Tag: lauren bella

AFL Women’s Saturday wrap: Prespakis, Vescio inspire almighty Blues escape

CARLTON overcame a horror start on Saturday afternoon to ward off a roaring Richmond outfit at Princes Park, escaping five-point victors against its traditional rival. The Tigers got the jump with the first four goals of the game, before reigning league best and fairest Maddy Prespakis sparked the Blues to life with two second term goals to help claim an unlikely half time lead. From there, the Darcy Vescio show took full toll to help Carlton kick a winning score, eventually reading 8.3 (51) to Richmond’s 7.4 (46).

While still winless in the AFL Women’s competition, green shoots are beginning to appear for Richmond after arguably its best performance to date. The Tigers’ poor conversion and attacking penetration have been a lead story thus far, but that was far from the case on Saturday as they surged forward with ruthless pace and efficiency to catch Carlton unawares on multiple occasions.

The Tigers’ pressure and early midfield dominance were other key signs of their upside, before Carlton’s prime movers began to take the game over. Having started the season at 0-2, the Blues’ finals hopes are still kicking as they sit just outside the top six, but a much more consistent run of form will be required from here on out.

Much of the hype coming into this clash surrounded the potential matchup of twins Jess and Sarah Hosking, who would take little time to acquaint themselves as opponents at the first centre bounce. It marked somewhat of another new role for Carlton’s Jess, who has been utilised up either end of the ground, while Richmond’s Sarah was typically reliable in midfield.

The Hosking in navy blue finished with 19 disposals, while her sibling managed 15 touches to go with six marks and seven tackles despite missing a chunk of action through concussion protocols. The Prespakis tackle which put Hosking out of action was deemed dangerous at the time, and could see Carlton’s star midfielder face more scrutiny from the match review officer this season.

Richmond’s Monique Conti was busy as ever, leading all comers with 26 disposals and seven inside 50s. Skipper Katie Brennan looked lively in the front half, notching two goals among her 17 touches and five marks with strong work in the air and across the ground. Others to impress in yellow and black included Ellie McKenzie (14 disposals, four marks) and the forward duo of Courtney Wakefield (three goals) and Tayla Stahl (two), who helped materialise each of their side’s momentum grabs.

Prespakis dragged her side back into the contest with 19 disposals, five tackles and two goals, aided by the forward 50 presence of Vescio, who clunked six marks and booted 3.2. Grace Egan was excellent as the Blues’ highest ball winner (21 disposals), while skipper Kerryn Harrington formed a wall in defence alongside Charlotte Wilson with seven rebound 50s.

CARLTON 0.2 | 4.2 | 7.3 | 8.3 (51)
RICHMOND 3.0 | 4.1 | 5.1 | 7.4 (46)

GOALS:

Carlton: D. Vescio 3, M. Prespakis 2, N. Stevens, L. McEvoy, T. Harris
Richmond: C. Wakefield 3, K. Brennan 2, T. Stahl 2

DC BEST:

Carlton: D. Vescio, M. Prespakis, G. Egan, K. Harrington, J. Hosking, L. McEvoy
Richmond: M. Conti, K. Brennan, S. Hosking, C. Wakefield, R. Miller, E. McKenzie

credit: Dylan Burns/AFL Photos

Credit: Will Russell/AFL Photos

Dockers endure slow start to overrun Suns

FREMANTLE added another huge win to its premiership tilt as the Dockers overcame the Gold Coast Suns in convincing fashion in Perth, 7.13 (55) to 1.0 (6). Whilst the Suns got the early jump on the premiership contenders, leading for much of the first and boasting a close margin at half time as the Dockers failed to capitalise on opportunities, it was Fremantle that ran down its foes in an excellent six goal second half to maintain top spot on the ladder. 

In an opening term that was dominated by the underdogs, things began with plenty of excitement as an early goal from Leah Kaslar got the ball rolling with the Dockers seemingly unable to find purchase within a tight contest. But whilst Kaslar’s major was the only score of the quarter, it went on to be the Suns’ only major of the match as, from quarter time onwards, the footy was well within the home side’s grasps with plenty of intent and drive into attack. Whilst the Dockers were ultimately unable to provide the scoreboard danger to rival their offensive pressure, producing a 1.5 (11) to 1.0 (6) scoreline to marginally lead at the main change, a huge second half loomed with much of the momentum going the way of the Dockers with Ebony Antonio and Gabby O’Sullivan unsuccessful but proving dangerous inside 50.

The second half saw the match well and truly open up for Fremantle, as its pressing backline led by Janelle Cuthbertson gained further control and confidence to propel ball forward into its waiting forward line. Back-to-back majors from Antonio and O’Sullivan and a maiden goal from Sarah Verrier created a tough buffer for the Suns to crack as the scoreline extended to 25 points by the time the final change arrived. Despite being tagged for much of the contest, Kiara Bowers shone as the match opened up further, proving unstoppable as Suns’ Jamie Stanton worked up a storm for the opposition but to no avail. 

A huge final term saw the Dockers’ class complete their second half rundown of the opposition, piling on another three goals and six minors as O’Sullivan got her second on the board, whilst Hayley Miller and Ash Sharp piled on the offensive pressure. Another inaccurate term could have seen a huge margin from the premiership contenders – who have now won 11 straight – but the side will surely be content with the 49-point victory as they continue to lead the way atop the tables.

Despite being down in contested ball and clearances in the first quarter, once the Dockers stepped up their game there was no stopping them as the work-rate lifted with a whopping 73 tackles to 46, as Bowers stole the show with 15 tackles to go with her 17 touches (15 kicks). Bowers was only beaten on the possessions count by Stanton, who led her side with 18 and five tackles, while Lucy Single showed some glimpses of what she is capable of with a great tag on Bowers, completing the match with seven tackles as Lauren Bella dominated the ruck contest. O’Sullivan was the lone multiple goalkicker with two from her 16 touches, whilst Miller also showcased her ball-magnet ways with 17 disposals and six tackles to her name. 

FREMANTLE | 0.0 | 1.5 | 4.7 | 7.13 (55)
GOLD COAST | 1.0 | 1.0 | 1.0 | 1.0 (6)

GOALS:

Fremantle: G. O’Sullivan 2, R. Roux, H. Miller, A. Sharp, E. Antonio, S.Verrier
Gold Coast: L. Kaslar

DC BEST:

Fremantle: K. Bowers, J. Cuthbertson, G. O’Sullivan, H. Miller, R. Roux, J.Stewart
Gold Coast: J. Stanton, L. Bella, L. Single, K. Surman, K. Howarth

Credit: Michael Willson/AFL Photos

Hot Pies down shaky Roos in ladder-leading encounter

It was a showstopper waiting to happen, with a fired up North Melbourne side looking to right the wrongs of their Round 3 loss to Melbourne and put another win on the board, coming in hot favourites against an improved Collingwood outfit. But it seemed that once again, the Kangaroos could not compete with a hardened side bursting through the midfield. The side was unable to contain the hot Pies who sit undefeated on four from four, with a low-scoring contest seeing the Roos rendered goalless for the first time, going down 4-4 (28) to 0.8 (8).

