After an extended break due to Victoria’s recent lockdown, Collingwood’s Round 3 clash with St Kilda was rescheduled and was set for a top two clash. Coach Fitzpatrick loaded up the troops and prepared them for battle, which was set to be an epic encounter.
Teams eager to put scores on the board resulted in both teams converting their first two shots into behinds. St Kilda drew first blood putting one through the big sticks and gaining the upper hand on the score board. Fitzgerald answered right back, scoring Collingwood’s first major. The Magpies lost structure and, for the first time in the 2021 season, trailed at a break.
St Kilda 2.3-15
The Magpies came prepared in the second quarter with Christian’s dominance in the midfield coming into play feeding Newman goals on a silver platter. Owens and Gale-Grime held tight down back against what is normally a dominant St Kilda forward line. The clearance game continued to show its importance as Collingwood had kept St Kilda to a three goal term while Newman and Stroud bagged eight between them for the Magpies.
“I felt pumped to get back on the court after the break,” said Newman. “Working with Josh out of the center I was lucky enough to shoot and score a few long range goals.”
St Kilda 5.3-33
St Kilda trailed Collingwood by 25 points at half time, which set up for an intense premiership quarter. St Kilda bought the heat, bringing their pressure straight into the mid.
However it couldn’t contain the Magpies ball movement, going from coast to coast Collingwood was unstoppable. Paddle’s ball movement and Razon’s push off of the backline kept it hard for St Kilda to put scores on the board.
The Saints however turned the tide as their pressure was immense, keeping it a low scoring quarter for both sides. Jankovski’s late quarter goal for the Magpies kept the scoring at two goals apiece in the third quarter which set up for a cracking last quarter.
St Kilda 7.5-47
After an intense first three quarters both teams pushed to dig deep to get the win for their side. The Magpies picked up on the Saints’ mistakes and made them pay by hitting the score board. Once again, St Kilda bought their pressure which saw their ball movement get the better of Collingwood throughout parts of the last.
However, it would be Collingwood who held onto a hard fought victory. The Magpies now remain the only undefeated team in the league knocking off the Saints by 23 points.
“We got the cobwebs out in the first half but pulled it together in the end and proved to be the better team on the day,” stated Christian after Collingwood’s win. “With a few key players returning for the next clash with the Saints it’s going to be an interesting one.”
St Kilda 9.7-61
Photo by Nerissa Turner