STEELE Sidebottom has starred for Collingwood who have stormed clear in the last quarter for a 41-point win over St Kilda at the MCG.
After a solid challenge from the Saints, Collingwood kicked six goals to one in Saturday afternoon’s final term for a comfortable 17.10 (112) to 10.11 (71) win.
The Saints could have put the Magpies under much more pressure – they should have been four or five goals up at halftime – but paid dearly for ongoing problems in attack.
Collingwood lost stars Jordan De Goey and Darcy Moore as late withdrawals and Tom Langdon sat out the second half with a knee injury.
Sidebottom had another outstanding game on the wing and was best afield with 29 possessions and two goals, while Brody Mihocek kicked four majors.
Key forward Ben Reid booted three goals and was massive for the Magpies when they were under pressure.
Jaidyn Stephenson put an exclamation mark on the win with his third goal – a booming 50m-plus torpedo punt late in the match.
Saints ruckman Rowan Marshall had the better of Collingwood star Brodie Grundy and even kicked a goal in the second term.
It was almost as though that goal stung Grundy into action, with the All Australian taking control in the second half.
The Magpies started well, kicking three goals to one in the opening term as the Saints again struggled forward of centre.
Travis Varcoe was reported for rough conduct after his bump not only caught Ed Phillips high, but there was friendly fire as he also collected Phillips’ brother Tom in the same incident.
Neither Phillips had to leave the ground, but Varcoe might face a rough conduct fine.
When Varcoe kicked a goal early in the second term to put the Magpies 15 points up, it looked like they would take the game away from St Kilda.
But the Saints went on to dominate the quarter in every aspect, except where it mattered most – the scoreboard.
They hit the lead briefly, but a late goal to Sidebottom had the Pies leading by five points at the main break.
St Kilda kicked 3.6 to 3.1 in the second term and should have been at least a couple of goals ahead.
The third quarter was a shootout as the game opened up, with five goals apiece, and the Magpies went into the last term with a five-point lead.
St Kilda’s Robbie Young kicked two goals in the third quarter to mark his AFL debut.
De Goey did not come up in time from his shin soreness and Moore also had been in doubt with an ankle injury.
James Aish and Rupert Wills took their spots.
© AAP 2019
COLLINGWOOD 3.1 6.2 11.4 17.10 (112)
ST KILDA 1.3 4.9 9.11 10.11 (71)
Goals: Collingwood: B Mihocek 4 B Reid 3 J Stephenson 3 J Thomas 2 S Sidebottom 2 T Varcoe 2 W Hoskin-Elliott. St Kilda: T Membrey 4 R Young 2 J Battle J Bruce R Marshall S Savage.
Best: Collingwood: S Sidebottom B Reid B Grundy B Mihocek J Stephenson J Crisp D Beams A Treloar. St Kilda: J Billings L Dunstan T Membrey S Savage J Gresham.
Injuries: Collingwood: T Langdon (knee) J De Goey (shin) replaced in selected side by J Aish, D Moore (ankle) replaced in selected side by R Wills. St Kilda: Nil.
Reports: Collingwood: T Varcoe in the first quarter for alleged rough conduct against E Phillips. St Kilda: Nil.
Umpires: Simon Meredith, Robert Findlay, Andre Gianfagna.
Official Crowd: 60,702 at MCG.