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NEAFL: Gold Coast prove too strong for the Giants

Gold Coast has bolstered its top four prospects ahead of the 2017 NEAFL Finals Series with their third consecutive win, following a commanding 31-point win over the GIANTS at Metricon Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Trent McKenzie was the best of the AFL-listed players who lined up for the SUNS, with the defender finishing with an equal game-high 32-disposals in the 15.13 (103) to 10.12 (72) win.

With eleven AFL-listed players among their arsenal to the GIANTS’ ten, the SUNS never trailed after quarter-time in their ninth win of the season, but will remain in fifth place at the conclusion of the round following NT Thunder’s clinical win over Southport.

The home side registered the first four scoring shots of the opening term, establishing a 14-point buffer before Matthew Flynn got the GIANTS on the board in the 15th-minute, successfully converting a 35m set shot.

Whilst the SUNS played direct, attacking football, the GIANTS, without a consistent leading target, were forced to be patient with controlled but often risky kicks; many resulting in turnovers.

Gold Coast took full advantage of the mistakes too, kicking six goals to two in the second quarter including a hat-trick from Josh Schoenfeld. The Peel Thunder product kicked two near identical long-range majors to complete the feat before half-time.

The clinical second term was the catalyst for the SUNS’ win, yet the drubbing continued after the main break. When Keegan Brooksby kicked his third late in the third term, the margin extended to a game-high 51 points.

The 99kg forward was the most dangerous forward on the ground, outmuscling GIANTS’ defender Tim Mohr deep inside 50 to finish with three contested marks.

Despite just a 23-point deficit at the main break, a GIANTS comeback seemed unlikely; the team worryingly inaccurate in front of goal.

The away side only managed to kick 1.4 in the opening 20 minutes of the third term, before salvaging two late goals through Lachlan Tiziani and Reed Stevens.

Daniel Currie capped off a dominant day with the SUNS’ first goal of the final term – Gold Coast’s only goal in the final term.

Much of the SUNS’ midfield supremacy was earned through the brilliance of Currie, who along with Under-18 All Australian ruckman Brayden Crossley, won the hitouts 64-30 and the clearances 46-34.

Mitch Hallahan (32 disposals, 11 clearances), Ryan Davis (32 disposals, four rebound 50s) and Jack Bowes (26 disposals, seven tackles) proved too much for the NEAFL’s bottom side.

GIANTS fans ought to not be disappointed though, as Brett Deledio and Jacob Hopper were both among their best in their continual returns from long-term injuries.

The SUNS will enjoy the bye next weekend, however face a dress rehearsal for the finals following that as they face both Brisbane and Sydney to round out the season.


Gold Coast Suns v GWS Giants at Metricon Stadium

GOLD COAST 2.3 8.4 14.7 15.13 (103)
GIANTS 2.2 4.5 7.9 10.12 (72)

Gold Coast: K Brooksby 3, J Schoenfeld 3, J Bowes 2, D Currie 2, J Heron 2, S Davidson, K Sheers, T McKenzie
GIANTS: M Walker 5, M Flynn 2, L Tiziani 2, R Stevens

Gold Coast: T McKenzie, J Schoenfeld, M Hallahan, D Currie, J Bowes, W Brodie
GIANTS: D Lloyd, B Deledio, J Hopper, H Himmelberg, M Flynn