The Cats have earned admiration for their ability to remain premiership contenders. Photo: Pat Scala
Geelong’s top four hopes have been kept alive after a thrilling win against Essendon, with coach Chris Scott saying doom-sayers who have been queuing up for their ‘power’ era to end would have to wait.
The Friday night game at Etihad Stadium in front of 43,732 spectators started off as a Geelong-lead massacre then turned into a mid-game thriller after Essendon found form in the third quarter.
By the fourth quarter, it was a game of whiplash, with the lead swapping four times before a last-minute goal from Tom Hawkins sealed the nine-point win for the Cats.
Scott was particularly pleased with the performance of his younger players. Photo: Pat Scala
“The fact is we haven’t been great in the past four to six weeks and I reckon there are some people lining up to call for the end but that’s okay, I’ve been dealing with it for four years,” Scott said.
“Our season’s alive. We’re not making any guarantees ... but it’s pretty exciting for us short term and long term.
“I’m very, very confident, almost certain, that we won’t give in.”
Scott credited younger players Mitch Duncan and Steven Motlop for playing a crucial role in the match-saving last quarter, saying they were in condition to carry on the club’s blistering form in recent years.
“I thought tonight was good for all our players but especially our young ones. We’re excited,” he said.
“We’ve got a great culture and great leaders and we’ll always stand up when the game’s on the line.”
Scott said Geelong’s goalless third quarter had been a worry adding that the opposition’s momentum was hard to rein in after five unanswered goals.
“They came out really a different team after half time and in some ways when a team has momentum like that it can be hard ... but you’ve got to find a way to stop them scoring goal after goal in quick succession and we weren’t good enough to do that.”
Geelong have lost to the Bombers only once from 10 games since 2006.