An impressive opening term well and truly set the tone for the match, as the Magpies piled on the pressure around the ground to negate any easy forward 50 forays from the Roos. With so many excellent targets within the Kangaroos’ grasps, an Aishling Sheridan goal was exactly what the Magpies needed to spur the side into action as the contest across the field continued to grow, pressurising the midfield as Chloe Molloy looked the goods with an early major to her name. Whilst the Roos forced a tighter contest in the second quarter, it seemingly was already too little, too late as the Magpies had all the momentum and ran with it. Three minors the way of the Roos did little to worry the Pies as Jordan Membrey kicked truly at the other end, with Bri DaveyJaimee Lambert and Molloy running rampant and well and truly outclassing the Kangaroos.

Inaccuracy and a lack of opportunity were the themes of the second half as neither side was really able to exit the tight contest, with North keeping Collingwood to just 1.2 in the second half after a stellar start but also failing to find the big sticks with five more behinds on the board well and truly putting the nail in their own coffin. Despite huge efforts from Jasmine GarnerKait Ashmore and Jenna Bruton, it was not enough as Molloy sealed the deal with a final goal in the last to propel the Magpies up the ladder with the 20-point victory.

For the Magpies, Davey and Lambert led all-comers, with 31 and 27 disposals respectively, whilst Davey racked up six marks and Lambert piled on the pressure with six tackles. Britt Bonnici and Steph Chiocci rang true with 21 and 20 touches, while Molloy’s goal sense saw her finish with two from her 12 touches, four marks and three tackles. Stacey Livingstone was a moving barricade down back with eight marks and seven rebounds. For the flailing Roos, Garner’s 19 disposals led the pack while Bruton (18 and five tackles), Ashmore (17 and six, one behind) and Emma Kearney (15 and five, one behind) also plied their trade.

NORTH MELBOURNE | 0.0 | 0.3 | 0.5 | 0.8 (8)
COLLINGWOOD | 2.2 | 3.2 | 3.4 | 4.4 (28)

GOALS:
North Melbourne: 
Nil
Collingwood: C. Molloy 2, A. Sheridan, J. Membrey

DC BEST:
North Melbourne:
J. Garner, K. Ashmore, A. Riddell, J. Bruton
Collingwood: B. Davey, J. Lambert, B. Bonnici, S. Livingstone, C. Molloy

AFL Women’s Saturday wrap: Giants outlast Suns in wet conditions for maiden 2021 win

THE Greater Western Sydney Giants finally put a win on the board on Saturday afternoon, defeating Gold Coast Suns in a rain-affected encounter at Blacktown International Sportspark, 2.6 (18) to 1.2 (8). Both teams were coming into this match off the back of comprehensive Round 2 losses, and while the Suns pressed hard after a tough first quarter, it was to no avail in the wet weather as they failed to put a major on the board until the final minutes of the match.

In an excellent start to the match the Giants were just about unstoppable, hogging the footy as Alyce Parker and Bec Beeson could not be separated from the action, as Taylah Davies and Alicia Eva slotted early goals to open proceedings and put some space between them and the traveling Suns. While the Suns were relatively composed running out of half back and dominated the marking contest, led by Jade Pregelj who collected a number of rebounds and Alison Drennan who piled on the physicality, the side could not clear the footy through the tightly contested Giants as a clogged midfield continuously sent the ball soaring back inside 50. While the tides changed in the second, with a clear scoring end coming to fruition as the Suns piled on the offensive pressure, the away side just could not pile on the scoreboard intensity they needed with the footy continuously rebounding between Lauren Ahrens and Elle Bennetts. A 15-point margin at quarter time only slightly changed to 16 points as the main break came around, with both sides failing to put a goal on the board.

Whilst the weather cleared up in the second half, the slippery conditions remained as frantic footy was played through the midfield and a tight one-on-one defence from both sides denied any easy chances for clearances. While the Suns denied the Giants a single goal after the first term and Jamie Stanton finally broke the drought with a Suns goal in the last minutes of the match, it was a tough slog for the Suns in a much tighter encounter than the scoreline suggested.

The trio of Parker (24 disposals and five tackles), Beeson (23 and seven) and Eva (15 and one goal) was impressive as ever, while Haneen Zreika was unstoppable early to finish with seven tackles and opposing rucks Erin McKinnon and Lauren Bella racked up 20 hitouts apiece. The Suns’ physicality was excellent with Drennan (22 disposals, 12 tackles) combing well with Serene Watson and Hannah Dunn (eight and seven tackles, respectively) while Ahrens and Stanton were also solid.

Image Credit: AAP/Dan Himbrechts

GWS GIANTS | 2.3 | 2.5 | 2.6 | 2.6 (18)
GOLD COAST SUNS | 0.0 | 0.1 | 0.1 | 1.2 (8)

GOALS:

Giants: T. Davies, A. Eva
Suns: J. Stanton

DC BEST:

Giants: A. Parker, R. Beeson, E. Bennetts, A. Eva, B. Tully
Suns: A. Drennan, J. Stanton, L. Ahrens, M. Levi, S. Watson

Credit: Getty Images

Experienced Blues overawe Saints

The second match of the evening saw the Saints host the Blues at Moorabbin, in the first crowd-less matchup of the round. Perfect conditions in Melbourne saw the home side get off to the perfect start, as Caitlin Greiser would not be rendered goalless for the second straight round and put the first goal through for the match with minute left in the quarter as the Saints dominated the early stages. With Greiser taking centre stage up forward for the Saints, the Blues would not be left wondering what could be playing an extra back to lighten the load of the likes of Mua Laloifi, but Greiser’s beautiful gather and goal from an angle well and truly outclassed the Blues backwoman on return from injury, allowing the Saints some breathing space and a slight seven-point upper hand heading into the first change.

But it was not all doom and gloom for Carlton, as the side picked up their game as the second term rolled around with two shocking weeks behind them and no desire to head in that same direction once more, as the side well and truly took advantage of the blustery wind to pile on the scoreboard pressure in the second quarter. It took only a perfect start from Elise O’Dea who was sent forward to do what she does best, hitting the scoreboard quickly and seeing the rest of the side pick up their game immediately as Maddy Prespakis got in on the action with a snap out of the back of a contest, and seeing a couple of excellent chains of handballs keep the footy moving fast down the field, evading Saints’ possession. While it was the experienced Blues cohort that got the show on the road in the second quarter, it was the young talent that lifted in the second half as Prespakis was aided by Grace Egan, Georgia Gee and Abbie McKay, with the latter two finding much more of the footy as the match opened up. A Kate Shierlaw purple patch – including the Saints’ second goal – was cut short as the tall was briefly sent off the field for a head knock, whilst the likes of Georgia Patrikios and Tyanna Smith were influential around the footy, matching up well against the Blues’ talent but unable to apply the offensive pressure the side so sorely needed.

A tough contest was had in the final term, and while the Saints proved they were more than capable of taking the game on, it was not enough as the Blues had the momentum and wind going in their favour. Whilst the Saints midfield and back-end worked in overdrive to push the footy forward once more, the Blues shut down the centre corridor and minimised options on the wing to continuously propel the footy back inside their attacking 50. Nic Stevens‘ second goal of the game – a soccer off the ground from within the square – well and truly put the ice on the cake for the then-winless Blues, as the side ran home with a solid 6-4 (40) to 2.4 (16) victory.

