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VFL: Zebras hit Lions for six

Justin Cooper  July 11, 2016 12:41 PM

All our players contributed today and played their role, and we know when we get those contributions we’ll get the result more often than not.

Sandringham has extended its unbeaten run to six games after comprehensively beating Coburg by 49-points at Piranha Park on Saturday.

In dry but muddy conditions on Harding St, the visiting Zebras had the best possible start with four majors while restricting the home side to just two behinds in the first term.

The 25-point quarter time lead didn’t stop there, with the Zebras kicking the opeing two goals of the second term, before ex-Saint Ahmed Saad got involved to get the Lions moving.

In a game that lacked highlights, it was the grunt work in close and the ability to make the most of scoring opportunities that won out.

Coburg struggled to mount any serious challenge to Sandringham after half-time, only managing two goals in the second half despite getting their running game going in difficult conditions.

Unlike the Lions, the Zebras were able to hit the scoreboard with five goals in the second half to run away with a victory that has them well entrenched in the top four.

Fielding a strong St Kilda contingent and a midfield led by vice-captain Myke Cook (30 disposals, 7 tackles), the Zebras were also well served through skipper Trent Dennis-Lane (3 goals, 13 disposals) and Cam Shenton (3 goals, 13 disposals).

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The three St Kilda Jacks - Billings (36 disposals, 2 goals), Sinclair (37 disposals, 5 tackles, 1 goal) and Lonie (27 disposals, 1 goal) - were all influential, while the return of key tall Tom Lee (16 disposals, 5 marks) was a welcome inclusion with his intercept marking a feature.

Sandringham Coach Paul Hudson was really pleased with the even spread of contribution and the grinding win away from home.

“All our players contributed today and played their role, and we know when we get those contributions we’ll get the result more often than not,” Hudson told saints.com.au.

“Huge result to win against a Coburg side in good form and to run out really well on a heavy ground we’re not used to playing on.

“We were challenged in the second and third quarters, but our ability to withstand that and to start and finish well was probably the difference in the end.

“Tom Lee’s inclusion was really important for us down back, particularly early on and Myke Cook led by example with his toughness inside and his skill to set up his teammates on the outside.

“Jack Sinclair was tremendous for us all game, along with Jack Billings and Jack Lonie are ones that are really pressing for AFL selection. I’d also put Cam Shenton up too, he’s had another six scoring shots today.

“We’re building well and playing really well at the moment, but our next month is going to be vital for us.”

With Port Melbourne (Trevor Barker Beach Oval) and the Casey Scorpions (Casey Fields) to come in the next two weeks, the Zebras are well placed for a big assault for the VFL flag.

SCOREBOARD

COBURG LIONS 0.2 3.2 4.4 5.6 (36)
SANDRINGHAM 4.3 7.6 8.9 12.13 (85)

GOALS: TDL 3, Shenton 3, Billings 2, Wilkins 2, Weickhardt, Lonie

BEST: Shenton, Billings, Cook, Sinclair, Lee, Holmes

At Piranha Park.

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