Tag: Stephanie Chiocci

2020 AFL Women’s Round 2 preview: Expansion sides to face off as inaugural sides do battle under lights tonight

ROUND 2 of the AFL Women’s is sure to bring plenty of big clashes and ignite old rivalries with Collingwood and Carlton set to do battle on Sunday while Fremantle and West Coast will take place in their inaugural Western Derby.

Friday, February 14

Western Bulldogs v. Melbourne at Whitten Oval, 7:40pm, AEDT

Taylah Melki

With one win on the board each expect a high intensity battle from the opening bounce in search of each teams’ respective second win. The Demons announced themselves to the rest of the competition last round, downing premiership favourites North Melbourne by two points and will be riding a wave of confidence heading into their Round 2 match-up. Similarly, the Dogs inflicted their fair share of pain on newcomers St Kilda with an impressive 25-point win. The Bulldogs were slick from the beginning, exploiting their oppositions’ inexperience and making them pay while the Dees fought hard to just get over the line and set up the makings of what could be a strong season.

After waiting 693 days the return of Daisy Pearce was exactly what the doctor ordered for Melbourne and their fans. The talented midfielder-turned-defender was right back in the mix, throwing her weight around and winning plenty of the pill around the contest, something that was sorely missed last season. Karen Paxman is as experienced as they come, able to sense the moment and have an impact while the likes of Elise O’Dea and Lily Mithen could prove a handful for the Dogs who lost a couple of key players during the off-season. Forward, Tegan Cunningham will be looking to have a big game after failing to trouble the scorers last round, only registering a point. But if Cunningham and Kate Hore get going the two could pose a dominant force inside forward 50, plus throw in the likes of Eden Zanker and the Dees have a lot to work with.

With Katie Brennan and Monique Conti both departing the kennel, the likes of Ellie Blackburn and Kirsty Lamb have taken their game to another level and will be hoping to have the same dominant impact as last round. Blackburn is a class act, able to read the play, apply strong tackles and consistently get involved while Hannah Scott has upped the ante. Number one draft pick Gabby Newton did not look out of place in Round 1 with her contested ball work and cleanliness, but will be keen to prove it was not a one-off with a strong showing against Melbourne. Up forward, Bonnie Toogood will have to deliver for the Dogs if they are to apply scoreboard pressure and get over the line.

Tip: Melbourne by 15.

WESTERN BULLDOGS

B: A.Gogos 36 L.Spark 11
HB: K.Herron 31 E.Gamble 14 N.Ferres 16
C: B.Hunt 21 K.Lamb 27 G.Lagioia 12
HF: G.Newton 5 B.Toogood 8 K.McLeod 6
F: E.Georgostathis 17 D.Berry 7
Foll: K.Rennie 24 E.Blackburn – C 2 A.McCarthy 15
I/C: E.Brown 9 D.Marshall 26 N.Callinan 10 H.Scott 22 A.Van Oosterwijck 28
Emerg: N.Morris-Dalton 25 H.Munyard 20

In: E.Brown, A.Van Oosterwijck
Out: I.Huntington (concussion), C.Moody (ankle)

MELBOURNE

B: L.Birch 9 M.Downie 2
HB: S.Lampard 8 S.Goldrick 23 D.Pearce – C 6
C: S.Heath 30 T.Hanks 28 C.Emonson 11
HF: K.Hore 10 E.Zanker 29 S.Scott 12
F: T.Cunningham 1 A.Newman 16
Foll: H.Cordner 21 K.Paxman 4 M.Gay 3
I/C: G.Colvin 32 C.Sherriff 18 N.McEvoy 17 A.Kemp 36 E.O’Dea 5
Emerg: B.Tarrant 20 M.Guerin 22

In: N.McEvoy
Out: M.Guerin

Saturday, February 15 

North Melbourne v. GWS GIANTS at University of Tasmania Stadium, 3:10pm AEDT

Michael Alvaro

North Melbourne will be looking to make good on a shock Round 1 loss when it hosts the GWS GIANTS in Launceston. Premiership points may soon become a premium for Scott Gowans‘ side as it looks to top a tricky Conference A, and the pre-season premiership fancies will expect to pick up their first set in this clash. But the GIANTS are one of the few sides which can match the ‘Roos for experience throughout their squad, and already ground out a win against league newcomer, Gold Coast in an opening round thriller. While North’s home ground advantage paid dividends in its inaugural season, the GIANTS were already made to endure tough conditions last time out, which should put them in good stead to tackle the often-windy Launceston afternoons. Last year’s result – which swung convincingly to the way of the ‘Roos – will also be in the back of players’ minds, but North knows it cannot take anything for granted.

The debut of Lisa Steane looms as one of the stories of the weekend, with the 24-year-old teacher surprised mid-week with news of her inclusion while working. Steane’s replacement of Ellie Brush in the side is the only change for GWS, with its strong and experienced core remaining for what should be a tough test. The midfield combination of skipper Alicia Eva and young gun Alyce Parker will again look to lead from the engine room, and their work will be cut out for them given the depth and strength of North’s midfield. The Kangaroos have made two changes as Daria Bannister (collarbone) and Bethany Lynch come out of the side for Jas Grierson and local girl, Abbey Green, whose inclusion could free up Emma King to play a more permanent key forward role. It makes the North Melbourne forward line one to behold, with a couple of capable tall targets and the likes of Daisy Bateman and Katlyn Ashmore at their feet.

Given how deep the hosts’ talent runs through midfield and around the ground, they are rightly fancied to bounce back to more typical form. The ‘Roos should also take solace in the feats of reigning premier Adelaide, as the Crows overcame a surprise first round loss in 2019 to go undefeated throughout the rest of the season. While last week’s outcome should drive North Melbourne to better results, the pressure will be on given not many would expect GWS to trouble them a whole lot. Nonetheless, the Kangaroos should fare much better in this clash against a side which looks like battling for mid-conference status, so do not be surprised if a statement is made.

NORTH MELBOURNE

B: T.Randall 16 B.Gibson 18
HB: T.Nestor 24 D.Hardiman 31 A.Gilroy 8
C: J.Trend 21 E.Kearney – C 9 A.Riddell 7
HF: S.Abbatangelo 1 K.Gillespie-Jones 5 K.Ashmore 10
F: E.King 60 D.Bateman 11
Foll: V.Saad 39 J.Garner 25 J.Bruton 35
I/C: E.King 4 S.Wright 17 J.Grierson 19 E.Gavalas 22 A.Green 26
Emerg: M.King 23 B.Lynch 20

In: J.Grierson, A.Green
Out: D.Bannister (collarbone), B.Lynch

GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY

B: P.Randall 21 T.Hetherington 9
HB: R.Beeson 6 L.Stephenson 12 A.Lister 14
C: E.Bennetts 22 A.Eva – C 2 N.Barr 8
HF: H.Zreika 24 C.Staunton 13 J.Hicks 5
F: R.Privitelli 19 I.Nielsen 25
Foll: E.McKinnon 23 J.Dal Pos 7 A.Parker 3
I/C: Y.Bonner 27 L.Steane 20 J.Allan 39 A.Schmidt 11 B.Tully 36
Emerg: T.Mackrill 32 S.Halvorsen 30

In: L.Steane
Out: E.Brush (unavailable)

Tip: North Melbourne by 20 points

Gold Coast v. Richmond at Metricon Stadium, 5:10pm AEDT

Taylah Melki

Two expansion teams are set to face off in an exciting clash at Metricon Stadium, the Suns’ first home game of the season. Both teams will be looking for their inaugural AFLW win, meaning there is plenty at stake for each side. The Suns were highly competitive over the weekend, narrowly edged out by the Giants by a mere one point while the Tigers simply had no answers for the rampaging Blues. Gold Coast went down in trying conditions with rain and wind impacting their ability to handle the ball cleanly and hit the scoreboard. On the other hand, Richmond were simply outclassed – unable to combat the torrential storm that was Carlton credit to their onslaught of pressure in the forward 50. But the girls in yellow and black know how to fight, not willing to be bullied across the field and will be hoping to assert themselves on a relatively young and inexperienced Gold Coast Suns outfit.

Richmond has a plethora of star power across the footy field, none bigger than captain Katie Brennan who has showcased her ability to turn a game on its head. Brennan will have to push up through the midfield, more to give players a chop out and provide added support despite her best work being done inside forward 50 with her leading patterns and strong hands. Full forward Sabrina Frederick could prove to be a handful for the Suns given her strength around the contest and ability to gobble up anything that comes her way while the nifty Monique Conti has shown she is all class with ball in hand, able to hit a target from a mile away. Phoebe Monahan was a ball magnet last round along with Christina Bernardi. The two will have to combine once again if they are to trouble the Suns.

Despite not being top-loaded in a-list class the Suns have a wealth of young up and coming stars that can do damage anywhere on the field. Youngsters in Serene Watson and Ellie Hampson offer plenty of excitement for the Suns’ line-up which could give them that upper hand thanks to their raw talent and unpredictability. Lauren Aherns led from the front last round, recording an equal team-high 15 touches running around ragged and burrowing in hard while Jamie Stanton was strong across the ground for the Suns. Captain Leah Kaslar will have her work cut out for her up against a strong Tigers side.

Tip: Richmond by 5.

GOLD COAST

B: J.Pregelj 42 J.Hickey 4
HB: S.Virgo 22 L.Ahrens 7 S.Watson 14
C: T.Ernst 19 J.Stanton 17 C.Hammond 29
HF: P.Parker 1 K.Surman 26 L.Kaslar – C 11
F: E.Hampson 21 B.Perry 16
Foll: L.Bella 2 J.Yorston 5 H.Dunn 24
I/C: J.Hewett 20 M.Ritson 12 S.Riley 8 D.Heslop 25 K.Howarth 23
Emerg: T.Thorn 15 T.Groves-Little 3

In: E.Hampson
Out: A.Hamilton

RICHMOND

B: R.Miller 15 G.Seymour 28
HB: S.Sansonetti 18 P.Monahan 2 A.Makur Chuot 34
C: K.Jacques 10 K.Brennan – C 3 H.Burchell 9
HF: S.Frederick 14 C.Wakefield 8 T.Stahl 24
F: L.McClelland 16 C.Bernardi 6
Foll: A.Edmonds 11 M.Conti 4 A.Woodward 13
I/C: L.Tesoriero 7 L.Bailey 12 S.Molan 1 M.Brancatisano 5 G.Campbell 43
Emerg: E.Wood 17 C.Fitzgerald 26

In: G.Campbell
Out: H.Whitford (injured)

West Coast Eagles v. Fremantle Dockers at Optus Stadium 7:10pm AEDT

Peter Williams

The Western Derby is the pride of Western Australia and for the first time ever at AFL Women’s level, the two sides can continue the tradition. West Coast and Fremantle go head-to-head in a Saturday night blockbuster with both teams coming off varying form. Last week, West Coast looked strong up against Collingwood at Victoria Park, booting the first goal and holding the Magpies scoreless in the opening term, before Collingwood took control and ran away comfortable victors in the end. Fremantle on the other hand did finish the job, knocking over fellow finalist Geelong in Western Australia in an effort that saw youngster, Sabreena Duffy win Most Valuable Player (MVP) for the week with four of her side’s six goals in the win. Both in Conference B – the more competitive conference – every win is absolutely crucial and neither side will want to relent against its biggest rival.

West Coast is the new kid on the block and they showed last week that they will be competitive, it will just be for how long. Dana Hooker plays her former side this week and it will unlikely faze the star who booted the club’s inaugural – and in the end, only – goal last week with a clever snap out of the pack. She was simply sensational across the four quarters, while Emma Swanson was also impressive with the pair leading from the front as vice-captain and captain respectively. Mikayla Bowen brought her tackling pressure from the Under 18s up to the elite level, while Imahra Cameron showed she has a nice set of wheels to burst away from stoppages and cause headaches for the opposition. Add in the smooth skills of McKenzie Dowrick coming off half-back and the reliability of Chantella Perera and Talia Radan on the last line and the Eagles are strong defensively. The Eagles have made just the one change for the this game, with the club’s social media coordinator Kate Orme making her debut for the injured Ashton Hill.

The expansion side will need to be strong defensively against a forward line that has plenty of excitement and X-factor, including Roxanne Roux, who showed exactly why she was the first West Australian taken last year with her high leaping and booming kick. She is a franchise player at centre half-forward, and with fellow teenage talent Mim Strom, the Dockers have a couple of gems they can build a side around through the ruck and key forward spots. Also up forward is Duffy who was simply sensational, and Ebony Antonio, who with partner and captain Kara and tackling machine Kiara Bowers rotating inside 50, there is no shortage of scoring options. The Dockers have made two changes for the team in Round 2 with Leah Mascall and debutant Bianca Webb coming in for Steph Cain – who unfortunately did her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) – and Mia-Rae Clifford. The question this season will be around the Dockers’ defence given the young rucks have already earned their stripes, but against an Eagles side still looking to gel, they should be able to contain their yellow and blue state-based rivals. In order to win they will want to shut down Hooker and restrict the flow forward while putting plenty of pressure on the opposition defence. Given many of the Eagles have come from the Dockers, the remaining Fremantle players would love nothing more than to get one-up on them early in the season and it will likely happen.

Tip: Fremantle by 35.

WEST COAST

B: C.Perera 27 T.Radan 26
HB: B.Smith 14 S.McDonald 35 M.Dowrick 5
C: M.Collier 8 I.Cameron 19 N.Kelly 12
HF: A.Atkins 9 K.Gibson 2 M.Bowen 1
F: G.Kelly 15 D.Pisconeri 11
Foll: P.Laurie 25 D.Hooker 17 E.Swanson – C 13
I/C: T.Tester 23 C.Guard 4 H.Bullas 24 B.Devlyn 7 K.Orme 32
Emerg: E.Bonser 6 C.Davidson 33

In: K.Orme
Out: A.Hill (knee)

FREMANTLE

B: J.Cuthbertson 29 L.Pugh 32
HB: A.Stannett 24 E.Gooch 8 L.Mascall 14
C: L.Rohde 11 H.Miller 19 J.Stewart 7
HF: E.Antonio 12 R.Roux 17 S.Duffy 6
F: G.O’Sullivan 22 G.Houghton 27
Foll: M.Strom 21 K.Bowers 2 K.Antonio – C 15
I/C: K.Flood 44 B.Webb 26 P.Seth 18 K.Grieve 13 A.Sharp 1
Emerg: E.O’Driscoll 3 M.Clifford 4

In: L.Mascall, B.Webb
Out: S.Cain (knee), M.Clifford

Sunday, February 16

Geelong Cats v. Brisbane Lions at GMHBA Stadium, 1:10pm AEDT

Peter Williams

This Conference A clash on Sunday looms as one of the more intriguing contests of the weekend. The teams head into the match with differing results from Round 1, as Brisbane toppled the Crows at home while the Cats fell to a Duffy-inspired Dockers outfit in the west. Heading into the clash, Geelong will start favourites against the current conference leaders, playing at home and with more experience in the line-up. For the Lions, they have youthful excitement about them and will worry a few teams. They will not win every game in the manner they did in Round 1, but you get the feeling they will push most teams and show that they are building something special for the future.

