Nick Holman celebrates a goal during round 14, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

GOLD Coast continued its march towards the top eight with a runaway 43-point win over Adelaide on a night in which it lost running defender Wil Powell to a horrific leg injury.

Powell left the field via the medi-cab during the third quarter of the 18.8 (116) to 10.13 (73) victory after his right knee and ankle got caught awkwardly under his body.

Play was delayed for five minutes to get the 22-year-old off Metricon Stadium.

The Suns also lost Connor Budarick (hamstring) in the same passage of play and despite a plucky Crows closing a 36-point deficit to 13 during the final term, the home team rallied and thumped home five late goals.

SUNS v CROWS Full match coverage and stats

It was their third straight win and fifth from six matches and now puts them a win plus percentage outside the eight with a mouth-watering match against Port Adelaide at Adelaide Oval next Sunday to come.

Half forwards Ben Ainsworth and Izak Rankine proved the difference.

Ainsworth kicked three goals and had a match-high 12 score involvement from 20 disposals, while Rankine also kicked three from 17 touches that included two assists, one a brilliant effort to gift-wrap Levi Casboult the match-sealing goal.

Matt Rowell (19 disposals, 11 tackles and seven clearances) was magnificent around the contest, while Noah Anderson (27) and Touk Miller (24 and two assists) also worked hard.


Adelaide had the better of the match early and will rue its inaccuracy.

Rory Laird (42 disposals) was tireless, while Jordan Dawson (32) was a driving force from defence.

The Crows had the better of the first quarter but couldn't convert it to the scoreboard, taking just a six-point lead to the break despite dominating around stoppages.

Gold Coast flipped the momentum shortly after quarter-time with Mabior Chol kicking two goals in the opening three minutes after the Suns won centre clearances.

Their dominance continued as the half wore on, winning the inside 50 count 17-9 for the quarter and cashing in with six goals, including two more to Rankine.

Injury nightmare for Gold Coast
After arguably the club's best run with injuries for years, Gold Coast has been clobbered with horror luck in the past fortnight. Wil Powell's horrific leg injury came just moments after lockdown defender Connor Budarick limped off with what appeared a hamstring injury during the third quarter. All this just two weeks after Lachie Weller ruptured his ACL. The Suns are now down three running defenders ahead of crucial matches against Port Adelaide, Collingwood and Richmond.


Crows cruel themselves around goal
Adelaide did more than enough around the ground to be competitive – having 81 more disposals and four more clearances - but its goalkicking would give coach Matthew Nicks nightmares. James Rowe missed a couple in the first quarter and Wayne Milera crumbed beautifully in the second but sprayed his shot from 15m wide. It was contagious as Taylor Walker missed three shots, Laird missed one on the run, and when the Crows were closing the gap late Shane McAdam could not convert.

Rankine's rise continues
Since Gold Coast turned its season around, Izak Rankine has been one of the leading men, and continued his purple patch against the Crows. His clean hands on the wing led to the opening goal of the match for Ben Ainsworth, and in the pivotal second quarter he kicked two goals of his own, including one from 50m as the Suns took control. Rankine finished with 17 disposals, 11 score involvements and two assists to go with his three goals.


GOLD COAST       1.2       7.5       10.7      18.8 (116)
ADELAIDE            2.2       3.6       6.11     10.13 (73)

Gold Coast: Ainsworth 3, Casboult 3, Chol 3, Rankine 3, Flanders 2, Holman 2, Davies, Jeffrey
Adelaide: Fogarty 2, Dawson, Hamill, McAdam, Murphy, Rachele, Rowe, Thilthorpe, Walker

Gold Coast: Ainsworth, Rankine, Rowell, Lemmens, Swallow, Miller
Adelaide: Laird, Dawson, Berry, Keays, Murray, Walker

Gold Coast: Powell (leg), Budarick (hamstring)
Adelaide: Thilthorpe (ankle)

Gold Coast: Jack Bowes (replaced Wil Powell in the third quarter)
Adelaide: Lachlan Murphy (replaced Riley Thilthorpe in the third quarter)

Crowd: 10,507 at Metricon Stadium