The Northern Blues have moved into the top four after a hard fought win over arch rival Collingwood in round four of the Peter Jackson VFL at a chilly Victoria Park. The Blues appeared in control for most of the match holding Collingwood to just the two goals by three-quarter-time and a lead of 30 points.
A spirited fight back however by the home side had their loyal fans finding some voice in the final term, as they booted four goals to the Blues one. However it wasn’t enough and the Northern Blues celebrated an AFL/VFL weekend double over their opponents winning 9.5.59 to 6.10.46.
The Blue’s had nine individual goal kickers while for the Magpies Jarryd Blair finished with a game-high two goals. Collingwood President, Eddie McGuire, was on hand prior to the opening bounce to help ring the bell with club stalwart, Ted Potter, to signify 125 years since the Magpies first graced Victoria Park in the VFL/AFL.
The match began evenly with both sides finding goals hard to come by. The Blue’s defence led by Liam Jones and Kristian Jaksch worked hard to stifle any Collingwood attack while Luke Russell and David Cunningham provided plenty of dash around the ground.
At the other end Matt Scharenberg was finding form for the Pies in defence and Blair was receiving good support from James Aish around the packs. The Blues managed to sneak clear in the second quarter with four goals to one into the wind at the social club end to take a fifteen point lead into half-time.
The Blues extended their lead into the final change holding Collingwood goalless for the third quarter with both sides having eleven shots on goal. The Pies lifted in the last and when Josh Daicos, son of club legend Peter, snapped truly 21 minutes into the final term, the difference was just 12 points.
But the Blues managed to hang on and once again spoil the Magpies party. Cam O’Shea (31 disposals) and Blaine Boekhorst (23) continued their good early season form for the Blues and they were well supported by the likes of Russell (20 disposals), Jones, Cunningham (24) and Jaksch (20) while better players for Collingwood included Scharenberg with a match high 34 disposals, Blair (32), Jesse White 13 disposals and 26 hit-outs in the ruck, Dale Hinkley (22) and Aish (25).
The Northern Blues will look to cement their place in the top four when they host the Casey Demons at Preston City Oval in round five while Collingwood will be hoping to get back on the winner’s list when they travel to Wangaratta to take on Werribee in a home game for the Tigers.
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