Magpies hang on against Saints in AFL
Collingwood overcame a series of late errors to hold on for a six-point AFL win over St Kilda in a see-sawing encounter at the MCG on Saturday night.
The Magpies led by 27 points at the main break, but the Saints surged back to hit the front in the third term before Collingwood finished slightly stronger to win 12.19 (91) to 13.7 (85).
The Magpies’ win lifted them above Hawthorn and at least temporarily into second spot, while the Saints’ defeat left them two wins outside the top eight and with only a faint hope of playing finals.
They had their chances, Ahmed Saad kicking his third goal from 55m to cut the margin to four points 24 minutes into the last quarter.
Collingwood then wasted several chances to seal the contest.
First, Dale Thomas, who had earlier kicked a brilliant goal to give the Magpies some breathing space, blasted a snap from the pocket out on the full with two minutes to play.
A Steele Sidebottom snap was then rushed through to stretch the lead to five points.
St Kilda’s Nick Dal Santo sent the kick-in straight to Collingwood’s Jamie Elliott 40m out.
But instead of steadying, the Magpies youngster played on and sprayed his shot wide, leaving the Saints the chance to tie the game in the final 40 seconds.
They swept the ball forward, but Collingwood’s Harry O’Brien won a free kick in a marking contest against St Kilda’s Stephen Milne.
Even then, O’Brien failed to completely ice the game, sending his free kick out on the full, although the Saints were unable to manufacture another scoring chance in the dying seconds.
Earlier, the Magpies had completely dominated the second quarter, kicking 5.8 to 1.1 to lead by 27 points at the main break.
Midfielders Dane Swan, Dayne Beams, Scott Pendlebury, Dale Thomas and Steele Sidebottom were well on top, while ruckman Darren Jolly had a huge first half with two goals, six marks and 21 hit-outs.
But the Saints charged back with a superb third term.
Brendon Goddard and Lenny Hayes led the charge, with Goddard having a huge third term, setting up three goals and gathering 11 disposals.
Dal Santo and Leigh Montagna were also influential as the Saints hit the front by the last change.
But, after a goal to Collingwood’s Chris Dawes early in the final quarter, the Magpies led for the rest of the match, although never by more than 10 points.© AAP 2013
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