Tag: Laura Cocomello

Even spread of talent to lead Cannons in 2020

CALDER Cannons’ NAB League Girls list was finalised last last week as the Craigieburn-based side prepares to head into the 2020 season. Reaching the 2019 Grand Final before ultimately falling a win short at the hands of the Northern Knights, Female Talent Coordinator Russell Humphrey said there was roughly around a 10-player split across top, middle and bottom-age players. With a different coaching group coming on board, Humphrey said he is feeling more comfortable ahead of his second season in the role.

“It helps going around again,” Humphrey said. “I had a little bit of a handle on it beforehand but being in the coordinator’s chair you’ve got to have a bigger handle on it and I’ve gone out last year and watched a fair amount of local footy which I’ll do again this year just to see what’s out there. “With our list (compared to the boys) it’s a little bit harder because our season starts before the local season starts so it only gives them three or four weeks before our season finishes so it’s a little bit difficult that way. “We rely a little bit on going out and watching them during the year and things like that.”

Last year the Cannons had two players drafted, with captain Georgia Patrikios going in the top five to St Kilda – and already earning a Rising Star nomination – and Krstel Petrevski picked up by Melbourne later in the draft. Humphrey said Patrikios’ influence on the club as captain had been profound.

“It was interesting for Georgia, at the start of the year she hurt her ankle so it made her work a little bit harder to go through the injury issue, getting right and then to start playing,” he said. “I think that because of that, it gives her a good understanding of what’s required going into AFLW. I know that when she played state footy she played very well for Vic Metro and then when she played for Essendon VFLW she played well there as well so she gave the girls an understanding of what’s required and I think a lot of the top-agers followed that. “Krystal got drafted, Alana Barba, Felicity Theodore and Terira Fry and Zoe Hardiman all ended up playing VFLW footy, and Makeisha Muller as well. “At Williamstown, North (Melbourne), and Essendon. So I think that group was dragged along by themselves and the results showed with them all playing VFL footy. “Getting two drafted was fantastic, if we got three it would’ve topped it off.”

While Patrikios has already made an impact in her first game, Humphrey said Melbourne fans had plenty to look forward to with Petrevski when she gets her chance to don the red and blue.

Competitive, competitive, very competitive young lady,” he said. “Does the right things, everyone knows the story about her moving from Halls Creek, down to Sydney and then across here to Melbourne, that in itself shows resilience. “And I think that’s what they’ll get, they’ll get a hard-working person that understands what’s required.”

The future looks bright for the Cannons, who regularly have past players – such as Patrikios and Petrevski – dropping in at training to keep them informed of what’s happening in the world of AFL Women’s. Former Cannon, Sarah Dargan is an assistant coach at the club, which has plenty of future talent on the list at Under-17 and Under-16 level coming through.

We were lucky last year, we got an exceptional group of Under-16 players who are now Under 17s,” Humphrey said. “And like it does in the boys, it goes in circles like that and we were just lucky to get that group of probably 10 quality Under-16 players. “We’re hoping that the development of our top-age players this year sort of drags them along as well, the 17s came back in better shape than maybe previous years and I think that’s experience for them, learning what’s going on a bit more. “Around the whole competition the 16s and the 17s are now getting a better idea of what’s required when they come back from their 16th year to their 17th, and 17th again to 18th.” We don’t want to rely on our 17s but they will be part of the going forward.”

For such a young group to make the grand final was huge, but Humphrey said the Knights were too good on the day, and did not enable the Cannons to play with the same freedom they had against an equally strong Falcons side.

It was for our playing group, reward,” Humphrey said. “For the coaching group it was reward. “I know the work that they had put in to get to the final, to beat Geelong who are a quality side and had quality people around them, to be able to get past them was probably more important for the girls than the grand final. “That’s no disrespect to Northern because they played great footy on that day but that high of beating Geelong, it was hard for our girls to get back up and play Northern, and Northern didn’t allow us to play the footy that obviously we played the week before. “It was an exciting time for (the players), making the finals and then winning the game against Geelong and leading into grand final week we were positive but unfortunately we just couldn’t get the chocolates at the end of the day, but Northern were a quality side and so were Geelong. I think the competition’s getting closer and closer every year which is fantastic.”

The name that has been and will regularly be touted is Georgie Prespakis, the younger sister of Carlton’s Rising Star Madison, who is still a year away from being draft eligible. In one game against the Rebels last year, the Under-16 talent booted seven goals after moving to full-forward in the second quarter. Humphrey said while the hype was genuine, the Cannons had plenty of players to watch from that age group that were worthy of the same praise.

“I think we all get excited with Georgie and I understand that,” Humphrey said. “We don’t have any expectations on her, we just expect them to play.” The hardest part for Georgie is being a bottom-ager and how well Maddy (Prespakis) is going, the scrutiny on her is a fair bit from this sort of forum (media). “I think we’re missing out on Tahlia Gillard who’s in the Academy, Neve Crowley, (Emilia) Yassir, Kasey Lennox, Peppa Poultney that played in the Vic Metro 16s – we’ve got a group of six to eight players in that group who are possibly draftable, again they have to do the work and we have to do our end. But everyone’s all about talking about Georgie a lot and I understand that but I think they’re missing some quality players there. “Tahlia Gillard is 186cm tall and her birthday’s at the end of the year so she doesn’t turn 17 until December.”

Those names are still a year away from being draft-eligible, and to focus on this year’s crop, Humphrey said there were certainly some to keep an eye on.

“I think you’ll find that Laura (Cocomello) will play in the midfield, probably mid-forward. “Kiara (Delia) will probably play down back and through the middle as well. “Tamsyn Crook we’re going to probably start her off down back and let her play one position instead of throwing her around – similar to what the boys will do with Cody (Brand) – and just let her give her a spot down back and let her hold down centre half-back for a while. That’s not to say she won’t go forward or won’t go in the middle but we’ll probably look at her beginning down back.”

The Cannons have managed to have a top five pick in the first three years of the system, with Chloe Molloy, Monique Conti, Prespakis and Patrikios all going early in the AFL Women’s drafts. In 2020, the Cannons have a more even top-age spread without a clear standout.

“I think that’s a great call, (in) our top-agers we don’t have the standout,” Humphrey said. “We have a top-age group that’ve worked pretty hard and there’s no outstanding sort of touted draft prospect. “But I think again if we do the job properly with the coaching and everything else, we’re hoping again to get one or two (drafted). “Our aim is obviously to get minimum one a year so if we can do that, that’ll be great. It’s an even group, most definitely. “And we’ve brought a couple of girls in who’ve never played NAB League footy or TAC Cup footy before, top-agers so that’ll be interesting to see how that goes. “But again if they’ve got the talent, you need to have a look at them and give them the opportunity so that’s what we’ll do.”

The Cannons will bring in a couple of 19-year-old’s with Grace Dicker coming back after a year off to recover from a shoulder injury sustained in 2018, as well as Freda Puruntatameri who spent some time at Essendon VFL last season having travelled down from the Tiwi Islands. With Matthew O’Connor now taking the reins of the girls’ side, the team has a different leader, but a similar game style to the previous year. In preparation for the year ahead, the Cannons will head up to Yarrawonga to face Murray Bushrangers, before another match against Western Jets the following Friday in a lead-up to their Round 1 clash.

Calder takes on Northern in a grand final rematch, played on Saturday, February 29 at RMIT Bundoora.

Scouting notes: NAB League Girls – Preliminary Finals

FINALS fever finally hit the NAB League Girls competition and in an exciting day of action, there were certainly plenty of standout performances on the big stage. Here are Michael Alvaro‘s opinion-based scouting notes on a mix of the most outstanding players on the day, and others selected in the Victorian sides for this year’s National Championships.

Northern Knights vs. Eastern Ranges

Northern:

#3 Nell Morris-Dalton

The Knights’ forward focal point continued her scintillating end-of-season form, booting over half of her side’s goals to finish with a bag of four. Morris-Dalton’s competitiveness inside 50 both in the air and at ground level played a big part in allowing Northern to make the most of their forward entries, while also locking the ball in. The Fitzroy junior’s marking overhead has greatly improved, and she was simply on form in front of goal with clinical finishes on her left boot. While she prized a couple of goals out of nothing in open play, arguably her best came on the run with a booming kick, and she claimed two of her goals in the all-important third term as the Knights pulled away.

#6 Alyssa Bannan

Bannan is a constant threat in the forward half with her pace and smarts over the back, and while she was quiet at times, this game proved no different. Unable to consistently find her trademark forward run from half-forward, Bannan spent a lot of time inside 50, where she took a nice overhead mark in the third quarter and slotted the resultant set shot – which proved to be the difference between the sides. Bannan’s best moment came with a couple of running bounces through the corridor which made the crowd stand up.

#11 Maykaylah Appleby

One to watch for a couple of years’ time, Appleby was terrific for the Knights on the wing. At still only 15 years of age, Appleby looked more than up to the level – as she has proven in her previous eight games to date. The bottom-ager provided great forward run throughout the day and constantly looked dangerous with ball in hand. Caught the eye with a sensational running goal in the second term and loves a celebration.

#18 Sarah Sansonetti

Sansonetti’s role was always going to be important against Eastern’s tall timber, and she well and truly stood up to the task. By no means had a high-disposal output, but the key defender did most of the defensive things well while looking to thwart the influence of Serena Gibbs for large chunks of the game. Really came to life in the fourth quarter with some physical showings around the contest – tackling hard up on the wing and pushing the Knights forward with presence from one-on-one wins.

#21 Ellie McKenzie

Talk about weapons, McKenzie is one of those players coaches wish they had two of. Snapped the first goal of the game starting one-out at full-forward, and had another opportunity to hit the scoreboard in the third term, but missed her shot on the run after rounding an opponent. Proved a match-winner in the second half with a move into the midfield – seen intercepting twice on defensive 50, winning crucial clearances from the centre bounces when the Ranges were pressing late, and slowing the game down in the final two minutes with composure beyond her years. Will again prove vital in the grand final, and stands out in high-paced contested games as her clean hands allows for more time on the ball and better decisions.

#22 Britney Gutknecht

Gutknecht was an absolute bull at the stoppages, burrowing in to prize out contested possessions and tackling hard all day. The versatile midfielder-forward spent all of her time in the engine room, providing great drive with clearing kicks and short runs out of traffic. Had an outstanding second half where she seemed to be involved in everything, accumulating key possessions at important times to prove her worth as part of Northern’s star midfield trio.

#23 Gabby Newton

It is unlikely that much more can be made about how good Newton is, and she was outstanding once again here. Playing her usual role in the midfield, Newton toned down her use of handballs and belted the Knights forward on multiple occasions early on with clearing kicks from centre bounces. Accumulating at her normally high rate across the day, Newton led from the front in a consistent display. The Northern skipper’s smarts in more of an extracting role proved crucial, with Newton’s ability to keep her hands free allowing her to escape traffic and dispose of the ball effectively. Newton’s overhead marking was again also a feature, forming a one-woman wall across the forward 50 arc. A prime example of that was when she marked from an Eastern kick-out, cleverly shifting to one side before charging back into the open space to intercept and frustrate the Ranges coaches. A step above.

Eastern:

#21 Olivia Meagher

Meagher played an absolute blinder for the Ranges, showing true heart to almost drag her side over the line from midfield. Hard to miss in her helmet, Meagher caught the eye in a different way on this occasion, providing scintillating run from the stoppages and in open play. Showed her intentions early in that sense with a two-bounce dash from defensive wing, with the rest of her breakaways coming through traffic and ending with a kick forward. Won her fair share of contested ball, but was also a danger across the forward 50 arc – finding the goals on the back of a 50-metre penalty in the second term, and assisting one of Madeline Di Cosmo’s two in the second half. Her defensive plays were just as important, laying a big tackle on Ellie McKenzie to set the tone late on, while also affecting a smother which would start the chain for Riley Hall’s goal to cut the margin to six points. A great overall effort, and we can look forward to more next year.

#26 Tarni Brown

It was by no means Brown’s most prolific day, but she started on the right note. The 2020 Collingwood father-daughter prospect was good alongside Meagher in competing against a stacked Northern midfield, winning clearances and proving tough in tackles. She would lay a few of her own too, but her best moment came with a smart steal as the ball was in dispute, which she ended nicely with a clearing kick to enter forward 50. Another we will see more of next year.

#33 Tess Flintoff

Very unlucky to miss out on being named in Eastern’s best for mine, but Flintoff has another two years in the system to rack up the votes. The midfielder is one of the best marking players in the competition, and showcased her skill in that area with phenomenal reading of the play and positioning. Often employed a kick behind the ball in open play, Flintoff had a purple patch in the third term with a series of intercept possessions, while also taking an impressive diving slips catch to show off her highly-touted junior cricketing skills. Flintoff’s clearance game was also strong – particularly when you consider her opposition – and she accumulated well throughout the day.

#39 Laura McClelland

It was not a huge day out of McClelland, but she started well in her usual post at half-forward. She helped the Ranges move forward well, acting as a link in the chain towards forward 50 – often collecting the ball on the arc and wheeling around to boot towards goal. McClelland did so twice in the opening few minutes, and popped up again in the third term with some nice work up the ground.

#41 Tahlia Merrett

One of Eastern’s many tall prospects, Merrett provided good value at either end of the ground. Starting at full-forward and later pitching in through the ruck, Merrett was an important part of the Ranges’ structure and helped to keep the Knights’ defence on its toes. Missed a long-range set shot in the third term but found the goals earlier on, and was later thrown down back to show her versatility.

#46 Serena Gibbs

Touted as a key player before the game for her ability to consistently find the goals, but Gibbs was unable to do so in this game. While she was limited at times by Northern’s Sarah Sansonetti, Gibbs competed well and looked to stand up in the closing stages with a big tackle and terrific overhead mark as the Ranges surged home. The over-ager also took on some of the ruck duties inside forward 50 and looked comfortable there as well.

