It was time for Geelong to make a stand.
After three losses in a row, the Cats had much to prove on the field. While the club had much to prove off the field.
The redevelopment of The Brownlow Stand took four years. Four years of detailed planning and flawless execution. The redevelopment of the Geelong team, took only one week. One week of detailed planning, soul searching and an opportunity to make a stand.
It was a night of rejuvenation, for the worn down Kardinia Park and the worn down Geelong team.
Dad and I arrived at Kardinia, hours earlier than expected. We entered the new Bob Davis Gate, and I wondered how proud he would have been at what this small town team has become. At what this small town stadium has become.
It was a weird mix of nostalgia, yet a fresh start.
I sat in my new seat, in the Players Stand, admiring the new Brownlow Stand while I watched my Cats make a long overdue stand.
The first quarter was intense. The pressure acts, the tackling and the manic approach from both sides was incredible. It was tight.
Geelong flattened the Dogs in the second quarter, kicking 5.5 while keeping them scoreless.
The Dog’s comeback in the third put them 9 points in front going into the final break. Mitch Wallis was on fire.
Geelong surged again, buoyed by their unusually loud parochial crowd, on the shoulders of their big man Zach Smith, whose last quarter carried Geelong over the line.
Mitch Wallis was prolific in his first game back from injury, finishing with a game high 12 clearances.
Mitch Duncan laid 18 tackles, Harry Taylor kicked five goals, Dangerfield dominated in the packs and on the scoreboard. Tom Stewart showed something and “Scooter” Selwood was back.
Importantly, the Cats brought a new attitude.
Tonight, Geelong made a stand. But it wasn’t just made of bricks and concrete or even plastic seats.
The stand included a club record 134 tackles, 46 clearances and 16 goals.
It included 30 thousand fans, some new friends and a new perspective.
We made a united stand, down at Kardinia Park