I’m gonna level with you guys. I miss footy. I miss yelling at the TV and watching Alex Rance. I miss the adrenaline rush of a close match and watching Alex Rance. I miss the ‘woah hos’ of an amazing specky and I even miss the numbing realisations that Saints are about 10 years away from a flag. Did I mention Alex Rance?
I miss it all so I’ve decided to compile a list of the great moments* of the season for you all to reminisce alongside me.
First cab of the rank starts in the buzzing excitement of round 1.
Dangerfield versus the Hawks
Patrick Dangerfield basically defeated the reigning premiers, Hawthorn all by his lonesome. He broke the record for most possessions for a debut player at a shiny new club with an enormous 43 touches.
They say variety is the spice of life, and Dangerfield definitely took that on board with assists, tackles and a huge hanger. His only downfall was his own boot in front of goal.
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Mason Wood serves massive troll
With the game in the absolute clinch between the Kangas and the Saints, Mason Wood marks inside 50 in the last twenty seconds of the match. The Saints had the smallest and slightest chance to run that back the other end, but by an absolute stroke of genius, Mason Wood looked at the shot clock and clung onto that ball.
The move caused a one-day controversy about the shot clock that everyone seems to have forgotten.
Frustrating for St Kilda but an absolute LOL for everyone else. I would say what a game, but I’d be lying.
It’s been a tough ol’ year for the Tiges. They’ve been absolutely thrown out of their rightful 9th place, but this moment is one of my personal favourites.
It was a hard fought flog between Richmond and the soon to be minor premiers. Lance Franklin scored five with midfield gun Hannebery gaining 33 disposals. Ben Griffiths booted his own five and Brett Deledio upped the ante with 34 possessions.
Everything was set up for a cracker of a last quarter, and wasn’t it just. An awe inspiring performance from Alex Rance set up victory. Sam Lloyd lives out the pipedream and kicks a goal after the siren to nab a one-point win.
It still sends chills down my spine. What. A. Game.
Sneaky goals and a Catty win
St Kilda pushed Geelong throughout the entire game. Cats scored, Saints scored and so on and so forth. The game was down to the absolute wire then Jade Gresham boots this baby from the boundary line.
I have seen it called ‘Graceful Gresham’s Goal of Greatness’ by afl.com, but make up your own mind.
The final victory was pretty great too. Who doesn’t love the comeback kids story?
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Nic Nat defies logic
In keeping with the theme of tight score lines and clutch goals, West Coast’s one-point win over the Greater Western Sydney Giants fits the bill pretty well.
Having come off a serious knee injury, West Coast Eagles’ Nic Naitanui just two games later seriously delivers.
I’m still so dumbstruck by it. My personal motto is never trust a ruckman, but Nic Nat constantly proves me wrong. Oh boy, wowee.
*Keep an eye on The Footy Gospel's own Danny Pinn behind the goals after Rory Lobb puts the Giants up by six points - Ed.
In truly spectacular Richmond style, the Tiges were up against the Cats, pushing them at every hurdle. But lo and behold...
Some would have said the Cats were done and dusted but, in the last quarter, one of my dear friends said to me ‘we’re on here,' and "on" the Cats were. Six goals later and a score of 10.22 (82), Geelong miraculously won the game. If you don’t laugh, you’ll cry. Am I right, Tigerland?
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David and Goliath
This game absolutely has to be in every footy fan's best moments. The Bulldogs, after having overcome many challenges, flew to Spotless Stadium to meet with up-and-comers Greater Western Sydney. What a game they treated us with. Goal for goal, amazing feat after amazing feat.
The Giants went in as favourites and the Dogs, well, underdogs. As they had been the entire finals series. They slew the Giants for a spot in their first Grand Final since 1961. It’s my favourite story since the invention of any sport ever.
*Honourable mentions to Eddie Betts' goals (all of them), Nick Riewoldt’s game against Brisbane Lions in the last round and Essendon beating long-time rivals Carlton.
Follow Morgan on Twitter: @morganbharding