By ZAC MILBANK
A stunning nine-goal haul from Glenelg giant Liam McBean propelled his team to a convincing 53-point win against Adelaide at ACH Group Stadium on Friday night.
In just his second game back with the Bays after spending last year travelling overseas, the former Richmond forward put on a masterclass in efficiency to finish with nine goals straight from 11 kicks, five handballs, four tackles and three marks.
It was the first time a Glenelg player kicked nine goals in a match since Dean Caldow booted 9.2 against North Adelaide in Round 18, 1994.
The 24-year-old – who measures in at an imposing 202cm and 93kg – got off to a fast start when he booted the Tigers’ first three goals of the game by 16 minutes into the opening term.
After booting the first goal of the second term to build on his team’s 19-point lead at the first change, McBean followed up again soon after when he crumbed a spoil from Crows defender Andy Otten to dribble the ball through from 15m.
While McBean’s positive positioning and ability to put himself into dangerous spots was a feature, he also earned his sixth major of the night after capturing his opponent holding the ball at the top of the goal square.
He then managed to outbody strong Crows defender Darcy Fogarty to claim a strong chest mark for his eighth goal, just three minutes after taking a tumbling set shot from team-mate Cory Gregson 15m out directly in front.
McBean’s night was made when his team-mates looked after him again, this time it was an unselfish handball from Marlon Motlop in the goal square to give the man wearing the Tigers’ No.1 jumper his ninth just five seconds before the final siren.
While McBean’s heroics were a feature in attack – together with some more than useful help from Josh Scott (20 disposals and 6 marks) and Luke Reynolds (3 goals) – the Bays defence must earn equal credit for the fine victory.
Captain Chris Curran, vice-captain Max Proud, veteran Aaron Joseph and former skipper Andrew Bradley controlled the tempo whenever the youthful Adelaide side surged back into the contest.
Between them, the quartet had 105 disposals with Curran taking a staggering 17 marks and Bradley 14.
It enabled Glenelg to strangle the life out of the Crows, who managed to restore some respect into the scoreboard by booting three goals in a row midway through the fourth term.
The pressure applied by the hosts was also critical in the winning, laying 68 tackles to Adelaide’s 42 as they forced the visitors into several errant passes by hand and foot.
Adelaide midfielders Cam Ellis Yolmen (36 disposals, seven tackles and nine clearances) and Myles Poholke (25 possessions and three goals) were again strong performers but they received little assistance from their team-mates in comparison to the Round 1 win against Sturt.
First-year defender Lachlan Sholl, son of former Carlton player Brett Sholl, is showing promising signs in his first two League matches, racking up 34 disposals off half-back.
Adelaide will now confront the Eagles at Maughan Thiem Kia Oval in Round 3 while the Tigers will host South Adelaide.
Glenelg will be hoping to regain key midfielders Luke Partington (hamstring) and Matt Snook (groins) for the contest against the Panthers, their absence making the win against Adelaide even more impressive.
GLENELG 5.4 7.4 12.5 18.7 (115)
ADELAIDE 2.3 5.5 6.6 9.8 (62)
LEADING DISPOSALS – Glenelg: Curran 31, Bradley, Scharenberg 26, Joseph, Proud 24, Nicholson 23, Motlop 21, Scott 20, Gould, Gregson 19.
Adelaide: Ellis-Yolmen 36, Sholl 34, Poholke, Wilson 25, Butts, Greenwood 19.
GOALS – Glenelg: McBean 9, Reynolds 3, Hosie 2, Gregson, Koster, Scott, White.
Adelaide: Poholke 3, Davis, Wright 2, Stengle, Wilson.