After two crushing losses, St Kilda have bounced back with a crushing victory over Hawthorn with a 69-point thrashing at Marvel Stadium.
The Hawks claimed a rare win with a three-point win over the Adelaide Crows last week but have crashed back to earth with a crushing loss.
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The 19.14 (128) to 9.5 (59) result has arrested a poor run of form for the Saints where the premiership heavyweights Richmond and Port Adelaide put them to the sword.
It probably gives St Kilda a better idea of where they sit in the AFL pecking order with the brilliant performance.
While the Saints still have some difficult games in the next few weeks, the first quarter was essentially where the game was won.
The Saints came out hot, winning the first quarter 5.4 (34) to 0.0 (0).
Great signs for the Saints, not so much for Hawthorn.Source:Getty Images
It was the first scoreless opening quarter for Hawthorn since round 11 2017, and the fourth time it’s happened for Hawthorn since 1965.
After the game, six-time All-Australian Brad Johnson said the Saints had turned it around in the first term.
“The response was the first quarter, the way they collectively came together,” he said.
Speaking on AFL Nation, Bulldogs great Bob Murphy said the Saints had shown the blueprint for the remainder of the season.
“The key takeaway for St Kilda today has been they’ve rediscovered their hunger and that’s a key pillar heading later into the season,” he said.
For Hawthorn, it was their biggest loss since 2017 as the reality of regenerating its list was laid bare.
Senior writer at the AFL Record and SEN Ashley Browne tweeted: “Hawthorn at the fall of the ball, and it’s forward pressure has been disgraceful today.”
The Hawks are in a hole.Source:Getty Images
The win takes the Saints to 3-4 for the season and even has the side looking at pushing into the top eight on the back of their best performance of the season.
This is the number of players each team seems to have on the ground #aflsaintshawkshttps://t.co/ZSIm1HvmcV
Waverley 1999 anybody?
That’s where my Saintly belief levels are at currently… 😂😬#aflsaintshawks
The Saints’ mammoth win, which was much needed to make up for heavy percentage lost through the first six rounds, was set up in a first quarter frenzy.
At quarter time the Saints had recorded 54 more disposals, 12 more inside-50s and six more clearances than the Hawks.
The Saints’ day out was powered by a midfield that clicked for four quarters for the first time in 2021.
The addition of Paddy Ryder let Zak Jones, Brad Crouch, Jack Steele and Seb Ross – who all collected more than 25 touches – dine out on his tap work.
— with NCA NewsWire
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