Casey Demons 18.11 119 def. North Melbourne 10.5 65
Ben McKay (1 disposal), Curtis Taylor (3 disposals), Declan Watson (10 disposals), Dom Tyson (22 disposals, 8 tackles), Joel Crocker (14 disposals), Kyron Hayden (8 disposals, 14 tackles), Nathan Hrovat (18 disposals, 6 tackles), Nick Larkey (8 disposals, 3 goals), Sam Wright (24 disposals, 7 marks), Taylor Garner (2 disposals, 3 tackles), Tom Campbell (19 disposals, 62 hit-outs, 2 goals), Tom Murphy (11 disposals), Tom Wilkinson (15 disposals, 1 goal)
Brendan Whitecross (14 disposals, 4 tackles), Cameron Hodges (9 disposals, 1 goal), Chris Jansen (24 disposals), Dan Robinson (27 disposals, 1 goal), Louis Cunningham (19 disposals), Mitch Rodd (9 disposals), Nash Holmes (16 disposals, 10 tackles), Nick Rippon (20 disposals, 1 goal), Quintin Montanaro (8 disposals), Ty Leonardis (9 disposals, 5 tackles)
Last year’s VFL grand finalists came out of the blocks fast, booting six goals in a dominant first term at Casey Fields, which also saw the Roos kept scoreless.
The Demons were on top for much of the day, with five successive goals in the last quarter for North bringing the margin back to 54 at the final siren.
North’s AFL-listed forwards battle hard, with Tom Campbell and Nick Larkey combining for five goals between them.
Sam Wright and Dom Tyson were also among the Roos’ best.
Mercurial forward Taylor Garner was rested after completing two quarters, which included plenty of big tackles.
Meanwhile, Ben McKay left the ground after suffering a leg injury in the first half.
What the coach said
“We were really positive late in the game,” VFL senior coach David Loader said.
“The frustrating thing is how we can be so bad for three quarters. We finished with 16 fit players and we ran over the top of them, we’re scratching our heads a little bit at the minute.
“All we can talk about now is the positive way that we finished and using that as a springboard for next week.
“Our focus will be on what we did really well late, like we were really good early last week. We’ve just got to do it for longer periods of time.
“We were a lot cleaner with the ball, so we didn’t fumble or turn it over. We’re learning, we want to get better and work towards four quarter performances.”
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The 27-year-old showed the composure and grit of a veteran, dominating at the stoppages, before finishing the afternoon with 62 hit-outs.
Campbell also spent time forward, booting two goals from as many attempts, highlighting his worth within youthful North’s forward six alongside Larkey.
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Renowned for his ability to draw the footy in traffic, the former Swan won plenty of the ball from a more familiar inside midfield role.
After being deployed on the wing in the season-opener, Robinson showed off the versatility of his game, nailing a set-shot from long range in the final term.