For the successful Blues, Prespakis and Egan led the way with 24 touches apiece, combining for eight tackles between them while McKay was not far behind with 17 touches and seven tackles alone. O’Dea had her best match in the navy blue, piling 21 disposals onto her season tally and booting the side’s opening goal, while Jess Hosking and Breann Moody were solid as ever. For the Saints, Patrikios was excellent with 20 disposals and five tackles, while Hannah Priest (18 disposals, six tackles and five marks) and Rosie Dillon (14 disposals and nine tackles) were also solid targets around the ground.

ST KILDA | 1.1 | 1.2 | 2.4 | 2.4 (16)
CARLTON | 0.0 | 3.1 | 5.1 | 6.4 (40)

GOALS:

St Kilda: C. Greiser, K. Shierlaw
Carlton: N. Stevens 2, L. Brazzale, M. Downie, E. O’Dea, M. Prespakis

DC BEST:

St Kilda: G. Patrikios, R. Dillon, H. Priest, K. Shierlaw, T. Lucas-Rodd
Carlton: M. Prespakis, G. Egan, E. O’Dea, A. McKay, J. Hosking

Credit: Getty Images

Dees triumph thanks to second term

demolition

Melbourne reigned supreme in an almighty top four battle as the Demons came from behind to claim an emphatic nine-point win over North Melbourne 9.6 (60) to 8.3 (51). Both sides headed into the Round 3 match undefeated but Melbourne proved their status as a powerhouse side in the AFL Women’s competition. highlighting their attacking mentality and peppering away at the goals in the second term to flip the script.

Despite multiple chances throughout the opening term the Dees struggled to find their kicking boots early while North Melbourne nailed the first two goals of the game. With the ball spending majority of time inside 50 for Melbourne, the Demons finally struck their first major as the clock ticked down to quarter time reducing the deficit to three points at the break. That momentum trickled into the second term as the Demons showcased their ability to link up with handballs and weave their way forward to steal the lead and slot four consecutive goals. Tegan Cunningham and Jackie Parry inspired the comeback second term with the pair combining for four goals in that quarter alone, showcasing their ability to get the job done both in the air and at ground level with Parry roving the pack and slotting a nice goal to really give Melbourne the ascendancy heading into half time.

Melbourne stretched the lead out to as much as 25 points before the Kangaroos tightened things up in the third term to pile on the scoreboard pressure and nullify the influence of the Dees. With a number of key cogs in the blue and white, the Roos found a way to be damaging as Daria Bannister picked up the slack with two goals in her side’s four goal term. But sensing a momentum switch, the Demons regathered their composure in the final stanza to keep North Melbourne at bay, trapping the ball inside 50 despite the margin getting as close as three points with only moments to spare.

It was the usual suspects for the Kangaroos that stood up in the contest as Jasmine Garner took the game into her own hands as shown through her mammoth 15 disposals, 12 tackles and two goal effort. Emma Kearney chimed in, amassing 16 touches while also slotting a timely goal to keep the Roos within touching distance of the Demons. Ashleigh Riddell was a key contributor with her 17 disposals as was Kaitlyn Ashmore who managed to find plenty of the footy thanks to her 16 disposals and two tackle performance. Jenna Bruton threw her weight around laying six tackles to accompany her 14 touches while Bannister kept the scoreboard ticking over banging home two majors.

For the Demons, Karen Paxman was a force to be reckoned with directing traffic and picking up a game-high 25 disposals. Paxman was involved in just about everything and made full use of her physical nature to match up against Kearney through the middle while on the goal-scoring front Cunningham was proving too big and too strong, outmuscling her opponents and kicking true out the front. Cunningham finished with two goals for the game as teammate Parry impressed with her three majors. Youngster Tyla Hanks provided that element of run and carry across the ground picking up 23 touches and nine tackles as Kate Hore was a real livewire with 15 touches and three marks. Maddison Gay made her presence felt recording seven tackles and 16 disposals in the win with Lily Mithen also a key playmaker for the Dees amassing 21 touches.

MELBOURNE | 1.3 | 7.4 | 8.4 | 9.6 (60)
NORTH MELBOURNE | 2.1 | 3.1 | 7.3 | 8.3 (51)

GOALS:

Melbourne: J. Parry 3, T. Cunningham 2, S. Scott 2, K. Hore, K. Paxman
North Melbourne: J. Garner 2, D. Bannister 2, G. Campbell, E. Kearney, S, Abbatangelo, I. Eddey

DC BEST: 

Melbourne: K. Paxman, T. Hanks, L. Mithen, M. Gay, T. Cunningham,
North Melbourne: J. Garner, E. Kearney, A. Riddell,  J.Bruton, K. Ashmore

QAFL Women’s Semi-Finals wrap: Devils cause upset to face Bluebirds in final

YERONGA South Brisbane has toppled minor premiers, Bond University to book its place in the 2020 Queensland Australian Football League (QAFL) Women’s Grand Final against Coolangatta Tweed. This year’s decider will see the second and third placed sides do battle for the ultimate prize on the weekend.

It was a memorable win for the Devils who grabbed the lead early, held off a second term fightback and then finished strongly to run out 35-point winners over the Sharkettes. Yeronga South Brisbane slotted three goals to one in the opening quarter to lead by 11 points at the first change, before Bond University hit back with three goals to two, cutting the deficit to just four points at the main break. Putting the foot down, Yeronga South Brisbane stepped up in the premiership quarter and final term to pile on six of the last seven goals to run out 11.6 (72) to 5.7 (37) victors.

Young gun Zimmorlei Farquharson slotted three goals and was named among the best for the Devils, as Sam Virgo (two goals) and Madison Goodwin (two) also hit the scoreboard multiple times. Jacqui Yorston (one) was among four single goalkickers, named in the best with Emily Bates, Jade Pregelj, Vanessa Hart and Mia Walsh. Lauren Arnell, Lexia Edwards and Lucy Bellinger were the other goalkickers in the famous win.

For Bond University, Taylor Smith kicked a couple of goals in the third term, with Casidhe Simmons, Jess Maher and Charlotte Hammans also kicking goals in the loss. Maddison Levi was outstanding in the loss, Hammans tried hard with the young brigade of Serene Watson, Lauren Bella, Lily Tarlinton and Annie Muir but could not help their side across the line.

In the Bluebirds’ win over Maroochydore, they controlled play for the most part, winning the first two terms to lead by 10 points at quarter time and 27 points at half-time. Maroochydore fought back in the third quarter to boot three goals to two and claw the deficit to within 21 points at the final break. Whilst the last term was even – both side booting a goal – Coolangatta Tweed had done enough in the first half to run out 11.4 (70) to 7.6 (48) winners.

Lauren James was massive for the winners, slamming home half a dozen goals in a huge performance up forward. She was joined by Kitara Farrar (two) as a multiple goalkicker, whilst the likes of Leah Kaslar, Leigh Alder and Hannah Martin all slotted a goal apiece. Lucy Turney, Paige Parker and Alexandra Hamlyn were all amongst the best players on the ground, with Kate Surman, Ebony Peterson and Casey Samuels also impressed in the win.

For the visitors, Shannon Campbell‘s terrific season up forward came to an end, but not without finishing on a high note of slotting three goals. Kelly Woods and Jacqueline Dupuy both kicked majors and were named among the best, whilst Tahlia Mead and Jennifer Carden-David also kicked goals in the loss. In terms of top performers, Chloe Gregory, Rachel Crack and Lily Postlethwaite all stood out, with Jessee Sills also named among the Roos’ best.

