Saints and Schneider make amends - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Saints and Schneider make amends

By Adam Cooper 26/06/2010 11:32:47 AM Comments (0)

St Kilda and small forward Adam Schneider gained some redemption against Geelong through a 24-point win in Friday night's AFL rematch of last year's grand final.

Wet and cold conditions meant the MCG was well short of capacity for the top-of-the-table clash, but the Saints are unlikely to mind as they won 10.10 (70) to 6.10 (46) before a crowd of 58,208.

St Kilda's win was their fifth in succession and moved them equal on 10 wins for the season with the Cats, whose seven-game winning run came to an end.

But Geelong will keep top spot in round 13 through better percentage.

Schneider booted four goals and had a direct hand in two others as he made amends for several costly misses in last year's season decider, which the Cats won by 12 points.

His three goals in the first half kept his side in the match as Geelong took a 16-point lead at half-time, but St Kilda were superb in the third quarter and booted five goals while keeping the Cats scoreless.

Geelong manager just three behinds for the entire second half, two of them rushed and one to Andrew Mackie.

St Kilda youngster Jack Steven booted three goals in the third term to have a huge impact in just the fourth game of his career.

Schneider soon after snapped another and then gave off a handball for a goal to Stephen Milne, who was another to rue a bad miss in the sides' last meeting.

Milne kicked the only goal of the last quarter.

St Kilda's resurgence came as a bolt given Geelong were nicely placed at the major break after wresting control during the second quarter.

The rain and heavy conditions made for a tight, bruising opening, but the game developed into a goal-fest during the second term when the rain eased.

The Cats scored three in three minutes and opened a handy buffer when Gary Ablett snapped truly.

But St Kilda's midfield asserted their control in the third quarter, continually winning clearances, with Lenny Hayes, Nick Dal Santo and Leigh Montagna great in the heavy conditions.

The Saints' work in defence was also at its best, as James Gwilt thrashed Geelong key James Podsiadly and continually pumped the ball out of the backline, while Jarryn Geary closed down Travis Varcoe, who was dangerous in the second quarter.

Geelong's best were midfielder Joel Selwood and running defender Corey Enright, while Jimmy Bartel battled hard but suffered an injured forearm late in the game when two players fell on him.

The match review panel is likely to scrutinise the running battle between Geelong forward Steve Johnson and St Kilda opponent Steven Baker, with the latter suffering a cut to the face after Johnson lashed out with an elbow.

St Kilda coach Ross Lyon was pleased with his side's ability to play aggressive football in the second half.

"I spoke some home truths probably at half-time - not personally, but where we're at and how we were looking and I didn't like what I was seeing," he said.

"I thought our effort was there, but I asked for some good aggressive football and we did that." But Lyon played down the significance of a win over the Cats.

"It's irrelevant, we all know that, based on last year," he said.

Geelong coach Mark Thompson said the Cats were "bitterly disappointed" with their second half, but was hopeful the fade-out was an aberration.

"At half-time we just reinforced how we were doing pretty well at the things we wanted to and I didn't see it coming," he said.

"St Kilda were fantastic and one thing we did say, was that St Kilda would come out and have an honest go in the third quarter, as they always do, and we just didn't turn up.

"We didn't play nearly well enough and let St Kilda in and they took the opportunity and played terrific." Thompson said Bartel had hyper-extended his elbow but expected to play North Melbourne next week, as would defender Harry Taylor (cut foot).

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