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Dons flying high

Natalie MacGregor  August 13, 2017 8:03 PM

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The Dons recorded a 6 point win over the Hawks, in the round 17 clash. Photo by Ben Johnstone.

Essendon VFL Coach, Paul Corrigan, says the side can take confidence from the six point win over top-of-the-ladder Box Hill.

The Bombers secured their place in the top eight, claiming their ninth win of the season.

The Dons have shown they can match it with the best, having defeated the top two sides in the competition.

“I think we can take a lot of confidence from that win,” Corrigan said.

“When you look at the Williamstown game and now the Box Hill game – they are the top two sides and we’ve been able to beat them.

“I said to the boys after the game – our best is really good but we just have to be able to find a really consistent level of that, closest to our best.

“If we do that then we are capable of beating anyone.”

Essendon came back from 44 points down, to beat Box Hill by six points.

Corrigan says a combination of the wind and the Dons lack of pressure in the first quarter were to blame for the Hawks early lead.

“There was a lot of wind. It was probably a lot strong than what we actually thought,” he said.

“In saying that, we’re felt we were off a little around the contest, which was one of our big focus areas for the day.

“Box Hill is really strong contest to contest, so that was one of our key indicators going into the game, and to watch the pressure on the ball from us and make sure that they couldn’t hit easy targets.

“I just felt as though they got through us too easy in that first quarter and it put our backs under pressure.

“That’s probably the reason they kicked seven goals.”

Daniel Younan was a standout in front of goals. He booted four majors, including a goal 30 seconds before the siren, to put the Dons in front.

Younan has played five games this season for the Bombers.

“It was really good to see him get some reward yesterday, with four goals,” Corrigan said.

“He has been in and out of the side throughout the year and I was really pleased for him yesterday - to play well and get some reward for the hard work he has put in all year.”

Michael Hartley returned to the VFL side, after 13 consecutive games at AFL level.

The defender finished with 21 disposals and six marks.

Hartley was strong against Ty Vickery, keeping the tall forward goalless.

“Hartley, down back, was strong against Vickery,” Corrigan said.

“I think there are a number of players that are pushing for senior selection, that’s been the best part about this season.

“If Harts can keep playing well in the VFL, hopefully when the time comes, he will be ready to back to AFL level.”

Best: Hocking, Bird, Younan, O'Brien, Begley, Hartley

Goals: Younan 4, Boyse 2, Luxford 2, Begley, McKernan, Darby, Davis, Draper, Hocking

Disposals: Bird 28, O’Brien 28, Mutch 22, Hartley 21, Long 20