The Cats have not had to make any major changes to its line-up that fell to the Dockers last Sunday evening, bringing in Rene Caris and Maddy Boyd to their extended squad. Last week it was the developing midfield of Olivia Purcell and Rebecca Webster, teaming with fellow 19-year-olds, Sophie Van De Heuvel and Nina Morrison, while Julia Crockett-Grills found plenty of the ball as well. They are still missing All Australian defender, Meg McDonald from their back five, but the Cats have the reliable Mel Hickey and Maddy McMahon helping youngsters Millie Brown and Denby Taylor. Geelong is growing a great culture of youth all coming through together, and with Phoebe McWilliams and Richelle Cranston bringing experience to the forward half, there is a nice balance of talent that should get the job done in this match.

Brisbane does not necessarily have the names on paper that Geelong has, but some of the players will become household names sooner rather than later. Jess Wuetschner is a big loss for the Lions, having been rested after being struck by lightning on the eve of the season. While she got through the first game, the Lions have erred on the side of caution for a game-by-game basis. Coming into the side on an extended bench are Gabby Collingwood, Jordan Zanchetta and Jade Ellenger. Of the trio, Ellenger has played just the two games and is one of a number of teenagers who are in the Lions line-up alongside recent draftees, Lily Postlethwaite and Isabel Dawes, and second year players, Nat Grider and Jesse Tawhiao-Wardlaw. Sophie Conway made a successful return from a long term knee injury last round, and along with Ally Anderson and Emily Bates providing plenty of run and hardness through the midfield. Throw in the impenetrable Kate Lutkins at centre half-back and they have enough about them to worry the Cats.

Tip: Geelong by 15.

GEELONG

B: M.Brown 19 M.McMahon 24
HB: M.Keryk 45 M.Hickey – C 18 D.Taylor 28
C: S.Van De Heuvel 27 R.Cranston 30 N.Morrison 9
HF: J.Crockett-Grills 6 M.Maguire 7 R.Garing 12
F: P.McWilliams 23 J.Ivey 5
Foll: A.O’Connor 14 R.Webster 21 O.Purcell 16
I/C: A.McDonald 3 D.Higgins 2 G.Rankin 10 R.Goring 44 G.Clarke 17 R.Caris 1 M.Boyd 26

In: R.Caris, M.Boyd
Out: None

BRISBANE

B: N.Grider 10 S.Campbell 20
HB: R.Lugg 11 K.Lutkins 13 C.Svarc 25
C: E.Zielke – C 8 B.Koenen 3 S.Webb 4
HF: L.Arnell 16 J.Tawhiao-Wardlaw 30 S.Conway 12
F: D.Davidson 14 G.Bodey 15
Foll: J.Keeffe 27 A.Anderson 18 E.Bates 1
I/C: I.Dawes 17 M.Moloney 28 G.Collingwood 7 O.O’Dwyer 9 L.Postlethwaite 6 J.Zanchetta 2 J.Ellenger 5

In: G.Collingwood, J.Zanchetta, J.Ellenger
Out: J.Wuetschner (managed)

Carlton v. Collingwood at Ikon Park, 3:10pm AEDT

Michael Alvaro

Traditional rivals and Conference B hopefuls Carlton and Collingwood are set to do battle at Ikon Park for a four time in their histories, in what promises to be a test of either sides’ true credentials. Both teams come in having feasted on competition newcomers in their opening fixtures, both running out on home turf in comfortable starts to the season. Bizarrely, last week’s season opener was an away match for Carlton, but the Blues once again hold home status against the ‘Pies in this match-up. While the extended history between these two powerhouse clubs is storied, their AFLW meetings have been much more one-sided – with Carlton taking out all three fixtures but the Magpies getting closer to a win every year. The Blues also fared much better in season 2019, embarking on a grand final run while Collingwood floundered and took out the Conference B wooden spoon. But with marked improvement already shown, Collingwood has the elite talent to take it to the Blues.

Much of the off-season talk and narrative coming in to the match surrounded ex-Carlton skipper and new Magpie, Bri Davey. Unfortunately for both neutrals and ‘Pies fans, the 2017 All Australian is set to miss this game after picking up a lower leg injury in Round 1. Davey’s sole omission opens the door for one of Kristy Stratton, Eliza Hynes, or Ebony O’Dea to enter the winning lineup, which has struggled at times to fill out depth outside of its formidable spine. With Davey out, the emphasis down back will be firmly placed on the pairing of Stacey Livingstone and Ash Brazill, while Brittany Bonnici and skipper Stephanie Chiocci will have to dig in hard to combat a powerhouse Carlton midfield. The ruck battle between Sharni Layton and Carlton’s pairing of Breann Moody and Alison Downie will also be one to watch, with Layton’s ability to provide use to her midfielders potentially key to shutting down a usually dominant Carlton engine room.

Twins Sarah and Jess Hosking will take the field together for the first time this year in navy blue, as the latter slots in on the wing while Jess Edwards and Abbie McKay help make up an extended bench. The Carlton core of Madison Prespakis, co-captain Katie Loynes, Grace Egan, and Georgia Gee remains, while the forward targets of Tayla Harris, Darcy Vescio, and Nicola Stevens should also work to stretch the aerial capabilities of Collingwood’s back five. Round 1 Rising Star nominee Lucy McEvoy is also primed to back up an eye-catching debut performance as part of the midfield-forward rotation, only adding to the hardness of Carlton’s overall unit. The only potential concern for the Blues may come down back as Jayde Van Dyk exits the side through injury, but the half back line of Kerryn Harrington, Lauren Brazzale, and popular mature-age draftee Vaomua Laloifi has already proven solid and will have to be as much against the likes of Chloe Molloy and Sarah Dargan. While this fixture has been somewhat of a mismatch in previous years, the increasing number of intriguing match-ups on across the field suggests this one should be a corker, with the Pies looking to elevate their game against the better-established Blues.

CARLTON

B: G.Pound 6 C.Wilson 20
HB: K.Harrington – C 9 V.Laloifi 8 L.Brazzale 12
C: C.Dalton 15 G.Gee 19 J.Hosking 11
HF: N.Stevens 21 T.Harris 7 L.McEvoy 13
F: A.Downie 30 J.Doonan 26
Foll: B.Moody 16 G.Egan 1 M.Prespakis 4
I/C: S.Hosking 10 N.Plane 32 B.Walker 14 K.Loynes 2 D.Vescio 3 J.Edwards 25 A.McKay 5

In: J.Hosking, J.Edwards, A.McKay
Out: J.Van Dyk (injured)

COLLINGWOOD

B: A.Porter 9 S.Livingstone 12
HB: L.Butler 23 A.Brazill 10 E.Fowler 15
C: S.Rowe 7 B.Bonnici 8 S.Chiocci – C 17
HF: C.Molloy 2 S.D’Arcy 4 S.Dargan 46
F: M.Cann 25 J.Allen 6
Foll: S.Layton 1 A.Sheridan 14 J.Lambert 13
I/C: S.Casey 22 K.Stratton 41 S.Alexander 24 J.Membrey 21 M.Shevlin 35 E.Hynes 11 E.O’Dea 50

In: K.Stratton, E.Hynes, E.O’Dea
Out: B.Davey (shin)

Adelaide Crows v. St Kilda at Hisense Stadium, 5:10pm AEDT

Peter Williams

This is expected to be an exciting show of talent for the future, with one side having been there and done it all – twice – while the other is still looking to find its feet in the new league as part of the expansion. A wounded Adelaide Crows side welcomes back some troops for the Round 2 clash against St Kilda with this match considered a must-win contest for the reigning premiers. The Crows were well beaten by a hungry Brisbane Lions side in Queensland, showing how tight the competition has become. Not even a record-breaking disposal count from Anne Hatchard (35) was enough to help the Crows get up in Round 1, and they will want to get a win on the board before the top sides in their conference get too far away. The benefit for the Crows was that fellow premiership contender, North Melbourne also lost, while last year’s finalist Geelong went down too. For the Saints, there are no expectations on their season with such a young list, but being competitive is the bare minimum expected, and after a nervous first quarter last week, the Saints settled and seemed to match it with the Western Bulldogs for large parts of the second half.

The Crows are still missing a host of names heading into this game led by Erin Phillips and Chelsea Randall – the latter of whom will play no further part in the season – but have brought in a couple of debutants in Caitlin Gould and Montana McKinnon. Gould hails from Glenelg and provides a tall presence up either end, while McKinnon is a dual All-Australian at Under 18s level, and could genuinely start ruck if they required her to. Expect her to spend time as a forward however, a role she played in South Adelaide’s premiership side, while rotating through the ruck and providing some strong contested marking ability around the ground. Ebony Marinoff, Hatchard and SANFL Women’s best and fairest winner Najwa Allen form a strong onball brigade and with former MVP, Courtney Gum in the team up forward alongside Danielle Ponter and Stevie-Lee Thompson, they still have the firepower to get the job done. Sophie Li has also come into the side for the Crows, as the only omission was Rachelle Martin – a top-up player who was brought on due to Adelaide’s expansive injury list.

The Saints have made three confirmed changes, with South Australian Nadia Von Bertouch – missing a return to the state where she captained North Adelaide last season – while Kelly O’Neill and Emma Mackie have been omitted. Coming into the side is a mix of youth and experience with former Collingwood talent, Darcy Guttridge and ex-North Melbourne players Alison Drennan and Courteney Munn named in the extended side. Also in to potentially make their debuts are ruck, Poppy Kelly and tall utility, Isabella Shannon who continue the trend of youth at the club. Georgia Patrikios starred in Round 1 with a Rising Star nomination, and expect her to show just as much excitement out on Hisense Stadium. Teaming up with the likes of Molly McDonald, Nicola Xenos and Tarni White, the youth of the Saints will come good in time. They still have experience on the list, with former Crow Jess Sedunary set to make her return to the AFL Women’s having kicked one of the Saints’ two goals last week. While the Saints have plenty to like, expect the Crows to do enough to win in a tight one, even with a few still out. They are desperate, hungry and at home, so a win is non-negotiable when it comes to their premiership aspirations.

ADELAIDE

B: D.Cox 31 C.Biddell 12
HB: A.Foley 3 S.Allan 39 M.Rajcic 32
C: S.Li 19 E.Marinoff 10 J.Mules 23
HF: E.Jones 2 C.Gum 5 R.Forth 27
F: D.Ponter 15 S.Thompson 14
Foll: J.Foley – C 24 A.Hatchard 33 N.Allen 8
I/C: C.Gould 1 A.Considine 16 M.Newman 17 N.Campbell 20 N.Gore 7 M.McKinnon 21 J.Tabb 28

In: S.Li, C.Gould, M.McKinnon
Out: R.Martin (ineligible)

ST KILDA

B: T.White 29 C.Fitzpatrick 24
HB: H.Priest 14 C.Phillips 35 T.Lucas-Rodd 18
C: D.Guttridge 5 J.Sedunary 10 M.McDonald 1
HF: N.Exon 15 K.McCarthy 9 C.Greiser 17
F: K.Shierlaw 12 G.Patrikios 21
Foll: R.Watt – C 7 O.Vesely 23 R.Dillon 25
I/C: I.Shannon 11 A.Brown 2 C.Munn 13 N.Xenos 27 C.Whitfort 4 A.Drennan 8 P.Kelly 16

In: D.Guttridge, I.Shannon, C.Munn, A.Drennan, P.Kelly
Out: K.O’Neill, N.Von Bertouch (knee), E.Mackie

ROUND 2 TIPS: [Total tips in brackets]

Michael Alvaro [5]: Melbourne / North Melbourne / Richmond / Fremantle / Geelong / Carlton / Adelaide
Taylah Melki [5]: Melbourne / North Melbourne / Richmond / Fremantle / Brisbane / Collingwood / Adelaide
Sophie Taylor [4]: Melbourne / North Melbourne / Richmond / Fremantle / Brisbane / Carlton / Adelaide
Peter Williams [4]: Melbourne / North Melbourne / Richmond / Fremantle / Geelong / Carlton / Adelaide

AFLW Draft preview: Collingwood

COLLINGWOOD has been hit hard in the AFL Women’s off-season, losing plenty of stars including Christina Bernardi, Jess Duffin, Jasmine Garner, Emma King and Meg Hutchins. Luckily, the Pies have gained some exciting prospects in former netballer, Sharni Layton and former Gaelic footballer, Sarah Rowe, while Brisbane defender, Nicole Hildebrand will add some experience to the line-up.

 

Last season: 6th

In: Nicole Hildebrand, Sharni Layton, Sarah Rowe
Out: Caitlyn Edwards, Bree White, Christina Bernardi, Moana Hope, Jess Duffin, Jasmine Garner, Emma King, Amelia Barden, Lauren Tesoriero, Meg Hutchins, Tara Morgan

COLLINGWOOD AFLW LIST (22/30)

  • Brittany Bonnici
  • Ash Brazill
  • Sophie Casey
  • Stephanie Chiocci
  • Sarah D’Arcy
  • Sarah Dargan
  • Emma Grant
  • Darcy Guttridge
  • Nicole Hildebrand
  • Eliza Hynes
  • Melissa Kuys
  • Jaimee Lambert
  • Sharni Layton
  • Stacey Livingstone
  • Cecilia McIntosh
  • Chloe Molloy
  • Georgie Parker
  • Iilish Ross
  • Sarah Rowe  
  • Ruby Schleicher
  • Kristy Stratton
  • Holly Whitford

DRAFT PICKS

5, 11, 13, 18, 19, 29, 32, 51

POSSIBLE DRAFT PROSPECTS

Given Collingwood’s connection with Oakleigh, it is hard to look past Chargers trio, Hannah McLaren, Daisy Bateman and Katie Lynch. The trio all represented Vic Metro and played for Collingwood’s Victorian Football League (VFL) Women’s side. Bateman would be a great replacement for Moana Hope, as she positions well in the forward line, and is an solid mark and accurate kick. McLaren will boost the defensive stocks of the Pies while Lynch is a dominant force in the midfield. If Madison Prespakis isn’t taken in the draft yet, the Pies could have her on their radar as well. Eastern Ranges duo, Mikala Cann and Emerson Woods could also be thrown into the mix, as Cann impresses with her explosiveness and Woods is extremely athletic. Others they may consider include Gippsland Power co-captain, Tyla Hanks or Dandenong Stingrays captain, Jordyn Allen. They could provide support to captain, Stephanie Chiocci and vice-captain, Brittany Bonnici in Collingwood’s midfield.

