Falcons likely to miss the finals

Monday, July 22

THE Geelong Falcons' TAC Cup finals hopes look dashed after losing to the Western Jets by five points in atrocious conditions at Williamstown on Saturday.

The Falcons have won just one match out of the past nine and now sit in 11th position on the ladder.

Geelong was also hit hard by injury on the weekend. All-Australian James Allan, from Lara, was sidelined with a shoulder injury after an incident during play in the second quarter and is expected to miss at least two weeks while St Joseph's Tim Callan was forced from the ground after he twisted his knee.

Geelong broke away to a solid start in the round 13 clash and was ahead by three goals at quarter time.

But the Jets stole the lead during a dominant second term and held onto an eight-point buffer at half-time.

The Falcons wrestled back the lead after the main break but the Jets eventually prevailed 12.11 (83) to 11.12 (78).

Newtown's Nathan Braddock proved handy on the wing for the Falcons and contributed two majors while fellow dual goalkicker St Joseph's Josh Rudd worked hard on the ball.

Leopold's Tim Boyle was another top performer and contributed four goals after being moved from centre half-back to centre half-forward late in the first quarter.

Newtown's Pat Travers and South Warrnambool's Brent Moloney were effective in the midfield and gathered possessions in trying conditions.

Falcons coach Damien Christensen conceded yesterday he didn't think reaching the finals was a realistic option for his side.

``With five games to go and percentage it makes it very difficult,'' Christensen said. ``We've lost two games in the last two weeks we could have and should have won.

``The focus now is to give other players experience so they're better equipped to play at this level next year.

``Hopefully, we can still finish the year off well and make sure all our top players finish hard because they may not get the chance to put their hands up for the draft in the finals.''