Report: Swans roar to life with final quarter blitz

The Sydney Swans roared to life in the final quarter in their blockbuster clash against the Geelong Cats, kicking 7-goals-to-1, to run out 17-point winners at the GMHBA Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

In doing so, the Swans become the first side since West Coast in round 10, 2006, to beat Geelong at their home fortress after trailing at half-time.

More impressively, the Cats have won 18 of their last 21 matches at their home ground, with Sydney the only team to beat them – winning their last three encounters, and four since round 22, 2011.

Led brilliantly in the final quarter by captain Josh Kennedy, the Swans turned around a contested possession and clearance deficit to record their fourth win of the season.

Kennedy was criticised for his performances over the last fortnight, including 13 disposals against the Adelaide Crows in round 5.

He silenced his critics, with 13 of his 33 disposals and six of his 13 clearances in the last quarter, proving a catalyst for the Swans comeback.

The problem was that none of the Cats star trio, Joel Selwood (23), Patrick Dangerfield (22) or Mitch Duncan (24), who combined for 14 clearances, could do anything to stop the Swans once their roll started.

Sydney ultimately won the territory and clearances game in the final quarter, 16-to-5, to trigger the Cats downfall.

The little height the Swans had, proved more than enough, as good as forced to go small, with Gary Rohan their tallest forward at just 189cm.

The mosquito fleet controlled the first quarter, kicking four goals to two, with debutant Ben Ronke hitting the scoreboard.

https://twitter.com/AFL/status/990079615866552320

Callum Sinclair was immense for the visitors, collecting a game-high nine disposals and 13 hit-outs at the first break, paving the way for the small forward line to turn up the pressure.

The Swans had the first inside fifties of the second quarter, but a string of contentious free kicks was paid against the Swans in their goal square, by Matt Stevic.

Isaac Heeney would feel robbed, perfectly maneuvering Mark Blicav’s out of the way in one of the contests, only to see a free paid against him.

Geelong’s tall timber gradually began to improve, with Tom Hawkins, despite failing to convert his chances, Esva Ratugolea and Rhys Stanley rising to the occasion.

The Cats capitalized on their good fortune, with first-year Cat Tim Kelly exploding into action (19 possessions), helping his side turn a fifteen-point deficit into a twelve-point half-time lead.

The Swans looked like going scoreless in a quarter for the first time this season until Luke Parker had a chance directly in front with minutes left, kicking into the man on the mark.

The Cats kicked the first goal of the third quarter, but nothing was free flowing or easy going, the Swans made them work for everything.

Goals to Parsons’s and Hawkins either side of a Heeney goal extended their lead to 22-points at three quarter time, leaving the Swans hanging on the ropes.

https://twitter.com/AFL/status/990102455726755840

Josh Kennedy stepped into the furnace and produced an all-time masterclass, singlehandedly destroying the Cats midfield.

Great ruck work by Sinclair (39 hit-outs, 18 disposals) put it repeatedly down the throat of his on-ball brigade, and they won the majority of the clearances for the quarter (16-5).

Instead of bombing it long and deep, they hit up leads and moved the ball expertly into their forward 50, taking several uncontested marks.

Selwood and Dangerfield were gang tackled just about every time they touched the ball, the ferocity of the Swans players palpable, forcing the Cats to turn the ball over.

Fox kicked off the last quarter rout with a spectacular high-flying mark, before a 7-point play with Zak Jones converting a shot on the run, put the Swans within striking distance.

A Cats reply gave them some respite, but three goals in five minutes put the Swans ahead, with Hayward, Fox and debutant Ronke kicking his second goal of the match.

Florent and Hayward finished the goal scoring for the visitors, while Papley’s snap on the final siren hit the post.

NEXT UP
The Swans face the resurgent North Melbourne Kangaroos at the SCG, who’ve shot up the ladder this season, but suffered a 33-point loss at home to Port Adelaide in round 6. The Swans may regain Lance Franklin, Dean Towers and Dan Hannebery during the week.

SYDNEY 4.6 4.7 5.10 12.14 (86)
GEELONG 2.3 6.7 9.8 10.9 (69)

INJURIES
Isaac Heeney received treatment to his lower back during the third quarter, after a marking contest with Tom Hawkins.

REPORTS
Nil

GOALS
Hayward 3, Fox 2, Florent 2, Ronke 2, Parker, Jones, Rohan

BEST
Kennedy, Sinclair, Heeney, McVeigh, Mills, Lloyd, Jones

dismiss x

2018 Player Sponsorship Program

The Swans Blog is delighted to be a 2018 Sydney Swans Redback member. While we're delighted to be members ourselves in such a prestigious, respected and loved club, we're extending the opportunity to you, followers and readers of The Swans Blog, to share in our experience and to become a membership with us.

We've already purchased the membership, and now we're looking for 24 supporters, followers and readers, to join us on our 2018 maiden journey. You'll share the excitement of the Sydney Swans journey, participate in match functions, have your say in who we nominate, as well as the football tips.

Best of all, if the Swans make it to the Grand Final in 2018, you could be the one representing us!

Interested? Let us know!.

dismiss x

Since you're here...

... we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading The Swans Blog than ever, but we don't accept advertising, and don't want to do so in the future. Unlike many other news and media organisations, fan forums and fan media, we haven't put up a paywall, or displayed ads - we want to keep our content as open as possible.

The Swans Blog is an independent fan blog and community platform. Our content takes a lot of time and hard work to produce. We do it because we love what we do and we believe our perspective matters - because it may be your perspective too.

If everyone who reads our blog, who likes it, is supporting it, our future would be much more secure.

Make a one-off contribution →

Want instant access to the latest blog and news content from The Swans Blog?
Download our Android App from Google Play today.

Justin Mitchell

Justin is a passionate AFL and Sydney Swans supporter, and football blogger since 2016. All articles are of his own opinion. You can reach him by twitter and Facebook at @theswansblog

Melbourne, Australia http://theswansblog.com

Subscribe to The Swans Blog

Get the latest posts delivered right to your inbox.

or subscribe via RSS with Feedly!