VFL Women’s 2018 season preview

THE new-look VFL Women’s season features 10 new teams in a 13 team competition. The sides feature plenty of elite AFLW, TAC Cup and local talent in what is shaping up to be a fascinating season of the state league. We have looked at each side’s players in the lead-up to the season’s commencement on Saturday.

 

Carlton Blues

The Carlton Blues have one of the most exciting TAC Cup Girls players joining their new team in 2018.

Gippsland Power co-captain and gun midfielder, Tyla Hanks will pull on the navy blue to test her skills against some bigger bodies. Hanks has been named in the best players in each game she has played for the Power this season and is a member of the AFLW Academy. Hanks will be joined by fellow AFLW Academy member, Rene Caris. Caris has been a solid force in the ruck for the Greater Western Victoria (GWV) Rebels this season and has been awarded with a navy blue jumper. Oakleigh’s Isabella Gietzmann will also suit up for the Blues this season. Gietzmann plays cricket as well as footy and could be a potent player for Carlton.

The Blues have also secured the services of their AFLW players including 2017 AFLW leading goal-kicker, Darcy Vescio, 2018 club best and fairest, Breann Moody, 2017 TAC Cup Girls best and fairest, Bridie Kennedy, 2018 Carlton captain, Sarah Hosking and 2017 Carlton captain, Lauren Arnell.

 

Casey Demons

The Casey Demons have combined Melbourne stars with Dandenong guns in their inaugural VFL Women’s side.

Coach and former Melbourne defender, Colin Garland will be able to work with plenty of AFLW talent, including Aliesha Newman, Bianca Jakobsson, Kate Hore, Katherine Smith and Shelley Scott. Two well-known former TAC Cup Girls players will also join the Melbourne brigade, with Eden Zanker and Darcy Guttridge donning the red and blue in this VFL Women’s season. Zanker hails from the Bendigo Pioneers and starred in her late appearances for the Demons in the AFLW. Guttridge on the other hand is a former Gippsland Power player who suited up for the Pies in the AFLW season, and will now get an opportunity to combine her skills with a new group of players in the VFL Women’s season.

In terms of TAC Cup players, the Demons have gone with two talented Dandenong Stingrays to fill their side. Captain, Jordyn Allen is a key acquisition for the club, as she is a talented defender who oozes composure and class. She will be joined by forward, Brooke Struylaart, who knows how to find the goals and provides plenty of assists along the way.

 

Collingwood Magpies

Collingwood’s VFL Women’s coach is a pioneer in female football.

Penny Cula-Reid was instrumental in getting the Youth Girls competition up and running. After being told at the age of 14 that she could not play football with the boys anymore, she took the case to the Victorian and Civil and Administrative Tribunal, and AFL Victoria created the competition for the young female footballers. Although Cula-Reid only played two games for Collingwood, she played in excess of 150 games at the St Kilda Sharks VFL Women’s club and has a brilliant footy mind.

Collingwood will have a very strong line-up with plenty of its AFLW players joining the Magpie brigade in the VFL Women’s season. 2018 Collingwood best and fairest, Chloe Molloy will be joined by AFLW captain, Stephanie Chiocci, former Calder Cannon, Sarah Dargan, and plenty more. The club also has a strong connection to TAC Cup Girls club, Oakleigh Chargers, signing three players for its inaugural VFL Women’s campaign. Oakleigh captain, Hannah McLaren is the most notable of the signings. McLaren has been one of the Chargers’ most important players this year, demonstrating her versatility in the side’s line-up. Other Oakleigh signings include former players, Julia Halaseh-Russo and Sarah Cameron, who will be players to watch throughout the VFL Women’s season.

 

Darebin Falcons

The Darebin Falcons are the most successful VFL Women’s side, having won five consecutive premierships.

The Falcons have lost Melbourne AFLW captain, Daisy Pearce, who will take a year off from VFL Women’s. However, they have plenty of players from local roots, with all but three coming from Darebin. These include AFLW players, Karen Paxman, Elise O’Dea, Lauren Pearce and Maddy Guerin. But that’s just from Melbourne. The Falcons will also have the services of Greater Western Sydney star, Jessica Dal Pos, as well as Aasta O’Connor and Nicole Callinan from the Western Bulldogs. Perhaps the most notable signing is Ainslie’s Hannah Mouncey. The transgender footballer was ineligible for the 2017 AFLW draft, but will be keen to play some good football for Darebin.

Darebin has also recruited the services of three TAC Cup Girls stars. Northern Knights forward, Alex Pronesti will pull on the Falcons jumper this year, after kicking nine goals for the undefeated Knights so far. She will be joined by teammate, Marnie Jarvis, who has been a valuable player for the Knights with her agility and speed around the contest. Eastern Ranges defender, Lauren Szigeti also has the opportunity to pull on the Darebin jumper in the VFL Women’s season. Szigeti has been a solid asset in defence for the Ranges, and could have the same impact for the Falcons.

 

Essendon Bombers

The Essendon Bombers have recruited a number of Calder Cannons and Diamond Creek players to join the newly-formed VFL Women’s side.

Current Calder players, Carla Rendelmann and Molly Warburton have earned a spot on the Bombers’ list this year. Rendelmann is a dominant force in the ruck and has represented Vic Metro while Warburton is a hard-working defender who boasts a place in the AFLW Academy squad. Premiership Cannons captain, Lauren Caruso also has an opportunity to pull on the footy boots again after not playing as an over-ager in the TAC Cup Girls this season. Caruso was a fantastic on-field leader in the midfield and 2018 is likely not to be any different. The Calder trio will be joined by another solid ruck presence in Bridie Winbanks from the Oakleigh Chargers. In the upcoming VFL Women’s season, Winbanks will have an opportunity to go head-to-head against Chargers teammate, Hannah McLaren, who will play for Collingwood.

The Bombers have also poached 17 (14 VFL Women’s players and three development players) Diamond Creek players, including the face of their AFLW bid, Michaela Long, who is the daughter of Essendon legend, Michael Long. Essendon has also recruited some local talent, including Natasha Hardy, who hails from the Sunbury Lions in the Essendon District Football League (EDFL). Hardy is a fantastic on-field leader and adds a mature presence in the Bombers’ VFL Women’s line-up. She will be joined by another experienced player in GWS defender, Tanya Hetherington, who often matched up on the damaging key forwards in the AFLW this year.

 

Geelong Cats

The Geelong Cats boast a number of AFLW players as well as some TAC Cup talent, but not who you may think.

GWV Female Talent Manager, Krista Woodroffe will line up for the cats in 2018, having an opportunity to do battle against Rebels ruck, Rene Caris, who will don the navy blue in the VFL Women’s competition. She will be joined by GWV defender, Georgia Clarke, who has been fantastic in the Rebels backline this seasonGeelong’s Mia-Rae Clifford will be another player who will be involved in an intriguing battle. Clifford, who is a former Melbourne AFLW player will play against the side that her partner, Penny Cula-Reid coaches, in the Collingwood Magpies.

Speaking of Melbourne, Geelong boasts two current AFLW Demons players on its VFL Women’s list. Powerful forward, Richelle Cranston and agile ruck, Erin Hoare will line up for the Cats in 2018. Hoare, who is a former Melbourne Vixen, got the opportunity to play AFLW this year for the Demons after being a rising star for the Cats last year.

 

Hawthorn Hawks

Hawthorn boasts a very experienced VFL Women’s list, with a host of AFLW players donning the brown and gold for the upcoming season.

Recently retired Pie, Meg Hutchins was one of the club’s first signings, and will provide a level head in defence. The forward line on the other hand, will be explosive with Adelaide’s Sarah Perkins and Greater Western Sydney’s (GWS) Phoebe McWilliams headlining the Hawks forward 50 line-up. Perkins was named as an AFLW All-Australian forward in 2017 while McWilliams was the Giants’ leading goal-kicker in 2018. Perkins grew up in Waverley and was a Hawthorn supporter growing up. The club also welcomes back Collingwood AFLW mid/ forward, Melissa Kuys, who captained Box Hill in 2017.

There is also no shortage of TAC Cup talent, with 2017 TAC Cup Girls Team of the Year member, Olivia Flanagan suiting up for the Hawks. Flanagan played for Box Hill last year and was also a key cog in the forward line for the Eastern Ranges. She will be joined by current Eastern Ranges players, Emerson Woods, Georgia Macpherson, Mikala Cann and Sarah Kendall. Woods is the co-captain of the Ranges side this year and is a member of the AFLW Academy. Macpherson is also a member of the Academy, and has been a key cog in Eastern’s defence this year with one some of the best hands in the TAC Cup Girls competition. Cann is a basketballer, and has showed her immense speed in the midfield this year for Eastern. Kendall has been dominant in the ruck and can also play a sweeping role in defence.

 

Melbourne University

There is plenty of TAC Cup Girls talent in the Melbourne University lineup this year, including one Calder Cannon who has been tearing up the competition so far.

Calder captain Madison Prespakis will have the opportunity to play VFL Women’s for the first time this year, and could be a key cog in the Melbourne University midfield. She will be joined by fellow AFLW Academy member, Rebecca Webster, who has been a versatile player across the midfield and in defence for the Murray Bushrangers this year. Up forward, Western Jet Caitlin Greiser will have an opportunity to continue her solid goal-kicking form into the VFL Women’s competition, after kicking eight goals for the Jets so far this season. Former Bendigo Pioneer, Aisling Tupper will be one to keep an eye out for, as the small and powerful midfielder starred for the Pioneers last season. Sandringham’s Alanna Dalley and Nicole Amiet round out the elite list of TAC Cup Girls players in the Melbourne University side.

As far as AFLW players go, Melbourne University only has one. But it is the best of the lot, as 2018 AFLW best and fairest, Emma Kearney will suit up for Melbourne University this season. After dominating in the midfield for the Bulldogs in 2018, Kearney will be a North Melbourne player in 2019, as the club prepares to enter AFLW for the first time.

 

Northern Territory Thunder

The Northern Territory (NT) Thunder unsurprisingly has a number of Adelaide AFLW players in its VFL Women’s side.

The club has a strong connection to the Crows, and could be a surprise package in the VFL Women’s competition. This is because the club has acquired the services of Adelaide co-captain, Chelsea Randall, Adelaide United’s Jenna McCormick, leading ruck, Rhiannon Metcalfe and exciting forward, Ruth Wallace. Defenders, Marijana Rajcic, Deni Vernhagen, Jasmyn Hewett and Angela Foley are among the other notable inclusions for the side.

The Thunder outfit also features two GWS players in Renee Forth and Emma Swanson. Forth was a solid presence for the Giants in the AFLW season, and is a mentor in the AFLW Academy program. Swanson is the GWS vice-captain and was a fantastic on-field leader for the side in 2018.

 

Richmond Tigers

Richmond have poached some Collingwood AFLW players ahead of its first season in the VFL Women’s competition.

Emma King, Lauren Tesoriero and Amelia Barden will swap the black and white for yellow and black, as they prepare to suit up as Tigers for the 2018 VFL Women’s season. All three players were key contributors to Collingwood’s AFLW outfit, with King dominating in the ruck, Barden having some nice moments in the forward line while Tesoriero was a lively player around the ground.

The Tigers have also acquired two Murray Bushrangers, Grace Egan and Sophie Damon. Egan has been a star in defence for the Bushrangers this season, and has also proven her versatility through stints in the midfield. Damon has been solid in the ruck for Murray and has been one of the most valuable players for the side in the TAC Cup Girls season. Eastern Ranges’ Jess Provan will also pull on a yellow and black jumper this season, after formerly playing at Diamond Creek.

 

Southern Saints

The Southern Saints are one of the new sides in the VFL Women’s competition, and have a diverse line-up.

The line-up will feature two Sandringham Dragons stars in Eleanor Brown and Jemma Owen. Brown has been a key cog in the midfield and has produced plenty of fantastic performances throughout the TAC Cup Girls season. Owen, who is the Dragons captain, has been leading from the front, as she has been dominant in the midfield and has even found herself up forward a couple of times, proving her versatility. Dandenong midfielder, Shelley Heath also joins the Saints side, and may have an opportunity to match up against TAC Cup Girls teammates, Jordyn Allen and Brooke Struylaart, who will suit up for Casey this season.

While the Saints have no AFLW players, they have a combination of players from Cranbourne, Seaford, and Mornington, recruiting local talent to boost their side’s chances in 2018.

 

Western Bulldogs

The Western Bulldogs have a host of AFLW premiership players in their VFL Women’s side.

Players include 2018 leading goal-kicker, Brooke Lochland, captain, Katie Brennan, and Rising Star nominees, Monique Conti, Aisling Utri and Bonnie Toogood. Star midfielder, Ellie Blackburn has also joined the side after making the move from Melbourne University. The club has also acquired the services of Bree White, who retired from AFLW in 2018 after playing for the Pies.

Three TAC Cup Girls players will also feature for the Bulldogs’ VFL Women’s outfit. GWV Rebels captain, Lauren Butler has been a wonderful leader for the Rebels this season, after making solid contributions in the midfield. Also joining the Bulldogs is Western Jets, Lauren Basto and Katarina Rebuffo. Rebuffo has been a key cog in defence for the Jets and will look to continue her form into the VFL Women’s season. Basto played for the Jets last season and would be keen to make an impact at the Bulldogs. 

 

Williamstown Seagulls

Williamstown has an even mix of local, AFLW and TAC Cup talent in its inaugural VFL Women’s side.

