B Jensen March 14 2004

GEELONG supporters' dream of a pre-season victory in the Wizard Home Loans Cup final were dashed by St Kilda last night. In front of over 50,000 at Telstra Dome, the Cats battled gallantly for three and a half quarters, only to be overrun by the Saints in the final dozen minutes. Leading by eleven points at three quarter time, Geelong could only manage one behind in the final term, to the Saints' five goals, including one super goal courtesy of another downfield free kick thirty metres from goal.

Although not gaining any silverware from the match, the young team did get to experience a full house at Telstra Dome, in front of over fifty thousand hysteric fans. Bookmakers across the nation took an absolute hammering, with virtually no money being placed on the Cats.

Matthew Scarlett, Kent Kingsley, Paul Chapman and Corey Enright played well, while David Spriggs, James Kelly and Matthew McCarthy struggled. Spriggs, in particular, drew the ire of Geelong fans with his inability to have any impact upon the game, besides giving away what was to prove a match winning free kick to Aaron Hamill.

For the Saints, Brent Guerra's four opportunistic goals kept them in the game until three quarter time. Had he been closer checked, the Cats may have been able to build an insurmountable lead. Michael Tuck medallist, veteran Robert Harvey, play superbly, ably assisted by many midfield teammates..

Geelong next face the Saints in Round One on Saturday March 27 at Telstra Dome (Match Preview).

ST KILDA: 0.4.1, 0.7.3, 0.10.4, 1.14.5 (98) defeated
GEELONG:0.2.1, 1.7.5, 1.10.6, 1.10.7 (76)
GOALS: St Kilda: Guerra 4, Riewoldt 2, Hamill 2, Gehrig 2, Montagna (1 Supergoal), Milne, Jones, Hayes, Ball.
Geelong: Kingsley 5, Graham (1 Supergoal), McCarthy 2, Haynes, Graham, Ablett.

Matthew Scarlett performed well against Fraser Gherig.