The Lions' Lincoln McCarthy flies high to mark over Jack Henry (left) of the Cats at the Gabba on Saturday. Picture: Darren England/AAP
The Lions' Lincoln McCarthy flies high to mark over Jack Henry (left) of the Cats at the Gabba on Saturday. Picture: Darren England/AAP

Brisbane Lions' former Cat sinks Geelong

LINCOLN McCarthy sank his former AFL side with a spectacular mark and goal in the dying moments as Brisbane ran down Geelong in a thriller at the Gabba on Saturday.

McCarthy, having moved north this season to revitalise his career, had just seven touches all day before he soared high to mark and put the Lions ahead with 90 seconds to play.

They hung on in a top-of-the table thriller to prevail 10.15 (75) to 10.14 (74) in what was a brilliant second instalment to the 2013 Miracle on Grass - the last time Brisbane had beaten the Cats.

Geelong led by 17 inside the final 10 minutes after Esava Ratugolea's second goal, but the Lions dragged themselves back through Charlie Cameron (five goals) and superb defence from Marcus Adams.

Patrick Dangerfield dominated the guts of the Gabba with 37 touches in what appeared to be a match-winning hand.

But just like in 2013 when Ash McGrath goaled after the siren to win, the Lions engineered another comeback to notch a ninth-straight victory in front of a sell-out crowd of 35,608.

Brisbane's Lincoln McCarthy completes his spectacular grab.
Brisbane's Lincoln McCarthy completes his spectacular grab.

The ladder leaders were always going to ask new questions as Chris Fagan's side prepared for their first finals foray in a decade.

And the Cats didn't take long to do so, shocking Brisbane with their pace around the contest and forcing mistakes from the Lions' backline.

Mitch Duncan and Jed Bews goaled early for the Cats but defenders Harris Andrews and Adams stopped the bleeding before Hugh McCluggage kicked the Lions' only goal in a low-scoring first term.

Cameron then started the second term with a major as Brisbane started to settle into the contest.

Geelong's Tom Hawkins hit the post with a booming kick to close out the third term, although Cameron Guthrie's running goal ensured they clung to a nine-point lead at the last break.

Ratugolea kicked his second to start the fourth, but Cameron had the reply when he turned his defender around and quickly snapped his fourth.

Jarryd Lyons' goal made it an 11-point game with seven minutes to play before Cameron missed a snap that appeared to end hopes of a comeback.

Cameron bobbed up again though, before McCarthy arrived in his 50th AFL game to kick the winner.

- AAP

News Corp Australia

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