Bendigo captain Megan Williamson will play for the Seagulls this year, after being a shining light for the Pioneers in the midfield this season. She will be joined by AFLW Academy forward, Sophie Van De Heuvel. Van De Heuvel has kicked five goals in five games for the GWV Rebels this season, and has been a key link in the chain in the Rebels forward line. Western Jets defender, Sharnie Whiting will also have the opportunity to stay close to home, after doing a wonderful job in the Jets’ backline during the TAC Cup Girls season.

The Seagulls have one of the leading AFLW defenders lining up for their side this year. Collingwood’s Jess Duffin was dominant in the back line, and was able to show composure and class at all times. She will be joined by teammate, Jasmine Garner, who revolutionised her game through moving from the forward line to the back line. Garner showed that she can dominate in both roles, which is a dangerous prospect in the VFL Women’s competition. Bulldogs premiership player, Jenna Bruton rounds out the AFLW players who are featuring in the Seagulls outfit.

Scouting notes: AFLW – Round 5

ROUND five’s matches made it even harder to predict who the 2018 AFLW premiers will be. The Crows got their season back on track with a huge win against Carlton, thanks to Ruth Wallace’s magic in the forward line. Despite Sabrina Frederick-Traub’s three goals, Brisbane suffered a loss against the Dees, who fought back after handing Collingwood its first win of the season last week. The Western Bulldogs were given a scare by the Magpies at Moe, but were able to hold on to keep their spot on the top of the ladder. Unfortunately for Carlton, the losses just keep coming, and they will have to do everything they can to finish off their season on a high note. 

 

Melbourne vs. Brisbane

By Connor Ferris 

#1: Elise O’Dea- Melbourne

One of the best players on the ground who made an impact whenever she got the ball. Tallied 26 possessions as well as a game-high 12 tackles to continue her terrific form. 

#2: Daisy Pearce- Melbourne

Bounced back like a true champion after being held in check last week. Kicked Melbourne’s first two goals, and kicked her first major of the season in the process. Ended with 24 possessions in what was a true captain’s effort.

#3: Kate Lutkins- Brisbane

A standout in what was a disappointing affair for the rest of her team. Was the leading possession-getter on the ground with 26 off the half-back flank and through the middle of the ground.

#4: Kaitlyn Ashmore- Brisbane

Got off to a great start. Presented a strong target all game, taking eight marks. Was able to set Brisbane up inside 50, however she was unable to convert any majors herself, with only two minor scores.

#5: Sabrina Frederick-Traub- Brisbane

Able to show off her strength throughout the game and looked unstoppable at times. Kicked three of Brisbane’s four goals and helped keep them within striking distance.

#6: Ally Anderson- Brisbane

One of the better players for Brisbane. Had 19 possessions, three marks and five tackles in what was an excellent all-round game.

#7: Lauren Pearce- Melbourne

Back into the side this week and played a good game. Competed well in the ruck contest and was able to impact the game around the ground.

#8: Karen Paxman- Melbourne

Fantastic once again. An absolute ball-magnet with 25 possessions, and was able to kick-start several forward drives for Melbourne.

#9: Richelle Cranston- Melbourne

Excellent passage of play with several running bounces, which led to a scoring opportunity for Melbourne. Continued what has been a good start to the season for her. 

#10: Shelley Scott- Melbourne

Solid game with 12 possessions. Had several opportunities to score but she couldn’t convert, ending with only a behind.

#11: Katherine Smith- Melbourne

Held up well under constant pressure in the third quarter from Brisbane’s attack. Also applied great pressure of her own with five tackles, and earning free kicks for holding the ball.

#12: Kate Hore- Melbourne

Looked very dangerous in the early stages, helping Melbourne get off to a fast start. Continued to be impactful late, kicking the crucial goal at the beginning of the last quarter, which gave Melbourne some breathing space when Brisbane looked threatening.

#13: Emily Bates- Brisbane

Played very well through the middle of the ground. Tallied 15 possessions at an efficient rate and applied relentless pressure, laying four tackles.

#14: Emma Zielke- Brisbane

One of Brisbane’s better players. Got a fair bit of the ball off the wing and the forward-flank. Laid four tackles to complete a good all-round performance.

#15: Anna Teague- Melbourne

Non-stop effort all day. Fought so hard down in defence to prevent Brisbane from scoring, and made good use of the footy when she got possession of it.

#16: Lily Mithen- Melbourne

Really impactful in the middle of the ground. Played an in-and-under style game that proved effective, as she was able to evade the Brisbane midfielders at important times throughout the contest. 

#17: Jess Wuetschner- Brisbane

Opportunistic in the forward line without troubling the scores. Provided good forward pressure, laying three tackles.

#18: Nat Exon- Brisbane

Possession-wise was quiet, however she laid six tackles and provided a terrific contest with Melbourne’s midfielders throughout the match.

#19: Melissa Hickey- Melbourne

Ran well around the ground and battled hard in the contest. Gained a lot of the ball in the first half and kept quiet late. However, she laid a massive tackle in the goal square to prevent Brisbane from levelling the scores with a little over a minute to go.

#20: Jamie Stanton- Brisbane

Proactive with the ball in hand, and laid some aggressive tackles throughout the evening. 

 

Fremantle vs. GWS

By Taylah Melki

#1: Courtney Gum- GWS

Gum has clean hands, worked hard, and starred all over the ground. Used her footy smarts to create overlap run and slot an important goal for the Giants. Made her physical presence felt, laying big tackles and imposing herself on the contest.

#2: Kara Donnellan- Fremantle

Used the footy efficiently, capitalised on her impressive kicking ability with 10 of her 15 touches being kicks. Helped to surge the Dockers forward and applied immense tackling pressure all over the ground. Showed great on-field leadership, standing up again for the Dockers. 

#3: Alicia Eva- GWS

Starred yet again for the Giants with her long kick, and got plenty of touches. Ran hard to create space for her teammates and imposed herself on the contest. Pushed forward in the fourth quarter, creating another target in the forward 50.

#4: Dana Hooker- Fremantle

Applied plenty of pressure and hunted the footy. Was a ball magnet particularly in the first quarter and used the footy effectively. Was lively and used the footy effectively throughout the match.

#5: Amanda Farrugia- GWS

Impressed with her excellent awareness. The captain hit targets and worked hard to create space, allowing her teammates to flow forward. She was in everything and fought hard to win every contest.

#6: Britt Tully-  GWS

Contested and scrapped hard to win the footy. Put her body on the line and applied plenty of crunching tackles. Good long, penetrating and clearing kick.

#7: Jacinda Barclay- GWS

Fought hard and imposed herself on the contest. Took a huge contested mark and had clean hands throughout the game. Read the play well.

#8: Stephanie Cain- Fremantle

Worked hard to get herself into damaging scoring positions. Took good intercept grabs and got plenty of the footy.

#9: Ebony Antonio- Fremantle

Got plenty of the footy and used the ball well, showing off her extreme class and football knowledge. Set her teammates up by creating space. Showed great athleticism to manoeuvre her body and run away from her opponent.

#10: Erin McKinnon- GWS

Fought well in the ruck and competed hard to win the contest. Tapped the ball down to her teammates’ advantage and got plenty of touches.

#11: Phoebe McWilliams- GWS

Was a key target for the Giants up forward and scored a goal early in the match to set up GWS’ day. Had strong hands and contested hard to win the footy in the air and on the ground. Used her speed and footy smarts to dominate her opponents.

#12: Cassie Davidson- Fremantle

Showed great courage and commitment to win the footy. Worked hard in the contest to get in and under and win the footy. Showed her physical prowess with her tackling ability.

#13: Lara Filocamo- Fremantle

Got plenty touches of the footy and dominated across the ground. Showed her class and competed hard to win the footy in packs. Took big grabs and was influential for the Dockers in helping to set up structures.

#14: Elle Bennetts- GWS

Got plenty of touches in the opening quarter of the game, contested hard for the footy and tried to help set teammates up. Had good speed to open up space and had clean hands.

#15: Evangeline Gooch- Fremantle  

Competed hard for the footy, going in hard at the contests. She was a tackling machine and applied a heap of pressure on the ball carrier.

#16: Belinda Smith- Fremantle

Got plenty of disposals and had clean hands in and around the contest. Tackled well and put pressure on her opponents.

#17: Rebecca Beeson- GWS

Never far from the contest. Had strong hands and took clean grabs. Was also able to capitalise on scoring opportunity. Showed her footy smarts and class setting teammates up in front of goal.

#18: Ellie Brush- GWS

Good defensive pressure, got herself into good positions to take intercept marks and propel the Giants forward. Had plenty of possessions, and used her clean hands to open up play.

#19: Nicola Barr- GWS

Good defensive pressure and was a ball magnet, racking up 15 touches for the game. Was never far from the contest and imposed herself on the game.

#20: Hayley Miller- Fremantle

Long, penetrating kick and used the footy well. Showed great speed and power to burst through packs and congestion. Clean pick up of the footy.

Adelaide vs. Carlton

By James Halley 

#1: Chelsea Randall- Adelaide

With Foley playing in the backline against Vescio, it allowed Randall to play up forward as she is dangerous across both ends of the ground. She was then forced to play against Harris after she was dominating in the air. She was one of the most influential players on the ground with 15 disposals.

#2: Ebony Marinoff- Adelaide

Was really strong throughout the contest all night. In one instance, she still managed to get her hands onto the ball, despite two opposition players tackling her. Backed up last week’s tackling efforts with another six on Saturday night. Got plenty of the ball, racking up 16 disposals. 

#3: Ruth Wallace- Adelaide

Early in the first quarter she managed to gather the ball from a spillage and finish nicely with a snap around the corner. Then about 10 minutes later, she snapped another goal from the opposite pocket, showing her versatility across the forward line. She has fancy footwork that allows her to sidestep her opponents. She kicked her third goal for the game in the last quarter that was an impressive long kick into an open goal.

#4: Katie Loynes- Carlton

She displayed an impressive mindset throughout the game, and was able to execute the one percenters. Went in hard at the contest, and did the little things, like when she smothered a kick to send it out of bounds. She also tackled very well. 

#5: Breann Moody- Carlton

Was in a good battle throughout the match against Metcalfe and probably got the better of her on the day. She finished with 11 disposals for the match.

#6: Courtney Cramey- Adelaide

Good intercepting and distributing of the ball throughout the evening. Has one of the longest kicks in AFLW, and was able to penetrate the ball forward multiple times thanks to her kicking ability.

#7: Marijana Rajcic- Adelaide

Kicked one behind for the day and finished with 14 possessions for the game. Good sweeping across the back-line. 

#8: Shae Audley- Carlton

Played a great shut-down role on Erin Phillips before she went off with an injury. Tackling pressure was high as usual, and played well in a rare outing for her in the midfield. 

#9: Deni Varnhagen- Adelaide

Always put her head over the footy but sometimes gave away high free kicks as a result of going too low for the ball. Intent was there, just needed to polish off her good work. 

#10: Kerryn Harrington- Carlton

Her best game in navy blue. The former basketballer dug in deep for her side all day and mopped up what she could in the back-line. A tough player who laid nine tackles for the evening. 

#11: Tayla Harris- Carlton

With her superior height and leap she managed to take plenty of impressive contested marks. In the dying seconds of the first quarter, she was able to finish off a goal from 45m out. She was the Blues’ only real target up forward, kicking one of their two goals for the match. 

#12: Jess Sedunary- Adelaide

She managed to kick the last goal of the night in the last minute, from a routine set-shot. Not a known goal-kicker but deserved to get on the scoreboard. She finished with seven disposals, and work-rate was high all night. 

#13: Sarah Hosking- Carlton

Has the class to evade tackles, and even evaded the game’s best tackler in Ebony Marinoff! Not afraid to go in hard for the footy, and was always at the bottom of the contest at the stoppages. 

#14: Tilly Lucas-Rodd- Carlton

She is very good in one-on-one scenarios, preventing her opponent from winning the ball, and often turning her inside-out. 

#15: Angela Foley- Adelaide

Played a new role this week in the back-line, matching up on Vescio. Kept her quiet and intercepted the ball really well in the process. 

#16: Jenna McCormick- Adelaide

She has good hands on the lead, but could not convert from a short distance on the run. Finished off a set-shot in the second term for the Crows’ sixth goal, which was Adelaide’s most impressive play of the match.

#17: Rhiannon Metcalfe- Adelaide

Was engaged in a tough ruck battle all day, but she lost the battle to Moody. She didn’t have any major impact in the forward-line or back-line, but gave her midfielders the opportunity to get their hands on the ball first at times. 

#18: Justine Mules- Adelaide

She was quite creative in the last play of the match with some handy footwork to get away from some opponents. Her centering kick from the boundary line to Sedunary in the goal square was exquisite. 

#19: Anne Hatchard- Adelaide

Intent was evident throughout the game, but she needs to be more aware of tacklers around her and not just take her time, as she isn’t the fastest player. 

#20: Maddison Gay- Carlton

Tried hard for the Blues in the middle of the ground. Clearance intent was good, but just couldn’t break through the elite Adelaide midfielders. 

 

Collingwood vs. Western Bulldogs

By Peter Williams 

#1: Ellie Blackburn- Western Bulldogs

Unbelievable effort on the weekend, she just stood up and led from the front after taking bump after bump from opposition players. Missed a goal tight on the boundary late in the game, but her work rate throughout the match saw her rack up 17 disposals, two marks and a major. She seems to be so underrated compared to other leaders in the game, but she is a champion.

#2: Caitlyn Edwards- Collingwood

Edwards was a tough nut in the forward 50, even without her trademark plaits which she was told were no longer acceptable as a hairstyle in the AFLW. Donning a ponytail as her hairstyle of choice, Edwards booted two goals and laid six crucial tackles to be the Pies’ top player and most dangerous forward. She plays that defensive forward role well, where she can nullify an attacking defender, while hurting the opposition team on the scoreboard. Had 11 disposals as well.

#3: Emma Kearney- Western Bulldogs

The skilful Bulldogs midfielder would have seen it as a privilege when Pies tagger Brittany Bonnici stepped up beside her at the opening bounce. After quelling Daisy Pearce the week before, Kearney knew she was in for a tough slog at the office. To her credit, she worked hard and ended up the winner in that battle, having 13 disposals – all kicks – as well as two marks and a tackle. She might not have had the free space she can be accustomed to at times, but showed she can win tough and she did just that.

#4: Kirsty Lamb- Western Bulldogs

An equal game-high seven tackles for Lamb, who also won her fair share of the football. While all eyes were on the prime Bulldogs movers, Lamb just continued to be an option and won 10 disposals, linking up well throughout the match and putting in a good four-quarter performance. Another underrated player on the Bulldogs list.