QAFL WOMEN’S SEMI-FINALS RESULTS:

Bond University 5.7 (37) defeated by Yeronga South Brisbane 11.6 (72)
Coolangatta Tweed 11.4 (70) defeated Maroochydore 7.6 (48)

Picture: Obtained via Gold Coast Bulletin (supplied by Coolangatta Tweed)

QAFL Women’s weekend preview: Semi-Finals – Top four sides remain in title hunt

IT was fitting that the two highest ranked teams in the Queensland Australian Football League (QAFL) Women’s competition won through their respective elimination finals last week, allowing the top four teams to remain in the hunt for the 2020 QAFL Women’s flag. In the two do-or-die semis, top of the table Bond University will host fourth placed Yeronga South Brisbane, while second placed Coolangatta Tweed takes on third placed Maroochydore.

You have to go all the way back to Round 1 to find the last time Bond University lost. Since then, they have strung together nine wins, as well as two COVID-related cancellations. Given one of those cancellations was against bottom two side Wilston Grange, it is fair to say the Sharkettes could have been even further ahead at the top of the table. For the Devils, they lost to Bond University back in Round 11 to effectively lose the chance at a top two spot, but have won four of their past five matches, and are coming off the back of a nine-point win against Coorparoo so they bring form into the clash.

The Round 11 battle between the sides has been the only clash thus far, with Bond University winning in a low-scoring match, 4.6 (30) to 1.5 (11). Trailing at both quarter time and half-time the Sharkettes kicked the last four goals of the game, with a three goals to zero third term being the difference. Jess Maher kicked a couple of goals for the winners, with Maddison Levi and Taylor Smith also snagging a couple, while Emily Bates kicked the opening goal of the game for the Devils.

Having had a nice rest over the first weekend of finals, the potent Sharkettes forward line returns with Smith leading the way with 15 snags in 10 matches, and being one of her side’s best throughout the season. The team has plenty of good young talent with Annie Muir and Annise Bradfield also named among the best on multiple occasions, as has been the case with Gold Coast’s Lauren Bella, and both Krystal Scott and Lucinda Pullar.

For the Devils, Lexia Edwards leads all-comers in the goalkicking with 13 majors in 11 games, ahead of Lucy Bellinger (nine), Courtney McDonnell (eight) and Sam Virgo (eight). The experience of Bates, Jordan Zanchetta, Jacqueline Yorston and Lauren Arnell has been telling this year and the quartet have been among the top players for Yeronga South Brisbane in 2020.

The Sharkettes will head in as favourites for the clash, but the Devils will hope to catch the rested Bond University off early, trying to take full advantage of the fourth placed side’s recent form.

Coolangatta Tweed comes into its semi-final clash against Maroochydore having won six of its past seven games, and having only dropped three matches for the season. No doubt avoiding Coorparoo in the finals would have been a relief for the Bluebirds, who have suffered two defeats at the hands of the Kings, whilst the other loss came against Bond University in the first match back from the restart on July 11.

Meanwhile Maroochydore is on a four-game winning streak, having had some percentage-boosting wins in the final fortnight to leap up to third, After dropping back-to-back games against Coorparoo and Yeronga South Brisbane following a COVID-19 related cancellation, Maroochydore looked to have slipped down the order after such a strong start to the season. The Roos have picked it up since and enjoyed a good run home.

The last time these sides played was on July 25, when Coolangatta Tweed got home in a five-point thriller, 3.4 (22) to 2.5 (17). It was neck-and-neck for the most past, with the Roos leading by seven points at the first change, then the Bluebirds holding a solitary point advantage at the next two breaks. Kicking the only goal of the final term, Coolangatta Tweed held on in a low-scoring win. Leah Kaslar booted one of her side’s three goals and was named among the best with Alexandra Hamlyn and Keyshia Matenga, while for the Roos, Mikayla Pauga was the best and also slotted a goal, with Sophie Bale and Maggie Harmer also named among the best.

Looking across the whole season, Kaslar won the club goalkicking for the Bluebirds with nine majors, two ahead of youngster Kitara Farrar and another AFL Women’s talent in Selina Priest. The AFL Women’s experience of Kaslar and Sally Riley has helped the Bluebirds this season, with Hamlyn, Matenga, Kate Surman and Ebony Peterson all featuring in the bests five times.

At the Roos, Shannon Campbell has been the competitions most reliable goalkicker with 18 majors in 10 games, and also been named among the best five times. Pauga is next, with 13 goals and six bests. Overall Harmer leads the way in the coaches votes, with eight bests in 12 games, one ahead of young gun Lily Postlethwaite, whilst Isabel Dawes and Ruby McDowell also feature highly.

Coolangatta Tweed will be favourites in this game, but Maroochydore is a huge chance based on recent form and will be looking to carry that form into the semi-final with no turning back for the loser.

QAFL WOMEN’S SEMI-FINALS:

Bond University vs. Yeronga South Brisbane
Coolangatta Tweed vs. Maroochydore

Picture: RF Photography

QAFL Women’s weekend wrap: Round 11 – Roos skip over Kings with percentage-boosting Hornets win

DESPITE winning by 40 points themselves, Coorparoo has seen Maroochydore not only make up 20 percentage points, but run away to be 16 per cent ahead of the Kings in a whopping 42 per cent swing over the weekend thanks to a 95-point shellacking of last placed Aspley Hornets. Playing at the same timeslot of 4.45pm on Saturday, Coorparoo would have felt pretty confident moving up to third spot on the table after an 11.8 (74) to 5.4 (34) win over Wilston Grange, only to arrive home and see that Maroochydore had kept the Hornets scoreless in a 25-scoring shot demolition of 14.11 (95) to 0.0 (0).

While it is unlikely the Roos will snatch a top two spot despite taking on the Gorillas in the final round – second placed Coolangatta Tweed plays the Hornets – Maroochydore has given itself the best chance of facing sixth placed University of Queensland in the first week of finals, the side that is 14 points adrift of an otherwise tight top five. The Roos were simply clinical all day, piling on at least three goals in every term, with a huge five-goal second term showing how important percentage can be.

Shannon Campbell slammed home five goals in a best on ground effort, while Mikayla Pauga (three goals) and Jennifer Carden-David (three) both had their fair share of majors and were among the best. Brisbane duo Lily Postlethwaite and Isabel Dawes (one goal) were impressive, while Zoe Smith kicked a couple on the day as well. After a few competitive weeks, it was a disappointing round of the Hornets, though Isabella Kotatis stood tall once again, with Kylie Guarino and Anais Kirvan also steadfast in defeat.

In Coorparoo’s comfortable 40-point win over the Gorillas, a 10-goal first half looked like the Kings were going to storm to a massive victory leading by 51-points at half-time. They had booted seven second quarter goals, but could only manage one in the second half, as Wilston Grange went on the attack slotting three consolation goals in the final term to cut the deficit back to 40 by the final siren, 11.8 (74) to 5.4 (34).

Tori Groves-Little booted four goals in the win and was impressive, while regular superstar Jamie Stanton snagged three goals in a best on ground performance. Jenae Govan, Ally Anderson and Tahlia Hickie were also terrific in the win. For the Gorillas, Luka Yoshida-Martin, Catherine Svarc and Rheanne Lugg all booted goals and were named among the best, as were Kristen Tyquin and Eloise Janette O’Connor.