Geelong Falcons vs. Calder Cannons

Geelong:

#12 Laura Gardiner

Gardiner capped off a fine middle-age year with another solid display, mixing time between her customary wing position and the inside. While she got her hands on the ball well at stoppages, her usual clearing kicks forward went lateral at times, somewhat limiting her damage. Undeterred, Gardiner competed well all day and is one to keep an eye on for next year.

#18 Darcy Moloney

The middle-ager had a quiet opener but built into the game nicely, spending time on half-forward and up on the wing. Moloney became influential in the second half, starting with a nice intercept mark on the Falcons’ forward 50 arc. While she missed the resultant set shot, she followed up the kick well and was unlucky to miss again with another shot on goal – this time though a snap. Moloney’s luck continued to go against her as a long shot on goal which was on target took an unfortunate bounce in the goalsquare, but her ability to create those three chances was hugely promising. Has obvious midfield credentials, but looked very good forward of centre.

#21 Abbey Chapman

Chapman again found herself in uncharted territory as the Falcons defence came under siege, and she again stood tall despite the defeat. Her mopping up deep inside defensive 50 early on was composed, but Chapman came up short on one occasion where she spilt a mark and gifted Alana Barba her opportunistic goal. Bounced back in the second half to save another Cannons goal with a clutch tackle, and followed up with a perfectly placed kick to find touch. Will be a key part of Vic Country’s campaign in the upcoming National Championships.

#24 Mia Skinner

Playing her typical half-forward role, Skinner tried her level best to manufacture the usual chances she would get to pepper the goals. While she worked hard up the ground to provide an option and link inside forward 50, Skinner’s best work came within the arc. She converted Geelong’s only goal with a set shot in the second term, had two quick-fire chances smothered, snapped one shot out on the full, and missed another. Skinner is great at getting dangerous positions and finding the ball in all the right areas, it is just unfortunate that on this occasion, she was hardly given a clean look to duly finish off her hard work.

#38 Lucy McEvoy

The Falcons’ skipper again led from the front and was simply outstanding. Won the first clearance of the game and launched a couple of huge kicks forward as she sought to set the tone for her side through the midfield. She has shown her ability to play just about anywhere, but took it to another level in this game with stints in the ruck after quarter time – playing more like a fourth midfielder at the centre bounces as the Falcons looked to thwart the impact of Calder’s firing midfield stars. McEvoy also tackled well and rose to the occasion with some fantastic overhead marking. Her positioning behind the ball while it was inside the Falcons’ forward 50 was effective, but McEvoy also ventured inside the arc and almost scrounged a goal with a snap out of congestion. Can hold her head up high, great performance as Geelong’s clear best.

#39 Renee Tierney

Tierney started brightly, tackling hard to win a holding the ball free kick which she used to punt inside 50. Given time in the midfield, Tierney won a couple of nice clearances to set Geelong forward and got involved well in a slightly different role. Went on to spend time all around the ground and will be one of Geelong’s better top-agers next year.

Calder:

#2 Felicity Theodore

Named at half-forward, Theodore took on a role in the back half on this occasion. The top-ager competed well in defensive 50 and swept up the scraps well at ground level throughout the day. While her kicking was a little shaky in the first half, she showed her ability to hit targets more effectively in the second, finding Emelia Yassir well from a free kick. A solid performer in the sturdy Calder defence.

#3 Emelia Yassir

Yassir put in an incredible performance to be named the Cannons’ best as part of a trio of promising Calder bottom-agers. After finding the goals in the first term as her side broke to an early lead, Yassir never looked back. The bite-sized forward played well above her height, marking strongly up the ground and becoming a key link into the forward 50. Played out of her skin, but could be one to keep an eye on in the coming years.

#4 Kasey Lennox

Another outstanding Calder bottom-ager on the day, Lennox was a rock in defence. The Calder back six collectively stood tall to intercept a wealth of high balls which entered their own 50 arc, and Lennox played a key part in that factor. The 15-year-old looked unfazed by the challenge, and is already a good height to play as a key defender.

#11 Alana Barba

Barba played a fantastic game as the third prong in a dynamic Calder midfield, and made arguably the best start to the game of all three. After a previous dribbled effort fell short, the top-ager cleverly snatched a spilled mark off her Falcons opponent and snapped truly, lifting her side with a big celebration to boot. While she did not find as much room to move after half time, Barba won some nice clearances and played her role well.

#21 Georgia Patrikios

Patrikios is an out-and-out leader, and stood up when it mattered as arguably the most skilful player on the ground. Winning clearances and providing a wealth of run, Patrikios delivered the ball aptly on both sides and was one of the more effective short passers by foot on the day. She is just so clean on the ball and her searing pace means she is hardly caught in possession – if ever – making her such a damaging player. Patrikios used her pace well in a particular passage along the boundary, skipping past players as she soccered the ball forward for some valuable meterage. She also proved her smarts with a holding the ball tackle on the back of a 50-metre penalty against the Cannons, and proved tough in contested situations. Missed the chance to hit the scoreboard in the final quarter and cap off a big day, but should be proud with her effort to lead Calder to their unlikely win.

#38 Laura Cocomello

‘Coco’ was combative on the wing, helping the Cannons to both break forward and keep the ball inside attacking 50. Cocomello’s overhead marking was impressive at times, with one from behind over the smaller Elise Vella a particular highlight. The middle-ager’s ability to keep her hands up allowed her to escape tackles well, and she was usually impactful with ball in hand. Had the chance to find the goals with a long-range set shot in the final term, but fell short.

#41 Georgie Prespakis

We are running out of superlatives to describe how scarily good Prespakis is at just 16 years of age, and she looked to have thrived in the finals atmosphere. Hard to miss in her standard long-sleever, Prespakis was the anchor at each centre bounce for the Cannons, bursting forward on multiple occasions and slicing through traffic with ease, while often finishing with a long roost inside 50. Laid a huge holding the ball tackle on Geelong star Lucy McEvoy the second term to further prove Calder’s intentions, and was an unstoppable presence around the ground all day. She was simply damaging with almost every possession, and has the ability to make opponents look silly in open space as she looks to deliver forward. Is the leading prospect for 2021 at this stage, and is more than living up to her pedigree.

Team of the Week: NAB League Girls – Round 8

THE penultimate round of the NAB League Girls competition was made for defenders, as nine genuine starters had to fit into six for the Draft Central Team of the Week, while the midfield is as stacked as ever. Unlike in past weeks where forwards have dominated the landscape, a lot of low-scoring games had the defensive work of players on show. Three sides – Calder Cannons, Eastern Ranges and Northern Knights all enjoyed victories and had three players each in our Team of the Week, while other winners, Dandenong Stingrays, Greater Western Victoria (GWV) Rebels and Western Jets had the two players in the 24-player squad. Unlucky losers, Murray Bushrangers, Oakleigh Chargers and Sandringham Dragons all had two players, while Bendigo Pioneers, Geelong Falcons and Gippsland Power had just the one player – the least of any week for the Falcons.

Northern Knights’ big win over Geelong Falcons in the final game of the round saw Team of the Week regulars, Ellie McKenzie and Gabby Newton making the side, as did forward, Alyssa Bannan. Abbey Chapman‘s work in defence under siege was terrific, picking up 11 rebounds in the Falcons’ first loss in two years, and slots into full-back. Up the other end of the field, Eastern Ranges’ Serena Gibbs booted 3.4 and lines up at full-forward, joined inside 50 by Team of the Week debutant Jenna Richardson, while Tarni Brown impressed on a wing. Regular Calder Cannons’ Team of the Week players, Georgia Patrikios and Georgie Prespakis make the side once again, as does Laura Cocomello who was impressive through the midfield.

Also on the ball is Murray Bushrangers ball magnet, Abby Favell who was named Draft Central Rising Star of the Week despite her side going down. She joins Newton and Prespakis onball, while Millie Brown stood up in defence and makes the team. In the opposite back pocket is Brooke Vernon who was best-on for Dandenong Stingrays in the win, while Isabella Shannon stood up in crunch moments in the forward half and she also makes the team. The Rebels’ captain Sophie Molan was involved everywhere and spent time inside 50 to provide a target, making the team alongside Nyakoat Dojiok who was terrific on a wing. Their opponents Oakleigh Chargers had the two nominees, with Kalarni Kearns impressing through the ruck against quality opposition, while Gemma Lagioia was also slick with her ball use off half-back.

The half-back line is filled with players from the one match, as Western Jets’ Elisabeth Georgostathis and Isabelle Pritchard were strong in rebounding the ball out of the Sandringham Dragons’ defensive 50. Up the other end, Sarah Hartwig was the Dragons’ best and makes Team of the Week again, along with Alice Burke who worked hard through the midfield. Rounding out the team are individual nominees for their respective sides, Bendigo Pioneers’ defender Kate Douglass, and Gippsland Power’s mid-defender Megan Fitzsimon.

NAB League Girls Round 8 wash-up: Knights rise while Ranges book finals spot

THIS round brought plenty of excitement with the top of the table clash between the Northern Knights and Geelong Falcons headlining the round, while Greater Western Victoria (GWV) Rebels potentially ended Oakleigh Chargers’ finals campaign, as Calder Cannons put themselves in the best position possible, winning over Bendigo Pioneers. Eastern Ranges booked a finals spot with an impressive win, while other victors were the Dandenong Stingrays and Western Jets, the latter of whom won their second consecutive match.

Calder Cannons 4.6 (30) defeated Bendigo Pioneers 1.3 (9)
By: Taylah Melki

GOALS:

Calder: A. Magri, Z. Hardiman, G. Patrikios, F. Theodore
Bendigo: E. Snell

BEST:

Calder: L. Cocomello, T. Crook, K. Petrevski, I. Young, G. Patrikios, N. Crowley
Bendigo: K. Douglass, B. Hards, D. Villiva, J. Finning, B. Heiden, T. Coad

It was a slow start for both sides with neither team able to score a goal in the opening term. Heading into half time the Bendigo Pioneers held a six-point margin scoring the only major for the term. But the goals seemed to be easier to find in the second half for the Calder Cannons who kicked into gear and applied strong pressure. Laura Cocomello impressed across the ground for the Cannons working hard at the contest and winning a heap of the ball with 17 touches. Georgia Patrikios and Georgie Prespakis led the way once again racking up 27 and 30 possessions respectively. Both were clean with the footy in hand with Patrikios making the most of her accuracy by foot with a game high 23 kicks and one goal for her efforts. Alana Barba applied good physical pressure laying nine tackles and did the little things well to worry her opponent out of the contest, while Krstel Petrevski was clever with ball in hand and made each possession count. For the Pioneers Brooke Hards put on a tackling masterclass with a whopping 16 showcasing her physicality and intent to win the ball. Jemma Finning also won plenty of footy for her side and fought hard throughout the game with the likes of Dakota Villiva also doing a wealth of work. Elizabeth Snell displayed her attacking flair with three inside 50s and the only goal for her side.

Dandenong Stingrays 6.4 (40) defeated Murray Bushrangers 3.9 (27)
By: Peter Williams

GOALS:

Dandenong: I. Shannon, A. Liddle, J. Guy-Toogood, J. Anthony, G. Grimmer, T. Smith
Murray: T. Verhoeven, A. Favell, A. Morphett

BEST:

Dandenong: B. Vernon, T. Smith, I. Shannon, J. Guy-Toogood, G. Howes, Z. Hill
Murray: A. Favell, M. Brown, K. Skepper, T. Brett, M. Jones, K. Adams

Dandenong Stingrays have held off a determined Murray Bushrangers outfit on their way to a 13-point win at Shepley Oval on Saturday. The Stingrays led by 11 points at quarter time, but the Bushrangers booted the only two goals of the second term to hit the front by four points. Dandenong hit back in the third term with a couple of majors, and led for the rest of the game as Murray missed a few chances in front of goal. A late goal to Abby Favell saw the Bushrangers draw to within a goal, but a Tyanna Smith major in the last minute sealed the win, 6.4 (40) to 3.9 (27). Brooke Vernon finished as Dandenong’s best with 19 disposals, two marks, two tackles and 12 rebounds, while Isabella Shannon finished with 14 disposals, five inside 50s and a goal. Smith stood up in the second half with her match-winning goal, while Molly McDonald continued her consistent form with 13 disposals, three marks and five inside 50s. Favell was the standout player on the field, racking up 26 disposals, four marks, five tackles, three inside 50s and four rebounds in the defeat. Millie Brown was also strong in defence, finishing the game with 24 disposals and seven rebounds.

Western Jets 3.1 (19) defeated Sandringham Dragons 1.3 (9)
By: Peter Williams

GOALS:

Western: J. Goodman 2, M. Ham.
Sandringham: A. Moloney.

BEST:

Western: P. Ozols, E. Georgostathis, I. Pritchard, R. Tripodi, A. Anthony, C. Singleton
Sandringham: S. Hartwig, D. Walker, A. Burke, A. Moloney, M. Purcell, L. de Gleria Cade

Western Jets have celebrated back-to-back wins after downing Sandringham Dragons at Avalon Airport Oval. The Jets hit the front in the second term after trailing by two points at the first break, booting 2.3 to 0.1 in the final three quarters to secure the win. Despite keeping them to one behind for three quarters, the Jets never looked entirely safe, holding strong in the final term despite the Dragons doing all the attacking in the quarter. Opposite centre half-backs Isabelle Pritchard (18 disposals, four marks and four rebounds) and Sarah Hartwig (17 disposals, four marks and five rebounds) were standouts on the day, rebounding and marking everything that came in their path. For the winners, Elisabeth Georgostathis had a game-high 22 touches as well as five marks and eight rebounds coming off half-back, while Payton-Ani Ozols was also impressive with 11 disposals, three marks and two tackles running on the outside and providing some drive for the Jets. For the Dragons, Alice Burke was strong again with 17 disposals, two marks and three tackles, while Daisy Walker had 16 disposals, three inside 50s and laid seven tackles in her best game this season.

Gippsland Power 2.1 (13) defeated by Eastern Ranges 9.10 (64)
By: Peter Williams

GOALS:

Gippsland: N. Williams, M. Van Berkel.
Eastern: S. Gibbs 3, B. Deed, S. Collard, M. Church, T. Brown, R. O”Dwyer, J. Richardson.

BEST:

Gippsland: M. Fitzsimon, C. Bird, M. Shaw, C. Abrahams , N. Webber, G. McRae
Eastern: J. Richardson, T. Brown, S. Gibbs, M. Di Cosmo, T. Flintoff, L. McClelland

Eastern Ranges produced their most commanding win of the year, defeating Gippsland Power by 51 points at Morwell Recreation Reserve. The Ranges looked impressive throughout the game on their way to the big win to cement a finals spot. It took until the tenth minute of the first term for Eastern to put through its first goal, but by quarter time they had three goals from seven scoring shots to lead by 22 points. Gippsland booted one goal in the second term, but the Ranges added a further two, extending their lead to 31 by the main break. By three quarter time the Ranges led by 44 points, and the margin got out to as much as 57 at one stage before the Power booted the final goal of the game through Matilda Van Berkel. Emma Horne picked up a game-high 28 touches, while Jenna Richardson was named the Ranges best for her 16 disposals, six marks, five inside 50s and a goal. Tarni Brown and Tess Flintoff were again busy with a combined 45 disposals, 11 inside 50s and 12 tackles, while Serena Gibbs slotted 3.4 from 18 disposals and six marks. For Gippsland, Megan Fitzsimon had 16 disposals, four rebounds and six tackles, while Grace McRae was again strong in the midfield with 17 disposals and three rebounds. Charlize Bird had 12 disposals, two marks and six tackles, while Chandra Abrahams was strong defensively, laying five tackles.

GWV Rebels 3.2 (20) defeated Oakleigh Chargers 2.7 (19)
By: Peter Williams

GOALS:

GWV: L. Condon, S. Molan, Z. Larkins.
Oakleigh: M. Bertuna, A. Porter.

BEST:

GWV: N. Dojiok, M. Caris, R. Saulitis, C. Willis, E. Wood, L. Condon
Oakleigh: K. Kearns, G. Lagioia, A. Porter, A. van Oosterwijck, J. Lin, A. Micallef

Greater Western Victoria (GWV) Rebels spoiled Oakleigh Chargers’ finals campaign, kicking a goal in the dying minutes to win by a point. Trailing for most of the contest after holding a one-point lead at quarter time, the Rebels kept the Chargers to just five behinds in the second half as teamwork and cohesion across the field from the underdogs was terrific. In the end, it was a Lilli Condon goal that separated the sides, as the Rebels held on for dear life in the last 90 seconds with the ball deep in their defence. They held strong and partied after the siren, with much jubilation and elation across the ground having toppled a highly fancied side. Sophie Molan was unsurprisingly the dominant ball winner for the Rebels, picking up 20 disposals, having five tackles and kicking a great goal. Ella Wood and Nekaela Butler were both good out of defence moving up the ground, while Nyakoat Dojiok was superb collecting 12 disposals, five marks, five tackles and two inside 50s. For the Chargers, Joanna Lin racked up 21 disposals, three marks, four tackles, two inside 50s, while Mimi Hill had 20 touches, five marks, two tackles and four inside 50s were busy. Alana Porter was terrific with her speed across the ground, and Kalarni Kearns named best for the losing side for her work in the ruck.

Geelong Falcons 0.7 (7) defeated by Northern Knights 6.7 (43)

GOALS:
Geelong: Nil
Northern: A. Bannan 2, N. Morris-Dalton, J. Fitzgerald, C. Linssen, M. Appleby

BEST:
Geelong: P. Sheppard, L. Gardiner, L. McEvoy, A. Chapman, L. Lesosky-Hay, M. Skinner
Northern: E. McKenzie, G. Newton, S. Sansonetti, A. Bannan, T. Smart, J. Nelson

The Northern Knights inflicted Geelong Falcons’ first defeat since Round 4 2017, winning by 36 points in a dominant display to snatch top spot and remain undefeated.

The Knights looked on and meant business from the get-go at Deakin University, throwing star trio Gabby Newton, Ellie McKenzie, and Britney Gutknecht into the first centre bounce. On the other side, Falcons coach Jason Armistead had shuffled the magnets heavily, with skipper Lucy McEvoy a notable starter across half-back. After a tense opening few minutes, the Knights broke away in a flash with three goals in as many minutes mid-way through the first term. As expected, the hosts threw everything back at their opponents to start the following quarter, dictating general play in the first 10 minutes and narrowly missing chances to open their goal account. It was to no avail though, as Northern applied smothering pressure and held on to keep the term goalless, taking a 15-point advantage into the main break.

With Geelong lacking a spark after seeing its efforts go unrewarded, the Knights continued to break open an unassailable lead in the third stanza on the back of a Jess Fitzgerald goal – the only goal for the term. Armistead did his best to rally his side at the final change, referring to Superbowl comeback victories and encouraging his side to take the game on. The Falcons needed a spark, and hedged their bets on winning the first centre clearance – hopefully kicking into the hands of McEvoy at centre half-forward. It was not to be as the ball found its way up the other end, and the Knights delivered two more crushing blows to seal the win.

The game ended on a sour note, with Northern’s Gulia Ceravolo downed unintentionally by a hard Renee Tierney tackle, forcing an early stoppage of the contest mid-way through the final term as she received treatment. It proved to be a bruising encounter for both sides, with Poppy Schapp sporting an ice pack and sling after a solid bump from McKenzie.

McKenzie and Newton were outstanding for Northern, providing a point of difference as cool heads in the hotly contested opening stages. Fitzgerald, Maykaylah Appleby, and Alyssa Bannan proved handfuls with their forward running and managed to hit the scoreboard alongside focal point, Nell Morris-Dalton. Up the other end, Sarah Sansonetti played a sensational role on Mia Skinner to quell Geelong’s main scoring threat. On a tough day for the Falcons, Paige Sheppard was combative as ever through the midfield alongside Laura Gardiner, while Abbey Chapman stood up under enormous pressure down back. McEvoy’s selfless role across each line was also fantastic, with her rebound and overhead marking a feature early on.

Weekend previews: TAC Cup Girls – Round 9

ROUND nine marks the last game of the home and away season, making the fight for a spot in the top two hotly contested. With the Geelong Falcons securing their spot in the grand final, it is left to the Northern Knights and Sandringham Dragons to fight for second spot on the ladder. Down the other end of the table, the Jets, Cannons and Pioneers will be wanting to claim their second win of the year and end the season on a high.

NORTHERN KNIGHTS v. MURRAY BUSHRANGERS

Round 9 – Saturday 12 May, 11.15am

RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

The Knights suffered their first loss of the year and will be looking to get back into the winning books with a dominant display against the out-of-form Bushrangers. Northern will be desperate to secure their spot in the grand final and will be relying on the likes of their star players such as Maddy Brancatisano, Gabby Newton and goal-kicking machine, Alyssa Bannan to get them over the line on Saturday.  

After only managing to score a point for the whole match in their round eight clash, the Murray Bushrangers will be looking to bounce back and put on an impressive performance against the Knights. Though both teams are filled with plenty of firepower in the midfield, Murray will be boosted with the return of AFLW Academy player, Rebecca Webster, who provides plenty of run and carry through the midfield. Claudia McKimmie and Olivia Barber will also make their way back into the Bushrangers side in hope of winning their fourth game for the year.

 

GREATER WESTERN VICTORIA REBELS v. OAKLEIGH CHARGERS

 Round 9- Saturday 12 May, 11.15am

RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

The Greater Western Victoria (GWV) Rebels have won their past four games and will be hoping to bring their hot form into Saturday’s clash with the Chargers at Craigieburn. Sophie Van De Heuvel has been a machine up forward for the Rebels while the likes of Chloe Leonard have also been important across the ground for GWV.

The Oakleigh Chargers have had an up and down season but will be looking to end the year on a high note by claiming their fourth win. The Chargers have been bolstered by the inclusion of Laura Mayne and Emily Hastie, and will be relying on Daisy Bateman, who was deadly in front of goal last week.

 

GIPPSLAND POWER v. SANDRINGHAM DRAGONS

Round 9 – Saturday 12 May, 1.00pm

RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

The Gippsland Power are coming off a loss last week and will be wanting to end the season with a win. They have brought in some big-name players such as Charlize Bird and Julia Redmond in hopes to try and end Sandringham’s winning spree. The Power will be hoping that the likes of Tyla Hanks, Emily Hauesler and Jazz Ferguson continue their impressive form to help them claim the club’s fourth win of the year.

For the Sandringham Dragons, all eyes will be on the Northern Knights clash, if the Knights lose the Dragons can sneak into the top two by winning against the Power. The Dragons have been in red hot form and bring in the likes of superstars Molly Denahy MaloneyLaura Amelung and Winnie Laing to further boost their line-up, making for a hotly contested match.

 

WESTERN JETS v. GEELONG FALCONS

Round 9 – Saturday 12 May, 1.00pm

RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

The Western Jets will be hoping to cause a big upset and ruffle the feathers of the Falcons in what is set to be their last game of the 2018 season. The Jets will be looking to the likes of Caitlin Gashi, Elisabeth Georgostathis and Caitlin Greiser who starred last week to help them claim a major scalp against the undefeated Falcons.

After eight rounds the Geelong Falcons are yet to drop a game and will be looking to put out another strong performance against the eleventh-placed Jets. Geelong have been strong around the contest thanks to players like Denby Taylor down in defence along with Olivia Purcell and Nina Morrison who are not afraid to go in and win the footy. To help further strengthen their line-up going into the grand final, defender, Sarah Hungerford has been named in the 22.

 

CALDER CANNONS v. EASTERN RANGES

Round 9 – Saturday 12 May, 2.45pm

RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

The Calder Cannons are coming off a narrow loss to the Stingrays but will throw everything at the Ranges to secure their second win of the season. The Cannons have plenty of firepower across the ground with the likes of captain Madison Prespakis, Laura Cocomello and Molly Warburton consistently starring for them.

Meanwhile, the Eastern Ranges have come home hard, bagging a 46-point victory over Murray in last week’s clash. The Ranges will fall just short of making it to the grand final but have proved that they have plenty of talent with the likes of Olivia Meagher, Ashleigh Allsopp and Jess Provan standing tall for Eastern, making for an interesting clash between the two sides.

 

DANDENONG STINGRAYS v. BENDIGO PIONEERS

Round 9 – Saturday 12 May, 2.45pm

RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

Late in the season the Stingrays have found some hot form, claiming three wins on the trot, and will be hoping to add to their total. Dandenong have made a host of changes for their clash against the Pioneers with the likes of Eloise Allen-Burns and Alice O’Sullivan being named in the 22. A win against Bendigo could push the Stingrays as high as sixth place on the ladder.

On the other hand, the Pioneers would love to get a win against the Stingrays to end their year on a high and propel them up the table. They will be pleased to see the return of Jemma Finning and Maeve Tupper, while they will be hoping that Megan Williamson continues her impressive form.

TAC Cup Girls previews: Round 8

There are plenty of big games in round eight with many teams competing for some much-needed wins. The Western Jets and Bendigo Pioneers will be looking to claim their second win of the season while the fight will continue at the top of the table with the Knights and Falcons going head-to-head.

 

CALDER CANNONS v. DANDENONG STINGRAYS?
Round 8 – Friday 4 May, 7.30pm
RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

The Cannons have only secured one win for the season but will be looking to claim their second victory against the eighth-placed Stingrays. Molly Warburton’s addition will help further boost Calder’s defence with the likes of Madison Prespakis and Laura Cocomello also named to take on Dandenong. Terira Fry will also line up for the Cannons and provide a great option up forward for her teammates.   

The Dandenong Stingrays came off a big win in round seven and will be looking to duplicate that form against the Cannons. With the likes of Isabella Shannon starring with two goals and Amie Carroll at her damaging best, the Stingrays will come into the match with some confidence, making for a hotly contested match.

 

EASTERN RANGES v. MURRAY BUSHRANGERS
Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 11.30am
Warrawee Park, Oakleigh

With plenty of big games this round, the match-up between the Eastern Ranges and Murray Bushrangers will be one to watch. Both teams are relatively evenly poised, with the Ranges sitting on five wins and Bushrangers on three. Eastern have named key mid/ forward, Olivia Meagher who wins plenty of footy across the ground. The Ranges will be hoping co-captain, Emerson Woods has a big game, as her clean pick-ups and work around the stoppages are invaluable.

On the other hand, the Bushrangers will be looking to claim a big win over the Ranges but will have to do so without star midfielder, Rebecca Webster. Murray will bring in the likes of dynamic forward, Julia Harvey and Ada Chessor to try and keep their finals hopes alive.

 

OAKLEIGH CHARGERS v. WESTERN JETS
Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 1.00pm
Warrawee Park, Oakleigh

After a disappointing year the Western Jets will be wanting to claim their second victory for the 2018 season over the Oakleigh Chargers, but the Chargers have been boosted by the return of Alana Porter who offers great composure with ball in hand. Oakleigh came off a big loss last week and will be hoping to bounce back through the likes of classy midfielder, Emily Harley, ruck, Bridie Winbanks and forward, Isabella Gietzmann.

In hope to secure their first win since round five the Jets have brought in goal-kicking machine, Caitlin Greiser who was sorely missed last week. Greiser provides a good target up forward for Western while the battle in the midfield will be one to watch with Isabella Grant and Elisabeth Georgostathis coming off a solid game in the previous round.

 

GEELONG FALCONS v. NORTHERN KNIGHTS
Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 1.15pm
St Mary’s Oval (Kardinia Park West Oval), Geelong

In a top-of-the-table clash the Geelong Falcons and Northern Knights will be looking to keep their undefeated record intact. It could easily shape up to be one of the best games of the round as both teams are littered with star players. The Falcons will be looking to make the most of their home ground advantage and put in a consistent four-quarter effort. With the return of star defender, Denby Taylor, Geelong will look to stop the Knights who are filled with scoring fire-power. After a strong performance last week, Nina Morrison and Sophie Walmsley will be looking to dominate once again in the midfield.

