St Kilda coach Alan Richardson hopes his team’s gutsy fourth-quarter fightback against West Coast will end up being the turning point the AFL club so desperately craves.
The Saints trailed West Coast by 48 points early in the last quarter of Saturday night’s clash, but produced a stirring comeback to close the final margin to 13 points.
Forward Tim Membrey, who booted 1.5 in his last visit to Perth several weeks ago, finished the match with 6.0 to go with 20 disposals and nine marks.
Three of his goals came in the final-quarter fightback.
St Kilda haven’t tasted victory since their round-one win over Brisbane and are destined to spend a seventh straight season without finals action.
But Richardson, who is contracted until the end of 2020, is confident there is light at the end of the tunnel.
“I think that has the potential to give the group some belief,” Richardson said after the stirring fightback against ladder-leading West Coast.
“There is a fair bit going right now and that wasn’t the case earlier in the year.”
Membrey’s performance in front of goal was in stark contrast to when he faced the Dockers at the same venue in round eight.
His wayward display that night cost his team any chance of victory in a 30-point loss.
“He just didn’t convert (that night) and felt somewhat responsible,” Richardson said.
“He loves his club and his mates and he felt he let them down.
“He should be rightly proud of how he performed (against the Eagles). I knew it would turn.”
St Kilda will take on Sydney at Etihad Stadium next Saturday night.
But they will be without captain Jarryn Geary, who will miss several weeks with a calf injury.
Defender Logan Austin conceded six goals against West Coast spearhead Josh Kennedy, and Richardson said it would serve as a good football lesson.
“He doesn’t feel it was a good experience right now, but he’ll review his tape and it will be a good lesson for him,” Richardson said.