WINNING FOCUS: Ipswich Eagles coach Mick Rush is keen to keep his players motivated in their bid to make another grand final.
WINNING FOCUS: Ipswich Eagles coach Mick Rush is keen to keep his players motivated in their bid to make another grand final. Rob Williams

Eagles still in race after Uni test

"WE just wanted it. The boys just showed a lot of heart as well."

With those words, Ipswich Eagles coach Mick Rush summed up how his team won its first Aussie rules final since 2006, progressing to this weekend's semi against Pine Rivers.

The Eagles survived Saturday's QAFA (A) elimination final at St Lucia, holding out University of Queensland by just four points.

It took a 25 metre free kick from Eagles rover Michael Lyons to put his team in front with about three minutes left.

"It was a pressure goal and he kicked it," Rush said.

The composed Eagles then shut down the home side to score a memorable win 13.8-86 to 12.10-82.

"It was probably the best win the club has had in quite a few years," Rush said.

"It was a long three minutes.

"There was a lot of stoppages, a lot of contested footy where players from both teams were just going hard at it and didn't give anyone an inch.

"We've played them three times this year and it's all been tight."

The Eagles senior team had last contested a final in 2009, being beaten.

However, the current team displayed plenty of ticker, led by captain Luke Konstanciak with six goals.

"He was inspirational up forward, unstoppable at times," Rush said.

Other best on-ground players included Keith Brick, Chris Devlin, Billy North, Tyson Watts and Michael Lyons.

Rush praised University of Queensland for their performance, coming from 20 points down to take the final to the end.

"UQ were fantastic the way they fought the game," he said.

"They were very fit so we knew that they were going to come hard in the last quarter and that was the case."

In the QAFA (A) qualifying final on Saturday, Redcliffe accounted for Pine Rivers 17.22-124 to 10.8-68.

Redcliffe plays Griffith-Moorooka this weekend for a place in the grand final.

Eagles must beat Pine Rivers to keep their title hopes alive.

That is important for the club after the Ipswich Eagles Reserves were eliminated from the finals race.

They lost by 35 points to Carrara in Saturday's earlier game at St Lucia.

Carrara led all the way with Nick Holland booting five goals for Ipswich.

State of play

  • QAFA (A): Seniors elimination final - Ipswich Eagles 13.8-86 d University of Queensland 12.10-82. Eagles to play Pine Rivers in the semi-final on Saturday at a venue to be decided.
  • Reserves elimination final: Carrara 12.12-84 d Ipswich Eagles 7.7-49. The Eagles' Reserves are out of the finals' race.


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