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Power edge gallant Suns to keep top-four hopes alive

Last time v Gold Coast The Suns and Power clash in Round 21, 2014.
Matthew Broadbent spoils David Swallow as the rain tumbles down - ${keywords}
Matthew Broadbent spoils David Swallow as the rain tumbles down
PORT Adelaide has kept its top-four hopes alive after grinding out a nine-point win over Gold Coast in wet and miserable conditions at Metricon Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
 
The 7.14 (56) to 7.5 (47) victory not only drew the Power level with fourth-placed Fremantle, but also all but ended Gold Coast's hopes of making a maiden finals appearance.
 
It wasn't pretty, and the Power were relentless for four quarters, but they still had to hold off a late Suns charge to seal their second win from the past seven matches.
 

Leading by 14 points midway through the last quarter, they looked home and hosed, but goals by Daniel Gorringe and a freakish left-foot snap by Harley Bennell drew Gold Coast within three points.
 
Chad Wingard steadied with a mark and goal to see the visitors through to their 13th win of the season.
 
Hamish Hartlett was the Power's best player with his 24 disposals and superbly roved third-quarter goal but limped from the field late with an ankle injury.
 
Robbie Gray (26) overcame a slow start and tight Danny Stanley tag to also become influential, while Justin Westhoff (24) floated superbly between both ends of the ground and Matthew Lobbe (56 hit-outs and 12 tackles) dominated the ruck.
 
They had seven individual goalkickers.
 
For much of the day, it looked more a matter of when rather than if the Power would win as they completely dominated the inside 50 count 72-39.
 
Coach Ken Hinkley was delighted with the win, saying the wet conditions were always going to make it a difficult day.
 
"You just can't score in conditions like that," he said.
 
"That’s as tough conditions as you play AFL football in anymore. Very rarely are playing conditions as bad as that.
 
"If you have a game when you have 33 more entries, the scoreboard’s usually very, very flattering.
 
"The Gold Coast to their credit stayed in for the fight. There’s only two teams that have beaten them up here that’s Hawthorn and Sydney so that’s a pretty good win."
 
But a Suns team that was ravaged by injury would not die.
 
They lost Steven May (hamstring) during the week, Greg Broughton (elbow) before the match and Charlie Dixon (quad), Jack Martin (leg) and Danny Stanley (shoulder) during the match.
 
They were desperate until the end and were best served by Bennell (27 disposals and two goals), Dion Prestia (25), Trent McKenzie (22) and Tom Lynch (18 and seven marks).
 
Coach Guy McKenna said after being smashed in close over recent weeks, it was pleasing to see the Suns with some intensity back in their game.
 
"There was weight of number (against) our defenders," he said.
 
"The resolve of the lads to have a go, I can't fault them on that. It gets back to the basics and fundamentals of football, so that was pleasing."
 
The Power had to overcome their own hiccups with defender Jackson Trengove succumbing to an ankle injury pre-match and Angus Monfries (hip flexor) also scratched just prior to the first bounce.
 
Hinkley said he expected both – and Hartlett – to be fine for Friday night's home match against Carlton.
 
They should have had a match-winning lead by the final change after completely dominating the run of play over the previous two quarters, but had just a two-point break.
 
Gold Coast showed more endeavour than any of its previous four matches, with Jaeger O'Meara, Martin and recalled Seb Tape all ferocious in their first contests.

Port Adelaide shows off its soccer skills with this contender for goal of the year

GOLD COAST             3.2     4.3    5.4     7.5 (47)
PORT ADELAIDE      1.5     2.8    4.12   7.14 (56)

GOALS
Gold Coast: Bennell 2, Kolodjashnij, Matera, Lynch, Harbrow, Gorringe
Port Adelaide: Westhoff, Gray, White, Hartlett, Schulz, Moore, Wingard

BEST 
Gold Coast: Bennell, Lynch, Prestia, McKenzie, Rischitelli
Port Adelaide: Hartlett, Westhoff, Lobbe, Gray, Jonas

INJURIES 
Gold Coast: Dixon (quad), Stanley (shoulder), Gorringe (knee), Martin (corked quad).
Port Adelaide: Trengove (ankle), Monfries (hip flexor), Hartlett (ankle)

SUBSTITUTES
Gold Coast: Louis Herbert on for Charlie Dixon in the second quarter.
Port Adelaide: Aaron Young on for Jared Polec in the third quarter.

Reports: Nil

Umpires: Fisher, Nicholls and Hay

Official crowd: 10,042 at Metricon Stadium
The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs