Thilthorpe wonder goal clinches Crows win
Emerging Adelaide forward Riley Thilthorpe has kicked a goal over his head to allow the Crows to pinch a stunning six-point comeback win over a heartbroken St Kilda.
The Crows kicked the final seven goals on Saturday night as Thilthorpe's quick thinking from 10 metres out put them in front for the first time in the game with a minute to go.
Adelaide went scoreless until midway through the second quarter, and trailed the Saints by as many as 36 points, but came good when it mattered to win 9.12 (66) to 8.12 (60) in Cairns.
Thilthorpe had a chance to kick his third goal and put Adelaide in front only minutes earlier but his tough set shot went out on the full.
However, the Crows kept charging to break St Kilda hearts and all but end the Saints' chances of playing finals for the second-straight year.
Thilthorpe described kicking his miraculous matchwinner as an "awesome feeling" and his coach Matthew Nicks was equally thrilled for last year's No.2 draft pick.
"Riley was in everything. He was fighting, not perfect, but we knew at some stage he'd get an opportunity," Nicks said.
"To knock it over his head and bounce it through from where he did, it was a great result. He enjoyed it.
"Then our players went into a mode that they had been practising and got wrong a week prior, but were able to hold on and get a great result."
Thilthorpe's second goal came in controversial circumstances, with the umpire handing him a free kick for contact against St Kilda's Dougal Howard right on the goal-line midway through the last term.
The early roles were reversed in the second-half as Adelaide kicked 7.6 to 1.6, with the Saints' last goal coming two minutes into the third term.
After being dominated in the middle during the first quarter-and-a-half, Adelaide's on-field brigade got on top with Ben Keays, Paul Seedsman and captain Rory Sloane playing crucial roles.
Adelaide collected last year's wooden spoon but can now add a rousing comeback win to giant upsets over premiership contenders Geelong and Melbourne this season.
St Kilda utility Hunter Clark's game ended early after being on the wrong end of a strong collision with Adelaide veteran David Mackay during the second quarter.
Clark, who was subbed off for Jack Bytel, was left with a broken jaw, while a dazed Mackay was able to gather himself and play out the game.
"That was hard to go through, and especially the way we went through it too," St Kilda coach Brett Ratten said.
"We were up 20 in contested ball at three-quarter-time and we lose a game by minus three, so minus 23 in a quarter.
"We're just not strong enough and hard enough."
Both sides have the bye next weekend before St Kilda face Richmond at the MCG and the Crows travel to tackle Carlton in round 15.
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