#5: Jasmine Garner- Collingwood

After being a prolific forward last season, Garner has relished her role in the defensive 50. She is a strong overhead mark, reads the play well and positions herself in the right spots. She was really impressive working with Chloe Molloy back there, and was the reason why the Dogs did not have it all their own way early on when the Dogs were dominating the clearances.

#6: Nicole Callinan- Western Bulldogs

A really solid performance from Callinan who effectively sealed the contest with her last quarter goal. She is a smart player who stands up in big moments and she did just that on Sunday, pushing the margin out to 23 points which was a bridge too far for the Pies, and turned out to be the difference. Callinan had 10 disposals, four marks and laid three tackles as well, so a good all-round game.

#7: Jaimee Lambert- Collingwood

The former Bulldog would have undoubtedly been a little nervous heading into the game, having transferred from the now top-of-the-table Dogs, to the cellar-dwelling Pies. But she shook off any nerves to play a vital role for the Magpies laying eight bone-crunching tackles and making her former teammates earn every touch. Just the eight disposals for Lambert, but her defensive work was impressive.

#8: Monique Conti- Western Bulldogs

It must have been a tad strange for the pocket rocket Conti to shake hands with former teammate and fellow dual-sport athlete Chloe Molloy. Both were so athletically similar, with Conti having that extra spring in her step, while Molloy was so good at reading the play. I thought they broke even in their one-on-one battles, with Conti even cracking a few smiles when she realised she was being tackled by Molloy. Nonetheless, Conti’s work when up the ground or opposing others just got her the nod overall, having 12 disposals for the game.

#9: Chloe Molloy- Collingwood

Molloy was her usual reliable self, getting down in the forward line to kick her first AFLW goal – something she became accustomed to in the TAC Cup Girls and VFL Women’s seasons last year. Her battle with Conti was intriguing, but when she got free she roamed through the defensive 50 and was a steady hand, directing traffic and switching play when required.

#10: Brooke Lochland- Western Bulldogs

After breaking the AFLW most goals record last week, Lochland knew she would not be flying under the radar at Moe. The Pies made their presence felt early, and Lochland was the subject of some pretty tough love. It must have felt good when she was the recipient in the best position for a goal-square goal to ease the pressure, and she finished the game with two majors from seven disposals and three marks.

#11: Jess Duffin- Collingwood

A key cog in the Collingwood defence, Jess Duffin was one of the best defenders on the day. She had her work cut out for her from the beginning but weathered the storm and finished with 11 disposals, seven marks and two tackles. She provided crucial rebound and often stopped Dogs’ attacks with strong marks inside the defensive 50.

#12: Brittany Bonnici- Collingwood

After a successful job on Pearce last week, Bonnici was given the role on Bulldogs star Emma Kearney. While Kearney took the points, Bonnici did manage to keep her from completely having the game on her own terms and played a tough inside role, winning 10 disposals herself and laying seven tackles.

#13: Jenna Bruton- Western Bulldogs

Another cog in the Bulldogs’ machine who just played her role to perfection. Bruton had eight disposals, three marks and laid five tackles in a strong offensive and defensive game. She has continued to improve week by week and is building up to have a big grand final, should the Dogs make it.

#14: Bonnie Toogood- Western Bulldogs

Kicked the opening goal of the game and presented well throughout the match. The exciting forward finished with eight disposals, two tackles and 1.1, but was constantly a danger in the forward 50.

#15: Emma King- Collingwood

Clearly won the hit-outs but the Dogs’ midfield was too strong. They began to read her taps and dominate around the stoppages, but you could not fault King’s efforts as she covered the ground well and asserted herself as the number one ruck on the ground. A whopping 29 hitouts, King could not be stopped in that area.

#16: Stephanie Chiocci- Collingwood

A passionate leader who unfortunately had a brain fade. The moment I saw her elbow lift, the signs were not good and she now will miss the remainder of the season. She has stepped it up this season compared to last and it took her a little while to shake off the nervous signs knowing she was in trouble – and the opponents’ wrath – but the Collingwood captain finished with 12 disposals and two tackles.

#17: Aasta O’Connor- Western Bulldogs

Was serviceable in the ruck against the league’s top ruck in Emma King. She had eight disposals and six hitouts, just playing her part through the midfield. Lost her battle to King, but was not disgraced and she presented around the ground as well.

#18: Christina Bernardi- Collingwood

Another Collingwood forward who continued to present and always looked dangerous around goals. Just the one major for Bernardi this week, but she laid four tackles and had nine disposals to be one of the Pies’ best.

#19: Kim Rennie- Western Bulldogs

Battled hard in the ruck and across the ground, finishing with just the four disposals. But Rennie had nine hit-outs and five tackles to work in tandem with O’Connor through the middle as they tried to combat King’s influence.

#20: Meg Hutchins- Collingwood

The Collingwood leader was strong in attack, booting the Magpies’ first goal and just went in hard for the four quarters. She was inspirational, willed herself to every contest and never took a backwards step. She had 14 hit-outs as well so was the second most dominant ruck on the field.

Crunching the numbers: AFLW – Round 4

AS the regular season passes the halfway point, things are heating up in the contention for finals places and round four did not disappoint. The weather was a major factor for many teams this week with players having to contend with extreme heat and wet and wild conditions. But the Bulldogs managed to put on a goal kicking masterclass against the Blues on Friday night, and the Pies secured their first victory in Alice Springs after upsetting the Demons. The Lions got over the line in a wet weather slog while the Giants and Crows were faced with similar conditions resulting in the first draw of the season.

Western Bulldogs vs Carlton

With injuries to key forwards Katie Brennan and Isabel Huntington the Bulldogs were in search of a star goalkicker, and after a record breaking seven-goal haul, they found one in Brooke Lochland.  It was a breakout performance for the former ice-skater who put on a dominate performance in windy conditions, racking up 17 disposals and smashing the previous record of four goals. Superstar on-ball duo Emma Kearney (26 disposals) and Ellie Blackburn (18 disposals) were on fire again, Aisling Utri (18 disposals) Monique Conti (16 disposals) and Hannah Scott (16 disposals) also contributed to the Dogs possession authority (220 to 157). While both teams had a similar inside 50 count (30 to 29) Carlton had a mere 10 per cent efficiency in comparison to the Western Bulldogs 87 per cent. Although missing many key players, Sarah Hosking (18 disposals) and Lauren Arnell (two goals) had notable performances, but it was ultimately to no avail with the Blues accepting consecutive defeats. They will have a fight to maintain a finals position while the Bulldogs sit comfortably in top spot after a percentage boosting win.

Brisbane vs Fremantle

Wet and miserable conditions resulted in a low scoring slog between Brisbane and Fremantle. There weren’t many opportunities when it came to scoring (seven to five), and on days like this, the team who hustles the hardest comes away with the victory, and that’s what the Lions did.  Tahlia Randall dominated in the ruck with 33 of her teams 44 hit outs in comparison to Fremantle’s total of 14. Brisbane defender Kate Lutkins had a stand out performance in the wet finishing with 18 disposals, with Jess Wuetschner (18 touches, two goals), Ally Anderson (18 disposals), Jamie Stanton (16 disposals) and Nat Exon (14 disposals, 10 tackles) also putting up notable performances. There was plenty of tackling on both sides (83 to 70) with Fremantle captain Kara Donnellan having another hard-fought game with 10. The Lions join the Bulldogs on top of the table with three wins only separated by percentage.

Melbourne vs Collingwood

The biggest surprise victory of the round saw Collingwood dominate most of the contest in an imposing 34-point win against hot premiership favourites Melbourne. Brittany Bonnici tagged Melbourne gun Daisy Pearce and restricted her to just nine disposals where Magpie midfielders Jaimee Lambert (19 disposals) and captain Stephanie Chiocci (17 disposals) shone. The Demons struggled to convert while the Pies were able to capitalise with a conversion rate of 69 per cent to their opponents 33 per cent. After a rough start, Moana Hope continued her return to form with two goals, equalled by teammate Caitlyn Edwards who impressed for the Pies. Elise O’Dea (19 disposals) and Karen Paxman (18 disposals) had commendable performances for the Demons, but the lack of impact from their star skipper was visibly deflating. The Pies still sit in the wooden spoon position after their first victory of the 2018 season while their opponents now fall one game shy of a top spot.

Greater Western Sydney vs Adelaide

After trailing for the majority of the match, a late comeback by last year’s premiers resulted in the first draw of the 2018 season. Suppressive conditions impacted the flow of the game and with a 9-point lead into the final term the Giants looked set for a victory. Yet somehow the Crows managed to grind their way back to even by doubling their 3-quarter time score. In another tackle heavy, wet weather hustle, Ebony Marinoff starred for Adelaide setting the record for the most tackles in an AFLW game with an incredible total of 21. There were also strong performances by Angela Foley (20 disposal, six tackles) and Chelsea Randall (15 disposals, six tackles) for the Crows, while Alicia Eva (23 disposals, eight tackles) and Jessica Dal Pos (12 disposals, 10 tackles) stood up for the Giants in the wet conditions.

Scouting notes: AFLW – Round 4

DEFENSIVE efforts headlined a massive round four, where players were pushed to their limits by the unusual weather conditions. Melbourne’s Daisy Pearce was kept quiet by young gun, Brittany Bonnici, while GWS’ Pepa Randall nullified Erin Phillips’ impact at Blacktown. But all the talk surrounded Friday night’s Pride Match, where Brooke Lochland lit up the forward line, while Hannah Scott held down the back line, in a bid to prove that the Bulldogs are the real deal this year. 

Western Bulldogs vs. Carlton

#1: Brooke Lochland- Western Bulldogs

SEVEN GOALS! The most goals ever scored by an AFLW player in one game! Need I say more? Lochland was everywhere. Her reading of the footy was exquisite, and she always got into the perfect position in front of goal.

#2: Emma Kearney- Western Bulldogs

Acceleration was second-to-none.  Was able to consistently burst through the pack with the footy. Gets and goes.

#3: Hannah Scott- Western Bulldogs

Everybody wanted to see her play well and she did. What a great game for an inspiration like her to be a part of. Stalwart in defence. Great spoiling and great composure throughout the night.

#4: Bonnie Toogood- Western Bulldogs

Played deep in the forward line and was able to get herself into good scoring positions throughout the night. Her and Lochland were such a dangerous duo inside 50.

#5: Monique Conti- Western Bulldogs

Her start was electric, you just knew she was going to play a ripper of  a game. She was zipping around the footy all night. Great ball-handling, but would have been spewing that she didn’t get on the scoreboard. Deserved reward for all her hard work.

#6: Libby Birch- Western Bulldogs

Very reliable when matching up on small, dangerous forwards. Kept Vescio quiet, whilst working up the ground as well. Always attacked the footy, and came to the ball rather than waited for it.  

#7: Ellie Blackburn- Western Bulldogs

Self-confidence is growing. Got right in Arnell’s face when her turnover resulted in Blackburn kicking a goal. Racked up plenty of the footy. Got a lot of it in the forward line, compared to getting more in the heart of the contest in the midfield in recent weeks. Able to mop up deep in defence.

#8: Sarah Hosking- Carlton

Got a lot of the footy as usual. Perfect replacement for Brianna Davey – went in extremely hard at the footy. Ran through players of all sizes.

#9: Kirsty Lamb- Western Bulldogs

Stood up for her team as usual. Got plenty of touches again in a stellar performance.

#10: Madeline Keryk- Carlton

Put in the hard yards for the Blues. Was able to stream through the corridor at multiple times, and has a long, booming kick.

#11: Lauren Arnell – Carlton

Desperately tried hard for the Blues. Made two crucial errors in a matter of seconds, which resulted in a Blackburn goal. Finally converted late in the third quarter, with two deserving goals in quick succession.

#12: Aisling Utri- Western Bulldogs

Went in hard at the footy. Was able to get it in the heart of the contest, and use her quick hands to dish it off to her teammates.

#13: Breann Moody- Carlton

Tried really hard in the ruck contest throughout the night. Got some of the footy as well. Was troubled by calf soreness in the second half. Hopefully it is not anything serious.

#14: Angelica Gogos- Western Bulldogs

Tackling was on display again. Laid 10 tackles, and was able to do the little things all night.

#15: Jenna Bruton- Western Bulldogs

Solid game in the middle, including a long, booming kick that floated through the goals!

#16: Aasta O’Connor- Western Bulldogs

Long, penetrating kick was vital throughout the night. Made a solid contribution in the ruck as usual. Such an important on-field leader for the Dogs.

#17: Tilly Lucas-Rodd- Carlton

Was able to move the footy quickly throughout the game. Fell away at times though.

#18: Kate Shierlaw- Carlton

Great agility. Started one-out in the forward line in the third quarter, and did her best. Would’ve liked to see her snag a major.

#19: Alison Downie- Carlton

Put in the hard yards for her side, particularly in the second half. Stepped up where she could.

#20: Shae Audley- Carlton

Played another solid game in navy blue. Becoming a very reliable player that always performs.

 

Brisbane vs. Fremantle 

By Taylah Melki

#1: Kate Lutkins- Brisbane

Once again dominated across the ground. Got plenty of touches and used the ball cleanly and efficiently. Fought hard to win contested ball and tried hard to set up scoring opportunities, pressing hard into the forward 50.

#2: Jess Wuetschner- Brisbane

Continued her excellent form. Slotted another impressive two goals and showed her skill, class and general football know-how to get herself into damaging scoring positions. Dominated possession and got plenty of touches in the forward line.

#3: Kara Donnellan- Fremantle

The captain stood tall once again for the Dockers. Had clean hands and used the footy well, racking up plenty of touches. The majority of them were kicks that helped send Fremantle forward.

#4: Nicole Hilderbrand- Brisbane

Proved her fitness showing no sign of her injury concern. Showed plenty of courage going back with the flight of the ball on many occasions.

#5: Lara Filocamo- Fremantle

Was the leading ball-winner for the Dockers and used the footy well. Great on-field leader.

#6: Nat Exon- Brisbane

She was her ever-reliable self and laid an impressive nine tackles. Hit the packs hard and imposed her physical presence while scrapping for the footy.

#7: Ally Anderson- Brisbane

Imposed herself on the contest and racked up plenty of touches. Long penetrating kick.

#8: Emily Bates- Brisbane

She was efficient with the footy, hit targets and used the ball cleanly. Had plenty of touches and was busy across the ground.

