WEST Coast’s 2014 season slid further into trouble in Launceston on Saturday with a 44-point loss to Hawthorn reducing the Eagles to a disappointing 4-7 record.

Competitive during the first half, the visitors were overrun during a six-goals-to-one third quarter and couldn’t compete with Hawthorn’s superior running power and premiership class.

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Despite the disappointing nature of their second-half fade-out, coach Adam Simpson said he was pleased with improved intent across the ground and the performance of young forward Jeremy McGovern.

“We wanted intent and work rate and we got that,” he said, also suggesting Hawthorn’s leaders ‘stood up a bit more’ during the crucial phase either side of half-time.

“When the game gets played in their half as it clearly was after that period of time, I’d say it’s a matter of time. They know how, when they smell blood, they can destroy you.

“I don’t want to compare leaders, but they clearly had an impact on the game. I can’t wait for two or three of our leaders to stand up and match them, it’s a collective responsibility.

The Eagles often turned the ball over going forward and found it particularly difficult to generate effective forward entries when the game was in the balance, Simpson admitting there is plenty of work to be done on the training track if their season is to recover.

“We’re just going to concentrate on the fundamentals,” he said. “It might sound really boring but we just need to get that right.

“Turn up with the intent we did today… that’s the minimum. The game itself, in terms of the fundamentals, that’s the next step.”

The performance of second-game forward Jeremy McGovern was one shining light for the Eagles, Simpson praising the 22-year-old for his consistent attack on the ball and sometimes spectacular marking.

Rewarded with two goals in the final term, McGovern took 10 grabs for the match and should get plenty of opportunity during the next few weeks given Josh Kennedy’s current absence with a fractured cheek.

“He’s got a great pair of hands, he’s footy smart and he’s a natural footballer,” Simpson said. “He’s got presence, so that was pleasing.”