NOBODY had more front than Gryan Miers on Wednesday night.
>> WATCH THE HIGHLIGHTS IN THE PLAYER ABOVE
When Geelong needed a spark, the Cats turned to the shaggy-haired small forward, who was a key player in his side's 33-point win over North Melbourne.
Miers, in his inimitable style, booted four goals in an otherwise inaccurate display for the Cats, who recorded a strong 13.12 (90) to 9.3 (57) victory at the Gabba.
The haul was a career-best for the third-year small forward, who helped steer the Cats to their sixth win of the season and their first win in a four-games-in-14-days block during the fixture cram after Saturday's loss to West Coast at Optus Stadium.
North's hopes were hurt in the first term, when recalled key forward Ben Brown suffered a knee injury that ended his night, and the Cats took advantage.
They were 18 points ahead at half-time but could have been further after a wasteful display around goal, however, they controlled the contest to run out comfortable victors.
CATS ATTACK THE TOP Full match coverage and stats
Tom Hawkins was also excellent in attack for the Cats with three goals, while Cam Guthrie (28 disposals, six clearances) and Sam Menegola 27 and one goal) were also pivotal.
Rhys Stanley also stepped up to the challenge of taking on the red-hot Todd Goldstein, with the Cats ruckman having more hit-outs (19 to 17) and also nullifying Goldstein's influence around the ground with 13 disposals and a goal to the veteran Roo's 15 touches.
Jy Simpkin was among North's best with 25 disposals, eight clearances and a goal, while Shaun Higgins' composure stood out on occasion, but the Cats' class prevailed.
Brown's bad return
After coming back into North Melbourne's line-up following his axing last week, it wasn't the type of return Brown hoped for. The Kangaroos spearhead was out of the game midway through the first term after being crunched in a heavy tackle at the top of the goalsquare. Brown grabbed for his left (already heavily strapped) knee before hobbling from the field and immediately ruled out for the game. Brown has managed only eight goals from nine appearances this season, so the injury adds to an already tough year for the out-of-contract goalkicker.
Danger's sign of the times
As Geelong confronts one of the toughest fixture blocks in the competition, coach Chris Scott is carefully managing his players' loads. That was clear in the Cats' use of superstar midfielder Patrick Dangerfield on Wednesday night, with the Brownlow medallist spending a lot of the contest in the front half. Dangerfield was dangerous deep in attack and presented well, but finished with 17 disposals, with his absence allowing time for Lachie Fogarty (23 touches and four clearances) flourishing with more midfield time.
Hosie's fast start
Debutant Lachie Hosie has had to wait for his chance at AFL level, but once he cracked into the Kangaroos' side he wasted little time to make an impact. The tenacious forward booted two goals in the opening quarter from close range to give some bite to the Roos' forward mix, converting two shots with ease. The 23-year-old, who joined the Roos as a mid-season rookie pick last year, put in a solid showing and did enough to hold his spot in North's forward half.
GEELONG 4.2 5.8 8.11 13.12 (90)
NORTH MELBOURNE 3.1 3.2 5.2 9.3 (57)
Geelong: Miers 4, Hawkins 3, Z.Guthrie 2, Duncan, Menegola, Simpson, Stanley
North Melbourne: Hosie 2, Daw, Hall, Mahony, Polec, Scott, Simpkin, Walker
Geelong: C.Guthrie, Miers, Hawkins, Fogarty, Stanley, Z.Guthrie
North Melbourne: Simpkin, Higgins, Anderson, Dumont, Tarrant
North Melbourne: Brown (left knee), Daw (ankle), Pittard (ankle)