What a well fought out win for the Collingwood VFL side on Friday night when the Gold Coast Suns visited the Holden Centre. A 3-point victory after Reef McInnes put the Pies in front with just 90 seconds left in the match.
Sam Glover got things rolling for the Pies, running in on goal after Collingwood earned a free kick deep inside 50. A VFL listed player, Glover was impressive on Friday night with his ability to play at both ends of the ground a big factor throughout the game.
Brayden Sier was strong in his return to the VFL side. Sier had 9 disposals, 3 marks and 2 tackles in the first quarter. He continued his good work throughout the night, impressive with his bullish work in the contest and spread in stoppages. He finished with 28 disposals and a goal to his name as he looks to push for senior selection.
After a fast start, the Suns hit back with fire. 3 quick goals gave the Suns a 10 point lead at quarter time. Will Brodie was massive for the Suns in the first quarter with 14 disposals.
QT Score - Collingwood 1.4.10 v Gold Coast 3.2.20
It was the Ollie Henry show in the second quarter. He had unbelievably sticky hands, marking absolutely everything all day. Henry had 13 marks for the day and a career high 22 disposals. The best of his 13 coming in the 2nd quarter when he ran back with the flight to take a fantastic contested grab. All three of his goals came in the 2nd quarter to get the Pies out to a 17 point lead.
A flourish forward from defender Tom Wilson secured his first goal of the season with a awesome running goal. Wilson was outstanding all evening, he ended up with 30 disposals coming off half back. His ability to read the ball, intercept and then rebound the Pies into attack was integral in preventing the Suns from hitting the scoreboard. Importantly, 21 of his 30 disposals were kicks resulting in a high meters game gained for Wilson.
A 5-goal quarter for the Pies, Rory Atkins got a late goal for the Suns just before half time to bring the margin back to 11 at the major interval.
HT Score - Collingwood 6.7.43 v Gold Coast 5.2.32
The Suns came out of the half time break absolutely scorching, the 11 point lead was diminished quite quickly with two goals early putting the Suns in the lead.
Momentum swung when the Suns got out the back of the Collingwood defence and Isaac Chugg and Jack Madgen put in a huge effort to prevent an easy goal. Madgen was dominant on his return to the VFL side, his industrious efforts along the wing rewarded with 25 disposals. Madgen’s leadership throughout the second half was very important, particularly with such a young side. Those who attended the game will notice how vocal Madgen, constantly communicating with his team mates.
It was the 17-year-old, Youseph Dib who got the Pies back in front just before three quarter time. An unbelievably clean crumbing goal was one of the best highlights from the night. Dib ended up with 2 goals for the game, the draft prospect continues to impress at the level with his speed and ability to find the football in and around the forward line.
3QT Score - Collingwood 7.9.51 v Gold Coast 7.5.47
The Suns kicked the first two goals of the final term to earn a 7-point lead early in the quarter. There were worrying signs for the Pies as the Suns look to have the run and the momentum of the game.
Trey Ruscoe stood up in the final term, he made his impact felt with some big individual efforts. Playing in the backline instead of his regular role up forward, Ruscoe looked comfortable with the ball in front of him. His defensive awareness was strong and he was able to use his speed and toughness to win multiple 1 on 1 contests.
3 points down with 90 seconds on the clock, it was Reef McInnes’ moment to stand up. The draftee has been strong in his first season at the Pies but he stepped up to a new level on Friday night. A game-high 11 tackles to go with his 20 disposals typified his effort around the ball. McInnes was sent to Will Brodie at half time in an attempt to nullify his impact in the middle, and he did a fantastic job at ensuring when Brodie got the ball he was under immense pressure.
The ball was floated into the forward line, Max Lynch reached for a massive mark but selflessly tapped the ball to the ground where McInnes went to work. Hitting the ball at full pelt, he ran into an open goal, putting the Pies in front.
There were a few nervous moments in the final minute of the game as the Suns looked to break Collingwood hearts, but the boys did enough to come away with a hard-fought victory. The ability to grind out a win is quickly becoming synonymous with this young VFL side.
Gold Coast 9.8.62
Goals: Henry 3, Dib 2, Glover, McInnes, Sier, Wilson
Bests: Henry, Wilson, Sier, Madgen, McInnes