The Knights will welcome back sharp shooters Alyssa Bannan and Abigail Bennett who will look to apply plenty of scoreboard pressure on the Falcons and add to the potent forward line that saw Britney Gutknecht kick six majors last week. The return of Bannan and Bennett will help to boost Northern while the likes of midfielders Gabby Newton and captain Madeline Brancatisano will look to have big games to secure their eighth straight win.

 

SANDRINGHAM DRAGONS v. BENDIGO PIONEERS
Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 1.15pm
Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

Sandringham are coming off a 50-point victory against the Jets and will be looking to dominate once again both in front of goal and across the ground. Holly Bate nailed a whopping five goals and will be hoping to replicate that impressive form against the Pioneers. Nayely Borg and Chelsea Bowen have been named to help boost the Dragons down in defence. The Dragons have won the past four games and will be looking to make it five in a row and secure a spot in the top four.

On the other hand, the Bendigo Pioneers will be looking to claim a big upset and end the Dragons’ winning spree. The Pioneers have only managed to win one game for the season but have made a few changes to their line-up in hope to move up the ladder. Bendigo have brought in Tess Goodrem and will be relying on Kodi Jacques and Elizabeth Snell to stand up for them in the contest.

 

GREATER WESTERN VICTORIA REBELS v. GIPPSLAND POWER
Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 3.00pm
Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

The Rebels are coming off a hard-fought win against Murray and will be hoping that they can bring the same intensity and hunt for the footy again this week. Their forward line will be bolstered with the inclusions of Chloe Leonard and Ella Bibby, while they will be hoping that Sophie Van De Heuvel continues her red-hot form.

The Power suffered a narrow loss in round seven, going down by nine points, and will be seeking some redemption against Greater Western Victoria. Gippsland will be bolstered by the return of damaging small forward Nikia Webber who was sorely missed last week. Tyla Hanks and Jazz Ferguson starred in round seven with their impact around stoppages and ability to read the play. They will be looking to impose themselves on the contest once again to claim their fourth win for the season.

TAC Cup Girls previews: Round 7

WITH only three weeks left before the the grand final, there are plenty of new faces coming in for round seven along with some big time players that are also back in the mix. The Geelong Falcons and Northern Knights will be looking to keep their undefeated record in tact while the Eastern Ranges will be hoping to secure their spot in the top four.  With Oakleigh notching up their second win of the season last week they will be hoping to bring that form into their round seven clashes.

OAKLEIGH CHARGERS v. DANDENONG STINGRAYS

Round 7 – Saturday 28 April, 12.00pm
Warawee Park, Oakleigh

Both teams are coming off big round six wins, making for a hotly contested match between the two sides. The Oakleigh Chargers will be looking to make the most of their home ground advantage against the Stingrays. Unfortunately, they lose the likes of midfield duo, Alana Porter and Katie Lynch along with defender Nicola Xenos, who is a general down back for the Chargers. With two wins under their belt the Chargers will be looking to storm home and claim their third win of the season.

The Stingrays claimed a 54-point win in last weeks’ match with the likes of Courtney Jones dominating up forward and slotting two majors while captain, Jordyn Allen imposed herself in and around the contest. But Dandenong will be missing the class of AFLW Academy forward, Brooke Struylaart who has gone down with an injury, making for an interesting clash on Saturday.

GREATER WESTERN VICTORIA REBELS v. MURRAY BUSHRANGERS

Round 7 – Saturday 28 April, 12.00pm
RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

With three wins each, both the Greater Western Victoria (GWV) Rebels and Murray Bushrangers will be looking to notch up their fourth win of the season, making for a good contest across the ground. The Rebels will be pleased to see the likes of forward, Renee Saulitis and talented midfielder Stephanie Glover – who has predominantly played in defence – both take the field for their clash against Murray. But the Rebels have some key outs for the match with Ella Wood joining a number of talented players on the boundary.

The Murray Bushrangers will be looking to bounce back after a loss last week. They will be bolstered by the return of key players, Eloise Ashley-Cooper and Chelsea Knight who provide good composure with ball in hand. Unfortunately, Murray will be without some of its most consistent players such as Sophie Damon and Julia Harvey for the trip to Craigieburn. The Bushrangers will be hoping to secure another win for the season and look to climb back into a spot in the top four.

 

EASTERN RANGES v. GIPPSLAND POWER

Round 7 – Saturday 28 April, 1.00pm
Healesville Sporting Complex, Healesville

After two losses in a row, the Eastern Ranges will be hoping to peg one back against the Gippsland Power who are hot on their heels on the ladder. Eastern will look to the return of Georgia Macpherson and Paige Buruma in the absence of key defender, Abbey Tognazzini and gun forward, Olivia Meagher. A win on Saturday will keep them in the hunt for a top four finish with the end of the season near.

The Gippsland Power will be looking to bounce back after a tight battle against the undefeated Northern Knights. Unfortunately, they will be without potent forward, Nikia Webber, who will be hard to replace with her accuracy in front of goal. Gippsland have brought in forward, Sophie Walker to apply some scoreboard pressure, while the Power will continue to look to the likes of star midfielder, Tyla Hanks to provide a spark for them across the ground against the Ranges.

 

SANDRINGHAM DRAGONS v. WESTERN JETS

Round 7 – Saturday 28 April, 1.00pm
Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

The Sandringham Dragons secured their fourth win of the season in round six against the Murray Bushrangers, moving themselves into the top four. The Dragons will be hoping to bring that type of intensity and pressure this week against the Jets, bringing in forward, Taylah Grasso and defender, Grace Bridges to continue their winning streak.

For the Jets, their leading goal-kicker, Caitlin Greiser will be absent from their clash against the Dragons on Saturday. The Jets have notched up one win for the season and will be looking to secure their second against Sandringham.

 

NORTHERN KNIGHTS v. BENDIGO PIONEERS

Round 7 – Sunday 29 April, 12.45pm
Preston City Oval, Preston

After six rounds of footy the Northern Knights are still undefeated and will be looking to bring that pressure against the Bendigo Pioneers. Playing at home the Knights will want to make the most of their home ground advantage and play an impressive four quarters of footy. The Knights have named scoring machine, Alyssa Bannan and the versatile Abigail Bennett as emergencies, but have brought in the likes of Jessica Fitzgerald and Neve O’Connor to help balance out the team.

The Pioneers have won just one game for the season and would love to cause a big upset against the undefeated Knights. Though they will be missing a few major players such as Olivia Taverna and Bree Heiden, they have brought in the likes of defender Sharmaine Reilly for the clash at Preston.

 

CALDER CANNONS v. GEELONG FALCONS

Round 7 – Sunday 29 April, 2.00pm
RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

The Geelong Falcons are yet to lose a game and will be hoping to continue their hot form against the Calder Cannons. The Falcons have been strong up forward with the likes of Sachi DeGiacomi dominating in front of goal. Though the Falcons may be without one AFLW Academy player Denby Taylor, Geelong have brought in the likes of another AFLW Academy member in Eliza Shannon, which is testament to their depth of players. The Falcons will have to contend with not just Calder Cannons gun midfielder, Madison Prespakis but so too her sister, Georgie Prespakis, which will make for an interesting match up.

The Calder Cannons have notched up only one win for the season and would love to claim a huge scalp in the undefeated Falcons. The Cannons will have their hands full trying to contain Geelong but with the return of Makeisha Muller and Laura Cocomello, the Cannons could put up a good fight and create a strong contest.

Team Selection: TAC Cup Girls – Round 7

WITH only three rounds left in the TAC Cup Girls competition, team selection is becoming increasingly unpredictable, with many exciting young new faces coming into line-ups this week. However, there are also some big outs with a few teams having to take the field without some of their stars this weekend.

 

OAKLEIGH CHARGERS v. DANDENONG STINGRAYS

Round 7 – Saturday, April 28, 12pm
Warrawee Park, Oakleigh

Oakleigh will be without star midfielders, Alana Porter and Katie Lynch as well as their dominant force in the ruck, Charlotte Moon. Nicola Xenos will also be watching from the sidelines instead of playing her usual role in defence. But there is no shortage of talent among the incoming players with two Bulleen Templestowe players in Elisabeth Jackson and Georgia Relph making their way into the line-up.

Dandenong enjoyed its first win in round six but lose AFLW Academy forward, Brooke Struylaart to injury this weekend. The Stingrays will be glad to see Grace Hodder come into the side this week and will be hoping to see her continue to play some good footy. Abbey Jordan and Brooke Borchard are also among the other ins for the Stingrays.

Oakleigh Chargers

B: 13. T. Morton, 51. G. Relph, 5. A. van Oosterwijck
HB: 14. H. McLaren, 39. T. Nichols, 26. A. Micallef
C: 31. K.  Hunter-Scott, 50. C.  Nancarrow, 30. G. Lagioia
HF: 3. J. D’Amato, 43. E. Hastie, 19. E. Harley
F: 29. M. Bertuna, 38. D. Bateman, 18. I. Gietzmann
R: 11. B. Winbanks, 32. C. O’Malley, 2. M. Hill
Int: 33. G. Byrne, 9. E. Jackson, 15. A. Ling, 22. Z. Makris, 69. L. Mayne, 10. A. Oloughlin

In: T. Morton, L. Mayne, E. Jackson, A. Ling, G. Relph, G. Byrne, A. Oloughlin
Out: N. Xenos,  A. Porter, K. Lynch,  C. Moon, T. Cowan

Dandenong Stingrays

B: 21. G. Hodder, 40. R. Clancy – Dillon, 28. T. Smith
HB: 15. J. Allen, 51. Z. Hill, 1. S. Heath
C: 12. M.  McDonald, 3. C.  Jones, 31. B. Vernon
HF: 48. A. Carroll, 26. I. Shannon, 2. S. Stratton
F: 19. B. Borchard, 44. S. Ryan, 46. J. George
R: 45. M. Graham, 35. L. Cripps, 20. E. Wilson-Macdonald
Int: 8. T. Giddings-Constable, 10. A. Jordan, 42. A. O’Sullivan, 16. A. West
Emg: 5. E. Allen-Burns, 18. S. Bayne

In: T. Giddings-Constable, A. Jordan, B. Borchard, G. Hodder
Out: L. O’Connell-Webb, B. Struylaart

 

GREATER WESTERN VICTORIA REBELS v. MURRAY BUSHRANGERS

Round 7 –  Saturday, April 28, 12pm
RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

One of Greater Western Victoria’s (GWV) best players last week, Ella Wood will miss this week, and will join Katie McAloon, Ally Trigg, Ayesha Nicholson, Chloe Leonard and Nekaela Butler on the sidelines. But the Rebels have bought in key players, Renee Saulitis, Stephanie Glover, Isabella Simmons and Rene Caris to fill the hole left by the outs, giving them a chance to compete strongly against Murray.

Some of the Bushrangers’ most consistent players in Sophie Damon, Julia Harvey and Ada Chessor will not take the field at RAMS Arena on Saturday. They will be replaced by some key ins though, with Eloise Ashley-Cooper returning to defence while Chelsea Knight rejoins fellow midfielder, Claudia McKimmie, who is fresh off a two-goal game.

Greater Western Victoria Rebels

B: 15. T. Jasper, 26. G. Pidgeon, 11. T. Marra
HB: 22. I. Rustman, 25. G. Clarke, 10. H. Simpson
C: 27. N.  Dojiok, 34. S.  Glover, 7. A. McAuliffe
HF: 28. I. Simmons, 21. D. Henson, 18. S. Van De Heuvel
F: 45. A. Humphries, 41. K. Harris, 2. R. Saulitis
R: 35. R. Caris, 16. L. Butler, 23. S. Molan
Int: 43. M. Caris, 20. T. Heath, 3. L. Moloney , 33. I. Robson
Emg: 42. B. Gregory

In: R. Saulitis, A. Humphries, S. Glover, I. Simmons, I. Robson, M. Caris
Out: K. McAloon,  A. Trigg, A. Nicholson,  C. Leonard, E. Wood, N. Butler

Murray Bushrangers

B: 21. C. Boschetti, 39. H. Doohan, 14. A. Duguid
HB: 16. E. Ashley-Cooper, 32. N. Watts, 26. E. Nicholson
C: 3. P.  Crelley, 22. T.  Smith, 33. M. Trethowan
HF: 8. O. Hall, 5. C. Hargreaves, 31. S. Locke
F: 6. K. Adams, 40. M. Burke , 23. E. Jones
R: 43. T. Verhoeven, 4. C. Knight, 36. C. Mckimmie
Int: 19. M. Brown, 42. G. Egan, 41. Z. Spencer, 17. R. Webster
Emg: 11. G. Kelly, 34. E. McPherson

In: M. Burke , E. Jones, E. Ashley-Cooper, Z. Spencer, C. Knight, A. Duguid
Out: S. Damon, J. Harvey, R. Winiata, A. Chessor

 

EASTERN RANGES v. GIPPSLAND POWER

Round 7 – Saturday, April 28, 1pm
Healesville Sporting Complex, Healesville

Following two consecutive losses, the Ranges have bought in all their big guns for this week’s clash against Gippsland. AFLW Academy defender, Georgia Macpherson, along with the likes of Paige Buruma and Emma Horne come into the Eastern line-up to fill the gaps of key outs, Abbey Tognazzini and Olivia Meagher.

Gippsland forward, Nikia Webber will not have a chance to continue her climb up the goal-kicking tally this round, but will hopefully return next week to continue her blistering form inside 50. The Power will be hoping that Sophie Walker, who comes into the side this week, can kick some goals in Webber’s absence.

