Jones ran hard all day and finished with 32 disposals and seven clearances, while Dan Butler was influential with two goals from 20 possessions.
Eagles forward Jack Darling bounced back to form with three goals, Elliot Yeo was a strong body in the midfield with 24 disposals and nine clearances, while 150-game milestone man Jeremy McGovern was solid in defence and performed an important back-up role in the ruck.
West Coast lost premiership forward Liam Ryan to a hamstring injury before quarter time, scans set to reveal the extent of the injury.
"It's not terrible, but it sounds like it might just be your standard hamstring," Eagles coach Adam Simpson said.
"Until we get the scans we're just guessing."
West Coast are slated to face Collingwood in round 20 of the AFL season, in what will be former skipper Shannon Hurn's 300th game.
IMAGE: Perth Now.