Lonergan makes his mark

AFTER his return to the AFL was further delayed by that pesky green sub's vest, Jesse Lonergan didn't waste his opportunity.

Jesse Lonergan in action for the Suns at Launceston's Aurora Stadium on Saturday.

Jesse Lonergan in action for the Suns at Launceston's Aurora Stadium on Saturday.

In wet conditions made for the big-bodied Gold Coast midfielder, the 19-year-old from Launceston was straight into the action in his home city, playing across half-forward and into the midfield in Saturday's loss to Hawthorn.

Lonergan collected 10 touches in his limited time on the ground, including eight in the final term; going at 60 per cent disposal efficiency with two score involvements, in his first game since round 9 last year and just the fifth of his career.

His hard-at-it style was on full display at Aurora Stadium, throwing himself into contests, with five of his touches contested and five tackles laid.

The performance prompted coach Guy McKenna to call it one of the few positives to come from the loss.

Fellow former Launceston footballer Kade Kolodjashnij struggled early with just three possessions in the first half, but the running defender finished strongly with 12 disposals and three tackles.

Burnie's Luke Russell, playing across half-forward, amassed 14 touches, four marks, two tackles and two score involvements.

For the victors, Devonport's Grant Birchall found himself as a goal-kicking weapon, two long goals giving him five for the season and 27 in his 183-game career.

Despite having just 14 disposals at 64 per cent efficiency, he still had five score involvements before being subbed off early in the final term.

Clarence's Josh Green and his mozzie squad of Dayne Zorko and Lewis Taylor were on fire in Brisbane's upset win over North Melbourne.

Green broke free of Luke McDonald to kick 3.0 from nine touches while teammate Ryan Harwood, of Glenorchy, collected 20 touches and eight marks running out of defence.

The wet conditions in Queensland did not suit Devonport's Ben Brown, with the North Melbourne big-man subbed out in the third term after collecting just one touch.

Clarence's Jack Riewoldt kicked 2.1 and had seven score involvements with Luke Delany as his marker as Richmond got back on the winner's list against St Kilda.

For the Saints, Burnie's Maverick Weller tried hard with 17 disposals and six tackles, while Glenorchy's Jimmy Webster had 11 possessions before hurting his ankle in the final quarter.

Launceston's Tim Mohr played on Lance Franklin in Saturday's Sydney derby, but failed to have the same success as last year when Buddy was a Hawk.

Mohr had 16 touches, but just four marks, with Franklin bagging 5.3.

Mohr's former teammate Sam Darley, of North Hobart, put in a solid 16-disposal midfield-half-back performance on his Western Bulldogs debut against Melbourne.

West Moonah forward Liam Jones was shut out of the contest by James Frawley, and was subbed off at three-quarter-time with only one handball to his name.

Melbourne's Jeremy Howe had Liam Picken playing a defensive forward role on him, but the Dodges Ferry high-flyer lived up to that label with a trademark grab, plus 23 possessions, five score involvements and seven marks in a strong showing across half-back.

Wynyard's Colin Garland spent time on Jake Stringer (who kicked 4.2) and finished with 20 disposals, four score involvements and nine marks.

Lauderdale's Mitch Robinson played on a dominant Steele Sidebottom in Carlton's loss to Collingwood, collecting 23 touches, taking five marks and getting reported for striking Taylor Adams.

Robinson was yesterday charged with a level three striking offence but his previous poor record means a two-match sanction must remain, even with an early plea.


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