#9: Jamie Stanton- Brisbane

Racked up 16 touches with 15 of those being kicks. Set up play for the Lions and hit her targets. Tackled hard and applied plenty of pressure

#10: Brittany Gibson- Brisbane

In difficult weather conditions, she used the footy well and looked lively with ball in hand. Stood up well throughout the game.

#11: Gabby O’Sullivan- Fremantle

Fought hard in the first quarter. Took plenty of contested marks and applied heaps of forward pressure.

#12: Tahlia Randall- Brisbane

Took plenty of contested and intercept marks for the Lions. Dominated in the ruck, getting plenty of hit-outs to advantage for Brisbane. Good elevation in ruck contests.

#13: Ashlee Atkins- Fremantle

 Started well in the first quarter, was in everything. Good tackling pressure. Bagged an important goal to keep her team in the game.

#14: Dana Hooker- Fremantle

Long penetrating kick. Was in every contest and scrummed well. Was not afraid to get down and dirty to try and win the footy to propel her team forward.

#15: Lisa Webb- Fremantle

Stood up under pressure and had good tackling pressure. Imposed herself on the contest and wasn’t afraid to scrap for the footy.  

#16: Sabrina Frederick-Traub- Brisbane

She was influential up forward though she didn’t hit the scoreboard. Created plenty of scoring opportunities for teammates and applied plenty of forward pressure to help trap the ball in Brisbane’s forward 50.

#17: Emma Zielke- Brisbane

She was in everything in the first quarter, scrumming hard to win the contested footy. Showed good on-field leadership for the Lions.

#18: Hayley Miller- Fremantle

Went down with a suspected finger injury but came back out firing. Contested hard for the footy, racking up 14 touches. Applied physical pressure with five tackles.  

#19: Jordan Zanchetta- Brisbane

Racked up 11 touches for the match in difficult conditions. Played her role well and did not over-complicate things.

#20: Leah Mascall- Fremantle

Played well and fulfilled her role to the best of her ability. Laid plenty of tackles and hit the pack hard.

 

Melbourne vs. Collingwood

By Connor Ferris 

#1: Christina Bernardi- Collingwood

Continues to be a force in the forward line. Great ability to find space. Gathered several uncontested marks and converted them into scores.

#2: Stephanie Chiocci- Collingwood

Reliable as usual through the midfield. Tallied up 17 possessions with good ball use, setting up several scoring chances. Scored a goal herself which took the game out of Melbourne’s reach in the last quarter. 

#3: Karen Paxman- Melbourne

Played a great game. Reliable with ball in hand and threw her body around in the contest well. A standout in an otherwise disappointing game for the Dees.

#4: Jaimee Lambert- Collingwood

Leading possession-getter on the ground with 19. Provided great run and carry for the Pies all day, and laid four tackles to polish off her efforts.

#5: Elise O’Dea- Melbourne

Early goal to really establish control of the game. One of Melbourne’s best, ended up being the leading possession-getter on the ground amongst both teams.

#6: Amelia Barden- Collingwood 

Most of her possessions came as a result of hard work and determination, with a majority of them being contested. Kicked a well-deserved goal in the last quarter.

#7: Jasmine Garner- Collingwood

Moved down back in the second quarter and was instrumental in holding the Dees scoreless for the quarter. Could be a permanent position for her.

#8: Emma King- Collingwood

Once again moved well around the ground getting plenty of the ball. Outplayed Melbourne’s Erin Hoare in the ruck contest

#9: Caitlyn Edwards- Collingwood

Kicked back-to-back goals in the third quarter to help Collingwood extend the lead, and remained threatening inside 50 throughout the match.

#10: Brittany Bonnici- Collingwood

Ran with Daisy Pearce to nullify her impact and did a terrific job. Held Pearce to nine possessions, while registering 13 herself.

#11: Harriet Cordner- Melbourne

Spent a bit of the game in the ruck, but was beaten by King when she was. However, she did display high levels of pressure throughout the match, laying six tackles.

#12: Moana Hope- Collingwood

The Melbourne defence applied great pressure on Hope, making her earn every possession. Two holding the ball decisions went against her early because she simply tried to do too much. But bounced back well, kicking two goals in the second quarter.

#13: Daisy Pearce- Melbourne

Struggled to break away from Bonnici, who battled her hard all day. Had a quiet day with just the nine possessions, but applied great pressure with six tackles.

#14: Richelle Cranston- Melbourne

Great pair of hands, and was able to read the ball really well in the air. Used her physicality to her advantage.

#15: Emma Grant- Collingwood

Very good game. Read the ball incredibly well down in defence, and showed great composure.  Has become an intercept-mark specialist.

#16: Meg Downie- Melbourne

Good defensive work on Moana Hope early. Tried hard all game despite Melbourne’s defence being under constant pressure.

#17: Iilish Ross- Collingwood

Ross’ impact was not defined by numbers. She displayed great efforts in defence, really shutting down the Melbourne forward line. Laid a team-high five tackles.

#18: Bianca Jakobsson- Melbourne

Good effort down in defence. Took a number of marks and stood up well under the Collingwood pressure. 

#19: Kate Hore- Melbourne

Kicked the first goal of the day for the Dees, but was kept quiet after that. This was mainly due to the limited scoring opportunities that Melbourne had.

#20: Shelley Scott- Melbourne

Had some early opportunities in front of goal but was unable to convert. However, she was involved in a great unselfish play to set up O’Dea’s first-quarter goal.

 

GWS vs. Adelaide

By James Halley 

#1: Alicia Eva- GWS

Despite the conditions she still managed to keep her skills pristine on most occasions. She was the best midfielder on the ground throughout the day, finishing with 23 possessions.

#2: Ebony Marinoff- Adelaide 

She set an all-time record in tackles, laying 21 of them. A tackling machine that was in-and-under all day. Used her size to her advantage at times- good to see some physicality from the youngster.

#3: Chelsea Randall- Adelaide

Her courage was immense when she took a mark running back with the flight, even though McWilliams was coming full of steam in the opposite direction. She kept a cool head at countless times, and her composure was paramount throughout the match. She was able to steady the flow and take plenty of important intercept marks.

#4: Jessica Dal Pos- GWS

Controlled her kicking really well in the heavy rain. Her desperation was pinnacle in saving many goals throughout the day.

#5: Angela Foley- Adelaide

Managed to have an impact on the game across half-back. She had sticky hands on a day where marks weren’t easy to come by, which was a positive for the Crows in the tough conditions. She is an integral cog in the Adelaide back-line.

#6: Amanda Farrugia- GWS

Her captaincy was on show throughout the day. Her ferocious tackling was a highlight, and her courage to constantly be in and around the contest was remarkable.

#7: Cora Staunton- GWS

Executed a snap from straight in front, which was a little bit strange. But she made it work despite the higher level of difficulty on the kick that she chose. It amounted in the Giants’ second goal of the game in the second quarter. Her Gaelic skills were evident, as it was easy for her to kick the ball to advantage in the wet. Managed to keep her feet all day, which showed her strong core.

#8: Courtney Cramey- Adelaide

After being awarded a free kick in the first quarter, she kicked the Crows’ first major of the day in hard goal-kicking conditions, which was impressive for a defender. But she couldn’t capitalise on a late shot at goal after a 50 metre penalty, which could have won Adelaide the game.

#9: Emma Swanson- GWS

The vice-captain showed great courage with a huge mark late in the third quarter, going back with the flight of the ball. Played her most impressive game of the year. 

#10: Rebecca Beeson- GWS

She capitalised on a set shot early in the first quarter to kick the Giants’ first goal of the game. It was impressive that her technique kept intact in the trying conditions.

#11: Pepa Randall- GWS

Played a great game, nullifying the impact of Erin Phillips. Played her role for the Giants.

#12: Justine Mules- Adelaide

Eight huge tackles to complement Ebony Marinoff’s immense pressure. Consistent throughout the afternoon. 

#13: Nicola Barr- GWS

Didn’t stop trying throughout the game. Twelve disposals is impressive enough, but her one percenters were what caught the eye of the fans. Did some wonderful things with the ball in hand. 

#14: Erin Phillips- Adelaide

Although the conditions were not ideal, she still managed to show why she is a major force in the AFLW with her vital leads in the forward line. She managed to take marks out in front with her hands, which most players were afraid to do.

#15: Eloise Jones- Adelaide

She was one of the better players for the Crows throughout the day. Looked proactive in the forward line, and is cementing her spot up there. 

#16: Deni Vernhagen- Adelaide

She played her role for the team. She also took some influential intercept possessions late in the game.

#17: Britt Tully- GWS

Was able to slow the play down in the conditions and apply pressure on the Adelaide forward line. Laid seven tackles for the game. 

#18: Ruth Wallace- Adelaide

Her pace was evident and got her into trouble sometimes, not knowing how much time she had and consequently, losing her feet. Halfway through the third quarter she was able to take an impressive mark in the wet, but couldn’t finish the job with an accurate shot for goal. However, she kicked an unbelievable banana-goal early in the last quarter, and was exciting all day with her evasive skills on show.

#19: Elle Bennetts- GWS

Hit the post with a shot on goal in the second quarter, which could’ve been avoided if she didn’t rush. However, she did manage 10 disposals and laid some fierce tackles. 

#20: Rhiannon Metcalfe- Adelaide  

She was off the field for a small amount of time in the second quarter with an eye injury, but came back on and seemed fine afterwards. She laid a great tackle on Erin McKinnon in the third quarter, which awarded her a free kick for holding the ball.

AFLW Previews: Round 4

ROUND three saw the return of reigning AFLW MVP, Erin Phillips, whose presence gifted her side with its first win of the season. Meanwhile, Melbourne suffered its first loss of the season against the Dockers, who are finding some form in recent weeks. Carlton struggled without captain, Brianna Davey, and now without star forward, Tayla Harris for this week, they will have to really step it up against the Bulldogs. Up north, the bottom-of-the-ladder Magpies and the high-flying Dees will battle for premiership points in what will be a memorable match in Darwin. 

 

Western Bulldogs vs. Carlton

Friday February 23, 7.05pm at VU Whitten Oval

The Western Bulldogs’ loss to the reigning premiers came as a surprise, as the Dogs had been dominant and had put their hand up for grand final contention this year. But the loss was not the biggest blow for the game, with the Dogs losing superstar forward, Katie Brennan to an ankle injury. Brennan will be hard to replace, as her presence in front of goal and on-field leadership is second to none. But as one door closes, another opens, making room for code-crosser, Kim Rennie to come into the Bulldogs side for the first time. For the Blues, their impressive start to the season came to an end last week, losing against a dominant Brisbane outfit. The Blues were outclassed, and unfortunately will continue to miss the skill of captain, Brianna Davey, who is out for the season with an ACL injury. Teammate, Tayla Harris will also be missed, after her hit on Brisbane’s Leah Kaslar last week cost her a spot in the round-four team. Last year’s AFLW leading goal-kicker, Darcy Vescio will be out to bag a few majors, after having a slow start to the season. Keep an eye out for debutant, Courtney Webb who will be looking to secure a spot in the midfield for the Blues. Former Carlton captain, Lauren Arnell has also been named in the team, and will be hoping to pull out all stops for the Blues in her first outing since round one. With the Western Bulldogs and Carlton coming off unexpected losses, expect the sides to come out firing, making for a highly contested AFLW Pride Match.

 

Brisbane vs. Fremantle

Saturday February 24, 4.35pm at South Pine Sports Complex

The Brisbane Lions put on a clinic against the Blues, once again raising their hand for grand final contention. The Lions are yet to feel the loss of marquee player, Tayla Harris, with the likes of star forward, Sabrina Frederick-Traub stepping up to fill the void. Frederick-Traub has impressed with her marking so far, but will be keen to hit the scoreboard in a big way this week. University of Queensland recruit, Gabby Collingwood comes back into the side to replace the injured Sophie Conway, and will be hoping to keep her spot in the team with a promising performance against Fremantle. With two wins under their belt, the Dockers have a spring in their step, and would be aiming for a third consecutive win this week. Their accuracy in front of goal proved to be their point of difference last week, with young gun and Rising Star nominee, Emily McGuire making a name for herself in her first outing as a Docker. Captain, Kara Donnellan stood tall once again for Fremantle, racking up plenty of touches and applying immense pressure on the Melbourne midfield. After serving her suspension, expect Stacey Barr to be out to prove a point at South Pine Sports Complex, and cement her spot in Fremantle’s line-up. 

 

Melbourne vs. Collingwood

Saturday February 24, 7.10pm at TIO Traeger Park 

After three rounds, Collingwood is still winless, and will be hoping to end its losing streak against the Demons this week. Brittany Bonnici and Stephanie Chiocci each had dominant starts in last week’s game against the Giants, getting the Pies on the scoreboard. The Magpies showed glimpses of their ability to control games, but fell away late in the match, succumbing to GWS’ pressure. If Collingwood can keep its intensity up throughout the game, the Demons could feel the pressure, after struggling in front of goal last week. Forward, Moana Hope slotted two goals and found some much-needed form, which she will be eager to maintain. Round 1 Rising Star nominee, Chloe Molloy will aiming to continue to show her excellent footy skills and strength for the Pies. Collingwood will be hoping that after serving her two-match ban, Sarah D’Arcy will be firing on all cylinders, and the inclusion of Holly Whitford will give a much-needed spark to the side. Up the other end, Melbourne will be seeking to get back in the winners’ column with a dominant performance over the struggling Pies. The Collingwood defenders will have their work cut out for them, having to control power forward, Tegan Cunningham, who has scored in every match so far. The class of Melbourne’s ever-reliable captain, Daisy Pearce and experienced defender, Karen Paxman may be hard for the Pies to stop. Speedy forward, Aliesha Newman has also proven to be a handy goal-sneak, and may be able to use the conditions to her advantage. The Northern Territory clash will prove to be a difficult one for the players, as they must also contend with the extreme heat and humidity.

