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Match Report: Round 12

Highlights Round 12 v North Melbourne The Suns and Kangaroos clash in round 12.

Jack Ziebell made sure his milestone game was one to remember, passing a half-time concussion test and going on to play a starring role in North Melbourne's 27-point win over Gold Coast on Saturday night.

In the Round 12 clash at Metricon Stadium, North Melbourne ran out 14.15 (99) to 11.6 (72) victors.

It was the first time the North skipper has been victorious in a milestone game.

But the win might have come at a cost.

All Australian midfielder Shaun Higgins was helped off in the opening minutes of the suffering an injury to the AC joint in his right shoulder.

Higgins was taken to ground in a legal Touk Miller tackle but came up grimacing and did not return after being helped off Metricon Stadium.

It didn't slow his teammates down, winning a third straight match, and second under interim coach Rhyce Shaw after last week's demolition of Richmond.

All the damage was done in a rampant seven-goal first quarter.

With No.8 draft pick Tarryn Thomas kicking two goals and giving off another two, the Kangaroos effectively put the game beyond doubt, leading by 35 points at the first change.

Gold Coast have been an excellent first quarter team this season but were well off the pace, leaving their opponents too much space around the contest and on the fringes.

North Melbourne led the disposals by 47, contested footy by 15 and clearances by five and cashed in on the scoreboard.

The SUNS lifted their intensity for the remainder of the match, but were lucky to stay in touch as North could kick just two goals from 27 inside 50s in the second quarter.

They also battled hard to win the fourth quarter when things could have got ugly.

But Shaw's men were too consistent and too professional.

Ziebell was leaving nothing to chance in his big game, joining forces with bulldozer Ben Cunnington (31 disposals and 14 clearances) to dominate in tight.

Ziebell avoided a scare late in the first half, copping a high bump from Jack Martin as he attempted to gather a loose ball.

Martin was reported for the incident as Ziebell staggered from the field.

The Kangaroos skipper passed a concussion test at half-time and returned in the third quarter.

Gold Coast was best served by returning midfield Will Brodie (29 touches) and running defender Jarrod Harbrow (27).

MEDICAL ROOM
Gold Coast: A few problems for the Suns on a tough night, with Jordan Murdoch leaving the field in the third quarter with a high ankle injury. Vice-captain Touk Miller copped a corked quad in the first quarter and played the second half in a limited capacity in the forward line.

North Melbourne: Just one concern, but it's a big one. Star midfielder Shaun Higgins suffered an injury to the AC joint in his right shoulder in the opening minutes and did not return.

NEXT UP
Both teams have one more match before the mid-season bye – with both hosting teams away from their traditional home grounds. Gold Coast travels north to play St Kilda in Townsville next Saturday at 1.45pm, while North Melbourne takes on Greater Western Sydney at Hobart's Blundstone Arena on Sunday at 3.20pm.

GOLD COAST              1.3       4.3       7.4       11.6 (72)
NORTH MELBOURNE  7.2       9.5       12.9     14.15 (99)

GOALS
Gold Coast:
 King 2, Powell, Swallow, Brodie, Sexton, Wright, Miller, Martin, Lukosius, Joyce
North Melbourne: Ziebell 2, Thomas 2, Turner 2, Wood 2, Brown 2, McDonald, Larkey, Zurhaar, Polec

BEST
Gold Coast: 
Harbrow, Brodie, MacPherson, Weller, Hombsch, Fiorini,
North Melbourne: 
Ziebell, Cunnington, Turner, Polec, Thomas, Dumont

INJURIES
Gold Coast: 
Murdoch (ankle)
North Melbourne: Higgins (shoulder)

Reports: Martin (Gold Coast) for rough conduct on Ziebell

Umpires: Haussen, Hosking, Harris, Mollison

Official crowd: 9305 at Metricon Stadium