Errol Gulden celebrates a goal during Sydney's clash against West Coast in round 15, 2023. Picture: Getty Images

SYDNEY has become the first side to crack 200 points since 2011, handing a struggling West Coast its biggest loss in club history, thrashing the Eagles by 171 points.

It was a bloodbath from the Bloods, who piled on 31.19 (205) to the Eagles' 5.4 (34) at the SCG on Saturday evening, as nine Swans kicked multiple goals. 

SWANS v EAGLES Full match coverage and stats

The Swans started strong, kicking nine goals in the opening term before enjoying an 11-goal third quarter to head into the final break with their highest three-quarter time score in club history. They then attacked with ease, bringing up the 200 points with three minutes remaining in what was an indictment on West Coast. 

Isaac Heeney led an impressive forward line, one that clicked for the first time in several weeks, kicking five goals from 22 disposals, while Errol Gulden's attacking run from the middle was a highlight, with three goals and 32 disposals. 


The aggressive rebounding Swans of 2022 were back, albeit aided by a lethargic Eagles outfit. Sydney looked to move the ball with speed through the corridor and delivered inside 50 with more clarity than the side has been able to produce in recent weeks. It dominated the stats sheet, including the clearances (49-36), disposals (441-300) and inside 50s (77-34). 

At half-time the home side had registered its second-most marks inside 50 for the season with 16, and would go on to take 29 marks in the attacking arc for the day. Importantly, there was an even spread of recipients as Heeney, Tom Papley, Logan McDonald, and Joel Amartey shared the load. 

West Coast's lack of organisation down back, causing any semblance of a team defence to break down, allowed Sydney to waltz into attack. By the last quarter it could raffle it in the arc, finding space and time with ease and flicking the ball around to create opportunities at goal for teammates. 


A lack of chemistry in the ever-changing Eagles was clear early in the game, as all too often were they thwarted by an inability to make space for one another or acknowledge a teammate's superior positioning. 

West Coast did start to find more connection in the second quarter, putting together some neat end-to-end passages of play thanks to its running in waves and pinpoint handballs. As a result, it was able to put through three goals for the quarter.  

It was short lived, however, as the Swans were ruthless, slamming home 18 consecutive goals between the second and final quarters. 


Eagles captain Luke Shuey (eight tackles, 28 disposals) worked tirelessly all game, Tim Kelly (27 disposals, seven clearances) tried to get things going at the source, and Elliot Yeo (10 tackles) brought some pressure in the face of the onslaught. 

Sydney now has a sniff at finals, which seemed off the table a mere week ago, thanks to a significant percentage boost. 

Fast-starting Swans 
In front of a home crowd for the first time since a frustrating loss to St Kilda in round 13, the Swans put on an opening-quarter show. Chad Warner snapped home the first goal within just 34 seconds and they went on to kick a season-best nine for the quarter. The side's connection between midfield and forward – which has been scratchy in recent weeks – looked unstoppable as it took nine marks from 20 inside 50s for the term, while also laying eight tackles in the arc. Not only was it Sydney's highest scoring first quarter for the year, surpassing its 34 points in round one, but it outscored its own performances from entire games in both rounds six and eight. 


Welcome back boys 
Sydney welcomed back some key cogs for the game, and their impact was immediately evident. Co-captain Callum Mills had a say in the side's two opening goals, playing across half-forward and pinch hitting at the contest, finishing the game with 20 disposals. Young key forward Logan McDonald offered plenty in attack, kicking four goals and taking seven marks, while also pushing up the field to provide an outlet. Meanwhile, Isaac Heeney was dangerous all afternoon inside 50, kicking five goals of his own and setting up teammates beautifully. In more good news for the Swans, key defender Tom McCartin had a strong return in the VFL and looks likely to further bolster the backline in the coming weeks. 

A lack of support 
In another chapter of a bleak year for West Coast, senior duo Luke Shuey and Tim Kelly worked hard to limit the damage. Leading the Eagles for disposals and clearances, there simply weren't enough teammates rising to their standard. Obviously skilful players, it wasn't through sharp, clever ball use that they stood out, instead, it was hard running, tackling and working from contest to contest.


SYDNEY                  9.4     14.9     25.14     31.19 (205)
WEST COAST          1.0      4.1        4.3          5.4 (34)

Sydney: Heeney 5, McDonald 4, Amartey 4, McLean 3, McInerney 3, Gulden 3, Warner 2, Parker 2, Clarke 2, Sheldrick, Papley, Fox
West Coast:
Darling 2, Allen 2, Kelly

Sydney: Parker, Campbell, Heeney, Hickey, Rowbottom, Gulden 
West Coast:
Shuey, Kelly, Yeo  

Sydney: Nil
West Coast:
Jack Williams (ankle)

Sydney: Will Hayward (illness) replaced in selected side by Ryan Clarke
West Coast:

Sydney: Robbie Fox (replaced Callum Mills in fourth quarter)
West Coast:
Campbell Chesser (replaced Jack Williams in second quarter)

Crowd: 31,367 at the SCG