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Match Report: Lions smash SUNS to secure back-to-back QClash victories

Michael Whiting, AFL.com.au  August 12, 2017 7:45 PM

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The Brisbane Lions peeked through the window of their brightening future, and in the process completed a horror week for Gold Coast with a runaway QClash win at the Gabba.

The Suns stormed to a 21-point quarter-time lead, but from then on it was one-way traffic, as the Lions cruised to a 22.10 (142) to 12.12 (84) victory.

They win moves them a step closer to avoiding the wooden spoon, drawing level with Carlton and North Melbourne on five wins and trailing only on percentage.

They can largely thank Dayne Beams for the reversal after quarter-time, with the skipper winning his second Marcus Ashcroft Medal for the season with another sublime showing.

Beams finished with 32 disposals, four goals, four assists and 13 score involvements, and dragged his team back into the game after a lacklustre first term.

The Lions kicked the last four goals of the second quarter, with Beams drilling one from 50m and setting up others for his brother Claye and forward Josh Walker as the home team arrested the momentum.

They kicked the last six goals of the third quarter to take the sting out of the contest and race to a 32-point lead at the final change.

The final score was their highest since round 17, 2007.

Celebrating 100 games in style! #AllForOne

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Beams' performance was as dominant as you'll see, but he had plenty of mates joining in as the match wore on.

Lewy Taylor (25 disposals and two goals) continued a fine season, and Tom Rockliff (24 and three goals) got back to his offensive best.

Taylor was so clean he missed his only target in the fourth quarter.

Jake Barrett kicked three goals while Daniel Rich (22) and Dayne Zorko (22) also contributed strongly.

Coach Chris Fagan was delighted with the win, joking it was his quarter-time speech that flicked the switch to put his team into overdrive. 

"We just pointed out at quarter-time that even our GPS numbers were running really low," he said.

"We were getting beaten in clearances and contested possessions and tackles, which has always been an indicator in this game against Gold Coast, is whoever wins that battle, wins the game. 

"It was just a matter of talking about those statistics and getting more effort from our players and trying to turn it around."

For the Suns, it completed a tough five days after the sacking of coach Rodney Eade and the withdrawals of stars Tom Lynch (knee), Gary Ablett (hamstring) and Pearce Hanley (hamstring).

During the week, interim coach Dean Solomon asked his men to be harder at the ball and hungrier without it – and their first quarter delivered in spades.

When the ball was in dispute, they were ferocious, leading the contested possessions 47-30 on the way to a handy quarter-time lead.

And when the Lions got their hands on it, the Suns' defensive pressure was manic, racking up 15 tackles in their forward 50 before the hosts had one.

They won that stat 25-6 for the night.The Suns looked like a totally different team.

The Suns looked like a totally different team.

Touk Miller (29 disposals) and David Swallow (30) dominated the clearances, and Jack Martin was sublime playing close to goal, kicking three majors in the space of five minutes to give the Suns a well-deserved advantage.

Martin finished with 4.4 for the night and could have finished with seven or eight if he had kicked straight and grabbed the marks he got his hands to.

The Lions were slow early, but whatever Chris Fagan said at quarter-time, worked.

Taylor started finding space and the Lions got their swift transition game working, punctuated by Ryan Lester's goal just prior to the main break after a towering 55m pass from Eric Hipwood.

The Suns also lost Sean Lemmens late in the game to a serious looking ankle injury.

NEXT UP

After winning their fifth match of the season, the Lions will fancy their chances next Sunday afternoon of upsetting Melbourne at the MCG. Gold Coast will play its final home game of the season next Saturday night against Essendon at Metricon Stadium.

BRISBANE LIONS    3.2    9.4    15.6     22.10 (142)
GOLD COAST            6.5    8.9    9.9       12.12 (84)

GOALS
Brisbane Lions: 
D. Beams 4, Barrett 3, Rockliff 3, Walker 2, Lester 2, Taylor 2, C. Beams, Hipwood, Bastinac, Mathieson, Close, Zorko

Gold Coast: Martin 4, Schoenfeld, Lemmens, May, Hall, Wright, Currie, Miller, Swallow 

Marcus Ashcroft Medal Voting

3 Votes: Dayne Beams x 3

2 Votes: David Swallow, Lewis Taylor x 2

1 Vote: Tom Rockliff x 3

Dayne Beams nine votes, Lewis Taylor four votes, Tom Rockliff three votes, David Swallow two votes. 

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