GOLD Coast has condemned Collingwood to its fifth straight loss and placed further pressure on besieged coach Nathan Buckley with a stunning 24-point win at the MCG on Saturday.
The Suns backed up their impressive triumph over Sydney last week with a 12.7 (79) to 7.13 (55) win, which was only their fourth ever victory at the MCG.
Hugh Greenwood was monumental for the Suns with 26 disposals, 10 tackles and a goal, while Touk Miller (34 disposals) and Josh Corbett (four goals) were also highly influential.
The Suns got off to the perfect start, with Caleb Graham tapping the first centre bounce to Miller, who wheeled around and kicked inside 50, where it ended up in the hands of Chris Burgess who slotted a nice goal from the pocket.
Gold Coast brought strong pressure early and was confident moving the ball down the ground, but had issues containing Brody Mihocek, who kicked the next two goals of the game.
But Izak Rankine proved dangerous up the other end of the field, receiving the ball from an inside-50 stoppage and snapping truly to kick the Suns' second and keep the deficit to one point at quarter-time.
Collingwood locked the ball in its forward half early in the second quarter, winning the first seven inside 50s of the quarter. But the Pies struggled to make an impact on the scoreboard, adding only four behinds.
As the Pies failed to capitalise, Jack Lukosius made them pay, spearing the ball inside the Suns' forward 50 for the first time and hitting up Ben King, who duly converted.
This kickstarted a mini surge from the Suns, who added another two goals in quick succession through captain David Swallow and Corbett.
MAGPIES v SUNS Full match coverage and stats
The rest of the term was more of an arm wrestle, but the Suns added another goal late through Brandon Ellis, whose long range bomb somehow floated through the goals without a Collingwood player laying a finger on it.
It left the Pies 19-points down at the main break and in dire trouble.
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Mihocek continued to play a lone hand up forward for Collingwood in the third term kicking his – and his team’s – third goal early in the third quarter.
The Pies again owned the territory battle in the third term and started to get greater rewards for their efforts after Josh Daicos snapped a goal from a holding the ball free inside 50.
But just when the Pies looked to be getting on top, King took a mark one-on-one forward and played on to kick an easy running goal against the run of play.
Further goals to Swallow and Greenwood set up a 16-point lead for the Suns heading into the final break.
The Pies were desperate for the first goal of the final term, but a hungry Gold Coast outfit surged the ball forward where Corbett kicked his second goal to take the wind out of Collingwood's sails.
From there, it was all the Suns, who added another two goals to complete one of the best wins in their short history.
Banner callback fails to inspire the Pies
To the casual observer, Collingwood’s banner on Saturday looked to contain an embarrassing spelling error. It read: "Last time this happened we went alright so show these Suns we own tonihgt". But the mistake was actually a callback to Collingwood’s banner in round 3, 2018 against Carlton, which said the Pies would "show these Blues we own tonihgt". After starting the season 0-2, the Pies won that game against Carlton and used it to kickstart their run to the Grand Final. Collingwood hoped the banner would offer similar inspiration on Saturday, but unfortunately for the Pies it instead foreshadowed one of the most disappointing losses in their recent history.
Gold Coast overcomes poor MCG record
The Suns don’t often get a chance to show their wares at the home of football, with Saturday’s match against the Pies only the 15th game at the MCG in their history. Entering the game, Gold Coast had a 3-11 record at the ground and had never beaten Collingwood there. But on Saturday, the Suns proved the ground holds no fears for them, overwhelming the Pies with relentless pressure and slick ball movement. If the Suns are able to sneak into finals this season, they can be a bit more confident of being able to perform on the game’s biggest stage.
Collingwood forwards fail to fire
Collingwood fans would have been excited to see the return of Jordan De Goey to their forward line on Saturday, after he missed the Anzac Day clash with concussion. While he also spent time in the midfield, De Goey failed to fire when up forward, finishing with 0.1 from 16 disposals. Defender-turned-forward Darcy Moore also finished goalless, meaning too much was left in the hands of Brody Mihocek – who kicked four of Collingwood’s seven goals. If Collingwood wants to reignite its season, it will need to start getting better spread from its goalkickers.
COLLINGWOOD 2.3 2.8 5.11 7.13 (55)
GOLD COAST 2.2 6.3 9.3 12.7 (79)
Collingwood: Mihocek 4, Daicos, Noble, Grundy
Gold Coast: Corbett 4, King 2, Swallow 2, Rankine, Ellis, Greenwood, Burgess
Collingwood: Mihocek, Daicos, Pendlebury, Quaynor, Noble
Gold Coast: Miller, Ellis, Corbett, Greenwood, Bowes
Gold Coast: Nil
Collingwood: Jay Rantall (unused)
Gold Coast: Alex Sexton (unused)
Crowd: 24,397 at the MCG