It’s time for AFL Round 9 in review, featuring West Coast moving #1, and the Brisbane Lions claiming their first win of the season.
West Coast Goes Top of the Ladder With Richmond Win
West Coast has had a fantastic season thus far, and they posted a massive home win against Richmond 130-83 on the back of a massive second half with 13 goals. The Tigers were competitive for a half, but Eagles forward Jack Darling helped put them away. Darling kicked 6 goals, while Josh Kennedy and Mark LeCras added another 6 to sink the Tigers. Elliot Yeo led the disposal count, while Nic Nat was strong in the ruck. For Richmond Dustin Martin and Jack Riewoldt were best on ground, but their backline gave up far too many points to keep the game close. The Eagles should have the best record in the competition heading the bye rounds, they have passed every test presented so far, and are a deserving #1 side at the moment.
Brisbane Lions and Essendon Bombers Find that Winning Feeling
Brisbane got their first win of the season, a 129-73 upset of Hawthorn that results in the AFL having no winless sides left in the competition. The Lions had a strong final term as Luke Hodge helped defeat his old mates. Dayne Zorko and Dayne Beams fired combining for 58 disposals, while Eric Hipwood and Tom Cutler combined for 7 goals. Zorko’s return to form has really helped the Lions in recent weeks. Tom Mitchell and Jack Gunston were in form for Hawthorn, but the Hawks backline couldn’t contain a renewed Lions attack.
Essendon continued to defy expectations, snapping a losing streak with another win against a top 8 side. The Bombers put away Geelong 84-50 in a game they led throughout, leading both the disposal and tackle count. David Zaharakis and Zach Merrett were both over 30 disposals while Shaun McKernan kicked 4 goals. The injection of youth was helpful for the Bombers this week as young Jordan Ridley was a standout in the backline.
For the inconsistent Cats Joel Selwood was solid, while Tom Hawkins and Patrick Dangerfield both fired, but they couldn’t generate enough goals to win.
Adelaide Wins Rain Soaked Home Game
Adelaide beat the Western Bulldogs on Friday Night Footy 63-26 as the Dogs posted an atrocious 2.14 goal kicking performance that cost them a chance at winning in the rain. The Crows steadily built a lead thanks to Rory Laird, Cam Ellis-Yolmen, and Bryce Gibbs, with veteran forward Eddie Betts best on ground with 4 goals. Jack Macrae likely earned a Brownlow vote with 36 disposals but 2 goals is simply unacceptable for the Victorian side.
North Melbourne Defends Tassie Fortress
North Melbourne got the job done against the slumping GWS Giants with a 112-69 win in a game they dominated in the second half. The Giants struggled on attack while Jarrad Waite and Ben Brown combined for 9 goals for North, a prolific showing that led them to the win. Shaun Higgins and Jed Anderson were also great, while Ben Jacobs tagged his way to 10 tackles. For GWS Stephen Coniglio was a standout, but only Jeremy Cameron kicked multiple goals.
Collingwood Keeps Pace With St. Kilda Win
In the closest game of the round, Collingwood won as expected 100-72 against the St. Kilda Saints, the Saints keeping with the theme of the round and imploding in the second half. Brodie Grundy, Steele Sidebottom, and Jordan De Goey (6 goals) were dominant for the Pies. Jack Newnes, Luke Dunstan, and Jack Steven were good for the Saints, but it was still another demoralizing loss in the end.
Port Adelaide Wins in China
The China game again went the way of Port, 82-42 was the final as Gold Coast again surrendered a massive amount of inside 50 chances. Travis Boak and Tom Rockliff were great in the midfield for Port, Sam Powell-Pepper was one of three multi-goal scorers for the Power. Gold Coast had no multi-goal scorers, but Aaron Hall did notch 29 disposals. Gold Coast is fading fast this season, while Port should be feeling good heading into their bye round.
Melbourne and Sydney Win by Big Margins
Melbourne and Sydney posted punishing wins against Carlton and Fremantle respectively. The Demons decimated Carlton 159-50 as Nathan Jones, Tom McDonald, Alex Neal-Bullen, and Jake Melksham (5 goals) were among standouts. Backline leader Jake Lever had his best game in a Melbourne uniform with 27 disposals and 8 marks. Patrick Cripps was again the club champion for the Blues, who extended their streak of games without scoring in triple figures.
Sydney won that the SCG 111-52 as Jake Lloyd got 41 disposals, and Josh P. Kennedy and Lance Franklin combined for 6 goals. Lachie Neale, Aaron Sandilands, and Nat Fyfe were good for Freo, but they simply lacked the talent to compete across the ground against Sydney.