Collingwood get first win of the season in see-sawing win over Brisbane Lions

Jake Santa Maria
The Nightly
3 Min Read
Jack Crisp celebrates kicking a goal.
Jack Crisp celebrates kicking a goal. Credit: Matt Roberts/AFL Photos/Getty Images

The reigning premiers are finally on the board for 2024 as Collingwood’s class saw them overcome wild swings in momentum to take their grand final rematch against Brisbane by 20 points.

For the first time since 2019 the Pies were victorious over the Lions at the Gabba 14.8 (92) to 10.12 (72) to condemn their grand final foes to a 0-3 start while snapping their own losing run.

After managing Steele Sidebottom at selection, Magpies coach Craig McRae made another surprising call by leaving veteran Jack Crip out as the sub with Fin Macrae brought in for his first start of 2024.

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Collingwood dominated the opening exchanges as Brisbane were forced to relive their grand final nightmare as Norm Smith medalist Bobby Hill ran rampant with three goals in the first quarter.

Inside 50s were even but Collingwood was far more efficient generating scores from 50 per cent of their entries while Jordan De Goey was showing flashes of his best to help the Pies get first use out of the middle.

But it was all one-way traffic after the break as the Lions poured on 29 unanswered points as they took the lead at halftime thanks to Cam Raynor’s set shot after the siren.

Bobby Hill was electric in the first quarter.
Bobby Hill was electric in the first quarter. Credit: Albert Perez/AFL Photos/via Getty Images

The Pies were lucky they were only down by five points as Brisbane managed an inaccurate 4.5 from their 17 forward entries as Collingwood were forced to defend for the entire quarter.

Dayne Zorko and Lachie Neale had 38 possessions between them in the first half with Neale racking up seven clearances as Collingwood were swamped at the contest.

Beau McCreery scored a much-needed goal to open the third quarter and break the rhythm of the Lions before Neale sent a scare through the Lions camp after limping away from a contest.

Fortunately, he could continue but Crisp was subbed on for the Pies with Macrae failing to make an impression.

Lachie Neale has a massive night.
Lachie Neale has a massive night. Credit: Chris Hyde/Getty Images

Brody Mihocek had his second for the quarter after snapping one from the boundary before a sloppy tackle gave McCreey a set shot as Jamie Elliott made it a 21-point margin with his second for the night.

The Lions would need to stage another big comeback in the final quarter to have any hope of stopping another breach to their Gabba fortress.

Zac Bailey got them a hot start after a defensive half-turnover running in one from the goal square before Collingwood failed to capitalise on their forward entries as the Lions went end-to-end as Hugh McCluggage cut the margin to nine points.

Brody Mihocek celebrates a goal.
Brody Mihocek celebrates a goal. Credit: Albert Perez/AFL Photos/via Getty Images

But the run would stop there as Crisp managed to get a shot for a goal away out of nothing to restore a 15-point buffer.

From there the Pies kicked away with three of the last four goals as the Lions were left to rue missed opportunities.

Brisbane won the inside 50 count 56 to 43 but the Pies’ efficiency going forward was the difference going at above 50 per cent throughout the night.

John Noble was excellent in his recall to the senior side while the Daicos brothers had strong nights with Nick having the best game of his season with 30 disposals and more than 600 metres gained.

Elliott was crucial with three of his four goals coming after halftime while the Lions lose back-to-back games at the Gabba for the first time since their preliminary and round one loss in 2020-21.

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