THE BRISBANE juggernaut showed no mercy against its Queensland rival on Saturday afternoon, smashing Gold Coast by 73 points in a Gabba demolition.
After an even first 10 minutes, the Lions ran riot, keeping the Suns scoreless in the first half and winning 12.10 (82) to 1.3 (9).
LIONS v SUNS Full match coverage and stats
It was a record losing margin for Gold Coast, with its only goal coming late in the third quarter via Jac Dupuy.
Brisbane's third straight landslide victory – following 49- and 47-point triumphs against Fremantle and Greater Western Sydney respectively –sets up a mouth-watering round four contest against Melbourne at Casey Fields next Sunday.
Craig Starcevich's team dominated all over the ground, starting with its engine room, as Emily Bates (21), Ally Anderson (29) and Cathy Svarc (20) racked up plenty of disposals and got their team going forward.
Bates won the QClash Medal for the best afield on the same day she went past 1000 career disposals.
Her disposals were incisive, with a game-high eight score involvements and two goal assists to go along with 10 tackles.
Orla O'Dwyer was magnificent on a wing, while Jesse Wardlaw (four), Greta Bodey (three) and Zimmie Farquharson (two) cashed in as part of a forward line that again saw plenty of ball.
While the highest scoring team in the league dazzled with his run and ball movement, the win was built on a ferocious intensity in the opening quarter.
Despite winning the disposal count by 27 in that term, the Lions still managed a barely believable 31 tackles as they swarmed and suffocated the stunned Suns.
The lead ballooned from 21 at quarter-time to 42 at the half and 61 at the final change as Cam Joyce's team battled to move the ball past the centre circle.
The Suns were best served by Lauren Bella who did well in the ruck against in-form Tahlia Hickie, and second-year midfielder Charlie Rowbottom.
Zimmie Zimmie Zoom
In a game of highlights for the Lions, Zimmie Farquharson's first-quarter goal was something to behold. Brisbane pumped the ball deep inside its forward 50 as the lanky forward charged out. The ball bounced in front of her, with Farquharson tapping it to herself, gathering and with barely a step to balance, snapped around her body from 30m. It was a thrilling finish from a player with as much natural talent as anyone on her team.
One to watch
Brisbane has a star-studded midfield with League MVP Emily Bates, former All-Australian Ally Anderson and rugged stopper Cathy Svarc, but young terrier Belle Dawes adds a dynamic that should not be underestimated. Once again the Sunshine Coast product was at her bashing, crashing, relentless best, finishing with nine disposals, but more notably setting the defensive tone with a whopping 11 tackles. She is an integral member of Brisbane's midfield as it chases a second premiership.
Strap in for what should be one of the matches of the season next Sunday when Brisbane travels to Casey Fields to play Melbourne at 4.10pm AEST. Gold Coast heads north to play a home game against St Kilda at Mackay's Great Barrier Reef Arena on Saturday at 12.05pm AEST.
BRISBANE 3.3 6.6 10.8 12.10 (82)
GOLD COAST 0.0 0.0 1.1 1.3 (9)
Brisbane: Wardlaw 4, Bodey 3, Farquharson 2, Anderson, Smith, R.Svarc
Gold Coast: Dupuy
Brisbane: Bates, Anderson, C.Svarc, Monahan, Wardlaw, O'Dwyer, Bodey
Gold Coast: Rowbottom, Bella, Darcy
Gold Coast: Nil
Crowd: TBC at the Gabba