THE Western Jets came into this season without a TAC Cup Girls win and with a full focus of development. Getting a win, especially against one of the top sides in the Eastern Ranges, is a bonus for the Jets this season, as their players have developed remarkably from just nine games.
R1: lost to Bendigo Pioneers by 37 points
R2: lost to Gippsland Power by 15 points
R3: lost to Calder Cannons by 12 points
R4: lost to Murray Bushrangers by 25 points
R5: defeated Eastern Ranges by 5 points
R6: lost to Dandenong Stingrays by 54 points
R7: lost to Sandringham Dragons by 50 points
R8: lost to Oakleigh Chargers by 15 points
R9: lost to Geelong Falcons by 55 points
Elisabeth Georgostathis: Georgostathis was the star of the Jets midfield, with her impressive acceleration and magnificent ball-use creating plenty of excitement. Her kicks too were precise and generated forward movement. She was a fantastic all-round player for the Jets this season, summed up by her aggressive tackling. It seemed as if Georgostathis had the ball on a string at times during the season, as she had an innate ability to find and win the footy at the heart of the contest. She will now have the opportunity to continue to display her impressive style of football at the AFL Women’s National Under 18 Championships, as she is in the star-studded Vic Metro line-up. Georgostathis’ consistency throughout the season was highlighted by her earning a place in the midfield in the AFL Draft Central TAC Cup Girls Team of the Year.
Isabelle Pritchard: Pritchard was a star defender throughout the year. She competed well in one-on-one battles and her strong marking was an asset of her game. Pritchard always went in hard for the football and her tackling stopped opponents in their tracks. She was able to stand up in tough contests, showing her ability to win the hard ball. Pritchard got to stand up as captain of the Vic Metro U16 side in the National Championships, which was credit to a fantastic season in defence.
Caitlin Greiser: Greiser provided plenty of highlights throughout the season. She was vital in her side’s first win, as she kicked four goals to take her tally to seven goals from two games. She ended up with a season total of 10 goals from eight games, demonstrating her ability to position herself well in one-on-one contests and take strong marks. Greiser’s strong hands were needed all over the ground and she was able to play roles in defence to steady the ship for the Jets, demonstrating her versatility in the Jets line-up. She now has the opportunity to line up for Melbourne University in the VFLW, after being named in the Mugars’ squads at the start of the year.
Isabella Grant: A versatile player who could make an impact in any position, Grant was a vital player for the Jets this season. Her best work was done at half-forward as she would take strong marks and move the ball well in the forward line to create scoring opportunities for her side. She was also able to move the ball well through the midfield with her long kicks and clean hands, giving her teammates prime opportunities to penetrate the ball forward. Her positioning was also a highlight of her game as she could outmuscle opponents with ease, only having eyes for the football. Grant was rewarded for a great season with a place in Vic Metro’s U18 squad in the National Championships.
Cleo Saxon-Jones: Saxon-Jones was fantastic in the ruck and rotating forward for the Jets this season. She not only gave her midfielders opportunity to run onto the ball but she would do it herself, showing her hunger to win the footy. She could often back up a solid stint in the ruck with a stint at half-forward, where she would use her stature to outmuscle opponents and take strong marks. Her kicking throughout the season was outstanding, as they were often precise and long, giving her teammates the chance to surge forward. Saxon-Jones contributed six goals for the season and will be hoping to contribute some more in this year’s AFL Women’s National Under 18 Championships.
Although it was another tough season for the Jets, they had a variety of players named in the best throughout the season. A solid season for the likes of Payton-Ani Ozols, Leah Spargo and Sharnie Whiting has ensured that the Jets have a bright future ahead of them. Most of their top players are young so they have time to build their skills in the program and hopefully deliver the team a few more wins in the next couple of years to reward them for their hard work and commitment to winning the footy.