Eastern Ranges

B: 18. A. Allsopp, 23. C. Smith, 11. M. Edwards
HB: 37. G. Macpherson, 49. C. Wilson, 48. L. Szigeti
C: 41. J.  Richardson, 21. M.  Cann, 24. K Ridley
HF: 16. E. Horne, 40. T. Merrett, 38. L. McClelland
F: 22. C. Chamberlain, 36. J. Grace, 47. J. Provan
R: 46. S. Kendall, 6. G. De Angelis, 3. E. Woods
Int: 34. S. Bowden, 9. P. Buruma, 10. N. Cormack , 8. C. Delbridge
Emg: 35. B. Cubitt, 45. M. Wandin, 50. S. Zappia

In: G. Macpherson, E. Horne, M. Wandin, C. Smith, J. Grace, S. Bowden, P. Buruma
Out: J. McCormick,  A. Tognazzini, O. Meagher,  L. Kelly, J. Torney

Gippsland Power

B: 2. S. Beaton, 65. J. Redmond, 47. E. Cornish
HB: 6. E. Haeusler , 45. L. Van Berkel, 17. S. Trewin
C: 13. H.  Andrews, 28. T.  Hanks, 30. A. Rippon
HF: 10. T. Dower, 8. C. Abrahams , 12. M. Fitzsimon
F: 1. E. Jones, 32. C. Bird, 11. S. Walker
R: 58. A. Dunn, 57. J. Ferguson, 49. M. Shaw
Int: 29. C. Bray, 48. C. Prestidge, 50. M. Van Berkel, 60. E. Williams
Emg: 21. H. Balmer, 9. T. Whitehead

In: S. Walker, S. Beaton, E. Williams, C. Prestidge, H. Balmer, M. Van Berkel
Out: J. Ross, C. Beale, N. Webber, L. Raymond

 

SANDRINGHAM DRAGONS v. WESTERN JETS

Round 7 – Saturday, April 28, 1pm
Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

The Sandringham Dragons are flying at the moment and as a result, Georgia Emberton is the sole omission from the round six side. Taylah Grasso and Grace Bridges are among the ins this week, and will be hoping to keep the Dragons’ winning streak going.

The Western Jets will be without their leading goal-kicker, Caitlin Greiser this week but welcome in Taylor Rose Evans and Taylah Kolevski into the forward line to fill the gap. Mollie-Ann Gregory, Chelsea Jansen and Abbi Bolt are the other players who have been named in the Jets’ line-up this round.

Sandringham Dragons

B: 2. W. Laing, 32. S. Hartwig, 60. G. Strangio
HB: 58. G. Bridges, 65. C. Saultry, 42. R. Woods
C: 30. E.  Brown, 43. A.  McKay, 5. J. Tait
HF: 61. G. Cooper, 50. H. Bate, 25. I. Eddey
F: 24. T. Grasso, 3. S. Rothfield, 1. M. Wilson
R: 33. M. Denahy Maloney, 36. J. Owen, 64. E. McNamara
Int: 31. B. Arnold, 46. A. Burke, 20. A. Dalley, 39. M. Purcell
Emg: 49. L. Amelung, 23. C. Bowen, 13. D. Walker

In: T. Grasso, G. Cooper, R. Woods, G. Bridges
Out: G. Emberton

Western Jets

B: 5. M. Daw, 31. K. Rebuffo, 8. E. Gardner
HB: 21. M. Fenech, 30. I. Pritchard, 40. S. Whiting
C: 14. I.  Grant, 13. C.  Jansen, 27. P. Ozols
HF: 36. J. Goodman, 39. C. Saxon-Jones, 12. K. O’Keefe
F: 34. T. Evans, 41. S. Forbes, 2. C. Gashi
R: 25. T. Kolevski, 16. E. Georgostathis, 19. O. Forsythe
Int: 42. A. Bolt , 22. A. Chivell, 1. M. Gregory, 28. E. Hannett
Emg: 33. L. Basto, 44. C. Myors-Moore

In: T. Kolevski, M. Gregory, T. Evans, C. Jansen, A. Bolt
Out: E. Cassar, C. Greiser, A. Lowe

 

NORTHERN KNIGHTS v. BENDIGO PIONEERS

Round 7 – Sunday, April 29, 12.45pm
Preston City Oval, Preston

The Northern Knights have had a huge shake-up to their side, naming goal-kicking forward, Alyssa Bannan and mid/ forward, Abigail Bennett as emergencies this week. But the Knights welcome back some important players this week, including Jessica Fitzgerald, Ellie McKenzie and Neve O’Connor, who will look to make it seven from seven on Sunday.

Key players including Bree Heiden and Olivia Taverna will be watching from the sidelines in round seven, but Bendigo has brought in some talented players for the trip to Preston. Emily Cooper, Sharmaine Reilly, Mia Ward and Tess Goodrem come into the side and would love to cause an upset win over the high-flying Knights.

Northern Knights

B: 33. T. Curavic, 26. E. Clayton, 12. O. Dikranis
HB: 10. P. Chisholm, 27. P. Kearney, 32. A. Snow
C: 2. M.  Jarvis, 13. M.  Suzuki, 18. S. Sansonetti
HF: 22. B. Gutknecht, 1. M. Antypas, 21. E. McKenzie
F: 24. A. Pronesti, 5. M. Brancatisano, 29. T. Pulcino
R: 4. N. O’Connor, 23. G. Newton, 14. J. Fitzgerald
Int: 9. M. Chaplin, 19. G. Malloy, 28. S. Moore, 3. N. Morris-Dalton
Emg: 6. A. Bannan, 7. A. Bennett, 16. T. Manson, 20. J. McCarthy, 30. M. Rodezno

In: J. Fitzgerald, G. Malloy, E. McKenzie, M. Rodezno, N. O’Connor, T. Pulcino, S. Moore
Out: G. Ceravolo,  T. Shell

Bendigo Pioneers

B: 24. E. Gretgrix, 32. S. Reilly, 25. T. Stewart
HB: 27. B. Hards, 20. K. Douglass, 3. C. Isaac
C: 11. J.  Finning, 28. M.  Williamson, 29. E.  Snell
HF: 26. L. Newton, 8. S. Knoll, T. Shepherd
F: 12. T. Coad, 7. G. Barton, 17. G. Sladden
R: 9. D. Kelly-Guthrie, 2. M. Baldwin, 19. K. Jacques
Int: 16. E. Cooper, 6. M. Curran, 1. M. Tupper, 5. E. Turnbull, 22. M. Ward

In: E. Cooper, S. Reilly, M. Ward, L. Newton
Out: B. Heiden, T. Goodrem, O. Taverna, H. Spencer

 

CALDER CANNONS v. GEELONG FALCONS

Round 7 –  April 29, 2018
RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

Calder consistent players, Kellie Sutton and Terira Fry will not take the field against Geelong, but the host of ins are quite remarkable for the home side. Important players such as Makeisha Muller and Laura Cocomello come into the side as well as Madison Prespakis’ sister, Georgie Prespakis, which could spell trouble for the Falcons!

Versatile AFLW Academy member, Denby Taylor will not make the trip to Craigieburn this round but Geelong has brought in fellow AFLW Academy member, Eliza Shannon to take her place. Other ins for the Falcons include Sophie Dinneen, Ella Mahoney and Jemma Dover.

Calder Cannons

B: 46. G. Elarmaly, 48. C. Brown, 8. E. Vale
HB: 11. A. Barba, 17. E. Cornish, 2. F. Theodore
C: 29. S.  Elias, 3. M.  Prespakis, 9. M.  Warburton
HF: 34. Z. Hardiman, 15. G. Marsland, 37. F. Holloway
F: 10. M. Hemburrow, 49. T. Crook, 25. A. Magri
R: 18. C. Rendelmann, 21. G. Patrikios, 23. G. Dicker
Int: 30. S. Cameron, 38. L. Cocomello, 43. C. Leahy, 22. M. Muller, 41. G. Prespakis, 27. E. Woodley, 35. I. Young

In: L. Cocomello, S. Cameron, M. Muller, G. Prespakis, T. Crook, E. Woodley, C. Leahy, I. Young
Out: B. Tolson,  K. Sutton, E. Vukovic,  L. Philippou, T. Fry

Geelong Falcons

B: 37. S. Dinneen, 36. A. Chapman, 21. K. Haustorfer
HB: 32. M. Sheppard, 34. S. Hungerford, 20. D. Smith
C: 16. L.  Gardiner, 18. N.  Morrison, 35. S. Walmsley
HF: 6. P. Sheppard, 42. S. DeGiacomi, 2. E. Vella
F: 26. M. Skinner, 38. R. Tierney, 4. B. Thompson
R: 33. Z. Inei, 7. O. Purcell, 23. L. McEvoy
Int: 10. S. Atkins, 15. J. Devarakonda, 31. E. Mahoney, 28. L. Ryan
Emg: 5. J. Dover, 40. E. Shannon

In: S. Dinneen, E. Mahoney, J. Dover, E. Shannon
Out: L. Lesosky-Hay, D. Taylor

Scouting notes: TAC Cup Girls- Round 5

ONLY two teams remain undefeated after round five delivered some cracking contests. The Western Jets got their first ever TAC Cup Girls win while ending Eastern’s undefeated streak in the process. Over in Bendigo, the Falcons managed to get up over Murray despite missing five AFLW players. Although the Knights were given a scare by the Chargers, they stormed home to remain undefeated after five rounds of competition. This may have been the hardest week to pick the best players, with each team showing their depth in their respective matches. Below are our opinion-based notes on each of the six TAC Cup Girls games.

Western Jets vs. Eastern Ranges 

Western:

#16 Elisabeth Georgostathis

Smothered the ball twice after giving away the free kick then gave a quick-fire handball to a teammate to set up a forward thrust. This was just one of her great plays on the day, she was simply everywhere. Displayed great run and carry after good mark and was able to clear the ball from congestion multiple times. She had an innate ability to get the ball moving whilst also doing a good job defensively with strong tackles. Georgostathis was able to display good composure to spin out of trouble on some occasions. Started to get targeted in the fourth quarter with the Eastern players trying to get in her head. Ended off a brilliant day with a big tackle in the goal square. 

#43 Caitlin Greiser

Greiser just read the ball better than her opponents and knew how to work her opponent under the ball. Eastern players did not know how to defend her. Booted two goals in the third quarter to get the Jets’ spirits up. Finished with four for the game. Continues to be a huge presence up forward. 

#19 Olivia Forsythe

Never stopped tackling the whole game. Her tackles were strong and often stopped Eastern players from playing that running game that we are so used to seeing from them. She was fierce around the contest and really got into the game in the third quarter. She tackled anyone that came near her and created so many stoppages. She was one of Western’s game-changers.

#26 Isabella Negri

Had a really good ability to move towards the ball on a long kick rather than waiting for it and trying to judge it in the air. In one instance, she took a huge contested mark inside 50 and was slow to get up. But she was brave enough to go back for the set shot, displaying incredible courage.

#40 Sharnie Whiting

Was able to snap through a nice goal after being really lively in the forward line. Was able to hunt the ball down, get it and kick it quickly to create space on the field. 

Others:

#27 Payton-Ani Ozols: Was able to burst out of stoppages a lot of times. Displayed nice acceleration and quick hands. Followed up when she missed the target with her kick, showing great determination.

#30 Isabelle Pritchard: Also displayed quick hands, was a rock in defence. Was able to provide good run and carry and was really strong in congestion. She laid a goal-saving tackle on the dangerous Laura Mcclelland in the last 30 seconds of the game.

#4 Leah Spargo: Kicked a nice ball to the top of the square which helped the tall forwards who were keen to take some contested marks. Like Georgostathis, she was lively and everywhere. Really aggressive on the wing.

#41 Savannah Forbes: Pushed off a player and kicked strongly on the run. She was aggressive all game and was right at the bottom of contest a lot of times.

#8 Emily Gardner: Another lively Jet. Laid some nice and strong tackles especially through the middle of the ground. Stepped up her game in the third quarter.

 

Eastern:

#46 Sarah Kendall

Was able to mop up well in the back-line and dominated the ruck. Played a sweeper role and did not let her team down. Kendall would often pick up the ball quickly, get it and kick it, and not just hacking it- following through for the kick to hit a target. Took a great sliding mark running at full flight towards the ball. She was a huge force especially at the top of the defensive 50, playing a great rebounding game. Nobody could get past her as she would mark everything that came her way.

#37 Georgia Macpherson

Stalwart in defence as usual! Displayed good run and carry and had a long penetrating kick. She took some great contested marks in this game and dominated. She usually takes a lot of uncontested marks but showed she is a contested marking beast as well. Read the footy really well when she took a mark right in the goal-square off a clever high kick by Caitlin Greiser. Sold the candy at one point and kicked off the other side of her body to get the ball into the middle, showing that she is one of the most clever ball-users in the competition.

#6 Gabriella De Angelis

Played a fantastic game for Eastern and just did not stop trying throughout the whole game. Took a great overhead mark under pressure, which was great to see for a small midfielder. Then she did what small midfielders do, when she took the ball and burst through the middle of the ground, hitting her target perfectly with a skillful kick. Kicked two goals to top off her hard work. They were well-deserved, she was outstanding.

#21 Mikala Cann

Really proactive in the middle of the ground. Delivered a nice kick to the middle of the ground at one point and did it on repeat occasions in other areas of the ground. At one point, she was barely looking at the ball and still hit a target. Displayed good hands under pressure and always managed to follow up her efforts with the ball in hand. She had good speed to chase the ball on the deck, showing off her impressive sprinting capabilities. Delivered a beautiful kick into the forward line and kicked a beautiful ball off one step. There was simply no other word to describe her game!  

#49 Charlotte Wilson

The co-captain made good contributions throughout the game. She kicked the ball nicely to the wing at one point and was a huge presence in the ruck. Kicked the ball well to her forwards, especially with a nice kick to Laura McClelland later in the latter stages of the game. Stepped up well in the absence of Emerson Woods. 

Others:

#48 Lauren Szigeti: Displayed nice movement throughout the game and her constant effort to fight for the footy was outstanding. Laid a huge goal-saving tackle at one point in the game. She was so aggressive throughout the game and did not ease her pressure at all.

#38 Laura McClelland: Had a good penetrating kick and kicked it well out of congestion. Took a huge contested mark and kicked it truly, already showing signs of an experiences forward. Had good eyes for the ball throughout the game.

#17 Mietta Kendall: Displayed nice hands to leap for a mark but just could not hold it on the way down. Still managed to build on her performance quarter-by-quarter. Had good quick hands.

