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Best: Easton, Linton, Fox, McConville, Williams, Allan
Goals: Robinson 3, Brandt 3, Madden 2, Cooper 2, McConville, Evans, Northe, Symes, Fox, Schraven
Coburg mastered a useful breeze to notch an impressive 50-point win over Port Melbourne at Piranha Park this morning in what was the side’s best performance of the season so far.
The Lions were switched on from the opening bounce, and, with the help of a strong breeze, started the game well. Daniel Cooper kicked Coburg’s first in the opening seconds to kick-start the Lions’ best opening term of the year.
Cooper kicked his second soonafter and was joined by Liam Brandt and Jai Robinson, who also booted two each in Coburg’s seven-goal first term.
The Lions lifted in all areas after last week’s loss. They moved the ball quickly and with intent, ran hard through the corridor, used the ball better and dominated possession. Coburg looked threatening going forward but was let down at times by long inside 50 entries, which were often spoiled by the Borough’s key defenders.
Tom McConville, however, unleashed a 60-metre punt that fortunately bounced through after sailing over the head of Damon Symes and his opponent. McConville finished with 26 disposals.
Port Melbourne used the wind to fight back in the second term and was able to reduce the margin. Morgan Evans kicked an important steadying goal for Coburg against the run of play and, while the Borough controlled the quarter, they were not able to score as freely as the home side had early in the game.
The Lions were made the most of their spare man down back when kicking in and Jesse Boyd spoiled well in crucial one-on-ones deep in defence 50. Nick Linton provided valuable rebounding run and carry against the wind. Despite cramping late, he worked tirelessly to collect a team-high 30 possessions.
The Lions used the wind to increase their lead in the third term with both Robinson and Brandt chiming in with their third goals. Quick movement forward created good opportunities for Coburg’s forwards and the home side’s harder running and chasing made the Borough look slugglish. Joel Madden and Matt Northe converted difficult set shots late to give Coburg a strong 38-point lead to defend against the wind in the last quarter.
And defend they did – keeping the Borough goalless for the first 15 minutes and allowing them to score just 14 points. Coburg also attacked effectively, with an early goal to Ricky Schraven helping the Lions get on to the front foot and eventually run away comfortable winners.
Robinson played a key role, adding an influential 29 disposals and six rebound 50s to his three goals. Josh Totino topped Coburg’s clearance numbers with 6 in another typically consistent, tough, inside ball-winning display.
Jordan Easton (25 disposals) impressed, Calder-listed Ben Allan also had 25 touches and provided pace through the midfield while Robbie Fox again found a lot of the ball in the back half and got forward to kick a goal.