Crows pile ton of pain on Freo
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