Crows pile ton of pain on Freo

Sunday Tasmanian - - Sport - STEVE LARKIN

was in the bal­ance, and when St Kilda mo­nop­o­lised the ball as well as the stats sheet but couldn’t trans­late that onto the score­board.

His match haul was only two fewer than the Saints mus­tered, and seemed a sign of grow­ing ma­tu­rity in this sub­limely tal­ented yet some­times way­ward star.

It could so eas­ily have been six goals, but for Mar­cus Bon­tem­pelli “burn­ing” him late in the game, obliv­i­ous to Stringer, who was loose and in a bet­ter po­si­tion.

At least Stringer could laugh it off af­ter the 40-point vic­tory, telling Fox Footy: “I couldn’t be­lieve it ... I thought I am in it for six here. He (Bon­tem­pelli) is a cham­pion; he will give it (off) next time.”

It was, as coach Luke Bev­eridge said af­ter­wards, the com­plete game.

His ef­forts, and the work of the Bull­dogs in at­tack, jus­ti­fied Bev­eridge’s se­lec­tion shakeup.

He dropped Travis Cloke and Jack Red­path to the VFL, and went for a smaller, more mo­bile for­ward line, even if Clay Smith’s calf sore­ness meant Jor­dan Roug­head re­turned for his first game of the sea­son.

Bev­eridge will go to the club’s bye week­end more sat­is­fied than he has been in re­cent weeks, de­spite the late ham­string in­jury suf­fered by cap­tain Bob Mur­phy.

Bai­ley Dale pro­duced his best game in his 18th match for the club; the for­ward line con­jured the goals it needed to close out the Saints; Ja­son Jo­han­nisen and Eas­ton Wood were strong in de­fence; and the mid­field shut out their op­po­nents.

Lachie Hunter did a num­ber on Jack Steven like few have been able to man­age in re­cent sea­sons.

The Saints mid­fielder has av­er­aged 28 dis­pos­als per game this year; yes­ter­day he had 17.

Saints coach Alan Richard­son con­ceded he has plenty to think about as his team heads off to its bye break fol­low­ing two con­cern­ing losses by a col­lec­tive 90 points. ADE­LAIDE come­back king Andy Ot­ten kicked four goals as the lad­der-lead­ers pul­verised Fre­man­tle by 100 points last night.

The Crows’ crush­ing 20.23 (143) to 6.7 (43) win at Ade­laide Oval was high­lighted by in­dige­nous trio Eddie Betts, Char­lie Cameron and Wayne Mil­era each slot­ting three goals in the AFL’s In­dige­nous round.

Josh Jenk­ins also booted three goals and Ot­ten, in his come­back sea­son af­ter two knee re­con­struc­tions, was out­stand­ing as the Crows made rapid road­kill of the Dock­ers.

In pelt­ing rain, Ade­laide kicked 5.9 to 1.0 in the first term – record­ing a whop­ping 25 for­ward 50m en­tries to Fre­man­tle’s three. The dom­i­nant tone was set as the Crows dished out the first 100-point loss of Ross Lyon’s 11-sea­son coach­ing ca­reer.

Af­ter lead­ing by 59 points at half­time, Ade­laide’s fan-favourite Betts crushed any re­mote chance of the Dock­ers turn­ing the tide, run­ning in for an open goal twice in two min­utes to start the third quar­ter.

The Crows main­tained com­plete con­trol, in their eighth win of the sea­son, with Matt Crouch (35 dis­pos­als), Rory Atkins (37 touches) and Rory Sloane vy­ing for bestafield hon­ours.

Sloane bet­tered Nathan

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