CARLTON have recorded its first ever win in an AFL Carlton Respects Game, producing an emphatic 63-point win over Geelong.

Leading from the outset, it was a brutal performance from the Blues, who set the game up in the first term before producing an incredible nine-goal final term to bring it home.

Patrick Cripps recorded another best-on-ground showing with 41 disposals (one shy of a career-best), but he wasn’t alone, with Sam Walsh (33 disposals), Jacob Weitering (zero goals conceded), Tom De Koning (20 contested possessions) and Charlie Curnow (five goals) all brilliant. 

It was the Blues’ biggest score of the season, on a night where the Club’s commercial partners contributed $7,000 towards Carlton Respects for every Blues goal, while Bupa donated a dollar for each of the 75,218 people who piled into the MCG on Friday night.


Quarter one

Despite the comments from Michael Voss earlier in the week that he wouldn’t like a similar shootout to what happened in Round 7, the opening to the game started in a similar fashion. Not for the first time in the last month, it was the Blues who made the fast start, registering three goals before the Cats had even registered an inside 50. The first of the game came through Tom De Koning, who received quite the surprise when brother Sam - and not Mark Blicavs - took the opening ruck battle. The Cats soon settled with two gold in quick succession, but the Blues’ pressure game was well and truly on, recording eight forward-50 tackles while dominating clearances in the early going. Zac Williams was dangerous forward of the ball, turning provider of a number of scoring opportunities, while Charlie Curnow was providing headaches with two first-quarter goals. Sam Walsh and Patrick Cripps were prolific, while Jacob Weitering stood up time and time again on the last line: the leaders ensured the Blues took a 19-point lead into the first change.

Quarter two

The game looked well and truly to be back on as a contest when Geelong got out the back for two goals inside the opening four minutes, bringing the margin back within a kick for the first time since the opening minutes. But Carlton was able to rally when the game called for it, with Curnow conjuring his third goal out of nothing before his mate Harry McKay quickly joined him on the scoresheet. Orazio Fantasia was busy with two direct assists in the forward half, while Nic Newman’s commitment to the cause at the other end was evident. while Weitering was at his intercepting best on Tom Hawkins, recording four in the first half. After the early scare by the Cats, the Blues were back to their ruthless best, recording six straight goals despite the game being relatively even as a contest. The Blues were dominant around the ground in stoppage clearances (+18) and made the most of their forward entries in a half where they had eight more inside 50s than the Cats. Matt Owies was electric up forward, kicking three first-half goals - with the last coming from a desperate holding-the-ball tackle - to open up a 36-point lead at the main break.


Quarter three

Carlton’s pressure felt like it was at an all-time high to start the third term, with the home side suffocating Geelong as the game was entirely played in Carlton’s forward half. After getting an early goal in his tag against Tom Stewart, Alex Cincotta doubled up, kicking his fifth goal in three weeks on the back of smart play from a Geelong turnover. Regrettably for the Blues, that was where their good work in front of goal ended, kicking six consecutive behinds from that point on - plus two that failed to register a score - at a time when they could’ve taken the game away from the Cats. Cripps continued to lead from the front with eight disposals for the quarter, taking his tally to 28 for the game at three-quarter time, while Adam Saad produced some blistering passages of play that had Carlton fans out of their seats. Just when the Blues looked to have the game on their terms, three consecutive goals late in the term stung them - especially after their earlier inaccuracy - with the margin whittled down to 27 at the final change.

Quarter four

In previous weeks, the Blues have found themselves ahead but with the game still in the balance at three-quarter time: that was no different in Round 15. And once again, the Blues stormed home. Matthew Kennedy kicked things off following a 50-metre penalty, and the Blues didn’t let up from there. Kennedy, Cripps and Walsh led the charge in the final term, with the midfielders collecting 11, 13 and 11 disposals respectively as the Blues took the game away from the Cats. Continuing their trend of blistering final terms, the Blues - who kicked 1.6 in the third - turned it around with 9.1 in the final quarter, averaging just shy of seven goals in the last four weeks throughout the final term alone. Blake Acres’ effort was indicative of the Blues’ temperament, fighting until the final siren to stop a Geelong goal with the game over as a contest on the scoreboard. The unanimous highlight from the quarter came from Lachie Cowan, with the first-year Blue producing a memorable first ever goal for his boyhood club as over 75,000 at the MCG cheered a big Carlton win.


CARLTON      5.3     11.5     12.11     21.12 (138)
GEELONG      2.2     5.5      8.8        11.9 (75)

Carlton: Curnow 5, McKay 3, Owies 3, Cincotta 2, Acres, Cowan, De Koning, E.Hollands, O.Hollands, Kennedy, Newman, Walsh

Carlton: Cripps, De Koning, Weitering, Newman, Walsh, Curnow, Kennedy