Locking up top spot and sentencing Yeronga South Brisbane to fifth, Bond University produced an impressive second half to run out 29-point winners on the road. It was never easy going, but the Sharkettes came from a point down at the main break to boot 3.4 to 0.2 and record a 4.6 (30) victory. Jess Maher (two goals), Maddison Levi (one) and Taylor Smith (one) all hit the scoreboard, while Lucinda Pullar and Lauren Bella were named among the best. Emily Bates kicked the sole Devils goal in the opening term, but it would not be enough despite the experience of Sam Virgo, Jordan Zanchetta and Lauren Arnell all on the field.

Coolangatta Tweed all but locked up second spot with an impressive 41-point win over University of Queensland. The Bluebirds had to win given their lower percentage compared to their rivals, and they did just that, knowing they have last placed Aspley Hornets in the final round. The Bluebirds were inaccurate at times, but did enough to restrict the scoring of the Red Lionesses, booting 9.14 (68) to 4.3 (27). Leah Kaslar (three goals), Sally Riley (two), Kate Surman (one) and Hannah Martin (one) all were among the best and hit the scoreboard for the winners. Dakota Davidson (two goals) continued her fine form as Megan Hunt (one) also hit the scoreboard, with Nat Grider, Davidson and Jane Childes the standouts in defeat for the visitors.

QAFL WOMEN’S ROUND 11 RESULTS:

Coolangatta Tweed 9.14 (68) defeated University of Queensland 4.3 (27)
Yeronga South Brisbane 1.5 (11) defeated by Bond University 4.6 (30)
Coorparoo 11.8 (74) defeated Wilston Grange 5.4 (34)
Maroochydore 14.11 (95) defeated Aspley Hornets 0.0 (0)

QAFL Women’s weekend preview: Round 11 – Top of the table clash highlights penultimate weekend

THE penultimate round of Queensland Australian Football League (QAFL) Women’s action gets underway on Saturday, in what will ultimately determine the final makeup of the finals series for the most part. The top six could well be decided following Saturday’s games if the favourites all win, but a top of the table clash keeps things interesting in regards to the minor premiership.

The only certainty coming into the weekend is that Aspley Hornets will not contest the 2020 QAFL finals series, but Wilston Grange has a glimmer of hope if the Gorillas can win the final two games and hope University of Queensland drop them both. The top five is settled, it will just be the order to be determined, with Bond University guaranteed a top three spot, but with a tough fortnight – against Yeronga South Brisbane and Coorparoo in the run home – there are no guarantees they get the week’s break in finals.

The Kings need to take care of Wilston Grange first if they are to get a week off, expected to beat the Gorillas, but will need to topple the Sharkettes in the final round if they are a chance. Even then there are no guarantees, with Coolangatta Tweed tipped to defeat University of Queensland this weekend and have Aspley Hornets net week. In fact the Bluebirds would be very comfortable with how they are sitting, knowing that the weekend’s top two battle will allow them to potentially hold second spot heading into the last round.

The other team that booked its finals spot last weekend was Maroochydore, and the fifth placed side is unlikely to make top two unless a host of near-impossible results occur. However the Roos can still make a play in the post-season series, with matches against the bottom two sides, Aspley Hornets and Wilston Grange in the last fortnight. If they win both chances are they will move up at least a spot or two depending on other results, which means they should face off against a lower-ranked opponent. Third spot is key as the sixth placed University of Queensland – the third placed elimination final opponent – will be 10 points adrift of the top five, with the five sides relatively even.

The key for Coolangatta Tweed is to win and win well, and by doing so can grab and likely hold second spot if Bond University triumphs over Yeronga South Brisbane. The Bluebirds have plenty of experience with Leah Kaslar, Sally Riley and Kate Surman all amongst the top players, as Kitara Farrar and Paige Parker have also shown their class this season. Dakota Davidson remains the key target up forward for the Red Lionesses with 11 majors this season, while Megan Hunt, Jamie Stone and Jane Childes have been among the best players in the competition despite the sixth placed ranking thus far.

The match of the round is clearly the top of the table clash between the Devils and Sharkettes. Whilst Bond University’s percentage will almost certainly see them retain top spot even with a loss, the Sharkettes cannot afford to drop both games in the last fortnight. A host of young guns such as Annie Muir, Lauren Bella, Annise Bradfield and Maddison Levi are all impressing at state league level, while Taylor Smith has been a target up forward with 11 goals in eight games, including a four-goal haul. Lexia Edwards and Lucy Bellinger have been lively for the Devils booting eight goals apiece, but the experience of Sam Virgo, Jacqui Yorston and Jordan Zanchetta has shone through for Yeronga South Brisbane.

To remain in the hunt for top two, Coorparoo must win against Wilston Grange after going down to Yeronga South Brisbane last week. Jade Ellenger is in blistering form for the fourth placed side, named in the best seven of a possible 10 times this season. Emma McKenzie has held her own alongside AFL Women’s guns in Emma Zielke and Jamie Stanton who remain huge reasons why the Kings can take out the flag. Having won only the one game since round one – against the Hornets – form is definitely against the Gorillas getting up in this match. Lucia Liessi has six goals to her name and leads all-comers, whilst Kaitlyn Day remains the clear standout player with nine bests in 10 games, while Catherine Zvarc – is from six – and Kristen Tyquin – five from nine – also remain the clear best from Wilston Grange’s perspective.

Maroochydore will want to build form heading into finals, while Aspley is keen to grab a win on the board in the second last round. The Hornets have ben much more competitive of late and would eye this as a potential win especially with the tough Coolangatta Tweed in the final round. Lauren Kreis has been the leading goalkicker with four majors this season ahead of Michaela Campbell (three) and Rachel Crawford (two). Courtney Daniec has not missed a beat as the only player to be named among the best in 10 games. Isabella Kotatis and Lucy Pengelly are also amongst the Hornets best, showcasing the youth the bottom placed side has. Maroochydore finally snapped a winless streak since the break with a victory last round, and will hope to build into finals. Shannon Campbell (seven goals), Ashleigh Hales (six) and Mikayla Pauga (six) have all been impressive in front of the big sticks, whilst teenagers Lily Postlethwaite, Isabel Dawes, Bella Smith and Chloe Gregory remain lively around the ground.

QAFL WOMEN’S ROUND 11 PREVIEW:

Coolangatta Tweed vs. University of Queensland
Yeronga South Brisbane vs. Bond University
Coorparoo vs. Wilston Grange
Maroochydore vs. Aspley Hornets

Picture: RF Photography

QAFL Women’s weekend preview: Round 8 – Top of the table clash highlights weekend action

A TOP of the table clash between Yeronga South Brisbane and Coolangatta Tweed highlights a huge Round 8 in the Queensland Australian Football League (QAFL) Women’s action, as a number of other ladder-defining clashes take place.

