Disposals: Fox 27, Seccull 23, Phillips 20, White 20, Battle 19, Steven 19 & Marsh 18.
Goals: Joyce 2, Owens 2, Steven 2, Parker, Answerth, Rice, Seccull & Young.
Sandringham and Casey yesterday ran through a joint banner in a display of solidarity towards LGBTQI+ inclusion and acceptance in sporting clubs.
The two teams were contesting for the Sandringham Pride Cup, an initiative that begun at the club last season to great success and continue to work with the community with this issue.
At a sunbathed Wilson Storage Trevor Barker Beach Oval, it was the Demons who gained complete control early in the contest, the ball unable to find its way to the Zebras offensive end until the sixth minute of play.
Regardless of the numerous inside 50's Casey gave themselves, Sandringham held up well through Jonathan Marsh and Daniel McKenzie, limiting the Demons chances to score through intercept marks and quick rebounds.
There was a long wait for the first score of the game, but it was Darragh Joyce, the newly appointed forward for the day, who made sure that the Zebras would get the first points of this important clash. The first major of the game came after McKenzie blitzed down the wing from half-back and hit up Joyce who marked 40m from goal.
Jack Steven was lively early, collecting 10 disposals in the first quarter and setting up Robbie Young with a clinical cross interpretation - his soccer skills finding Young right in front of the goal square. Young slotted the goal to bring the scores level again after Casey had bagged the previous two goals. Steven shortly after etched his name on the goal kickers list himself to reward the Zebras with the lead once more.
The Zebras were deadly when they sent the ball inside 50, converting five of their eight first quarter entries into scores while quelling the influence of Casey's forwards. The backmen rebounded 13 times, preventing the Demons from having too many chances.
In the second quarter, Casey started brilliantly again, but couldn't capitalise on their entries once more. While at the other end. Joyce became the game's first multiple goalscorer as Marsh bursted through the middle, evading two tacklers before presenting the ball onto Joyce's chest.
The Zebras started moving the ball around in their forward 50 and to great avail too, as 50-50 contests were won along the wing. Kade Answerth took an advantage close to goal and snuck in a goal that took the lead out to a then-game high 17 points.
Sandringham were starting to have some breathing space as their delivery inside 50 worked well. Kai Owens kicked two goals in quick succession after being awarded a free kick and 50m penalty respectively. The Zebras went into the main break with a 23-point lead.
The Zebs didn't look like slowing down, as Matty Parker had his moment, roving Joyce to kick it along the ground for the best possible start in the second half. But after Parker's goal, Casey had complete control.
They responded with four unanswered goals, and continued to lock the ball inside their forward 50, with Hore intercepting every clearance the Zebras had.
A Rice set shot from 50 out seemed to be the last score of the quarter, but Casey managed to advance the ball and convert in the final seconds, to end the third term cutting it back to just a one point margin.
Casey got the first of the fourth quarter to lead by five points but Steven got the ball rolling for the Zebras in the middle of the fourth term, snapping around his body, which was destined to reignite the grunt the Zebras needed to hold on for a victory.
Two minutes later, Casey had regained the lead and the already-heated contest was continuing.
Eventually, it was the Demons that found a way to kick the sealer, finishing the game 12-point winners and taking home the Sandringham Pride Cup.
Sandringham's Sam Fox (27 disposals) continued his terrific season as he played a defensive wing role. Owens was deadly when rotated forward from the ruck (2 goals, 11 tackles) as was Brayden O'Toole (14 disposals).
For the Saints, it was great to see Jimmy Webster (13 disposals) and Josh Battle (19 disposals) get through their first games back unscathed. Both Marsh (18 disposals) and White (20 disposals) were exceptional in helping the Zebras defend the footy, as was McKenzie (16 disposals) taking plenty of opportunities to quickly counter and move the ball forward.
Next week the Zebras travel to Windy Hill to take on the Bombers on Saturday the 3rd of August.