 

GWS vs. Adelaide

Sunday February 25, 4.35pm at Blacktown International Sportspark

With both teams securing their first win for the 2018 season in round three, they will be searching to claim that elusive second win. The Crows had a sluggish start to the year but will be hoping to hit their straps late this season. The return of superstar, Erin Phillips kick-started Adelaide’s season, after struggling without her goal-kicking ability, class through the middle, and leadership across the field. The Adelaide line-up has been further bolstered with the experienced Courtney Cramey set to play her first game for the season. The All-Australian defender will be a huge in for the Crows, who will be hunting to take down GWS. Superstar forward, Sarah Perkins will also be looking to have a big day out this week, as she has struggled in front of goals in the past few outings for the Crows. Down the other end, keep an eye out for GWS forward, Aimee Schmidt who was explosive against the Pies. Star midfielder, Courtney Gum also impressed, and showed that age does not matter in AFLW, racking up plenty of touches and bagging two goals in her outing last week. Nelson Marlins Bay recruit, Pippa Smyth is set to make waves for in her first appearance for GWS, after delivering some promising results in the AFLW Draft Combine last year. The Giants can expect to see big things from the former netballer, and will be hoping that she can perform on the big stage. Sitting on even points on the ladder, the Giants and Crows are evenly poised, making for a close contest between the teams. A win for either team would restore some much-needed faith from their supporters, after a disappointing start to the season.

Scouting notes: AFLW – Round 3

SEESAWING contests and surprising victories headlined an action-packed round three. Melbourne stumbled at Fremantle Oval against the Dockers, who continue to rectify their disappointing start to the season, while the reigning premiers welcomed back superstar, Erin Phillips, who got her side over the line for their first win of the year. At Ikon Park, Lion Nat Exon ran amuck against her old side, who struggled without captain Brianna Davey. For the Pies, they sit winless at the bottom of the ladder, and are under pressure to kick-start their 2018 campaign. 

Carlton vs. Brisbane

#1: Emily Bates- Brisbane

Absolute bull. Worked well under pressure. Nearly beat three Carlton players to the ball at one point.

#2: Nat Exon- Brisbane

Got plenty of the ball throughout the night and kicked a ripper goal to sink her old side. Her best game in Brisbane colours.

#3: Jamie Stanton- Brisbane

Brilliant performance. 18 disposals including 14 kicks. Knows how to use the footy.

#4: Ally Anderson- Brisbane

Ball magnet as usual. 16 disposals, in which 10 of them were kicks. So smart with the ball in hand.

#5: Nicola Stevens- Carlton

Aggressive as usual. Imposed on the ball with 13 disposals.

#6: Kate Lutkins- Brisbane

Smart in defence and good run-and-carry. Never rushes her kick.

#7: Shae Audley- Carlton

Tackling was outrageous! 10 tackles to go with 10 disposals isn’t a bad night out.

#8: Jess Wuetschner- Brisbane

She’s the person you’d want kicking for your life from the boundary. Kicked a ripper at the beginning of the third quarter.

#9: Breann Moody- Carlton

Stood tall in defence and took three early marks. Has a booming kick and a great ability to smother the footy.

#10: Sophie Li- Carlton

Was proactive in defence. Didn’t stop trying all night. Deserved a goal but couldn’t convert on what should’ve been a gimme.

#11: Sophie Conway- Brisbane

Opened up the play by playing along the boundary and wider parts of the ground. Took four impressive grabs and kicked two goals.

#12: Maddison Gay- Carlton

Really good pressure player. Showed intent throughout the whole game. A third-quarter clearance exposed us to her immense pace.

#13: Kerryn Harrington- Carlton

Got plenty of the ball in defence. Her best game for the year.

#14: Katie Loynes- Carlton

Good, hard running all game. Such an aggressive player.

#15: Sabrina Frederick-Traub- Carlton

Was all over the ground. Took some killer marks, just not in the forward line.

#16: Brittany Gibson- Brisbane

Kicked a good left-to-right goal. Was active with the footy, collecting 12 disposals.

#17: Danielle Hardiman- Carlton

Calm and composed in defence. Straight down to business after taking a mark, always looks for the best option.

#18: Emma Zielke- Brisbane

Solid captain’s game again. Only nine disposals but laid five tackles. Really wanted to get involved in the pressure side of the game.

#19: Sharni Webb- Brisbane

Had 14 disposals but could not kick a goal. Tried hard all night.

#20: Leah Kaslar- Brisbane

Played really tight on Tayla Harris and kept her quiet. Forced her up the ground. Made Harris frustrated, as she gave away two free kicks in quick succession.

 

Adelaide vs. Western Bulldogs

By Connor Ferris 

#1: Erin Phillips- Adelaide

Unbelievable in her first game of the season. Played a huge part in getting the Crows on the board, kicking four goals from six opportunities. Dangerous with ball in hand all day, constantly creating scoring chances, and intimidating the Bulldogs defence.

#2: Ebony Marinoff- Adelaide

Great game across the board, with over 20 possessions. A number of those set the Crows up for forward attacks. Displayed relentless pressure, and was the leading tackler on the ground, laying an astounding 15 of them! One of the best players of the day.

#3: Chelsea Randall- Adelaide

Terrific contest with Katie Brennan when she pushed up into the midfield. Leading possession-getter on the ground with 24, and stood up when it mattered most.

#4: Monique Conti- Western Bulldogs

Solid game in all areas of the ground. Accumulated 15 possessions, and put in a tremendous effort in the final minutes, but could not quite get the Dogs over the line.

#5: Emma Kearney- Western Bulldogs

Opportunistic first goal. Should have had more than just one, missing two shots on goal later in the game. Was a key contributor for the Dogs.

#6: Ellie Blackburn- Western Bulldogs

Played a great game with 17 possessions and a behind, but just couldn’t snag a major. Provided good run through the midfield, and looked dangerous up forward.

#7: Brooke Lochland- Western Bulldogs

Continued what has been a terrific start to the season. The small forward took advantage of the opportunities coming her way with 16 possessions and a goal.

#8: Georgia Bevan- Adelaide

Quiet day at the office numbers-wise, but was still able to have an impact on the game. She laid six tackles, including a clutch tackle in the dying minutes to set up the winning goal.

#9: Katie Brennan- Western Bulldogs

Played her way into the game after a slow start. Ended up kicking two goals, but overall was held in-check well by the Crows defence and midfield.

#10: Sarah Perkins- Adelaide

The early move into the middle of the ground allowed her to find some form after a disappointing first two games. Moved back up forward in the second half, and registered a minor score.

#11: Jenna McCormick- Adelaide

Continued to build on what has been a good start to the season. Kicked two goals for the Crows from her seven possessions.

#12: Sarah Allan- Adelaide

Good composure down back to fend off a number of the Bulldogs’ scoring opportunities. Provided a tough contest across the back-line.

#13: Aisling Utri- Western Bulldogs

Got off to an excellent start with a lot of the ball early, including a goal in the first term. Was held down well for the remainder of the game.

#14: Tiarna Ernst- Western Bulldogs

Spent some time in the ruck throughout the day but was beaten by Rhiannon Metcalfe. Racked up eight possessions for the day through moving around the ground.

#15: Hannah Scott- Western Bulldogs

Another good outing down in defence, which was under constant pressure. Laid a number of tackles, and showed good composure with ball in hand.

#16: Marijana Rajcic- Adelaide

Played a solid game with 11 possessions. Impactful in a number of key moments down the stretch to set up a victory.

#17: Angelica Gogos- Western Bulldogs

So aggressive around the contest. Gogos was the Bulldogs’ leading tackler, with 10 for the day.

#18: Rheanne Lugg- Adelaide

Presented a strong target, taking three marks. Accumulated eight possessions, and showed positive signs through her effort around the contest.

#19: Dayna Cox- Adelaide

Was reported in the first quarter for a hit on Ellie Blackburn. Physicality was on display all day, and was something that seemed to inspire her teammates. 

#20: Rhiannon Metcalfe- Adelaide

Got the better of the ruck battle throughout the day with 25 hit-outs, a number of those to advantage. Not much impact outside of the ruck contests, with only three touches.

Collingwood vs. GWS

By Taylah Melki

 

#1: Courtney Gum- GWS

She had a stellar game with plenty of possessions, and a goal-saving smother in the second quarter. Showed great desperation and commitment, going hard at the footy and putting her body on the line. Her tackling was intense, yet she had great composure in front of goal, slotting two majors.

#2: Alicia Eva- GWS

Her kicking game was on show with 20 of her 23 touches being kicks. She had clean hands and showed great poise and decision-making with ball in hand. Great on-field leader.

#3: Amanda Farrugia- GWS

The captain was unstoppable once again with 15 disposals. She racked up 10 kicks for the game which were long, penetrating and accurate. Her intensity and aggression around the ground was felt, laying six tackles and imposing herself in the contest.

 #4: Emma King- Collingwood

She took plenty of good contested marks around the ground, and imposed herself on the contest throughout the match.

 #5: Brittany Bonnici- Collingwood

Skilful use of the footy, and slotted an extraordinary goal in the first term. She used her speed and agility throughout the game to manoeuvre herself into dangerous positions and rack up plenty of the footy.

 #6: Phoebe McWilliams- GWS

Dominant in front of goal and used the footy cleanly and accurately. Showed good awareness and skill with ball in hand. Took good contested marks and showed plenty of composure, slotting the match-winning goal.

 #7: Jaimee Lambert- Collingwood

Great on-field leader. Got plenty of disposals and displayed good decision-making. Dished the ball off cleanly to teammates. Impressed again for the Pies, racking up 19 disposals.

#8: Jessica Dal Pos- GWS

Her tackling intensity was up, laying six tackles for the match. She made her physical presence felt with her 11 touches, and used her poise to control the flow of the game. Good speed.

#9: Emma Grant- Collingwood

Belter of a first quarter, as she imposed herself on the contest from the outset. She tackled aggressively and chased down opponents, placing pressure on GWS. Got plenty of the ball with 12 touches.

 #10: Jacinda Barclay- GWS

Showed great composure to score an important goal late in the last quarter. Scrummed hard to win the contested ball and provide opportunities for teammates.

 #11: Stephanie Chiocci- Collingwood

The Collingwood captain stood tall again, bagging an important goal in the first quarter. She had clean hands around the footy, and kicked the ball with penetration.

#12: Chloe Molloy- Collingwood

Starred in the last quarter providing plenty of run and carry, helping to break up the congestion on the field. She also took a few intercept marks and racked up 14 touches, with 11 of those being kicks.  

 #13: Aimee Schmidt- GWS

She was accurate in front of goal. Helped to spark the onslaught for GWS with her forward pressure and leads to the footy. Hit the contest hard on the ground and in the air.

#14: Elle Bennetts- GWS

Her tackling pressure was intense, laying four tackles for the game. Got involved and competed for the ball in and around the contest.

#15: Meg Hutchins- Collingwood

She was her ever-reliable self, taking important intercept marks and racking up 11 touches. Good on-field leader for the Pies.

 #16: Moana Hope- Collingwood

She found some impressive form after being dropped from the team. She slotted two skilful goals; one around her body and another dribbling through the goals. Her bag of tricks was on display with clean pick-ups and classy finishes.

#17: Cora Staunton- GWS

Imposed herself in contests and fought hard to try and win the contested footy. Copped a nasty hit to the face but played out the rest of the match, showing her mental and physical toughness.

#18: Jess Duffin- Collingwood

Ran hard and opened up space for the Pies. Supported her teammates, through providing them with leads and options. Scored an important goal late in the third quarter.

 #19: Christina Bernardi- Collingwood

Got herself into space and contested for the ball. She made her physical presence felt laying three big tackles. Showed great speed.

#20: Amelia Barden- Collingwood

Clean pick up of the footy. Good footwork to move herself around opponents.

 

Fremantle vs. Melbourne

By James Halley

#1: Kara Donnellan- Fremantle

Great eyes in traffic to be able to spot teammates in space. Took responsibility and went to Pearce to try and nullify her impact in the last quarter. Took the match-saving mark in the dying seconds, which shows why she was named captain of the Dockers.

#2: Daisy Pearce- Melbourne

Showed Dusty-like traits with a ‘don’t argue’ on a Fremantle opponent! Dominated the middle of the ground with a game-high 24 disposals. A complete captain’s game.

#3: Lisa Webb- Fremantle

She had the skill and composure to convert a set shot in the third term on a relatively hard angle. Continued to impress in her debut season, with 17 disposals and four marks.

#4: Ebony Antonio- Fremantle

She is not scared to go back with the flight and take a gutsy mark. Puts her head over the ball in the contest. Has a great set shot for a defender, and kicked a beautiful goal in the second quarter.

#5: Emily McGuire- Fremantle

She has a fantastic goal-sense and showed tremendous skill on debut. Finished with two goals for the game, and created a buzz in the forward line. She had free reign inside 50, and showed Richelle Cranston-like attributes. 

#6: Karen Paxman- Melbourne

Wasn’t just influential in the middle of the ground, but was also able to go forward and take a contested mark, and convert from close range. Good intercept marker, and great intent on the ball. She was buzzing around the packs.

#7: Tegan Cunningham- Melbourne

Able to manhandle her opponents to get her hands on the ball. Being 186cm tall and having a basketball background gives her a supreme advantage over her opponents. She also has a good goal-kicking technique. She is able to chip in the ruck, which is very valuable for the Demons.

#8: Dana Hooker- Fremantle

Began where she left off last week with a lively start. Made an impact in the contest and racked up 13 possessions.

#9: Evangeline Gooch- Fremantle

She has great speed, and executed some impressive run-down tackles in the first quarter and second quarters. Appeared to be everywhere, and contributed nicely on the day.

#10: Katherine Smith- Melbourne

She has good rebounding speed and a penetrating kick. Was very determined to find the footy, and looks like she is benefiting from complementing Bianca Jakobsson in the back-line. 

#11: Cassie Davidson- Fremantle

Great pace and acceleration shown throughout the day. Did the little things right. Racked up 12 disposals, of which 11 of those were kicks.

#12: Shelley Scott- Melbourne

Her effort could not be questioned, as she showed impressive intent all day. Accumulated 11 possessions. Her tackling was a highlight for the Dees, laying seven for the day.

#13: Elise O’Dea- Melbourne

Impressed again with 11 disposals, and did the job that she needed to do. A rare brain fade for her in the dying minutes, as she rushed and missed an easy shot on goal.

#14: Melissa Caulfield- Fremantle

She beat Jakobsson inside 50 to kick an amazing goal in the final quarter. Has immense speed and class, and showed that to kick her third goal of the season.

#15: Hayley Miller- Fremantle

Miller has a huge kick, and can mimic Tayla Harris’ scissor kick! A promising 16 disposals for her in another great outing for the Dockers.

#16: Richelle Cranston- Melbourne

Loves to take her opponents on and break through tackles. Had a big influence on the match, with her big body being a roadblock for Melbourne.

