Sport

Saints march on with player signings

Shane Savage (right) is congratulated by St Kilda teammates Blake Acres and Sebastian Ross.
Shane Savage (right) is congratulated by St Kilda teammates Blake Acres and Sebastian Ross. JULIAN SMITH

AFL: St Kilda duo Shane Savage and Jack Lonie have inked new deals with the club.

Savage has signed a two-year contract which will see him through until the end of 2019, while Lonie has penned a one-year extension until the completion of the 2018 season.

Both players were out of contract at the end of 2017.

Savage, 26, fell out of the club's senior team during the first half of the year but forced his way back in and played the last eight games, notching 25 or more disposals in five of these outings.

The ex-Hawk has played 67 games for the Saints (and 123 in total) since he was traded along with draft pick 17 for Ben McEvoy at the end of 2013.

He started Hawthorn's losing 2012 grand final in the green vest and was an emergency for the club's 2013 triumph.

"Shane's drive out of defence in the second half of the season was an important element as the club strived for a finals berth,” St Kilda chief operating officer Ameet Bains said.

"After a period out of the team, he showed great resilience to win his spot back and then seize his opportunity.

"He was able to find great balance between defending his opponent and taking the game on with his run and elite kicking.”

Lonie's deal will see him enter a fourth season at St Kilda.

The 21-year-old was recruited with pick 41 in the 2014 national draft and played 12 senior games this season for a career tally of 39.

When not in Alan Richardson's 22, he averaged 25 disposals per outing from nine games for Sandringham.

"Jack also demonstrated his determination to be part of the senior team, even when required to play at Sandringham,” Bains said.

"Jack's forward pressure and football smarts are highly regarded and with another strong pre-season we expect him to achieve the consistency required to become a regular senior player.”

St Kilda currently has five vacancies on its list following the retirements of Sean Dempster, Nick Riewoldt and Leigh Montagna, plus the departures of Joe Baker-Thomas and Nick Coughlan.

As it stands, the club has picks 7, 8, 43, 57 and 61 ahead of November's national draft.

Topics:  afl jack lonie player draft shane savage st kilda saints



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