VFL Review – Round 16

Updated: August 2, 2015
Geelong's Daniel Menzel climbs high to mark in the Cats win over Frankston. Picture: ARJ GIESE


Geelong's Daniel Menzel climbs high to mark in the Cats win over Frankston. Picture: ARJ GIESE

Geelong’s Daniel Menzel climbs high to mark in the Cats win over Frankston. Picture: ARJ GIESE

IT’S tough to break into the midfield of Geelong’s AFL side at the moment but George Horlin-Smith isn’t just knocking on coach Chris Scott’s door, he’s near on banging it down.

Horlin-Smith again starred as Geelong’s VFL side scored a comfortable 71-point win over Frankston today.

The talented midfielder had 43 possessions – 24 contested – and eight clearances, took eight marks, laid eight tackles and kicked a goal and continues to put his name up for debate at the Cats’ weekly selection meeting.

VFL coach Paul Hood said Horlin-Smith’s workrate was impressive.

“He was just intense from the start and maintained that for entire game,” Hood said.

“The last two weeks he’s shown he’s at the top of his game and today was certainly his most consistent performance so really pleased for George.

“He is banging the door down (of AFL selection) and that’s what the footy club needs – guys pushing the players in the senior team and keeping them on their toes every week.”

The Cats had 13 goalkickers in their 16.20 (116) to 6.9 (45) victory with Daniel Menzel taking another significant step towards a long-awaited return to AFL level.

With many of the Cats’ coaching staff watching on, Menzel kicked 3.3 and had 21 possessions.

“He’s getting close to playing at AFL level,” Hood admitted.

“It was pleasing to see him back up his performance last week and he’s putting up a fair body of work now. But he’s been out for a long time so he won’t be rushed back.

“But Dan can put his head on the pillow tonight and feel really good about his contribution today.”

Dean Gore played his best game for the Cats, gathering 32 touches across half-back, ruckman Dawson Simpson dominated his Dolphins opponents and had 53 hit-outs and Mathew Stokes had 28 disposals, six clearances and kicked two goals.

VFL-listed pair Nick Dixon, who also had 32 possessions, Matt Farrelly (24 touches) in his 50th game and Brenton Rees (17 disposals, 11 tackles, six clearances) were also solid contributors for the Cats.

The Cats head up the Midland Highway next Sunday to take on North Ballarat.

Meanwhile Werribee has moved a step closer towards locking away a September appearance after beating Casey Scorpions in an arm wrestle at Cranbourne today.

A seven-goal third term – in a quarter that ran over 35 minutes – was the catalyst behind the Tigers 12.10 (82) to 10.9 (69) victory that’s lifted them into sixth spot on the ladder.

Werribee is now three games clear of the ninth-placed Port Melbourne and Geelong heading into the last month of the regular season.

Importantly, the Tigers are back in the race for a top four spot and face another must-win match next Sunday against the fifth-placed Essendon at Windy Hill.

Werribee kicked the first three goals of the game but the Scorpions then hit back with a seven-goal second term to take a 26-point lead into the main break.

North Melbourne-listed forward Mason Wood sparked the Tigers’ third term blitz and finished the match with three goals, along with Josh Porter, who was a standout in attack.

Dylan Reid and captain Michael Sodomaco also chipped in with two each. Sodomaco kicked the only goal of the final term that sealed the victory for Werribee after they led by seven points at three-quarter time.

Coach John Lamont, who re-signed with the club for another two years on Friday, was delighted by his team’s fightback and ability to hold the Scorpions out in the finish.

“The rain came in the final quarter and took the edge off the ball movement and our blokes just bottled it up,” Lamont said.

“(A) really meritorious win without a doubt. The way the boys went about it was terrific.”

Veteran Kangaroos defender Scott McMahon backed up his best-on-ground performance in last week’s win over Box Hill and was well supported by Matt Hanson, Majak Daw, Matthew Brett and Issac Conway.

Twitter: @GreenBradley

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