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Northern Blues keep finals hopes alive

Paul Sebastiani  August 19, 2017 6:25 PM

VFL Highlights | Round 18 Watch the highlights from Carlton listed players in the Northern Blues' Round 18 win against Werribee.

THE Northern Blues kept their finals hopes alive with a decisive 29-point win over Werribee at Preston City Oval today.

In a tight and scrappy match which saw the lead change several times, the Blues skipped away at the pointy end of the match in difficult conditions to secure a 16. 9. (105) to 10. 16. (76) win.

The game kicked off how it would end, with an early Northern flurry courtesy of Andrew Gallucci: the rookie kicked two goals in the opening minutes to give the Blues an early jump.

From there, Werribee dominated the majority of the opening term but couldn’t get it done on the scoreboard, kicking only two goals from 10 scoring shots.

The muddy conditions reeked havoc in the first half with inaccuracy and inefficiency plaguing both sides.

Neither team was able to gain major ascendancy on the contest and it was left to a late set shot in the hands of Kye Declase to give the Blues what at times seemed like an unlikely first half lead.

The Blues stood up under pressure from their counterparts in the third term before nailing four straight goals to close the quarter to take a 15-point lead into a pivotal final quarter.

After copping a hard tag for the majority of the game, Nick Graham popped up at crucial stages of the last quarter to nail two important goals with the lead blowing out to 40 points.

A few late consolation goals to the Tigers brought the margin back to within five goals, but the Blues held their nerve take home the win.

Captain Tom Wilson threw his weight around in the mud with a team-high 29 disposals and 10 inside 50s, as well as his side’s final goal of the day.

Gallucci finished with four goals for the afternoon in an energetic display, while Cameron O’Shea yet again proved a rock in defence with 28 disposals and four marks. 

NORTHERN BLUES           3.2       5.6       9.6           16. 9. (105)
WERRIBEE TIGERS          2.8       4.9       5.15          10. 16. (76)

GOALS
Northern Blues: Gallucci 4, Graham 3, Gorringe 2, Stevens 2, Declase, Korcheck, Lebois, Sumner, Wilson

BESTS
Northern Blues: Graham, Wilson, L. Russell, O’Shea, Gorringe, Gallucci