WILSTON GRANGE vs. ASPLEY HORNETS
Saturday, August 8, 2pm – Hickey Park

  • A bottom two clash here between the seventh placed Wilston Grange and seventh placed Aspley Hornets
  • The Gorillas have the one win and cancellation draw this season, whilst the Hornets are yet to taste success
  • A win to the home side could see them level University of Queensland on 10 points, while Aspley can draw within two of the Gorillas with a victory
  • Wilston Grange is on a four-game losing streak since the return, but have only lost by more than five goals once, and one of them was a heartbreaking one-point defeat
  • Kaitlyn Day has been sensational this season, with Catherine Svarc using all her experience since returning, Rheanne Lugg also impressive for the Gorillas
  • Lucia Liessi and Luka Yoshida-Martin lead the goalkicking for Wilston Grange
  • Michaela Campbell and Rachel Crawford have been the multiple goalkickers for the Hornets this season
  • Courtney Daniec outstanding for the Hornets, whilst Isabella Kotatis and Lucy Pengelly will also be up there in the club best and fairest votes

 

YERONGA SOUTH BRISBANE vs. COOLANGATTA TWEED
Saturday, August 8, 2.45pm – Leyshon Park

  • Top of the table clash between first placed Yeronga South Brisbane and second placed Coolangatta Tweed
  • Both teams have achieved 20 points, with the top of the table Devils only losing the one game this season, while winning four and having two draws, while the Bluebirds have had a fifth win, but an extra loss with no draws
  • Winner takes top spot, and loser could theoretically fall as far as fourth
  • Since the break, Yeronga South Brisbane are two draws and two wins, Coolangatta Tweed had two losses then two wins, so both are in form the last fortnight
  • Lucy Bellinger is in terrific form with eight goals in six games, named among the best in four games, while Madison Goodwin (four) is next in line for goals, as 18 Devils players have hit the scoreboard
  • Emily Bates, Jordan Zanchetta and Vanessa Hart are among the Devils players in great form this season
  • Selina Priest (four goals) leads the goalkicking for the Bluebirds, ahead of Ahlani Eddy and Uma Brennan (both three)
  • Youngster Keyshia Matenga has been named amongst the best four times, more than any other player, while Alexandra Hamlyn, Casey Samuels, Georgia Breward and Sally Riley have also been strong

 

COORPAROO vs. MAROOCHYDORE
Saturday, August 8, 4.45pm – Giffin Park

  • A real ladder-defining clash for both the fourth placed Maroochydore and the fifth placed Coorparoo
  • Both teams have plenty of AFL Women’s experience, with the Kings sitting at 4-3 and two bonds off both the Roos and Bond University, though have played an extra game
  • A win to Maroochydore will see them at least move up to third, and if Bond University loses, second, while Coorparoo cannot drop below fifth, but could be a win behind fourth with a loss
  • Maroochydore had its first loss a fortnight ago to Coolangatta Tweed, and was not able to avenge it since, with the postponed match against Bond University
  • Coorparoo has been on fire of late, winning four of their past five games after two losses to start the season
  • Emma McKenzie (nine goals), Jess Wuetschner (eight) and Chelsea Chesterfield (six) are all in great form, as is match-winner Jamie Stanton who booted three last quarter goals last week to win the game for the Kings
  • Jade Ellenger is a contender for the best and fairest this season with a really consistent performance each week, as are McKenzie and Brooke Spence, while Emma Zielke and Ally Anderson are just another couple of stars running around
  • Ashleigh Hales and Mikayla Pauga (both five goals) are leading the goalkicking as Chloe Gregory and Jacqueline Dupuy are just behind on four
  • Maggie Harmer and Ruby McDowell have been named amongst the best more than anyone else (four times), while the likes of Lily Postlethwaite and Isabel Dawes are ever-dangerous

 

UNIVERSITY OF QUEENSLAND vs. BOND UNIVERSITY
Saturday, August 8, 4.45pm – UQ Oval 2 St Lucia

  • Huge game for both sides with Bond University able to keep in touch with the top two if the Sharkettes win, though have a game in hand, while University of Queensland can really go a long way to securing a finals spot with a victory
  • If the Red Lionesses lose, they could well sit only percentage ahead of Wilston Grange, and if Coorparoo get up, there will be an eight-point gap to fifth
  • For Bond University, they could slip to fourth with a loss, favoured by the fact Maroochydore and Coorparoo face off this round
  • University of Queensland have a mixed bag since the return of the competition in July, with two wins, a draw and a loss, while Bond University have had the unfortunate situation of a forced cancellation draw before the break, and potentially another one last week, depending on if that match with Maroochydore is rescheduled or not
  • Jasmyn Davidson leads the Sharkettes goalkicking with six majors ahead of Taylor Smith (five) and Lydia Pingel (four)
  • Youngsters like Annie Muir, Maddison Levi and Annise Bradfield have been superb in 2020, alongside the likes of Ellie Hampson and Lauren Bella
  • Dakota Davidson is the other Davidson to be sharp in front of goal, booting eight majors for the Red Lionesses in 2020, while Greta Bodey (seven) and Megan Hunt (four) are next in line
  • Hunt has been in blistering form for the home team this season, while Jane Childes, Alexandra Moran and Breanna Koenen are others who have stood out

QAFL Women’s weekly wrap: Sharkettes snatch top after Bluebirds topple Roos

JUST two points separates first from fourth on the 2020 Queensland Australian Football League (AFL) Women’s competition following Round 6 which yielded results showing how tight the competition is this year. Bond University defeated Coorparoo in the battle on the in-form sides since the break, whilst Coorparoo’s victory over Maroochydore meant there are no QAFL Women’s sides without a loss. In other results, Yeronga South Brisbane escaped with a win over Wilston Grange, whilst University of Queensland defeated a spirited Aspley Hornets.

In what was anticipated to be the match of the round, Bond University came away with the points in a low-scoring contest against Coorparoo showing the importance of defence. Despite both teams showing they are more than capable of piling on the goals, just five were kicked in the match, and four were off the boots of Sharkettes players. Taylor Smith was the only multiple goalkicker in the match with a couple of snags in the 4.6 (30) to 1.3 (9) victory, while Jasmyn Davidson added another goal to her total following a bag of five last week, as did youngster Annise Bradfield.

AFL Women’s National Academy member Tegan Levi was named best on ground in the win, with her sister Maddison also among the best, with Lucy Single, Lucinda Pullar and Lauren Bella impressive for the Sharkettes. For Coorparoo, they could not quite find the same space the Kings were afforded to in past weeks, with Chelsea Chesterfield the only player to breakthrough with a major in the third term. Charlotte Edmunds and Alanna Perry were named the Kings’ best in the loss, while the likes of Jamie Stanton, Emma McKenzie and Jade Ellenger continued their good form this season.

The only other side to record back-to-back wins with Bond University in Rounds 5 and 6 was University of Queensland following the Red Lionesses’ 33-point triumph over last placed Aspley Hornets. The game was moved prior to the first bounce due to weather conditions, but it did not seem to worry the Red Lionesses who booted three goals to nil in the opening half, having eight scoring shots to two and leading by 21 points. They continued that form into the second half, but the Hornets ensured it was not a blow out by kicking a third term goal and restricting the opposition to just six goals for the match.

Dakota Davidson (three goals) and Megan Hunt (two) both booted multiple majors, while Grace Bodey (one), Mikayla Martin and Alexandra Moran were named in the Red Lionesses’ best. For the Hornets, Lucy Pengelly was a standout in the loss, with Morgan Lanigan, Courtney Daniec and Angela Lingard also in the top players, and Lauren Kreis the sole goal kicker.