 

Bendigo Pioneers vs. Gippsland Power

By: Peter Williams 

Bendigo:

#3 Carly Isaac

Showed off a lot of speed throughout the game, spreading to the outside and showing composure with ball-in-hand. She put in a consistent effort across the game, winning the footy and getting back to help out the defence and break the lines down the wing.

#19 Kodi Jacques

Thought she was one of the best Pioneers for her sheer work rate and ability to get to the football. She provided good pressure on the inside and a knack for quick hands. In the second term she snapped inside 50 which led to a goal to Bree Heiden. When inside 50 she was lively and took a good intercept mark from a kick out and kicked long to the square. In the third term she worked hard out of the midfield, had three possessions in a chain from the clearance through to a snap which just missed.

#27 Brooke Hards

Really liked her game off half-back, particularly early in the peace. Had it not been for Hards’ efforts then no doubt Gippsland’s lead would have been higher in the opening half. She worked really hard in the back 50 and won the footy at half-back thinking her way through her touches going forward. She also showed off a good turning circle when she managed to swing onto her preferred side to kick forward.

#28 Megan Williamson

Another consistent effort from the captain who consistently showed no fear in her attack on the ball. She buzzed around the stoppages and showed good intensity when tackling the opposition ball carrier. She organised the midfield well and won a few free kicks from going in hard, and getting to the ball first. One of the Pioneers’ most consistent on the day.

#30 Bree Heiden

Attacks the football with vigour and used her strong body to bump an opponent off the ball and win a crucial one-on-one. She earned a goal through hard running to lead into the central corridor and kick truly from the set shot.

Others:

#1 Maeve Tupper: Packs plenty of excitement and almost snapped a miraculous goal in the second quarter from a tight angle, but was dragged down and the shot just missed.

#2 Maddy Baldwin: Created some good run on the outside and was able to get into space to win the ball. Baldwin was another Pioneers midfielder who stood up when it counted and put in a consistent performance.

#8 Shelby Knoll: Provided a target inside 50, taking a couple of good marks out on the lead, including a juggling mark in the third term. She worked well with Kodi Jacques in the third term, marking the pass and then handballing back to Jacques to keep the play moving.

#9 Dayna Kelly-Guthrie: Played through the ruck and was solid in her tapouts, then got forward and kicked a great goal from a set shot in the second term.

#11 Jemma Finning: Another midfielder who was up for the fight defensively. Laid some huge tackles and worked hard with Jacques and Williamson through the midfield.

#20 Kate Douglass: Played in defence for most of the game before swinging forward. Provided a target in the final term, taking a couple of marks and kicking a long goal from 45 metres out.

#32 Sharmaine Reilly: Showed good pressure in defence, stopping a certain goal on the line in the opening quarter with a dive, and then laying a particularly memorable tackle later in the game to lock up the ball from escaping in the Power’s forward 50.

 

Gippsland:

#1 Ebony Jones

A composed user of the football, Jones played on the wing but also worked hard to get back into defence and help out. She covered the ground well and took a couple of marks in the defensive half of the ground. Jones also showed off a high defensive awareness and great speed, when in one instance she shepherded a teammate to allow them to kick inside 50, and later produced a great run-down tackle on the wing.

#6 Emily Haeusler

Her best performance of the year and put together a four quarter performance. Camped at half-back she rebounded everything, keeping a firm line between half-back and the centre of the ground. Her first interaction was a good one, side-stepping an opponent and kicking long inside 50 to a one-on-one. Moments later she took a great overhead mark one-on-one and kicked to Alana Rippon on the wing. She showed off her fleet-footedness using agility to turn her opponent inside out and showed composure while on the move. Her first term was superb but it did not stop there, consistently providing rebound for the power, intercepting anything in her area and laying some great, fierce tackles. Her mindset was also promising. In one instance in the fourth quarter where she missed a kick out of defence after winning the ball at ground level, but rather than berate herself, ran forward, bumped the opponent and locked the football up to stop the Pioneers getting it forward.

#8 Chandra Abrahams

A player who impressed with some great highlights. She laid a good tackle on the wing in the second term, and provided great forward pressure throughout the match. In the third term she showed quick thinking and goal sense to kick a goal off a step from 45m out. In the final term she laid a great goal-saving tackle, earning her a free. Her versatility to play up either end was on show on the weekend.

#27 Nikia Webber

A player who is in ripping form currently, Webber continues to provide a forward target for the Power, finishing the game with three majors and moving to second on the goal-kicking table. She kicked a huge goal from 40m out in the first term, then got her second in the second term through some hard running, and capped off with an impressive third goal just after that. Aside from hitting the scoreboard, Webber also provided strength and a keen goal sense inside 50.

#58 Amy Dunn

Played through the ruck and certainly held her own, showing good strength and giving her midfielders first use most of the time. A strong body, she assisted her teammates with good defensive efforts. The co-captain was a good leader in the absence of co-captain Tyla Hanks on game day.

Others:

#10 Tahlia Dower: Provided some good dash out of defence and got forward to kick a goal for her hard running efforts. She covered the ground really well and was one of the better Power players on the day.

#30 Alana Rippon: Worked hard through the midfield and provided some good dash. It was clear if the opposition gave her a centimetre she would take a mile. Got some quick first few steps and is able to find the ball.                     

#57 Jasmine Ferguson: Constantly applied pressure to the opposition and pumped the kick long inside 50. Ferguson took a huge grab in the middle of the ground and moves well for a taller player.

#65 Julia Redmond: Had a memorable moment in the second term, pulling down a huge pack mark on the wing.

 

Northern Knights vs. Oakleigh Chargers

By: Michael Alvaro 

Northern:

#4 Neve O’Connor

Fought valiantly all day against Bridie Winbanks in a very even ruck battle and made her presence felt. She moves really well for a player of her height and was not afraid to take her opponents on when pushing the ball forward with her booming kick. In a very strong Knights midfield, it felt like O’Connor was a fourth rover with her efforts around the ground proving valuable.

#6 Alyssa Bannan

She always finds a way to hit the scoreboard and today was no different. Starting on the wing, Bannan provided touches of class and some good run through the midfield. Her spread from the congestion proved to be damaging, and her ability to repeatedly be the option to carry the ball inside 50 is a real asset. She booted both of her goals in the final term, with one of them coming off the back of a nifty side-step to get rid of her opponent.

#18 Sarah Sansonetti

Kicked the first goal of the game but spurned the chance to kick another moments later as she could not manage to poke the ball through from the goal-square. She was ever-present inside 50 and provided a solid option all day, often acting as the link in the chain between the arc and the goals. She had the chance to kick another goal in the final quarter but gave it off, which was typical of her score involvements for the game.

#21 Ellie McKenzie

Arguably the best player on the ground, McKenzie dominated in all areas. She started the game in the centre bounce and won a stack of clearances to go with two goal assists early on. The highlight of her game also came early in the first term when she received the ball at half-back and went on a winding four-bounce run through the centre square. She lost the ball momentarily but bounced straight back up, won it back and hit up a teammate inside 50. She was thrown forward late in the last quarter and kicked three goals in as many minutes to seal the win for her side, capping off a complete and dominant display.

#24 Alexandra Pronesti

Another Knight who always seems to find the goals, Pronesti was again at her dangerous best. Her three first-half goals helped the Knights to set up a handy buffer going into the main break, and she stood up when needed. Playing as a deep-lying forward, she was able to position herself well at every contest and proved to be a real handful when working in tandem with Sarah Sansonetti.

Others:

#2 Marnie Jarvis: There is not much of her, but Jarvis was everywhere and had some nice moments. Working mainly off half-back and the wing, she looked lively with ball in hand and provided some spark going forward. Her speed and nifty sideways movement allow her to stand out.

#5 Madeline Brancatisano: The skipper was lively early as she attended most of the stoppages. She provided a cool head to go with her tough edge in the contest and burrowed in well to set the tone for her side. While she faded out later on and was caught in possession a couple of times, she showed signs of her usual accumilating best.  

#7 Abigail Bennett: Was used in varying roles around the ground but was mostly effective behind the ball and through the midfield. Her best moment came in the last quarter where she picked up the loose ball, weaved through two opponents and set on a dangerous forward run. A smooth mover, Bennett also impressed with her clean hands in a frantic contest.

 

Oakleigh:

#11 Bridie Winbanks

Was a standout as the Chargers’ best player alongside midfield bull Emily Harley with a massive contribution in both the ruck and at ground level. While the ruck battle was relatively even, it was Winbanks’ follow-up efforts and fierce tackling that were most impressive. As a mobile tall, she was able to show off her admirable work rate and strong hands in what was a physical contest. Her lone goal came at the end of the third term, which the Chargers won with three goals to zip thanks largely to her efforts. 

#16 Alana Porter

Porter spent the majority of the game in the midfield and had a few good moments. Her speed and willingness to take the game on was a highlight, and she was able to give her side a nice bit of outside drive. While her attacking style is exciting, she was caught in possession a couple of times, opting to bounce or hold the ball when she had the chance to quickly dispose of it.

#17 Nicola Xenos

Was quiet early but found her feet and a way into the game during the third quarter. She had a five minute purple patch where she showed off her speed in a mazy run, caught an opponent holding the ball, and put in a courageous effort at half forward in quick succession. Her hands are clean and she has good natural pace, proving to be quite evasive throughout the game.

#19 Emily Harley

Harley was a bullocking force through the Oakleigh midfield and provided some real grunt when they needed it. She started off the game dishing out a couple of fend-offs and doing her best to side-step opponents with her turn of pace, and continued on with much of the same. Her forward drive and competitiveness was a real standout, with many of her runs finished off with a long inside-50 ball. A highlight for her was her handy slips catch while she was thrown deep forward in the second term, which she capped off with a goal.

Others:

#41 Katie Lynch: Having started in the centre square for most of the first half, Lynch struggled to make an early impact. A move deep forward in the second half proved fruitful, as she looked to have gained some confidence and found a lot more of the ball. She looked dangerous at times and finished the game with a goal.

#38 Daisy Bateman: There were limited opportunities for the Oakleigh forwards but Bateman took advantage of the ones that fell her way, booting two of her side’s five goals for the game.

 

Dandenong Stingrays vs. GWV Rebels

By: Peter Williams 

Dandenong:

#1 Shelley Heath

One of the Stingrays prime movers through the midfield and constantly pushed back to help out the defence. Had a busy first term with a couple of eye-catching dashes in the opening minutes, and also laid some tackles later that quarter. After a quieter patch in the middle of the game, Heath picked up in the second half with a huge tackle later in the third quarter just outside 50 with the clock counting down. Her last quarter was great, winning plenty of the football pushing back at half-back and along the wing, working hard to use her pace to drive the ball forward.

#10 Abbey Jordan

Has pace to burn and constantly tried to break the lines. She worked in tandem with Heath along the wing and covered plenty of ground. In particular she moved well in the final term, driving the ball out of defence to help propel the Stingrays forward.

#18 Saige Bayne

One of the better Stingrays throughout the game, played on the outside and managed to get into ball-winning positions. I thought it was her best performance of the season and she adds a bit of pace and grunt to the outside, a solid performance across the four quarters. Just keeps battling hard and was able to get free on a number of occasions to kick the ball long.

#28 Tyanna Smith

Booted two goals for the Stingrays and was lively in the front half of the ground. Early in the third term, Smith positioned herself well in front of her opponent and protected the ball drop to mark. Not long after she kicked one of the goals of the day from long range. One of the better Stingrays on the day and a creative option inside 50.

 

#35 Lucy Cripps

As consistent as ever in defence hardly put a foot wrong and just so consistent, when the going got tough she got going. Cripps even pushed up to a wing at times in the third term to provide extra support in the midfield and drive the ball forward. Good long kick deep in the third term, as she had pushed up to half-forward at the time. Knows when to push up the ground and when to stay back. Versatile and can play anywhere on the ground.

Others:

#5 Eloise Allen-Burns: A composed defender in the back 50, Allen-Burns repelled a number of Rebels attacks with some good intercept marks and clearing kicks. Just does her job and is rarely beaten one-on-one.

#20 Eliza Wilson-Macdonald: Buried herself under packs again and laid a number of fierce tackles. She just continues to work hard and win one-on-one contests or at least put her body on the line. Earned a free kick in the final term at a crucial stage to drive her team forward.

#26 Isabella Shannon: Played forward in the third term and presented well and then started to show it on the scoreboard with a goal and then a centering pass to the square. With her leading out the Stingrays looked much more dangerous. Great long kick at half-forward to deep.

#55 Harmony Thomas: Continues to present as a forward target, just needs to capitalise on her opportunities. She took a great one-on-one mark early in the game but missed the set shot. A last quarter free for going in hard presented another opportunity but just missed. She laid a great tackle in the third term to stop a forward thrust and provided a neat kick to Shelley Heath.

 

GWV Rebels:

#2 Renee Saulitis

She has a bit of pace and class about her, kicking a goal and looking dangerous at times through the midfield. She had a good deep pass forward in the second term and is a good mover, sidestepping her opponent.

#16 Lauren Butler

Just a consistent leader in midfield, she positions her kicks well to the danger zone and has that powerful penetration. In the third term she won the ball at midfield and hit up her team-mate leading out of the forward 50. Early on with Dandenong having the breeze, Butler drifted back to help the defence and took a good intercept mark in the hole in defence.

#21 Denver Henson

Really liked her performance through the ruck and around the ground. She continued to push hard and kicked long to gain serious metres. She laid a fierce tackle in the opening quarter and showed quick hands to her runners. I think the bigger highlights were her efforts around the ground.

#23 Sophie Molan

Really consistent performance again from Molan who seemed to be everywhere. She settled down the side and was used in transition, winning the football across the midfield and being an important link in the chain going forward.

#34 Stephanie Glover

Provided some great drive out of defence, and was particularly prominent early. She showed good agility to sidestep opponents and kick long down the wing, and was one of the better Rebels across the course of the game. Seemed to have a no-frills approach of winning the ball and keeping it moving in transition, working hard to win it defensively and drive it forward.

Others:

#9 Jordie McAuliffe: A hard runner who was rewarded with a great goal in the second term. She also was a reliable kick, hitting up Isabella Simmons who lead at the football in the forward 50.

