GEELONG remains an AFL graveyard for Adelaide, with the Cats steadying after a scratchy start to win by 27 points despite Patrick Dangerfield’s injury.
After the Crows challenged early, the ladder leaders flexed their considerable muscle and broke clear for a 14.12 (96) to 10.9 (69) win on Friday night at GMHBA Stadium.
The Crows have lost their past 11 games at the venue, last winning there in 2003.
Dangerfield clearly was handicapped with sore ribs after he was crunched late in the second term.
Adelaide captain Taylor Walker made a strong start, but also hurt his elbow in the second term and that dented his impact.
The Cats moved Mark Blicavs into the ruck after quarter-time and that was critical.
With Blicavs taking control of the ruck duels and midfielder Tim Kelly outstanding, the Cats kicked seven goals to three after halftime.
It was a quick rebound for Geelong, having lost after the bye again last weekend, with Port Adelaide dominating.
Adelaide made the early running, as they threatened to take control of the clearances.
The Crows extended a nine-point lead at the first break to 20 midway through the second term.
But Walker had to leave the field with his injury and that appeared to hamper him for the rest of the game.
Once Blicavs went into the ruck, Geelong had the clearances more on their terms.
The Cats steadied, kicking the last three goals of the half to lead by a point at the main break.
The one big negative in the second term for the home side was Dangerfield, who was crunched by Daniel Talia in a marking contest.
Dangerfield returned to the field early in the third term and had minimal impact.
The Crows were on the back foot for much of the third term, but great support from Walker helped to set up defender Brodie Smith for an outstanding goal.
The third term belonged to Cats small forward Gryan Miers, who kicked two goals – the second when he won a 50-50 ball superbly.
Fellow newcomer Jordan Clark and veterans Joel Selwood and Harry Taylor also impressed for the Cats, while Matt Crouch and Rory Sloane were best for the Crows.
Adelaide star Bryce Gibbs, recalled for his first game since Round 11, had minimal impact and star forward Eddie Betts was also quiet.
© AAP 2019
GEELONG 4.1 7.6 11.9 14.12 (96)
ADELAIDE 5.4 7.5 9.7 10.9 (69)
Goals: Geelong: C Guthrie 2 G Ablett 2 G Miers 2 T Hawkins 2 T Kelly 2 J Bews J Clark M Duncan R Stanley. Adelaide: E Himmelberg 2 P Seedsman 2 B Smith H Greenwood J Gallucci L Murphy R O’Brien T Walker.
Umpires: Jacob Mollison, Nicholas Foot, Nathan Williamson.
Venue: GMHBA Stadium.