Macca’s, cup-of-soup fuel 22km day and Lions’ belief

Murray Wenzel |

Debutant Logan Morris celebrates his first AFL goal in the Lions’ win over the Suns.
Debutant Logan Morris celebrates his first AFL goal in the Lions’ win over the Suns.

Chris Fagan hopes McDonald’s-fuelled Logan Morris’s incredible AFL debut, in boots one size too small, has the Brisbane Lions believing again.

The 18-year-old played twice for the Lions in a remarkable Sunday, kicking a VFL goal at Brighton Homes Arena in the afternoon and an AFL goal at the Gabba that night.

In between there was a “Macca’s run”, cup of soup and a mad scramble to find some boots. 

The knockabout Werribee teenager was a central figure in a QClash defeat of Gold Coast which Fagan rated “the most amazing and courageous” he’d been a part of.

Logan Morris
Morris (c) was swamped by teammates after kicking his maiden goal. (Darren England/AAP PHOTOS)

All up Morris ran 22km – 13km in VFL before 9km in his AFL debut, despite some early cramping in the Lions’ 34-point win.

“I went for – big order here – a BBQ angus meal, six nuggets on the side and a frappe. And some soup and bread at the ground,” Morris detailed post-game.

“I played the whole game of VFL and me and a few of the boys did a Macca’s run, assuming that I wasn’t going to be playing.”

But Brandon Starcevich’s calf injury in the warm-up, just minutes before the first bounce, changed all of that.

“All three of us emergencies were looking around seeing who was going to be the one – and that was me, so I had to rush,” Morris said of the scene in the changeroom.

“I was in all sorts, didn’t know what to do.”

Morris, a size 13, had left his boot at Brighton Homes Arena and was forced to wear injured but ever-prepared teammate Will Ashcroft’s size 12s.

“Good story to tell,” he shrugged. 

“I’ve been close (to a debut) the last couple of weeks, speaking to the coaches.

“You want to be playing 1s (AFL) and doing your preparation correctly would be ideal, so hopefully I get another crack soon.”

Morris finished with 1.3, two relatively straightforward set shots misses and a tougher snap unable to spoil the occasion.

Morris
Morris celebrates with fans after the derby victory. (Darren England/AAP PHOTOS)

“That’s his first game; he’ll never forget that,” a beaming Fagan said.

The coach was so pleased to move to a win/loss of 3-5 that he was able to smile through the likelihood of two more anterior cruciate ligament tears. 

Lincoln McCarthy and Darcy Gardiner will have scans on Tuesday that the club expects will confirm the season-ending damage and make it five currently rehabilitating the same injury.

Noah Answerth (concussion) was another early casualty, the Lions playing with two men on the bench for almost three quarters.

Bruce Reville looked assured in his debut while fresh faces Harry Sharp was influential on the wing and Kai Lohmann looked dangerous up front.

Reville
Lions debutants Morris and Bruce Reville (r) pose together post-match. (Darren England/AAP PHOTOS)

“One way or another, whatever happens to the Brisbane Lions this year you’ll find more players and have more depth,” Fagan said of last year’s beaten grand finalists.

“And as we showed, we can win games of footy in that scenario.

“We’ve had a pretty settled line up for a long time, now the opportunity’s going to come their way and sometimes all you need is that opportunity.

“It was a very different-looking Lions team out there.”

Fagan admitted a brutal run of losses to top sides had sapped their confidence but that victory under adversity had restored it.

“I thought we had it after the North Melbourne-Melbourne wins,” he said.

“I didn’t think it (the situation) was, with the record 2-5, as bad as that and … our statistics show it not to be.

“But we’ll take a lot of heart from that.”

AAP