#19 Katie McAloon: Kicked a great goal off a step in the second quarter.

#27 Nyakoat Dojiok: Created some great run and carry early on in the match, and almost pulled down a high leap but just dropped it. Good acceleration and has a penetrating kick, she had some impressive plays.

#28 Isabella Simmons: Positions herself well down forward, leads for the footy and then camps under the drop zone protecting the ball drop.

#45 Alyssa Humphries: Early on in the game she was damaging up forward, booting a goal and then using her quick hands after a mark to give it off to Jordie McAuliffe for a goal. Played well out of full-forward, and almost kicked a second goal, hitting the post in the final term.

 

Sandringham Dragons vs. Calder Cannons 

Sandringham:

 

#1 Maddison Wilson

Was lively around goal, especially in the first quarter. She kicked the first two goals for the game and finished up with three. Bended it nicely around the body for a confidence-boosting goal after stoppages started to come into play more frequently. Wilson read the ball well in the goal-square, crumbing the ground balls and snapping them through. Was killing it inside 50, taking great uncontested marks and trapping to the ball deep inside 50.

#25 Bella Eddey

Her goal was a stunning pick up and snap around the body from the boundary line! This was set up by Alice Burke’s high ball, which set the small forwards up nicely to run onto the footy. Eddey displayed good work to hunt the ball down and got plenty of it. She was involved in a lot of passages of play, which was highlighted by a spearing pass to Sophia Rothfield on the lead. Even brought her teammates into the game with a good one-two to get the Dragons out of trouble.

#30 Eleanor Brown

Did all the little things right for Sandringham. Managed to kick the ball well even off a burst of acceleration. Delivered a beautiful kick into the middle of the ground to get the Dragons out of trouble. Displayed pinpoint accuracy with her kicking. Had good run and carry especially down the wing. Brown leads well towards the ball even in defence, and doesn’t wait for the ball to come to her so she can spoil. She didn’t allow opponents to lead to the footy because she always meets it first.

#36 Jemma Owen

Really starting to find some good form in these past couple of rounds. Was able to stand up in the stoppages and did some nice things to clear the ball out of congestion. Kicked a nice goal after a good assist from Georgia Emberton. Kicked two for the game which really got her confidence up.

#49 Laura Amelung

Amelung can make an impact wherever she plays. Spent some time up forward and kicked a goal courtesy of a nice snap. Had some great one percenters with some really strong tackles, some great work to run into space and even a nice attempt to thread the needle through goals! She had a nice moment where she grabbed the ball off the deck, accelerated and ran towards goal. Ended up with two majors for the day, showing her versatility.

 

Others:

#2 Winnie Laing: Was able to trap the ball well and handball it out of congestion. Displayed great work to get the ball out with three Cannons players tackling her.

#3 Sophia Rothfield: I witnessed one of the best leads to the footy I’ve seen after Rothfield burst off her opponent with immense speed when she read Bella Eddey’s spearing pass immensely well. Gave her opponent no chance to chase her down in that instance. Displayed some really good work to chase the ball down in the goal-square and kick off one step while being tackled.

#31 Bryanna Arnold: Read the footy beautifully, shown by a kick just landing into her arms after all eyes were on it. Displayed good work to hold up play while the Cannons attempted to run away out of a stoppage.

#32 Sarah Hartwig: Displayed good composure down back. Was able to kick well under pressure. She’s a good defender and a great leader in the back-line.  

#46 Alice Burke: Had plenty of score involvements throughout the match. Most memorable one was a high kick to set up a Bella Eddey goal. Delivered some really nice kicks for the forwards to run onto, and one of them ended up in a great boundary-line snap from Eddey once again.

 

Calder:

#2 Felicity Theodore

Theodore was everywhere for the Cannons and tried extremely hard to keep her side in the game. Did well to hold the dangerous Alice Burke up in stoppage to create another stoppage. Was reading Carla Rendelmann’s taps perfectly and was able to get some clearances. Even had a couple of good ‘don’t argues’ to clear the kick away from congestion. In another instance, she fended off well to evade her opponent and dashed out of the middle. Theodore was able to pick up ball with pace, making it look like the other players were just staring at it. Often got the Cannons out of trouble. Leapt and marked against two Sandringham players to send the ball straight back inside 50 after a kick-out from full-back. Really filled Prespakis’ shoes.

#32 Terira Fry

Applied great pressure to cause a stoppage with four Sandringham players around her. Laid a huge tackle in the goal-square to keep the ball alive for the Cannons inside 50. Continues to improve each game and is one of the Cannons’ best players. Caused some headaches for the Dragons thanks to her aggressive manner and hunt to penetrate the ball forward through defensive acts.

#34 Zoe Hardiman

Hardiman did some really nice things around the contest. She picked up the ball well and evaded her opponents to deliver a nice centring kick, took a really nice mark which set her up for a set shot in the second quarter,  and delivered a fantastic run-down tackle. Also read the ball well when she marked a kick that dropped short. Accelerated towards it rather than waiting for it. Was active around the half-forward flank especially.

#38 Laura Cocomello

Got heaps of kicks away and did not seem to stop trying for the Cannons. She was proactively keeping the game moving for Calder. Kept herself in the game through some good running and following up her teammates’ nice work around the contest. Was able to just grab the ball and kick it without fuss.

#42 Kellie Sutton

She was really strong in defence. She took a great mark to create a turnover and delivered a nice handball under pressure. Displayed great work to hack the ball out of inside 50 when Dragons looked dangerous. Strong tackling was also evident in one of her best games of the season.

 

 

Others:

#15 Georgia Marsland: Took a nice mark off a high kick. Kicked the Cannons’ first goal of the day.

#18 Carla Rendelmann: Was impressive in the ruck and won lots of hit-outs. Tapped the ball down well to her small midfielders, especially Felicity Theodore.

#37 Faith Holloway: Broke away from the contest well and got a kick away. Had a lively start to the game. Smothered the ball well to save a certain goal for the Dragons.

#46 Gloria Elarmaly: Did some nice work to thread through a goal for Calder. Was lively inside 50.

 

Geelong Falcons vs. Murray Bushrangers 

Geelong:

#10 Samantha Atkins

I was impressed with her performance across half-forward, providing some fierce tackles and keeping the opposition honest. Earned an important free kick in the first term when she dispossessed Grace Egan, and then worked hard inside 50 to win the ball at half-forward and centre it to a dangerous position, leading to a goal. She laid quite a few strong tackles, with one in particular in the third term causing an important turnover in the forward half.

#11 Luka Lesosky-Hay

Arguably Geelong’s most prominent midfielder, Lesosky-Hay really stood up in the absence of Olivia Purcell and Nina Morrison. She went head-to-head with Grace Egan throughout the day and had some great battles, never taking a backwards step. She went in hard and won some crucial contested possessions, shovelling the ball out to teammates in space.

#32 Mia Sheppard

I thought she was one of the better Falcons given her strong work in defence. On a couple of occasions, she positioned herself well in the marking contest, and had a desire to win the football. In the final term when Murray was attacking, Sheppard won a crucial one-on-two and locked the ball up. Had she lost that contest, Murray would have surely goaled and put the margin within a kick.

#36 Abbey Chapman

It was almost impossible to name a best player from the Falcons such was their team effort, but Chapman probably came the closest with her sensational work in defence. It was not just her consistency that was impressive, but she just had a number of “big” moments which could be considered game-changing. In the third term she saved a certain Grace Egan goal with a mark on the line, and then in the fourth term, took a huge intercept mark with five minutes to play, settling down the team as the Bushrangers attacked. Across the course of the game she was very good one-on-one.

#39 Tarryn Love

I thought she was one of the best on ground early, until injury curtailed her match in the third term. She just hunts the ball and harasses the opposition, providing pressure on the ball carrier. When in control of the football she has clean hands and a great first touch. Her awareness of her teammates’ positioning is also important and she is able to execute handballs through traffic. Love set up a goal to Paige Sheppard with a kick to her advantage up forward.

Others:

#6 Paige Sheppard: Kicked a couple of goals to spur on the Falcons with one from a set shot, and another from a snap courtesy of a Tarryn Love kick inside 50.

#16 Laura Gardiner: Seemed to cover the ground well, playing off half-back and also getting forward to kick a goal. She is a long kick who is often on the move.

#37 Sophie Dinneen: Another Falcons defender who worked hard to win the football and repel the Bushrangers attacks. She was smart with ball in hand and kicked long out of the defensive zone.

#35 Sophie Walmsley: A lively player who kicked a great goal courtesy of a snap in the pocket. She provided run on the outside, received a good handball to keep the ball moving along the wing, and showed good pace at times, highlighted by a spin around and kick long to the danger zone inside 50 in the third quarter.

#38 Renee Tierney: Did not kick a goal after a bag last week but played a team role with the way she pushed up to the wing and hit the packs hard, providing support for her teammates. She moves pretty well and is strong one-on-one. Had more of an impact up the field than closer to goal this week.

 

Murray:

#1 Julia Harvey

The pocket rocket stepped up into the midfield and had a huge opening term against the Falcons. She seemed to be everywhere, buzzing around the stoppages and weaving her way through traffic. A noticeable strength is her great hands in close and cleanliness at ground level. She is a good user of the football and quite composed with ball in hand. Was quieter later in the game – still had some impressive plays – but her first quarter was sensational.

#22 Tamara Smith

Was Murray’s best player across four quarters and the attributes that stand out are her ability to move through traffic, and her game smarts. She is good above her head and in the second term, showed the awareness while under pressure, to punch the ball forward mid-air rather than take possession and be dispossessed. Smith is a clever player who in the third term also did the team thing, going in to assist her teammate Kate Adams at a stoppage, providing a vital shepherd to allow Adams clear passage for disposal. She also assisted with a goal to Melanie Cook after a nice pass in the fourth quarter.

#37 Sophie Damon

Had a huge first half in particular, being somewhat of a playmaker through the middle with her teammates looking to her to kick long and deep. She was often on the end of handballs, and moved really well for a taller player. In one instance she calmly sidestepped an opponent and managed to kick with composure. She had a shot on goal but that just missed to the left. Her ruck work was also impressive, giving her teammates first chance at possession. She was also involved in the Melanie Cook goal, hitting up Tamara Smith with a piercing pass.

#39 Hayley Doohan

The most notable moments for me were when she won some crucial one-on-ones late in the match. She was able to win a hardball and handpass to Grace Egan under pressure, then beat her opponent late in the final term in a one-on-one contest.

#42 Grace Egan

One of the stars of the Bushrangers’ line-up, Egan was consistent across the game, but particularly picked up in the second half. She worked hard through the midfield, burrowing under packs, putting pressure on the opposition. She stands strong during tackles and found a lot of the ball in close. In the third quarter she ran forward and had a shot on goal, but it was marked on the line. She has clean hands and a one-grab player, spreading well to cover the ground. One of her best passes was in the final term when she had the ball at half-back. She sent a bullet, hitting up a teammate on the wing, switching up play and disrupting the opposition’s set-up. Really stood up as a leader in the final minutes, trying to assist in directing players.

Others:

#4 Chelsea Knight: A classy midfielder who assisted Julia Harvey, Tamara Smith and Grace Egan through the midfield. She stepped up at points and had a few good touches in the midfield, especially in the third term.

#8 Olivia Hall: Got her side up and about in the final term with a great goal to put the Bushrangers back within 10 points at the six and a half minute mark of the final term.

#40 Melanie Cook: Continually presented at the football and was often under tight watch from the opposition. She took a good mark and kicked to the danger zone in the second term to set up Mikayla Jones’ goal. In the final term, Cook got the ball rolling and the atmosphere going with a goal from a snap.

Team Selection: TAC Cup Girls- Round 5

WITH round five upon us there have been plenty of changes across the board with the AFLW Academy playing Geelong in a practice match on Tuesday. The Geelong Falcons, Northern Knights and Eastern Ranges will be looking to keep their undefeated record intact while the Western Jets and Dandenong Stingrays will be searching for their first win of the 2018 season. Though many teams have been forced to make changes through losing players to the AFLW Academy, it will allow plenty of new and young talent to shine in the upcoming matches.

WESTERN JETS v. EASTERN RANGES 
Round 5 – Saturday, April 7, 12.15pm
Williamstown Football Ground, Williamstown

The Western Jets and Eastern Ranges are set to kick off the round in Williamstown with the Ranges looking to continue their undefeated run. On the other hand, the Jets will be hoping to notch up their first win of the season, making seven changes to their line-up.

With the likes of co-captain Emerson Woods and fellow midfielder Olivia Meagher out for the match, the Eastern Ranges will be relying on their depth to get them across the line against the Jets. The absence of Ranges defender Abbey Tognazzini and Ashleigh Allsopp will test their strength down back as they are key players for their team, but the inclusion of Sophia Zappia will provide some much needed composure.

For the Jets, the loss of forward Isabella Grant will be hard to replace as she provides some good dash across the field and uses the footy well. Grant was one of seven changes for the Western Jets who have named the likes of Katarina RebuffoEden Cassar, Emily Hannett and Chelsea Jansen to take on the undefeated Eastern Ranges.

