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Report: JLT success in Moe

Mason Cox impressed with four goals against the Western Bulldogs in Moe. Image: AFL Photos. - Collingwood,Collingwood Magpies,JLT Series,Ted Summerton Recreational Reserve
Mason Cox impressed with four goals against the Western Bulldogs in Moe. Image: AFL Photos.

Collingwood's experiment to play Mason Cox in the same side as Brodie Grundy received a boost as the American booted four goals in an impressive display as the Magpies pulled off a stirring comeback in warm conditions to post a 33-point win in Moe.

As temperatures nudged above 32 degrees at Ted Summerton Recreational Reserve, Cox took four contested marks, including a great grab late in the third quarter, to help propel the Magpies to a 16.17 (113) to 12.8 (80) victory.

However, Travis Varcoe could find himself in trouble with match review officer Michael Christian for an elbow to Hayden Crozier.

The Western Bulldogs started impressively, kicking six goals to one in the first quarter before the Magpies responded with 21 inside-50s in the second term as they closed the margin to three points at the main break.

Inaccuracy in front of goal prevented Collingwood from leading at that point – the Pies were 1.10 at one stage – but the misses had more to do with where the shots were taken from than wayward foot skills.

The Pies ran out the game far stronger and finished with 10 goalkickers after managing  just 36 points against Greater Western Sydney last week.

Collingwood's experiment to throw Darcy Moore into the backline was an early success.

In his first game at AFL level this year after having been hampered by an Achilles tendon problem during the pre-season, the 22-year-old had no issue backing himself and flying for the football.

Also in defence, Jeremy Howe made his return from a calf injury in a solid display. While he finished with only 14 disposals, his influence was felt, particularly by Marcus Bontempelli, who played the stepladder to Howe's high-flying grabs not once, but twice.

Tough midfielder Tom Liberatore showed form reminiscent of his 2016 season, collecting 28 disposals and 16 contested possessions.

Toby McLean and Jason Johannisen were two to thrive through the middle of the ground and Bontempelli made the most of the time he spent up forward, notching three goals.

The game was effectively over when Steele Sidebottom snapped a brilliant goal on his left boot in the last quarter, capping off a superb 28-disposal display.

Last year's ninth selection at the NAB AFL Draft Aaron Naughton acquitted himself well and looks likely to be named in the Bulldogs' round one side against GWS.

Western Bulldogs big man Jordan Roughead went off the ground twice in the opening term after appearing to injure his groin, but returned soon afterwards on both occasions.

COLLINGWOOD                      1.5       5.13     8.16     16.17 (113)
WESTERN BULLDOGS            6.2       7.4       9.7       12.8 (80) 

Bontempelli 3, Jong 2, Wood 2, Dahlhaus, Johannisen, Dunkley, Liberatore, Gowers
Western Bulldogs: Cox 4, Varcoe 3, Reid 2, Sidebottom, Adams, Treloar, Grundy, C Brown, Thomas, Phillips 

Sidebottom, Cox, Treloar, Murray, Adams, Brown
Western Bulldogs: Liberatore, Macrae, Bontempelli, McLean, Johannisen, Trengove

Goldsack (left ankle)
Western Bulldogs: TBC  

Reports: Nil 

Umpires: O'Gorman, Meredith, Mitchell, Brown 

Official crowd: 3442 at Ted Summerton Recreational Reserve

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs