CARLTON has snapped a four-game losing streak in emphatic fashion at Ikon Park, smashing the winless St Kilda by 46 points on Saturday.
Daniel Harford's side hadn’t won a game since beating Geelong in round two and had suffered an average losing margin of six goals across the past month.
But their season has a faint pulse again.
The Blues booted three goals in the opening quarter and had their highest score of the season by half-time – 5.5 (35) – before putting the foot down again in the final term to finish on top in the 7.6 (48) to 0.2 (2) contest.
The much-needed win reignites a season that has been a disappointment to date, launching Carlton from 13th up to 10th on the ladder, two games outside the top-six.
St Kilda took only eight seconds to take a mark inside 50, but that shot faded to the right and was just about as good as it got for the red, white and black.
BLUES v SAINTS Full match coverage and stats
St Kilda kicked the first two points of the game but didn’t trouble the goal umpires again, finishing goalless and with the equal-lowest score in the history of AFLW.
The Saints haven’t won a game since they beat West Coast in round nine last season and currently sit dead last on the ladder under new coach Nick Dal Santo.
Dal Santo – whose side has been hit hard by injury and suspension – will have to quickly rally the troops at RSEA Park on Monday, with two games to come in the next seven days, starting with a trip to Sydney to face Greater Western Sydney on Wednesday.
Blues young gun Georgia Gee cut the Saints apart across the ground, using her beautiful kick to punish the opposition, before finishing with 20 disposals and six marks in an eye-catching display.
Carlton star Mimi Hill continued her brilliant return from a knee reconstruction, adding another 17 disposals to the 25 touches she had against Fremantle last week, after amassing 26 in a stunning return to the game a fortnight ago.
While Hill and Gee were two of the best players on the ground, Carlton enjoyed an even spread of contribution, with star forward Darcy Vescio producing a handful of special moments that sent the crowd into a frenzy, including a goal early in the last quarter to put the icing on the cake.
Finally some goals for the Blues
Carlton has struggled to impact the scoreboard this season, but finally found some form in front of goal – and should have kicked more goals given the amount of scoring chances they generated. The Blues put their highest score of 2022 on the board, benefiting from much better ball movement than in recent weeks.
Milestone within reach for Carlton star
Dual All-Australian Darcy Vescio continued to show why they're one of the best forwards in the competition, slotting two classy goals to move just two goals away from becoming the first player to reach 50 goals in AFLW history.
The ever-changing fixture will provide an anomaly this week. The next side Carlton and St Kilda will both face is Greater Western Sydney. The Saints will play the Giants first on Wednesday before the Blues face them next weekend in Canberra.
“It was disappointing. We came here fully prepared. We knew the opposition well. We’re clearly disappointed. I thought at times we showed some signs of how we want to move the ball but also how we want to defend. Clearly for the majority of the game we didn’t do that. We’re in it together – this is a collective – clearly we’re not where we want to be yet.” - St Kilda coach Nick Dal Santo
“It’s been a while coming, been a month coming for the players, so to see them celebrate victory and have the joy in their face from playing a four-quarter performance was lovely. It was nice in the rooms for the first time in a while.” - Carlton coach Daniel Harford
CARLTON 3.1 5.5 5.5 7.6 (48)
ST KILDA 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2 (2)
Carlton: Vescio 2, Moody 2, Good, Jones, Sherar,
Carlton: Gee, Vescio, Prespakis, Hill, Egan, Laloifi
St Kilda: Lucas-Rodd, Phillips, Priest
St Kilda: Nil
St Kilda: Nil
Crowd: TBC at Ikon Park
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