WEST Coast has come from behind to record its first win of a new season over the AFL Indigenous All Stars in an entertaining exhibition game at Medibank Stadium in Perth.
The Eagles trailed by 10 points at half time but injected young legs into the game after the break to kick three goals to none in the second half and win 7.7 (49) to 5.11 (41).
The match was played in front of a sell-out crowd of close to 10,000.
All Stars captain Shaun Burgoyne won the Polly Farmer Medal for best player on the ground, with his class shining brightly throughout the night.
But it was Eagles rookie Rowen Powell and new recruit Tom Lamb who provided a spark in the last quarter kicking a goal apiece to drag the home side over the line.
"To finish off the last quarter was pleasing and for our young boys to come on and make an impact is a good sign for our future," Eagles coach Adam Simpson said after the game.
The All Stars midfield, led by Burgoyne, Jarrod Harbrow and the Hill brothers, Bradley and Stephen, took the game on but their forwards couldn't finish. The All Stars kicked just five behinds in the second half.
Burgoyne said the All Stars players would be better for the run when they returned to their clubs next week.
"No doubt we will benefit from that because the game was played at a pretty high intensity for a practice match," Burgoyne said.
"It was disappointing to lose, but it tops off a good week."
They had started brightly, kicking the first goal of the match - Shaun Edwards finishing brilliantly on the run after Jack Martin and Shane Edwards had provided some early spark.
But when Jeremy McGovern nailed a 55-metre set shot, the Eagles grabbed the ascendency with the aid of a strong breeze. Brad Sheppard benefitted from McGovern's strong aerial presence, crumbing and snapping for the Eagles second.
Sharrod Wellingham was influential as well with a classy finish on the run to extend the lead.
But the All Stars hit back in the second term with run and carry a key feature of their play.
The Hill brothers, playing together for the first time in more than a decade, were dangerous through the midfield. Stephen found Bradley in open space and the two-time premiership player finished with aplomb from 40m.
Bradley Hill also set-up a goal for Shane Yarran, a Subiaco player in the WAFL who was drafted into the All Stars side late on Friday afternoon.
Both sides tired in the second half and the skills dropped away in the warm conditions.
The Eagles added some fresh legs with Powell and Lamb providing energetic targets inside 50m in the last quarter.
Port's Jake Neade looks to move the ball on for the All Stars. Picture: AFL Media
WEST COAST 3.2 4.2 5.5 7.7 (49)
AFL ALL STARS 1.2 5.6 5.9 5.11 (41)
West Coast: McGovern, Sheppard, Wellingham, Gaff, Cripps, Powell, Lamb
AFL All Stars: Edwards, Jetta, Yarran, Pickett, B.Hill
West Coast: Wellingham, Masten, Gaff, Schofield, Sinclair, Cripps
AFL All Stars: Burgoyne, Harbrow, Martin, B.Hill, S.Hill
West Coast: nil
AFL All Stars: nil
Crowd: 10,000 (approx) at Medibank Stadium
Brady Grey attempts to escape the clutches of Kane Lucas. Picture: AFL Media
Shaun Burgoyne leads out the All Stars. The Hawk would later be named best afield. Picture: AFL Media
The All Stars conduct a war dance prior to the first bounce. Picture: AFL Media
A depleted West Coast outfit lines up before the start of the game. Picture: AFL Media