Suns, Eagles play out draw while Kangaroos win

Goldstein was outstanding for the Kangaroos. Photo: Getty

Goldstein was outstanding for the Kangaroos. Photo: Getty

A Tom Lynch goal in the dying seconds has won Gold Coast a share of the spoils as the Suns and West Coast fought out a thrilling draw.

Just as the Eagles appeared to have dodged an almighty bullet, acting Suns captain Lynch flew high to claim a strong mark and then went back to kick his fourth goal of the night to level the scores with just four seconds left on the clock at Metricon Stadium.

The 12.11 (83) to 11.17 (83) draw on Saturday night still came as a shock, with lowly Gold Coast given next to no chance pre-match against the high-flying Eagles.

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But West Coast were a long way from their clean and clinical best and were incredibly lucky to escape with the draw against a Suns side that produced its most even and courageous performance of the season.

The Eagles have only themselves to blame for their inaccuracy, which cruelled them both in the early stages and when the game was there to be won.

The two premiership points do come in handy for both sides, however – West Coast are now six points clear of third place, with games against Hawthorn and Fremantle to come, while the Suns have likely palmed off the wooden spoon to local rivals Brisbane, who sit bottom ahead of next weekend’s Q-Clash.

Following captain Gary Ablett’s season-ending injury, it was Gold Coast’s lesser lights who shone on Saturday, with the often-maligned Aaron Hall and Brandon Matera hugely influential, each collecting 24 disposals.

Goldstein was outstanding for the Kangaroos. Photo: Getty

Goldstein was outstanding for the Kangaroos. Photo: Getty

Lynch’s four-goal haul was the best of any player on the ground and continues his sterling run of form up forward for the Suns, while Harley Bennell’s strong return to the AFL ranks continued with a 28-disposal, seven-clearance game.

But the Suns’ injury curse continued with key defender Rory Thompson substituted out of the game at half-time with an ankle problem.

Also a concern was the crowd of just 9,341, although they were treated to a cracking game.

West Coast’s Matt Priddis was, as usual, a ball magnet with 34 touches and 12 clearances, and was well supported by Luke Shuey and Andrew Gaff, while Dom Sheed, Josh Kennedy, Jack Darling kicked two goals apiece.

Meanwhile, at Etihad Stadium, Todd Goldstein and Jack Ziebell starred as North Melbourne beat Carlton by 64 points.

The Blues gave the Kangaroos a major fright through the middle of Saturday night’s match at Etihad Stadium, but the Kangaroos steamrolled them in the last term for an 18.10 (118) to 8.6 (54) cakewalk.

Goldstein, the lock for All-Australian ruckman this year, had 41 hitouts and kicked two goals.

Ziebell made the most of Goldstein’s ruckwork and had 26 disposals, while Drew Petrie kicked three goals.

The Kangaroos kicked five goals to one in the first term but Carlton came storming back, cutting the margin to 10 points at the main break.

They managed just two second-half goals, though, while the Kangaroos kicked 10 as they, in the end, won comfortably.

Shaun Higgins had 31 disposals and kicked two goals for the winners, while Kade Simpson and Marc Murphy were Carlton’s best.

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