The Northern Blues were made to pay for their errant kicking in front of goal, going down by 22 points to Box Hill. (PHOTO CREDIT: Tim Murdoch)
The Northern Blues have suffered their third loss in a row, this time at the hands of the ladder-leaders Box Hill at Preston City Oval.
In windy conditions, inaccuracy haunted the Blues late in the game who fell to a 6. 19. (55) to 11. 11. (77) defeat.
Kicking against the wind in the first quarter, the Blues’ defence had their work cut out for them early as the Hawks piled on the pressure.
The Blues conceded 13 inside 50s to four and fought hard to keep the score within reach, holding Box Hill to three goals in the first term.
Despite the away side dominating the play, the Blues managed to only trail by 15 points with the advantage of the wind in the second term.
Inaccuracy in the second quarter became the bitter flavour of the day from then on for the home side, failing to capitalise on prolific midfield performances from Blaine Boekhorst and Tom Wilson.
After amassing eight scoring shots for the term, the Blues were only able to slot two majors through and trailed by a solitary goal into the main break.
The third term battle was almost a carbon copy of the first quarter, with the Blues again conceding 13 inside 50s to which Box Hill this time were able to put to effect on the scoreboard.
With the Blues again struggling to gain any forward momentum, a four goal to one quarter in favour of the Hawks meant Northern were left with an uphill battle in the last term even with the aid of the wind.
The Blues completely dominated the contest for the first 15 minutes of the last term and with some accurate kicking may have found themselves in front.
An amazing ten scoring shots unfortunately did not bare any fruit for a determined Northern outfit, who were only able to land two goals and eight behinds after having all the play.
Against the run of play, the Hawks were able to steady and hand Northern a 22-point loss.
Cameron O’Shea continued his sparkling form down back with another solid performance, racking up 28 disposals and 10 marks.
Boekhorst and Wilson were the pick of the midfielders with 36 and 25 disposals respectively, with the captain stepping up at vital stages.
NORTHERN BLUES 1.1 3.7 4.11 6. 19. (55)
BOX HILL HAWKS 3.4 4.7 8.10 11. 11. (77)
Northern Blues: Buckley, Gallucci, Kerr, McKay, Pickett, Palmer
Northern Blues: O’Shea, Wilson, S. Russell, Macreadie, Smedts, Boekhorst