BATTLING difficult conditions and a Collingwood side fighting for its own season, the Demons put on a determined and dogged performance on Sunday afternoon to hold on for a gutsy 15-point victory.
With traditional Melbourne football clubs playing at a traditional Melbourne football ground it was only fitting it be a traditional Melbourne winter’s day.
From passing showers drenching the ground to bright sunshine bathing the players in light, the game needed a tough performance from the Casey boys and that is exactly what the coach got.
Marty Hore was outstanding recording 26 possessions, while Josh Wagner was stellar in the Demons midfield.
DISPOSALS: Hore 26, Wagner 23, Munro 22, Preuss, Tynan 21
GOALS: Chandler, Neal-Bullen, Wagner 2, White, Hutchins
Resilient Demons side keeps season alive
Facing elimination from the finals with a loss, the Demons played like their season depended on it.
Using a second-quarter surge powered by the play of Jack Hutchins, the Demons took the lead and used the breeze to take a 7-point into the main break.
Then when the pressure was on in the final quarter, Casey lifted to make sure they secured victory and kept the boys’ finals hopes alive.
Marty Hore continues his outstanding form
Demons defender Marty Hore continued his outstanding run of form since returning to the Casey side.
In the past three games, Hore has averaged an impressive 26.7 disposals and a calming influence to the Demons backlines.
With Steven May suffering an injured hamstring in the Melbourne contest against the Pies, Hore should push for selection for the AFL-side come Thursday night.
Braydon Preuss: A man mountain
The difficult conditions resulted in the match-up becoming a battle of stoppages and returning ruckman Braydon Preuss again dominated his VFL opponents recording an astounding 75 hit-outs.
Preuss against showed he is the best ruckman in the VFL, now increasing his season average to 50.9 hit-outs per game.
Giving his midfielders first possession of the ball on a difficult day played a big part in the Demons getting the victory.
Luke Tynan celebrates an incredible achievement
The win topped off the day for Luke Tynan.
The veteran was celebrating his 150th VFL game on Sunday and the coach praised the achievement.
“Luke is back at Casey where he started and to play 150 games in the VFL is a big effort,” Radford told Melbourne Media.
“I am glad the boys got up for him and we can celebrate the milestone.”
A word from the coach
“It was a hard-fought win for sure, the conditions made it pretty scrappy,” head coach Sam Radford told Melbourne Media.
“We had to manage a few guys with Melbourne having a 5-day break so that limited rotations as well.
“It was a gutsy performance.”
Next week the Demons head home for their final regular-season match of the season against the Frankston Dolphins with a finals spot on the line, win and they keep the dream alive but a loss will see Casey eliminated from the race, it’s all to play for next Sunday at Casey Fields.