Geelong have outlasted a wounded Collingwood to consolidate their spot in the AFL's top four, securing a 21-point victory on Sunday at the MCG.
In a scrappy and low-scoring arm-wrestle despite fine conditions, the Cats led at every change and withstood a second-half comeback to secure a 9.12 (66) to 5.15 (45) victory.
Sam Menegola starred with three goals and 24 disposals while star duo Gary Ablett (32 touches, one goal) and Patrick Dangerfield (26 and one) proved a headache rotating between the midfield and forward line.
Collingwood were made to pay for a lacklustre first half and a woeful performance in front of goals.
The Magpies managed just one goal to halftime and were reduced to two players on the interchange bench when Tom Phillips was concussed early in the third quarter.
Phillips managed to soccer through his second goal while being tackled by Zach Tuohy but copped an inadvertent knee to the head from teammate Chris Mayne on the way down.
Tuohy's hard tackle also drove Phillips' head into the turf and is certain to attract match review scrutiny with a groggy Phillips heading straight to the rooms.
Magpies swingman Darcy Moore earlier appeared to re-injure his hamstring in just his second AFL game back from a month on the sidelines.
The 22-year-old pulled up sore after taking a chest mark early in the second term and played no further part in the game.
It continued a rough day for the Magpies on the injury front.
Skipper Scott Pendlebury, who hurt his ankle during last week's victory over Brisbane, was a late withdrawal at the MCG, while forward Jamie Elliott suffered an injury - thought to also be a flare-up of a previous hamstring issue - in his VFL comeback match earlier in the day.
"Clearly Jamie today and Darcy today are issues for us," coach Nathan Buckley said.
"Rest assured, we're not sweeping them under the carpet. We've got to find the answer to it. We want access to our best players more often."
Neither Ablett or Dangerfield fully broke the game open but each were damaging and creative.
Ablett's classy goal late in the second half, weaving his way through traffic and kicking truly from 30m out, set up a 19-point Geelong lead at the major break.
After scoring just 1.6 to halftime, the Magpies lifted in the third term with majors to Phillips and Jordan De Goey cutting the margin to seven points.
But the Pies continued to misfire in front of goals and paid the price as Dangerfield and Menegola piled on three straight goals between them.
Adam Treloar had 13 of his 34 disposals in a huge third quarter but also kicked 0.3, as did Daniel Wells in his first game for the season.
"It's not a performance that we'll be getting too carried away with because we acknowledge the difficulties for the opposition," Geelong coach Chris Scott said, noting that the Magpies had played four games in 20 days.
"But once again, we had some younger players really stand up when it counted."