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Viney pressure
Lions first to the ball (AFANA)

A cool Thursday night greeted the visiting Lions, and they were a little slow out of the box. Melbourne's Alex Neal-Bullen got the scoring underway when he snapped on the outside of his boot from 40 meters out early in the first quarter. The Demons playing their fourth match in 20 days. The Lions quickly remembered their Fitzroy roots though, adjusted to the conditions and Hipwood evened the ledger at the Punt Rd end. Big Joe Daniher missed his first set shot, but with the aid of a 50-meter penalty a few minutes later he kicked the Lion's second. Bailey Fritsch marked strongly just inside the 50-meter arc for the Demons and kicked his first for the night. And already halfway through the quarter it looked like this could be a shootout.

Hipwood managed to lose May for a second time on the lead and from 25 meters straight in front kept up his end of the bargain and likewise Daniher was again able to beat Lever on the lead and kick his goal from 40 meters out giving the Lions a 14 point lead at quarter time.   Brisbane winning the bulk of the center clearances and delivering the ball well to their big men up forward.

The Lions opened up the second quarter with another clearance and this time Fletcher chipped in for his first of the night. McCluggage opened the growing wound in Melbourne's side when he received a free kick for high contact in the forward pocked and goaled to take the margin to 26 points. Charlie Cameron had barely been sighted all night, but suddenly he too came to the party marking and kicking a goal from 20 meters out and helping his team to a 30 point lead at half time.

Kade Chandler made coach Simon Goodwin happy with his opening goal of the second half. The Lions continued to force turnovers and give their forwards opportunities while Cameron and Rayner could only kick minor scores. It seemed inevitable that the Lions would add more goals. With Loman, then McCluggage, and again Cameron kicking goals, the Lions won the quarter. It their first third quarter win this season and lead by a very healthy 43 points at the final break.

Ben Brown got the Demons off to the start they needed if they were to have any hope of a comeback. That was quickly snuffed out by goals to Bailey and later Cameron to maintain the commanding lead. Consolation goals to Max Gawn, Jacob van Rooyen, Bailey Fritsch, and lastly Jake Lever in the last ten minutes made the margin slightly less painful for Demons fans.  Charlie Cameron was denied a goal from the score review which also softened the blow.

A final kick after the siren by Jacob Ran Rooyen that hit the post, saw the Lions with a win by 22 points, a slight fade out.  They did more than enough to get the four points at the MCG, a location where they have struggled to win in recent years. A tired looking Melbourne will welcome the bye next week, while Brisbane hosts the Cats at the Gabba.

MELBOURNE: 2.0 2.4  3.7  8.12 (60)
BRISBANE:  4.2 7.4 10.8 12.10 (82)

Melbourne: Fritsch 2, van Rooyen, Neal-Bullen, Lever, Gawn, Chandler, Brown
Brisbane:  Cameron 3, McCluggage 2, Hipwood 2, Daniher 2, Lohmann, Fletcher, Bailey

Melbourne: Gawn, Chandler, Viney, Rivers
Brisbane:  Rayner, McCluggage, Dunkley, Neale, Andrews, Bailey

Melbourne: Salem (hamstring)
Brisbane:  Nil

Melbourne: Taj Woewodin (replaced Christian Salem in Q1)
Brisbane:  James Tunstill (unused)

Crowd: 43,098 at the MCG

Article last changed on Monday, April 22, 2024 - 2:13 PM EDT

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