In the tightest game of the round, Yeronga South Brisbane escaped with the narrowest of margins. The Devils got up 3.4 (22) to 3.3 (21) over Wilston Grange. Both teams booted minimal goals, but the pressure stakes were high as AFL Women’s talent Sam Virgo (Yeronga South Brisbane) and Kristen Tyquin (Wilston Grange) were their respective sides’ multiple goalkickers. Courteney Bromage booted the other major for the Devils and was a standout in the win alongside the likes of Emma Bates and Vanessa Hart. For the Gorillas, Charlotte Taylor was nominated best-on with Tyquin, Brooke Randall and Catherine Zvarc also among the best.

In another tight game, Coolangatta Tweed kicked a crucial final term goal to escape with a five-point victory over the previously undefeated Maroochydore. The Bluebirds did not kick a goal until the second term, and when they did led by just a point at the main break and final break, but came good when it mattered as experienced Leah Kaslar kicked the important match-winner. The Bluebirds got up, 3.4 (22) to 2.5 (17) with Haze-Lee Martin and Faith Alchin booting the other two goals. Alexandra Hamlyn and Keyshia Matenga were also impressive in the victory with Kaslar. Mikayla Pauga was best-on for Maroochydore, booting one of the Roos’ two goals, while Sophie Bale, Maggie Harmer and Lily Postlethwaite among the other top performers in the defeat.

QAFLW ROUND 6 RESULTS:

Wilston Grange 3.3 (21) defeated by Yeronga South Brisbane 3.4 (22)
University of Queensland 6.7 (43) defeated Apsley Hornets 1.4 (10)
Coorparoo 1.3 (9) defeated by Bond University 4.6 (30)
Maroochydore 2.5 (17) defeated by Coolangatta Tweed 3.4 (22)

QAFLW weekend preview: Round 5 – Kings and Bluebirds to do battle in huge clash

THE cobwebs are now blown off and the Queensland Australian Football League (QAFL) Women’s competition players are adjusted to the tempo returning to football. With the additional talent scattered across the lists upon return in Round 4 last weekend, Round 5 is set to either further set teams forward, or see them slip back to the pack. We preview each game with the must-watch matches first.

COORPAROO vs. COOLANGATTA TWEED
Saturday, July 18, 4.45pm – Giffin Park

Our chosen match of the round sees the bolstered Coorparoo taking on the second placed Coolangatta Tweed in the evening game at Giffin Park on Saturday. The Kings might have started the season slowly, but with the inclusion of a host of AFL Women’s stars last week, are genuinely a title contender. They come up against the Bluebirds who suffered their first loss last round against Bond University, but remain in second on the QAFL Women’s ladder.

  • Coorparoo has won its last two games now, both against Aspley Hornets and are coming off a massive 93-point win on the road
  • Despite being at a 50 per cent win-loss record, the Kings have a massive percentage of 188.15, the third highest in the league despite sitting fifth
  • Coorparoo have scored 68 more points than their nearest rival
  • After winning their first three games, Coolangatta Tweed lost to Bond University by 24 points
  • Opponents have kicked more than 30 points against the Bluebirds in three of the four games, whilst prior to last round, Coolangatta Tweed had no scored below 33
  • The Bluebirds did outscore the Sharkettes last week in the second half after conceding 4.4 in the first half, but only 0.1 in the second half
  • Jess Wuetschner booted four goals and was one of eight individual goal kickers for the Kings, and will be one that the Bluebirds need to stop
  • Coolangatta Tweed has plenty of AFLW talent itself and with Sally Riley and Hannah Dunn through the middle, it will be crucial the Bluebirds win the midfield battle

 

YERONGA SOUTH BRISBANE vs. MAROOCHYDORE
Saturday, July 18, 2.45pm – Leyshon Park

The other match worthy of match of the round is Yeronga South Brisbane looking to tackle the top of the table Maroochydore. The Roos are the only undefeated team in the competition, and sit four points clear of Coolangatta Tweed with a superior percentage. Regardless of the result, the Roos will retain top spot because of this percentage, though will want to hold off another genuine contender in the match. The Devils drew last week against an improving University of Queensland side, and sit fourth with Bond University gaining a massive percentage boost to create some separation last week.

  • Yeronga South Brisbane could theoretically move up to second if Coolangatta Tweed and Bond University lose, though realistically third is the most likely scenario
  • Maroochydore will remain top of the table regardless of the result courtesy of their impressive percentage of 260.32
  • The Roos have the best rated defence in the competition, with the second lowest against tally, but with Bond University playing one less game. The Roos concede just 15.8 points on average
  • The Devils are one of the best offensive sides in the competition, averaging 46.5 points per game compared to Maroochydore’s still very impressive 41 per game
  • Both these sides have some terrific young talent both current and future AFL stars with Zimmorlei Farquharson among the AFL Women’s National Academy and alongside Dee Heslop and Jacqui Yorston for the Devils, while Brisbane’s top two picks last season in Lily Postlethwaite and Isabel Dawes are running around for the Roos

 

UNIVERSITY OF QUEENSLAND vs. WILSTON GRANGE
Saturday, July 18, 4.45pm

The other game that will be interesting in terms of ladder positions and subsequent consequences for the result is that between Wilston Grange and University of Queensland. Neither side is a particularly high scoring team, but they are quite strong defensively and match up well. The Red Lionesses have to catch up a bit of percentage to overtake the Gorillas, but roughly a five-goal win could see them grab sixth spot that Wilston Grange currently holds. If the Gorillas get up, they can leapfrog Coorparoo if the Kings lose, with the draw taking away any percentage difference.

  • After three consecutive losses to start the season, the Red Lionesses got their first points on the board with an important draw against Yeronga South Brisbane last week
  • University of Queensland only average 14 points per game, compared to the Gorillas’ 25.3 points, but also concede less with 31.5 per game to Wilston Grange’s 40.3 per game.
  • The Red Lionesses do not mind a scrap, coming back from eight points down at half-time last week to pull level and hold out in the final term
  • Breanna Koenen and Megan Hunt were both impressive in the draw, and will be closely watched by Wilston Grange in this match
  • Kate Lutkins can play up either end and her reading of the ball in flight is superb, so expect her to be a thorn in the Red Lionesses side for the Gorillas

 

BOND UNIVERSITY vs. ASPLEY HORNETS
Saturday, July 18, 3.45pm – Bond University

In the one game that seems fairly straight forward to predict, a bolstered Bond University side comes up against the last placed Aspley Hornets at home. The Sharkettes took down Coolangatta Tweed last weekend to hand the Bluebirds their first loss, and could go as high as second with a victory here. Aspley sit on the bottom of the table with the lowest rated attack and defence, but a team with no expectations can often be the most dangerous.

  • Bond University have a superb defence, averaging just 16 points against in their three matches played this season, whilst the Hornets average just 9.5 points per game
  • The Sharkettes also average 40.7 points per game on the offensive end, whilst the Hornets have leaked 67.5 per match, including 93 last round in their loss to Coorparoo
  • Not having any AFLW talent has hurt the Hornets with the other seven sides bolstered, though Courtney Daniec is one who continues to be named among the best, while the likes of Isabella Kotatis and Lucy Pengelly are names who have gone through the pathway systems.
  • Bond University have an array of AFLW talent, beginning with young guns, Ellie Hampson, Charlotte Hammans and Lauren Bella, whilst Taylor Smith booted two goals last week and the Levi sisters – Maddison and Teagan – are both in the AFL Women’s National Academy
  • It would be the upset of the season if Aspley can get it done, but the key is winning the midfield and playing sensibly going forward.

