Cats Swamped By Panther Surge
Saturday 9 May 2009
The Morningside machine cranked into gear after a goalless first quarter to destroy Broadbeach by 101 points in a powerful display at Esplen Oval today.
The Panthers frittered away five chances in front of goal in the first term to trail by 15 points at quarter-time, but ran roughshod over the opposition from there to win 25.18 (168)-10.7 (67).
The performance was crowned by a 12-goal third quarter in which the Panthers swept the ball forward in waves.
"The third quarter was pretty good but the second wasn't bad either," admitted Panthers coach John Blair.
Broadbeach threw everything they had at the Panthers early and used the ball effectively in their forays forward, booting the opening three goals of the match.
"Our intensity was pretty good, it just wasn't reflected on the scoreboard," Blair said.
The home quickly changed that by taking complete control for the opening 20 minutes of the second term, with highly talented left-footer Ryan Holman in sublime touch.
"He was the players in the second quarter who turned the game on its ear for us," Blair said. "We put him in the forward half and he marked or crumbed everything that came his way - his goal assists were really important for us."
Just when they appeared to wavering, the Cats hit back with two late goals to bring the margin back to 12 points at the main break.
That just made the Panthers angry, and the home side blasted 12.4-1.1 in the most dominant quarter seen at the ground since Morningside generated 19 scoring shots in a quarter against a strong Brisbane Lions side two years ago.
"We used the ball pretty well and if you get the ball in deep enough, often enough, youre going to kick a score," Blair said.
The Panthers' running brigade were outstanding, with Paul Shelton (pictured) showing the form that made him a star in the VFL, Nathan Kinch and Tyson Upton continuing their good form, and veteran Nick Clark kicking four goals in a midfield role.
It was a super effort by Clark, who left Brisbane at 3am this morning to start work on a job in Grafton, before returning just in time for the game to start.
State ruckman Jacob Gough is in Grogan Medal-winning form and dominated the ruck, while Holman vied with Shelton for best afield honours.
Broadbeach lacked the presence to match Morningside once they clicked into gear, although Matt Fife was yet again the Cats' best, manfully supported by Jesse Derrick and Nathan Lyons.
Korey Fulton tried hard and kicked three goals from limited opportunities, while Ryan Clough did his job