WAROONA were forced to come from behind to defeat the Rockingham Rams in a nail-biting Peel Football League grand final on Sunday.
The Demons trailed for the majority of the match but were able to kick the only goal of the final term to secure the hard-fought 8.7 (55) to 7.9 (51) win.
Despite all the possession of the opening five minutes, the Rams conceded the first goal before it took an outstanding kick from Matt Ware on the 50m arc to record their first major of the afternoon.
It was an intense 20 minutes in the first as both sides put their bodies on the line and when Ram Caleb Bloomer snapped truly in time-on, the minor premiers had the lead into the first change by three.
The Rams opened up the biggest lead of the match early in the second with the first goal of the term before ruckman Rowan Arnott was hit late.
The Arnott hit started a brawl between the two sides as tensions threatened the boil over.
Two yellow cards were handed to the teams as both sides played a man down.
A quick goal had the Demons back to within three but another late hit, this time on Ram Chris Wrigley, saw Waroona reduced another man.
As fights broke out across the ground it was Waroona who steadied through Aaron Payritis to take a three point lead.
A big hit on Ram Steven Boyd resulted in a 50m penalty and inspired the Rams to back-to-back goals to reclaim their nine-point lead.
A goal right on half-time to the Demons saw them bridge the gap to four points at the major change.
It took 17 minutes of the third term for either side to register a goal despite Rockingham with all the run.
The minor premiers failed to score from a number of opportunities before a Craig Callaghan mark was reversed for a free kick inside 50 which captain Kade Fissioli converted.
A silly 50m penalty in the middle of the ground gifted Waroona their first for the term as the two sides headed into the final change separated by just three points.
Despite playing every week of the 2012 finals series, it was the Demons who were full of run in the last.
An injury to Ram Chris Oliver didn’t help his side and when the Demons were rewarded a holding the ball decision inside 50 at the 10-minute mark, the lead was theirs.
That goal was the only major kicked for the entire quarter as the Rams threw everything at the Demons in the final five minutes.
Playing as a spare man in defence, Payritis was able to clean up any Rams forward movement and ensure his side’s slender lead remained intact until the final siren.
Supporters ran onto the field at the siren, only to be sent to the boundary as a free kick had been awarded seconds before, but despite the premature celebrations the Demons became one of the most successful clubs in recent history.
For the Rams, it was heartbreak after they appeared on track to claim their first title since 1997 as the side lost just one game for the entire 2012 season.
But for the Demons, it was a double celebration as the club claimed the premiership double on the league’s biggest day in September.