2020 QAFLW season outlook: Back in action for bumper season

PLAYERS are preparing to take to the field once again in the Queensland Australian Football League Women’s (QAFLW) competition this weekend and Draft Central will be providing a weekly wrap on how the teams are performing and who’s taking on who the following week. To catch up on the competition already played – three rounds were completed prior to the season being cancelled due to the COVID19 pandemic – we run through where the teams stood. We also list the AFLW Academy Hub members as per their aligned club, as well as the AFL Women’s aligned players, though with competition returning at a different time to usual, there is no guarantee all will suit up for their respective sides.

1st Maroochydore (3-0, 274.42%, 12 points)

The green and gold Roos sit atop the QAFLW ladder after three rounds with a massive 274.42 per cent and a perfect 3-0 record. Their wins got progressively more nerve-wracking as the season went on, following a 55-point shellacking of Aspley Hornets before notching up a 16-point win over Coorparoo in Round 2, and a narrow four-point win over University of Queensland in the last match back on March 14. They face off against fifth placed Wilston Grange this weekend, to complete matches against the bottom four sides. The Roos are a much improved side this season, but expect them to know exactly where they stand when they face the other top few teams.

AFL Women’s aligned players: Lily Postlethwaite, Isabel Dawes, Shannon Campbell, Tahlia Randall

AFLW Academy Hub members: Bella Smith, Maggie Harmer, Mikayla Pauga

Others to watch: Chloe Gregory, Tahlia Mead, Kathryn Hehir

 

2nd Coolangatta Tweed (3-0, 162.96%, 12 points)

The Bluebirds are one of only two Gold Coast-based sides in the top flight QAFLW and started their season off strongly with an unblemished three from three record. In that time they knocked off rivals, Bond University by five points, defeated Aspley Hornets by 27, and got the better of Yeronga South Brisbane by 19 in the most recent match. They take on fellow Gold Coast side Bond University for a second time this weekend in what should be a massive clash. Having wins over two top four sides, albeit this early in the season would be promising for the confidence as they look to build on their season.

AFL Women’s aligned players: Lauren Ahrens, Hannah Dunn, Georgia Breward, Jasmyn Hewett, Jordann Hickey, Leah Kaslar, Paige Parker, Selina Priest, Sally Riley, Maddy Roberts, Kate Surman

Others to watch: Casey Samuels, Alexandra Hamlyn, Ebony Peterson

 

3rd Yeronga South Brisbane (2-1, 119.40%, 8 points)

The Devils had a promising start to the year with a high-scoring 15-point win over last year’s premiers, Coorparoo before toppling Wilston Grange by five goals. Their strong start was halted at the hands of Coolangatta Tweed who won by 19 points, but there was plenty to like about what the Devils had to offer. They take on University of Queensland this weekend and realistically should get up over the winless Red Lionesses. Their opponents are fairly strong defensively though, so Yeronga South Brisbane will need to line-up well.

AFL Women’s aligned players: Sam Virgo, Lauren Arnell, Emily Bates, Jordan Zanchetta, Jacqui Yorson, Gabby Collingwood, Jessie Keeffe, Dee Heslop, Jade Pregelj

AFLW Academy Hub members: Zimmorlei Farquharson

Others to watch: Emmii-Lee Zanker-Close, Madison Goodwin, Vanessa Hart

 

4th Bond University (1-1-1, 228.21%, 6 points)

Backing up from its maiden QAFLW Grand Final last year, Bond University sits at an even balance with a win, loss and draw to start its season. On face value its 228.21 percentage might seem absurd, but they completely tore apart the University of Queensland, 56-1 in Round 2 to bounce back from a shock five-point loss to Coolangatta Tweed in Round 1. Then the clash with Wilston Grange was called off due to fears over the COVID-19 pandemic, with both teams awarded two points for the game, with the Sharkettes in much better shape considering their massive Round 2 victory.

AFL Women’s aligned players: Molly Ritson, Serene Watson, Ellie Hampson, Kalinda Howarth, Lauren Bella, Tiarna Ernst

AFLW Academy Hub members: Maddison Levi, Tegan Levi, Annise Bradfield

Others to watch: Annie Muir, Esther Boles, Georgia Brehmer

 

5th Wilston Grange (1-1-1, 74.67%, 6 points)

It was only two seasons ago the Gorillas saluted in a memorable grand final win, and after missing out on going back-to-back, they hope to start their season off on the right note. They had indifferent form prior to the break with an 11-point win over University of Queensland before going down to Yeronga South Brisbane by 30 points. The called off game against Bond University meant they headed into the long lay-off with one result in each of the columns, but a lowly 74.67 percentage. They take on Maroochydore this weekend in what will be a tough game, but no one knows what to expect after such a long time off.

AFL Women’s aligned players: Sophie Conway, Rheanne Lugg, Kate Lutkins, Brianna McFarlane, Catherine Svarc

Others to watch: Kaitlyn Day, Sarah Fuller, Imogen Stackelberg

 

6th Coorparoo (1-2, 119.26%, 4 points)

The Kings regained their status as the league’s top club with a record fourth title from the nine years, moving outright first ahead of Yeronga South Brisbane (three). However to make it five, the Kings will need to really pick it up after a slow start, dropping matches to the Devils and then Roos back-to-back, before bouncing back with a 57-point smashing of Aspley Hornets. They take on the Hornets again this week up at Aspley, so will be looking to repeat the dose and further boost their percentage. One thing is for sure, the Kings have no trouble scoring so can really put up some big numbers.

AFL Women’s aligned players: Ally Anderson, Jade Ellenger, Tori Groves-Little, Tahlia Hickie, Hannah Hillman, Jamie Stanton, Jesse Tawhiao-Wardlaw, Jess Wuetschner, Emma Zielke

Others to watch: Charlize Anderson, Macie Brown, Abby Reynolds

 

7th University of Queensland (0-3, 30.00%, 0 points)

The Red Lionesses had a competitive start to the season if you exclude the Round 2 55-point loss at the hands of Bond University. They pushed Wilston Grange in the first round before going down by 11 points, then lost to top of the table Maroochydore in a four-point heartbreaker. Whilst they might only have a percentage of 30 and no points on the board just yet, expect that to change. Their first match up is against Yeronga South Brisbane which will likely be a tough first encounter. If all of their AFL Women’s players, or even some of them return, expect the Red Lionesses to be a real threat this season.

AFL Women’s aligned players: Maria Moloney, Natalie Grider, Breanna Koenen, Dakota Davidson, Greta Bodey, Sharni Webb

Others to watch: Megan Hunt, Mikayla Martin, Tiarna Jericho

 

8th Aspley Hornets (0-3, 21.47%, 0 points)

The league’s cellar dwellers had struggled to start the season, with a 55-point loss to Maroochydore followed by a 27-point defeat at the hands of Coolangatta Tweed. A 57-point loss to Coorparoo rounded out the first three weeks, but they will have a chance to atone for that coming off the break. They take on the Kings again this weekend at home, and will hopefully use the home crowd support to put in a bigger effort.

AFL Women’s aligned players: Nil.

Others to watch: Courtney Daniec, Isabella Kotatis, Shaye Easton