West Coast forward Josh Kennedy unleashed an opening-term blitz to help power the Eagles to a record 103-point win over St Kilda in Sunday’s AFL clash at Domain Stadium.
Kennedy booted five goals in the first quarter to set up the 20.12 (132) to 3.11 (29) romp, with the Eagles never challenged after kicking the first nine goals of the match.
Although Kennedy failed to kick a goal after quarter-time, Mark LeCras (six goals), Luke Shuey (31 disposals), Andrew Gaff (36 disposals), and Nic Naitanui (33 hit-outs) ensured West Coast continued to hammer St Kilda on the scoreboard.
The victory was West Coast’s biggest ever triumph over St Kilda, eclipsing the 95-point margin they beat them by in Perth last season.
St Kilda skipper Nick Riewoldt tried his best to stem the flow by roaming to all parts of the ground, but West Coast’s dominance of the midfield battle meant the result was only ever going to go one way.
The victory lifted West Coast (5-3) back to within striking distance of the top four, but they are yet to win on the road this season – a situation they can change in Saturday’s clash with the Power at Adelaide Oval.
Kennedy was an unstoppable force during the opening term as West Coast slammed through nine unanswered goals to start the game.
The 28-year-old booted two goals in the match’s opening two minutes and by the time he kicked his fifth, it was effectively game over as West Coast’s lead ballooned to 57-1.
Chances on goal were few and far between for the Saints.
And when they did get them, they often ended badly.
Skipper Nick Riewoldt tried his heart out in the opening half, but his set-shot kicking let him down.
Riewoldt fluffed his kick at goal on the quarter-time siren, and he didn’t even make the distance with his 45m set-shot in the second term.
Spearhead Josh Bruce was just as guilty, spraying two set-shots in the second quarter to add to the frustrations of coach Alan Richardson.
St Kilda’s only major for the half came just before quarter time when Jack Steven dribbled through a goal.
The onslaught was briefly halted early in the third quarter, but West Coast soon regained their groove to power to the triple-figure win.