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Our NEAFL side overcome the Gold Coast Suns

Bryce Heaton  June 10, 2017 6:29 PM

The Brisbane Lions have withstood an intense last quarter fightback from the Gold Coast Suns - Darcy Macpherson missing a set shot to tie the game in the dying seconds - to see the Lions win by just five points in a scrappy affair at Brendale on Saturday afternoon.

The Lions led by three goals at quarter time and extended that lead to 24 points before the Suns booted four consecutive majors to tie it up. It was Josh Walker that slotted the goal to put the Lions in front with less than three minutes to go - the Lions holding on 12.13 (85) to 11.14 (80) to win the match.

It looked like the Lions might kick away several times in the second half, but each time the Suns were able to regroup and keep the Lions in check.

Will Brodie (30 disposals, six marks) was outstanding in a losing side for the Suns, whilst Jono Freeman spearheaded the win for the Lions with 4.2 to his name.

Brisbane Lions NEAFL Coach Mitch Hahn knew it was going to be a tough contest from the first bounce.

“We feel like we didn’t play the way we 100% wanted to for the full four quarters, but the pleasing part for our group was that we were able to come off fresh from the bye, it’s something we spoke about considering we struggled a bit after our last last bye against Sydney,” Hahn said.

“Today we were forced to jump straight back into it and I thought we did pretty well.”

While Josh Schache had a quiet return with six kicks and five marks, Hahn was buoyed by his signing on with the club for two more years.

“It’s fantastic for the football club and for Josh, he was a shining light throughout the week for the club,” said Hahn.

“I thought today he certainly moved a lot and could have been used a bit more than he did but, from the way he was moving around today, you can see he’s on the right track.”

Our NEAFL side defeated the Gold Coast Suns by 5 points today 👏🦁 #singitloud

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The Suns took to the field minus the direction of Senior Coach Steve Daniel with Nick Malceski taking the reins for the day.

The first half was a messy affair, both sides feeling the pressure and struggling to hit targets by hand and foot.

Suns’ Kai Sheers copped a head knock early in the second quarter and took no further part in the match.

The Lions managed to inch ahead of the Suns, leading by four points at the main break.

Rohan Bewick took a courageous mark and finished truly to kick start the second half, before Bailey Scott and Keegan Brooksby answered to retake the lead for the Suns, but the Lions kicked the next four to create a buffer.

It was a soccered effort from Brayden Fiorini before the three quarter siren that kept the Suns in the match.

Momentum in the last quarter see-sawed between the two clubs, before Walker kicked the winning goal for the Lions.

“Claye Beams (28 disposals, eight marks, five tackles) really lifted in the second quarter and Liam Dawson (22 disposals, six marks) continued on his good form from the week before, Josh Walker (21 disposals, 10 marks, two goals) found it a bit,” said Coach Mitch Hahn.

“I thought Reuben William (15 disposals, six marks, one goal) did a pretty good job on the Suns’ Trent McKenzie (24 disposals, six marks).”

“It was a great education for our group and it’ll be a great education for the Gold Coast as well.”

Michael Close (20 disposals, 14 marks, two goals) and Tom Bell (29 disposals, seven marks) were also positive contributors for the Lions in a match where the lead changed five times.

The Suns dominated the ruck contests, with the formidable pairing of Dan Currie (30 hitouts) and Tim Nicholls (23 hitouts) battering Oscar McInerney (14 hitouts) who struggled without a recognised ruck partner.

Michael Rischitelli (12 disposals) was managed in his return from a ruptured ACL and made it through the match unscathed.

The win puts the third placed Brisbane Lions two games clear of the NT Thunder, while the Suns only have the Canberra Demons’ percentage of 69.9 to thank for their place in the top six.

Next week, the Lions next to Fankhauser Reserve to take on the second last placed Southport, while the Suns have a bye.

BRISBANE LIONS 2.2 4.5 9.11 12.13 (85)
GOLD COAST 1.2 3.7 6.11 11.14 (80)

Lions: J Freeman 4 J Walker 2 M Close 2 J Clayton R William J Jansen R Bewick
Suns: K Brooksby 3 D Macpherson 2 C Offermans B Scott M Hallahan B Fiorini D Charlesworth D Currie

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