SANFL 2nd Semi-Final, Adelaide Oval, 18 September 2021
It was hard to watch, hard to take, and hard to write about, but there is a clear and bright silver lining out of Glenelg’s loss to the Eagles on Saturday night.
Sure, the opposition was better on the night and deserved to win. They beat the Bays for 3 quarters and while they were fully up for it, Eagles were handed the initiative by their opponents, who were playing in a static, clumsy and tentative manner, confirming fears over the last few weeks that the Tigers had lost their Mojo. In the last 7 minutes of the first quarter, the Eagles kicked 4 goals to zip, opening up a handy lead at which Glenelg fecklessly chipped-away in the second stanza, only clawing 4 points closer.
And the third quarter – in which the Menzel brothers and Tyson Stengle were particularly and annoyingly active – made it look like a blow-out was in the offing.
At 3-quarter time, Liam McBean said “Let’s go for it” and the Tigers did. Throwing caution to the winds, playing on at every opportunity, taking chances, Glenelg piled on 3 goals in 6 minutes and although the opposition got one back, another 3 put Glenelg a point in front at the 19 minute mark. 2 minutes later, Lachlan Hosie had the chance to seal a Grand Final slot, but he missed; Stengle got a good albeit lucky goal, and on Glenelg’s last sortie, the final siren rang (somewhat precipitously). Eagles get a week’s rest and a Grand Final berth by a 4 point win. Glenelg has to battle an in-form South Adelaide this Friday night for a chance at revenge.
So where’s the silver lining? Just this: Glenelg has taken care of South twice this year; we will have (we think) Luke Partington back for the game; and if we can get over the Panthers, we’ll roar into the GF with the knowledge that we can get it done, that we’ll have had a good run rather than a potentially enervating week off, and that the Eagles know from last night’s last quarter that the Bays have rediscovered their Mojo.
Glenelg 13.4 (82) Eagles 13.8 (86)