Pies down Hawks in Sydney AFL showdown

Brody Mihocek kicked four goals as Collingwood beat Hawthorn by 32 points in Sydney.
Brody Mihocek kicked four goals as Collingwood beat Hawthorn by 32 points in Sydney.

Brody Mihocek has produced a career-best equalling goalkicking effort as Collingwood returned to the AFL winners list against an inept Hawthorn side, with the luckless Jon Patton making a miserable return to his old home ground

Coming off consecutive losses, and dealing with off-field distractions, the Pies kicked the first three goals and dominated a horribly out-of-sorts Hawthorn to win 8.11 (59) to 3.9 (27) at Giants Stadium in Sydney on Friday.

The Hawks scored just 2.1 in the first half and had only 14 points by three-quarter time.

It was the lowest score Hawthorn have kicked in coach Alastair Clarkson's lengthy tenure as coach, which stretches back to 2005.

The win lifted Collingwood six places to fourth while Hawthorn remain outside the top eight.

Mihocek bagged a four-goal haul for the eighth time in his career as Collingwood moved the ball better than they have managed in recent weeks, especially in the first half.

Luckless former Giant Patton, in his first game back at the ground he called home for eight seasons, limped off midway through the first quarter

Key forward Patton, whose career has frequently been stalled by knee problems, including three reconstructions, suffered his latest setback while sliding to take a low mark.

He was visibly upset and distraught on the bench, sparking fears he may face another lengthy stint on the sideline.

Hawthorn officials said it was a hamstring injury and he may be out just a couple of weeks pending tests.

Back on the ground where they lost to GWS last week, Hawthorn moved the ball poorly as they slumped to successive defeats for the first time this season.

The Hawks were also hurt by having midfield prime mover Tom Mitchell off the ground a couple of times in the first half to have a head wound cleaned up.

The Pies, who have not been outscored in any opening quarter this season, made another fast start with their tall forwards prominent.

They slammed on five first quarter goals, with Mihocek booting two goals and Mason Cox and debutant Will Kelly one each.

"We got to work early and I think our work inside was the biggest improvement for us," Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley said.

"We were able to get a lot of offence started off really good contests or good defence."

Kelly, whose father Craig played alongside Buckley, goaled with his first kick but suffered an elbow injury late in the game.

The Hawks managed just a paltry 11 inside-50 entries to halftime and were second best in all the ball winning categories.

"Early in the game we over-possessed the ball in the back half in particular, and we couldn't take ground with the ball, and we would turn it over," Clarkson said.

"It gave Collingwood the corridor and I think they scored four goals from turnover in the first quarter."

Australian Associated Press