Perri tops the ton

LEITCHVILLE/GUNBOWER'S Matt Perri has become the first player wearing Bombers colours to kick 100 goals in a season.

Perri's eight-goal haul in the Bombers' 126-point demolition of White Hills took his tally to 101 for the year.

Early on in Saturday's match it looked as if the forward maestro would have to wait until the following week to reach the milestone – a flooded Demons defence and a drizzly, windy day combining to limit the star to two goals only by half time.

But in characteristic fashion Perri exploded with three goals in the third term to put the target in reach.

Aided by a dominant midfield featuring a busy Daniel Couewenberg (three goals) and a resurgent Tim Lincoln (four goals), the Bombers piled on seven goals while keeping the fifth placed Demons scoreless with Perri a constant threat to the beleaguered defence.

Ninety-eight points up at the final change, all interest in the game focused on Perri's quest for the century with the Bombers far too strong in all parts of the ground.

Perri didn't disappoint, kicking his 99th goal after just five minutes and it was from there the drama started with the forward experiencing a cricket-like nervous nineties – ironic given Perri's prowess with the willow in the off-season.

First a set shot hit the post, then a snap was touched on the line, then a mark was disallowed for being over the goal line before fittingly his good friend Couewenberg drilled him with a pass that led to a simple shot from 35 metres out.

Calmly Perri went back and with his usual economical kicking action notched his century – albeit after a short wait while the field umpire added to the drama with a goal line conference .

Celebrations complete, Perri added another for good measure, giving a remarkable tally of eight when four or five looked out of reach at one stage.

Coach Matt Hawken agreed.

"It's a great effort from Pez to kick the hundred goals – I didn't think he'd get there today after the first half but he was keen to get it out of the way before the finals began and he really lifted in the second half," Hawken said. 

"He was OK in the first half and we had a lot of contributors - his second half was just terrific."

Perri was presented with the match ball in the rooms after the game by White Hills legend Matt Sawyer. 

" I was really focused on kicking them as quickly as possible so we can concentrate on the main prize which is what we are all aiming for – it was great to have Chook kick the pass for the goal but now we start again," Perri said. 

Perri will have a chance to increase his tally against LBU next week at Gunbower as the Bombers round out their home and away season.

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