June 21, 2024

Dynamic playmaker Harley Reid showcased his electrifying skills in West Coast’s stunning 35-point victory over Melbourne at Optus Stadium, leaving the crowd of 43,404 in awe.

While Jake Waterman’s five-goal haul and Tim Kelly’s 30 disposals and eight clearances were instrumental in the Eagles’ 16.9 (105) to 10.10 (70) triumph on Sunday, it was Reid’s breathtaking moments that stole the spotlight.

In a display of sheer brilliance, the 19-year-old sensation stole the show early on, delivering a goal-of-the-year contender in the opening quarter. Taking the ball from the centre, Reid left Melbourne’s Christian Petracca in his wake with three lightning-quick bounces before slotting home from 45 meters.

But Reid wasn’t finished there. In a mesmerizing passage of play in the third quarter, he showcased his agility and strength, fending off Clayton Oliver and then Petracca with remarkable ease before setting up Jack Darling for another goal.

Waterman kicks five but Harley Reid steals the show | Shepparton News

And just when it seemed he couldn’t outdo himself, Reid produced yet another moment of magic late in the third term. Brushing off an opponent as he scooped up a ground ball one-handed, he dashed to the goal line to score another crucial major.

With 21 disposals, seven clearances, two goals, and three score assists to his name, Reid’s performance was nothing short of magical, leaving fans and pundits alike in awe of his talents.

Melbourne, who would have climbed to third on the ladder with a win, were left rueing their missed opportunity as Reid’s heroics powered West Coast to a memorable victory.

Instead, they slipped to seventh place, finding themselves back in the mix to secure a top-eight spot.

The Demons faced an early setback just eight minutes into Sunday’s game when Jake Lever suffered a concussion from an accidental blow to the face by Jack Darling’s leg as the Eagles forward scored a goal with a soccer-style kick.

Waterman made an impressive start to the game, taking two contested marks against Steven May in the opening minute.

The Eagles looked dangerous every time they attacked, with Reid’s stunning first goal contributing to their 27-13 lead by the end of the first quarter.

Although Melbourne trailed by 27 points at one stage, Petracca’s determination rallied his team back into contention. His precise handballs set up goals for Kade Chandler and Shane McAdam, and his own goal reduced the deficit to 13 points at halftime.

In the first half, West Coast dominated the inside 50m count 27-15 and also held a plus-10 advantage in contested possessions.

Melbourne’s inaccuracy cost them dearly in the third quarter, as they kicked 3.7 while West Coast managed 5.0.

Reid’s remarkable double fend-off thrilled the crowd, and his second goal further ignited their enthusiasm.

However, Waterman’s performance should not be overlooked, as the key forward took five contested marks among his 13 grabs, putting him at the top of the Coleman Medal race with 29 goals for the season.

Harley Reid: Waalitj Marawar (West Coast) Eagles star produces Goal of the  Year contender against Demons | The West Australian

Eagles ruckman Bailey Williams (25 hitouts) also played a crucial role in neutralizing the influence of Melbourne’s Max Gawn (27 hitouts).

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