FREMANTLE will head into its bye on a high, with Alex Pearce's ankle injury the main concern out of its upset win over Collingwood on Saturday.
The Dockers outplayed the Magpies at the MCG but looked set to let slip a golden opportunity to claim a big scalp away from home when they fell nine points down at the 20-minute mark of the final term.
However, a late goal to Brandon Matera, and then one to Michael Walters in the final minute, saw them snatch an important win and leave their season at 6-5 heading into their week off in round 12.
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Coach Ross Lyon said he never lost hope that his side would be able to capitalise on its dominance in general play.
"To come here where you need to play, on the big stage, and [be] pretty isolated, it was a really strong performance. It was a hard-fought victory. We never gave up [and I'm] really proud of the group's effort," he said post-game.
"It was 34 entries to 18 our way after half-time. The second quarter they dominated us, and the first quarter we thought we could've been a bit further in front. We just stuffed up some opportunities [and] we thought they were taking theirs."
Although they had to wait until the final 30 seconds to take back the lead, Lyon said his faith didn't waver.
The four-point win sits alongside their round five victory over Greater Western Sydney in Canberra as the standout victories of a much improved campaign.
"We haven't given up all year. Every game we've been in we've gone to the end so we know we can go to the end. We're really confident we can go to the end," Lyon said.
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"We feel the frustration's been that a couple of games have gotten away from us that we felt we should've been able to get. If we can improve our efficiency, there's some opportunities to put some more scoreboard pressure on."
Walters' ability to back up last week's kick after the siren to clinch victory over Brisbane with a dead-eye shot against the Pies highlighted his work-rate and ability to deal with the big moments, according to Lyon.
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"It's the mental toughness. Everyone talks about the physical side of the game, but the mental side to go back and kick a winning goal – no matter what distance or what angle – is mentally tough. But you are your habits, and 'Sonny's' an incredible trainer," he said.
"He gets reward for effort and we get rewarded as well which is fantastic."
Key defender Pearce left the field in the third quarter with an ankle injury and missed the rest of the game, leaving the ground on crutches. Lyon said he was able to bear weight on the injury and didn't rule him out from facing Port Adelaide in round 13.
He also said second-year midfielder Andrew Brayshaw had a "sore neck" after a critical late contest in the game but there was no injury to report.