Belief growing for soaring AFL Magpies
Collingwood's winning mentality has earned praise from coach Craig McRae after a nailbiting five-point AFL triumph over Gold Coast at Metricon Stadium on Saturday.
The Magpies extended their winning run to six games after kicking the last three goals of the contest to overrun the Suns, despite defender Darcy Moore being stretchered off in the dying minutes with a knee injury.
While Moore will undergo scans on his left knee, McRae was hopeful the damage was nothing more than a hyperextension post-match.
The tight win is Collingwood's fifth this season by less than a two-goal margin as the Magpies move into sixth on the ladder and seemingly put themselves in the box seat for finals football.
Having held on for four-point wins over Carlton and Hawthorn in their recent run, McRae was pleased with the different kind of tenacity shown to haul themselves back into the contest against a Suns team that had opened up a 14-point lead early in the final term.
"There's a great belief in the group and there's a level of trust that, doesn't matter what situation we're in, we know what we need to do," McRae said.
"This is a different version of the other (narrow wins), the others was hanging on.
"This one is where we're a couple goals down, now we'd better get to work.
"We've got things we want to do to execute and they just delivered on them."
While superstar midfielder Jordan de Goey, with just 11 disposals, had a quiet return from the period of personal leave following his controversial trip to Bali in the mid-season bye, it was the Pies' young guns that stood out.
Jack Ginnivan kicked three goals, as did Josh Daicos, while his younger brother Nick continued a remarkable first season in the AFL with a best-on-ground display.
The 19-year-old had a career-high 37 disposals, four marks, seven score involvements, eight rebound 50s and four inside 50s in a dynamic performance.
"He's an exceptional talent," McRae said.
"He's in his first year and they put (Nick) Holman to him in the third quarter to try to stifle his influence and the game was there to be won and we thought we'd move him forward.
"You put him into a role where, the players were talking about it, he went into the stoppage and then started to organise others and he's in his first year.
"We're really lucky to have him."
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