Western Jets

B: 29. E. Cassar, 31. K. Rebuffo, 2. C. Gashi
HB: 21. M. Fenech, 30. I. Pritchard, 44. C. Myors-Moore
C: 19. O.  Forsythe, 13. C.  Jansen, 27. P.  Ozols
HF: 3. A. Lowe, 36. J. Goodman, 26. I. Negri
F: 39. C. Saxon-Jones, 41. S. Forbes, 40. S. Whiting
R: 43. C. Greiser, 16. E. Georgostathis, 4. L. Spargo
Int: 22. A. Chivell, 8. E. Gardner, 28. E. Hannett, 12. K. O’Keefe

In: E. Cassar, L. Spargo, C. Jansen, E. Hannett, J. Goodman, S. Forbes, K. Rebuffo
Out: I. Grant, M. Gregory, K. Ratu,  A. Bolt 

Eastern Ranges

B: 17. M. Kendall, 50. S. Zappia, 45. M. Wandin
HB: 37. G. Macpherson, 49. C. Wilson, 48. L. Szigeti
C: 8. C.  Delbridge, 6. G.  De Angelis, 16. E.  Horne
HF: 38. L. McClelland, 36. J. Grace, 41. J. Richardson
F: 42. M. Taverna, 28. L. Kelly, 15. J. Torney
R: 46. S. Kendall, 21. M. Cann, 10. N. Cormack
Int: 19. I. Ball, 9. P. Buruma, 35. B. Cubitt, 51. J. McCormick

In: M. Kendall, N. Cormack , S. Zappia, C. Chamberlain, J. Grace, S. Bowden, T. Merrett, I. Ball
Out: A. Tognazzini, A. Allsopp, O. Meagher, E. Woods

 

BENDIGO PIONEERS v. GIPPSLAND POWER 
Round 5 – Sunday, April 8, 11am
Epsom Huntly Reserve, Epsom

After a gallant effort last week against the Eastern Ranges, the Bendigo Pioneers will be hoping to bring their impressive form into round five. They were sound in defence but were ultimately outclassed by their undefeated opponents. The Power however fought hard to secure a three-point win against Calder, resulting in minimal changes to the team’s line-up.

The Pioneers go in unchanged after their strong performance last week with the likes of Kate Douglass and Megan Williamson proving their worth with their impressive work across the ground.

On the other hand, Gippsland Power have made five changes, with star midfielders Tyla Hanks and Leyla Berry unavailable for the game. The likes of fellow teammates Jazz Ferguson and Alana Rippon will have to stand up in the contest. The Power have included Charlize Bird, Tahlia Dower and Leila Raymond in their squad for their trip to Epsom.

Bendigo Pioneers

B: 3. C. Isaac, 32. S. Reilly, 14. O. Taverna
HB: 24. E. Gretgrix, 20. K. Douglass, 25. T. Stewart
C: 11. J.  Finning, 28. M.  Williamson, 21. H.  Spencer
HF: 30. B. Heiden, 8. S. Knoll, 26. L. Newton
F: 27. B. Hards, 7. G. Barton, 1. M. Tupper
R: 9. D. Kelly-Guthrie, 19. K. Jacques, 2. M. Baldwin
Int: Unknown. A. Bodilly, 15. T. Goodrem, 5. E. Turnbull

Gippsland Power

B: 2. S. Beaton, 45. L. Van Berkel, 29. C. Bray
HB: 6. E. Haeusler , 65. J. Redmond, 17. S. Trewin
C: 1. E.  Jones, 57. J.  Ferguson, 30. A.  Rippon
HF: 10. T. Dower, 8. C. Abrahams, 12. M. Fitzsimon
F: 4. J. Ross, 60. E. Williams, 27. N. Webber
R: 58. A. Dunn, 13. H. Andrews, 49. M. Shaw
Int: 21. H. Balmer, 47. E. Cornish , 50. M. Van Berkel, 9. T. Whitehead

In: C. Bird, T. Dower, L. Raymond , C. Prestidge, M. Van Berkel
Out: T. Hanks, L. Berry

 

NORTHERN KNIGHTS v. OAKLEIGH CHARGERS 

Round 5 – Sunday, April 8, 12.15pm
Preston City Oval, Preston

With the Knights sitting second on the ladder they will be hoping to continue their red-hot form, even though they have had to ring through the changes. The Northern Knights were forced to make five changes due to the AFLW Academy game taking place. Meanwhile the Oakleigh Chargers have named a huge extended list after losing three players to the Academy game.

The Northern Knights will be set to take on the Chargers without Jessica Fitzgerald, who has been a standout for them throughout the first four rounds. Though the Knights are filled with midfield power with the likes of Maddy Brancatisano and Alyssa Bennett, they will be missing Gabby Newton who is a huge force in the ruck and can make her presence felt all over the ground. The Northern Knights have brought in Sarah Sansonetti who provides a good target up forward.

The Chargers have lost Hannah McLaren, who is a key up forward for them along with Gemma Lagioia, who is so important through the middle of the ground. Both were involved in a head clash in the first quarter of their round four clash against Geelong. The Chargers have their absence covered though, bringing in Katie Lynch, Daisy Bateman and Melanie Bertuna, who are some of Oakleigh’s most dominant players. 

Northern Knights

B: 12. O. Dikranis, 10. P. Chisholm, 20. J. McCarthy
HB: 17. C. Fitzgerald, 27. P. Kearney, 32. A. Snow
C: 6. A.  Bannan, 5. M.  Brancatisano, 2. M.  Jarvis
HF: 7. A. Bennett, 18. S. Sansonetti, 25. T. Mills
F: 1. M. Antypas, 3. N. Morris-Dalton, 24. A. Pronesti
R: 4. N. O’Connor, 22. B. Gutknecht, 21. E. McKenzie
Int: 9. M. Chaplin, 30. M. Rodezno, 31. T. Shell, 13. M. Suzuki

In: M. Rodezno, J. McCarthy, A. Snow, M. Chaplin, T. Shell
Out: M. Uwland,  G. Ceravolo,  J. Fitzgerald,  E. Clayton,  G. Newton

Oakleigh Chargers

B: 50. C. Nancarrow, 45. T. Cowan, 5. A. van Oosterwijck
HB: 26. A. Micallef, 39. T. Nichols, 17. N. Xenos
C: 31. K.  Hunter-Scott, 19. E.  Harley, 16. A.  Porter
HF: 29. M. Bertuna, 21. C. Moon, 43. E. Hastie
F: 70. P. Fennell, 38. D. Bateman, 18. I. Gietzmann
R: 11. B. Winbanks, 2. M. Hill, 41. K. Lynch
Int: 33. G. Byrne, 52. L. Harris, 6. T. Johnson, 15. A. Ling, 22. Z. Makris, 69. L. Mayne, 32. C. O’Malley, 51. G. Relph

In: L. Mayne, G. Relph, Z. Makris, D. Bateman, M. Bertuna, A. van Oosterwijck, K. Lynch
Out: E. Jackson, G. Lagioia, H. McLaren

 

DANDENONG STINGRAYS v. GREATER WESTERN VICTORIA REBELS 

Round 5 – Sunday, April 8, 12.45pm
Epsom Huntly Reserve, Epsom

The Dandenong Stingrays will be looking to notch up their first win of the season against the Greater Western Victorian Rebels (GWV) in Epsom. The Stingrays may be a bit deflated after another loss last week but will be hoping the changes will bring around some good fortune. The Rebels on the other hand will be hoping to get back into the winning books and claim their second victory for the season.

After another loss, Dandenong have not shied away from the changes, making six changes to their line-up. The Stingrays will be without Lauree Metcalfe and defender Courtney Jones who provides some strength down back. In to replace Jones is Jenna George who will have her hands full in defence.

After her short return for the Rebels, classy midfielder Sophie Van De Heuvel will be unavailable for selection leaving it up to the likes of teammates Nyakoat Dojiok and Denver Henson to compete in the midfield. Van De Heuvel is just one of four changes for GWV with Alyssa Humphries and Tess Heath set to come into the side for the likes of Rene Caris and Georgia Clarke. 

Dandenong Stingrays

B: 5. E. Allen-Burns, 51. Z. Hill, 37. J. Lilley
HB: 46. J. George, 35. L. Cripps, 12. M. McDonald
C: 1. S.  Heath, 32. M.  Layfield, 28. T.  Smith
HF: 19. B. Borchard, 31. B. Vernon, 48. A. Carroll
F: 7. L. O’Connell-Webb, 44. S. Ryan, 2. S. Stratton
R: 45. M. Graham, 26. I. Shannon, 20. E. Wilson-Macdonald
Int: 18. S. Bayne, 21. G. Hodder, 10. A. Jordan, 42. A. O’Sullivan

In: A. Carroll, A. Jordan, J. George, S. Bayne, M. Layfield, J. Guy-Toogood
Out: J. Allen,  C. Jones,  R. Clancy – Dillon,  B. Struylaart,  L. Metcalfe

Greater Western Victoria Rebels

B: 6. N. Butler, 26. G. Pidgeon, 19. K. McAloon
HB: 10. H. Simpson, 15. T. Jasper, 14. L. Sykes
C: 27. N.  Dojiok, 21. D.  Henson, 7. A.  McAuliffe
HF: 13. C. Leonard, 28. I. Simmons, 2. R. Saulitis
F: 12. G. Douhadji, 45. A. Humphries, 34. S. Glover
R: 22. I. Rustman, 16. L. Butler, 23. S. Molan
Int: 20. T. Heath, 11. T. Marra, 9. J. McAuliffe , 1. A. Trigg

In: L. Moloney , K. Harris, A. Trigg, A. Humphries, G. Douhadji, T. Heath
Out: G. Clarke, R. Caris, S. Van De Heuvel, M. Caris

 

SANDRINGHAM DRAGONS v. CALDER CANNONS 

Round 5 – Sunday, April 8, 1.15pm
Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

Sandringham will be looking to take advantage of its home ground and secure its third win of the season, while the Calder Cannons will be searching to claim their second victory. The Cannons have named an extended squad with two notable outs for the team, while Sandringham has only made a few changes for the clash on Sunday.

The Dragons have brought in a relatively unchanged line-up after last week’s strong win against the Stingrays. Sarah Hartwig stood up in defence in round four, showing her ability to tackle well and take important grabs. This will be needed again this week as Sandringham will be without Taylah Grasso and Grace Bridges who are key members of the Dragons backline. Meanwhile, Daisy Walker, Margie Purcell and Chloe Saultry have been named in the squad.

The Calder Cannons have made a few changes going into round five with the likes of Madison Prepakis and Georgia Patrikios lost to the AFLW Academy game. Molly Warburton (also in the Academy) will be missed down in in defence for the Cannons as she provides strength and composure. In their extended squad the Cannons have named Makeisha Muller to start at half-forward while Laura Cocomello and Ashton Driscoll are expected to play.

Sandringham Dragons

B: 46. A. Burke, 33. M. Denahy Maloney, 13. D. Walker
HB: 49. L. Amelung, 32. S. Hartwig, 23. C. Bowen
C: 30. E.  Brown, 43. A.  McKay, 5. J.  Tait
HF: 25. I. Eddey, 3. S. Rothfield, 36. J. Owen
F: 31. B. Arnold, 50. H. Bate, 1. M. Wilson
R: 20. A. Dalley, 64. E. McNamara, 2. W. Laing
Int: 56. G. Emberton, 39. M. Purcell, 65. C. Saultry, 60. G. Strangio

In: D. Walker, M. Purcell, C. Saultry
Out: T. Grasso,  G. Bridges

Calder Cannons

B: 44. I. McNeill-Wren, 48. C. Brown, 8. E. Vale
HB: 29. S. Elias, 17. E. Cornish, 35. I. Young
C: 32. T.  Fry , 31. K.  Petrevski, 37. F.  Holloway
HF: 34. Z. Hardiman, 46. G. Elarmaly, 22. M. Muller
F: 25. A. Magri, 49. T. Crook, 15. G. Marsland
R: 18. C. Rendelmann, 11. A. Barba, 23. G. Dicker
Int: 38. L. Cocomello, 4. T. Cook, 39. A. Driscoll, 2. F. Theodore

In: L. Cocomello, K. Sutton, G. Elarmaly, M. Muller, C. Macumber, A. Driscoll
Out: M. Warburton, G. Patrikios, M. Prespakis

 

GEELONG FALCONS v. MURRAY BUSHRANGERS 

Round 5 – Sunday, April 8, 2.30pm
Epsom Huntly Reserve, Epsom

The final game of the round could shape up to be one of the best spectacles for round five, as both teams will be evenly poised with quality players being absent for both teams. With huge outs in the midfield such as Rebecca Webster for the Bushrangers and Olivia Purcell for the Falcons, it will be a battle to see who can win the contested ball.

The Murray Bushrangers have been forced to make six changes to their line-up, losing star midfielder Rebecca Webster and Eloise Ashley-Cooper, who is important across the ground for the Bushrangers. Millie Brown will also be a big loss to Murray as she provides a good target up forward. But the Bushrangers have brought in the likes of Kate Adams to fill the void of Ashley-Cooper and Mikayla Jones up forward for Millie Brown.

For the Falcons they have brought in Mia Skinner to help provide a target up forward. It will be hard to replace the class of Olivia Purcell and Nina Morrison in and around the contest, who provide clean hands around the footy and use the ball well.

Geelong Falcons

B: 15. J. Devarakonda, 37. A. Chapman, 22. K. Haustorfer
HB: 38. S. Dinneen, 35. S. Hungerford, 33. M. Sheppard
C: 2. E.  Vella, 11. L.  Lesosky-Hay, 36. S.  Walmsley
HF: 10. S. Atkins, 42. S. DeGiacomi, 27. M. Skinner
F: 31. S. Milsome, 39. R. Tierney, 4. B. Thompson
R: 34. Z. Inei, 20. T. Love, 6. P. Sheppard
Int: 48. E. Allan, 16. L. Gardiner, 46. E. Lawson, 21. D. Smith

In: M. Holdsworth, B. Thompson, M. Sherman, D. Smith, P. Sheppard, L. Gardiner, M. Skinner
Out: N. Morrison,  L. McEvoy,  D. Taylor,  O. Purcell

Murray Bushrangers

B: 26. E. Nicholson, 39. H. Doohan, 32. N. Watts
HB: 6. K. Adams, 23. E. Hibble, 24. Z. Spencer
C: 44. M.  Eze, 1. J.  Harvey, 33. M.  Trethowan
HF: 11. A. Chessor, 8. O. Hall, 36. C. Mckimmie
F: 40. M. Cook, 42. G. Egan, 35. M. Jones
R: 37. S. Damon, 22. T. Smith, 4. C. Knight
Int: 13. E. Balaburov, 25. E. Freeman, 31. S. Locke, 34. E. McPherson

In: K. Adams, S. Locke, E. Balaburov, H. Doohan, Z. Spencer, M. Jones
Out: O. Barber, C. Hargreaves, P. Crelley, E. Ashley-Cooper, R. Webster, M. Brown