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CASEY CLIFFHANGER - PART THREE

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CASEY CLIFFHANGER - PART THREE by KC from Casey 

The Casey Scorpions' incredible start to the 2012 season continued with yet another exciting finish - this time by the closest possible margin of 1 point against Frankston at Casey Fields on Sunday. It follows narrow winning margins of 2 and 6 points respectively in the Scorpions' previous games and remarkably, despite posting three wins and no losses, Casey has now conceded one goal more than it has scored for the season.

The Scorpions made their task all the more difficult with errant kicking for goal while the Dolphins were deadly accurate all day until late in the game when they had a couple of narrow misses.

Frankston set the tone for the game with two goals in the early minutes before Casey steadied and gained some composure. Unfortunately, it struggled in front of goal despite dominating the rest of the opening quarter while, on a rare foray forward, the Dolphins managed their third straight to lead at the first break 3.0.18 to 2.5.17.

Rian McGough was on the end of a chain of good play to put the Scorps in front early in the second term but the plucky Dolphins were far more direct in their approach on goal and fought back with the next two goals. The hosts continued to be wasteful in front of goal despite dominating possession and it was only late in the quarter that they found their targets. Jack Fitzpatrick who had been good in the ruck, marked strongly and kicked his team's fifth goal and when Matt Fieldsend kicked truly on the siren, Casey led 6.9.45 to 6.1.37. 

Frankston came back full of determination to boot the opening goal of the third term while Casey continued to be wasteful in front of goal. Fitzpatrick showed great pace for a big man but his shot just missed, then he kicked out on the full with his next. The Scorpions continued to attack for little result as the game ebbed and flowed and a nice goal from Will Petropoulos settled the team down. At the final break Casey had more than doubled Frankston's scoring shots but was only up by 13 points.

The Scorpions were being well served by Wade Lees and Tom Couch who dominated possessions with 31 each. Danny Nicholls was good around the ground and last year's reserves best and fairest winner, Luke Tynan was playing his best game for the club. Cale Morton was excellent and in always giving himself time to set up play from out of defence, was an important player at this stage of proceedings. 

The final quarter was again a slog for the home side which had plenty of possession but struggled to convert as the opposition crowded their forward fifty. The teams traded goals and halfway through the term Casey led by 14 points before Frankston moved the ball coast to coast for a goal. And so it continued with the Scorpions unable to convert when they went forward and the Dolphins kicking truly at almost every opportunity, a couple of late misses and the final bell robbing them of the opportunity to steal victory.

Special mention must be made of young defenders in Troy Davis, Jai Sheahan and Luke Tynan who were cool in the crisis late in the game and Tim Smith who was excellent on his return after a long lay off with injury.

The Scorpions might have slipped under the radar so far this year as they have not yet been involved in either the VFL telecasts or radio broadcasts but next Sunday's home game against Bendigo promises to be a ripper.

HOW THE DEMONS FARED

Only nine Demons turned out for Casey on Sunday after James Strauss and Josh Tynan failed to take their places in the team. Presumably, Strauss failed to come up again after copping a bad knock a fortnight ago while Tynan arrived late on the flight after the Melbourne game in Perth. Aaron Davey was not selected for the VFL while the other emergency for the Demons, Tom McDonald had replaced the injured Stef Martin at Paterson's Stadium. Dan Nicholson was under suspension for drinking during his rehab. In all, 15 Melbourne listed players were not available to take part in games this weekend.

Sam Blease - a real enigma. He has pace to burn which is in short supply at Melbourne at the moment but he made some poor decisions and coughed up the ball a bit. Frustrating and as much as someone with his flair and speed are needed by the Demons, I can't see him moving up this week.

Thomas Couch - a ball magnet at this level and he picked up numerous possessions but he's similar to a few of the players already in the Demon midfield. 

Troy Davis - after being touched up in one or two NAB Cup games, Davis has gone back to the VFL where he continues to impress. He is creative, contests well, has good pace and looks to have a good future.

Jack Fitzpatrick - played well in the ruck (23 hit outs) and around the ground (17 disposals) and came close to kicking goal of the year with a great run from a flank. Marking is improving but still needs to work on his kicking.

Kelvin Lawrence - flashes in and out of the game and needs to do more.

Cale Morton - was always in the game sweeping the ball in defence and although he didn't always hit his target did enough to get promotion. 

Jai Sheahan - another defender with a future, Sheahan's development will be watched closely. He hasn't put in a bad game yet in defence at Casey.

Luke Tapscott - tackled and shepherded strongly and showed composure when the team needed it. That said, it still wasn't his best of days although that might be due to the fact that he took one or two heavy knocks in play.

Leigh Williams - playing in his first game, Williams struggled to keep up with the game's tempo and struggled to hold his marks but found his footing and kicked a goal in the last quarter. Needed the run.

Casey Scorpions 2.5.17 6.9.45 8.14.62  9.16.70

Frankston 3.0.18  6.1.37 8.1.49 11.3.69

Goals

Casey Scorpions Riseley 2 Fieldsend Fitzpatrick McGough  Petropoulos Salton  Smith Williams

Frankston Kitchin 3 Haretuku 2 Appleford Clark  Greeley Martin Matheson  Potts 

Best

Casey Scorpions Lees L Tynan Couch Nicholls Morton Smith

Frankston Kitchin Martin Van Unen Osborne Irving Miller

Disposals Couch Lees 31 Davis Nicholls 24 Collins 22 Sheahan, 21 Morton 20

Casey's Development League team broke the ice against Frankston.

Casey Scorpions 4.3.27 6.5.41 7.8.50 11.11.77

Frankston 1.1.7 3.2.20 5.5.35  7.7.49

Goals

Casey Scorpions McPhie 3 Clay Lang Plummer 2 Hill Rosier 

Frankston Orr Uzarevic 2 Boland Policha  Sykes  

Best

Casey Scorpions  Plummer Page Patti Lang Rosier McPhie

Frankston Corp Jaroszczuk Lombardozzi Heddles Smrdel Ndongo

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