#17: Aliesha Newman- Melbourne

She has great explosive speed, and has the ability to push her opponent under the ball. She is hard to catch, which was evident with her soccer goal in the third quarter.

#18: Kate Hore- Melbourne

She lead up to the ball all day, and took some nice marks on the lead. Never gave up and kept presenting.

#19: Stephanie Cain- Fremantle

She puts the team first, and loves the one percenters. She has a team-first attitude, and loves to tackle and smother.

#20: Amy Lavell- Fremantle

In the third term, she had good skill and composure to finish nicely with a goal on her left foot.

Scouting notes: AFLW Round 2

THERE were big crunches, exciting goals and high-flying marks in an entertaining round of AFLW on the weekend. The AFL Draft Central women’s footy writers watched every game closely, and analysed each player, ranking the top 20 players from each game, and will continue to do so each week.

Carlton v GWS  

#1: Sarah Hosking- Carlton

The vice-captain was intimidating in the midfield, and really broke her way into the game in the third quarter. Got a lot of the footy, racking up 12 disposals. Great on-field leader. Broke the league record for tackles, laying 16 of them on the night!

#2: Tayla Harris- Carlton

Leading patterns were exquisite. Cracking hands on display all night, and presented as a contested marking beast. Created so many opportunities all over the ground, not just up forward. Huge tackle on GWS’ Renee Forth in the dying seconds showed how keen she is to do well for her new side. 

#3: Brianna Davey- Carlton

So clean with the footy in hand. Lowered her eyes whenever she got the ball and looked for an option. Knee injury was devastating for all footy fans, not just the Blues faithful.

#4: Shae Audley- Carlton

Real good in-and-under style game. Always dished off the footy to her teammates. Great hands under pressure.  

#5: Jess Hosking- Carlton

Was up and about early. Got plenty of the footy and had clean hands throughout the night.  

#6: Tilly Lucas-Rodd- Carlton

Carlton looked stronger with her back in the side. Aggressive tackling was on display all night. She always dug in deep at the heart of the contest.  

#7: Courtney Gum- GWS

Made an impact all over the ground. Almost looked like the footy followed her at one point in the game. Saw her head pop up at every contest.  

#8: Alicia Eva- GWS

Played along the boundary a lot at the start, trying to get a gauge of the conditions. Once she did, she was unstoppable. Was the leading disposal-getter for the Giants.  

#9: Lauren Brazzale- Carlton

Such an active player, went in hard at the footy whenever the ball came into her vicinity. Just needs to polish her kicking in front of goal. Could benefit from a longer run-up when taking a set shot.  

#10: Amanda Farrugia- GWS

Tried hard and dug in deep all night. She has a great ability to run through the corridor, and uses it really well. Shame she missed the shot at goal at three quarter time, which would’ve taken some pressure off her side. 

#11: Renee Forth- GWS

Long, booming kick that was executed well, even in the trying conditions. Got a lot of the footy and can absorb strong tackles. Crunched by Tayla Harris at the end, but came off better than Harris did.  

#12: Jessica Dal Pos- GWS

Aggressive in defence. Put her head over the footy and was in plenty of contests in the middle of the ground. Much better performance this week after a quiet round one from her.  

#13: Alison Downie- Carlton

Showed intent early. Good on-field leader and a smart kicker.

#14: Gabriella Pound- Carlton

A real gritty performance from the youngster. Had a go in the midfield, and rushed down back to put her head over the footy. Good overhead mark for a small player.

#15: Nicola Stevens- Carlton

Effort around the footy paid off as she kicked Carlton’s first goal of the night.

#16: Darcy Vescio- Carlton

Work rate improved so much after last week. Showed more belief in herself. Had four shots on goal, but could only convert one. Does not need to rush.

#17: Georgia Gee- Carlton

Proactive early, just lacked a bit of polish. Has heaps of pace. Strong chase in the forward line ended up with her having a snap at goal, which just missed from a tricky angle.

#18: Sophie Li- Carlton

In hard at the footy. Didn’t stop trying all night.  

#19: Nicola Barr- GWS

Aggressive, and took the game on multiple times. High-risk, high-reward type game from her.  

#20: Rebecca Beeson- GWS

Great courage shown in defence throughout the night. Can take a cracking mark.  

 

Melbourne vs. Adelaide  

#1: Karen Paxman- Melbourne  

One of the performances of the year already. Hard to beat in a contest with her elite agility, and beautiful kicking. Always lowered her eyes and picked the smartest option. All 21 of her disposals were classy and skilful. 

#2: Bianca Jakobsson- Melbourne  

Took a ridiculous amount of intercept marks. She was like a brick wall in the backline, no-one could penetrate past her. When disposing of the ball, she had good control and was able to kick into space. 

#3: Tegan Cunningham- Melbourne

Provided good presence up forward, and marking was good particularly in the second quarter. She was able to work up the ground a lot. She showcased not only her goal-sense, but her fantastic endurance.

#4: Elise O’Dea- Melbourne  

Executed penetrating kicks throughout the whole game. She was smart and read every situation really well. Knows how to find a teammate. Another impressive game from the Darebin premiership captain, as she ended up with 19 disposals. 

#5: Aliesha Newman- Melbourne  

First touch not only ended up in a goal, but a potential goal of the year! Her pace caused real issues for the Crows, and she used her bursts of pace wisely. Every time she got the ball, you knew something exciting was about to happen. 

#6: Kate Hore- Melbourne  

Displayed excellent pace all afternoon. She always went in hard at the footy, particularly in the forward line. Real in-and-under type game from her. Racked up 20 disposals in an impressive performance.

#7: Daisy Pearce- Melbourne  

She was the best reader of the footy on the field. Shutdown tackling was exquisite, laying 11 of them. Did all the hard work in the middle, and ended up with 17 disposals. 

#8: Ebony Marinoff- Adelaide  

Had a great ability to run and carry. Always looked to play on and keep the game moving. Thumping kick. The reigning AFLW Rising Star fought hard for the Crows, with a team-high 18 disposals.

#9: Chelsea Randall- Adelaide  

Adelaide needed her all over the ground. Endurance and experience was on display throughout the afternoon. Played in the midfield then went to play in the backline. Excelled in both positions. 

#10: Lily Mithen- Melbourne  

Displayed great acceleration and played tight on her opponent. Racked up 20 disposals and laid seven tackles. 

#11: Richelle Cranston- Melbourne  

Her power is head-and-shoulders above the rest. Able to burst and accelerate through packs to move the ball forward. Got a major on the board to cap off another great day for her. 

#12: Ashleigh Guest- Melbourne  

Played a real aggressive game, and racked up an impressive 17 touches.

#13: Melissa Hickey- Melbourne  

Took the game on whenever she had the ball in hand. Displayed great leadership, and most importantly, she really looked like she enjoyed herself out there.

#14: Brooke Patterson- Melbourne  

A handy 10 disposals for the defender. Did well to shut down Adelaide’s dangerous forwards. 

#15: Dayna Cox- Adelaide  

 Executed great clearing kicks. Was one of Adelaide’s best. Came to the ball rather than waited for it, anticipation was impressive. 

#16: Ruth Wallace- Adelaide  

Another solid game from the youngster. Played on-ball for a bit, and displayed good pace and agility in patches. 

#17: Sarah Allan- Adelaide  

Was brave in the back-line. Had to do a lot of mopping up, as Melbourne’s slingshot footy meant quick entries into the forward 50. 

#18: Emma Humphries- Melbourne

Really smart player with a blistering kick. You know you’re safe when the ball is in her hand. 

#19: Laura Duryea- Melbourne  

Good defending on Sarah Perkins. Kept her to just three touches. 

#20: Alyssa Mifsud- Melbourne  

Had good presence around the footy, particularly in the forward line. 

 

Fremantle vs. Collingwood

By Connor Ferris 

#1: Dana Hooker- Fremantle

Great all-round game. Gained plenty of the footy whilst applying strong pressure all day. Polished it off with two goals, and was the driving force behind Fremantle’s first quarter fightback.

#2: Lisa Webb- Fremantle

One of the best players on the ground, had an electric start. Seventeen possessions (mostly kicks) hit her targets well throughout the game.

 #3: Jess Duffin- Collingwood

Ball magnet, and among the leading possession getters on the ground. Fifteen of her 17 possessions came by foot, and she made good use of them.

#4: Lara Filocamo- Collingwood

Fantastic game. Fremantle’s second leading possession-getter on the ground. Good use of the ball by hand and by foot. Also laid six tackles.

#5: Kara Donnellan- Fremantle

In and around the contest all day. One of the leading possession-getters on the ground, with a high number of them, contested.    

#6: Ebony Antonio- Fremantle

Excellent performance. High number of possessions, high levels of pressure, and good in the air, taking three marks.

#7: Melissa Caulfield- Fremantle

Made the most of her opportunities up forward with two goals. Provided a good target for the midfielders all day with six marks.

#8: Ashlee Atkins- Fremantle

Kicked Fremantle’s first goal of the game. In and around the contest inside 50. Inefficient in front of goal, kicking only one major and two behinds from three opportunities.

#9: Chloe Molloy- Collingwood

Followed up an excellent performance in round one with another strong outing. Fought through the physicality her opponents threw at her. Laid an excellent run-down tackle in the second quarter. Gained 15 possessions and displayed terrific ball use.  

#10: Melissa Kuys- Collingwood

Gained a lot of the ball all day in the midfield, and opened up a number of scoring opportunities for the Pies. Great all day, finishing with over 20 disposals.

#11: Hayley Miller- Fremantle

Played in the midfield for most of the day, and gained plenty of the ball. Used her pace and skill to drive the Dockers forward.    

#12: Stephanie Chiocci- Collingwood

Instrumental in the early stages of the game, helping Collingwood stem the flow after the Dockers got on a roll. One of Collingwood’s better players.

#13: Christina Bernardi- Collingwood

Excellent start to the game with a mark and goal. Was also involved in the play to set up Emma King’s goal early in the game. Added to her goal-kicking tally in the third quarter, booting through a major to keep Collingwood within striking distance.

#14: Gabby O’Sullivan- Fremantle

Read the ball very well through the air. Had several chances inside 50 both in the air and at ground level.

#15: Amelia Barden- Collingwood

Provided pressure throughout the entire match. Leading tackler on the ground and provided good ball use moving forward.

#16: Belinda Smith- Fremantle 

Provided good run out of defence, several rebounds 50s, and helped in shutting down Collingwood’s scoring opportunities.

#17: Jaimee Lambert- Collingwood

Played well in patches during the game. Used the ball well, and tallied up 13 possessions. Kicked a much-needed goal for the Pies in the last quarter.

#18: Caitlyn Edwards- Collingwood

Solid performance, gaining 13 possessions. A steady hand down in defence to help Chloe Molloy out, who received a lot of attention from the Dockers players.

#19: Lauren Tesoriero- Collingwood

Good start to the game with five possessions in the first quarter. Kept relatively quiet throughout the remainder of the afternoon. 

#20: Cecilia McIntosh- Fremantle

Put in the hard yards all night. Great leadership displayed in defence.

 

Brisbane vs. Western Bulldogs   

By Carly McClen 

#1: Kirsty Lamb- Western Bulldogs

Applied attacking pressure with the 15-20 metre kicks, similar to last week. Great vision to switch the ball in defence to create attacking opportunities.

#2: Emma Kearney- Western Bulldogs

Ran all day at a cracking pace in the heat. Precise kicking to forward targets creating scoring opportunities for her team, with a huge number of tackles.

#3: Lauren Spark- Western Bulldogs

Great defensive marking, and solid defending throughout the game. Good positioning and vision.

#4: Emily Bates- Brisbane 

Fast sidestepping midfielder. Had 21 disposals and five strong marks. Created much needed ball movement, particularly in second half, when a long kick nearly went through the goals. Would have surely converted if it was not against the breeze.

#5: Tahlia Randall- Brisbane 

Good consistent ruck work on O’Connor with effective follow-up on the ball. Effective hitouts against Ernst in second half.

#6: Ally Anderson- Brisbane 

Dominant first quarter. Won the hard ball. Pace right up in the heat. Good tackling which created free kicks. Played on and kicked a vital goal in final quarter.

#7: Jenna Bruton- Western Bulldogs

Good long kicking. Much improved ability to absorb tackles, showed her balance and strength. She backed herself and took courageous marks. Played with confidence throughout the game. In the second quarter she snapped a kick out of a pack cleanly for a great goal. Great ability to find space.

#8: Jess Wuetschner- Brisbane 

Two exciting goals. Used the last-touch rule cleverly to paddle the ball onto the foot of her opponent on the boundary, setting up a much-needed scoring opportunity. Nailed it with a clever bend from the boundary, reading the breeze like no one else on the day. Reliable with strong marking and kicking ability. Creative player.

#9: Sabrina Frederick-Traub- Brisbane 

Strong tackling. Presented well in packs but just couldn’t bring it down at times. Took a strong mark late in second quarter. In front of goal, she was susceptible to pushing her kick to the left, and was disappointed with it. Needed better delivery from the midfielders. 

#10: Kate Lutkins- Brisbane

Effective tackling keeping the Lions within reach until early in the final quarter. Good work-rate and running throughout the day.

#11: Bonnie Toogood- Western Bulldogs

Presence on field is felt by opposition due to her strength and imposing physique. She played steadily and took strong marks. Another great performance.

#12 Angelica Gogos- Western Bulldogs 

Strong tackling. Dug deep, fighting in packs to keep Bulldogs’ possession. Made good ground to apply pressure all day.

#13: Hannah Scott- Western Bulldogs

Great long goal in second quarter. Good ability to crash through packs and absorb tackles. Strong body and work rate. Excellent intercepting marks when it mattered in the last quarter.

#14: Deanna Berry- Western Bulldogs

Strong tackling and applied pressure all day. Created forward opportunities. Played both ends of the ground effectively when required.

#15: Brooke Lochland- Western Bulldogs

Solid performance again this week. Consistent tackles that stuck, and displayed strong marking. Ran into space with confidence to move the ball forward.

#16: Emma Zielke- Brisbane 

Worked hard both ways through the midfield. Ran hard, used the ball well, and created good ball movement. She possesses a quick handball which was useful in the contested situations. Skipper stood up when it mattered.

#17: Libby Birch- Western Bulldogs

Consistently effective again in her defensive role. Great defensive bursts from the midfield, and accurate kicking into the forward line. Strong leadership.

#18: Aisling Utri- Western Bulldogs

As per last week, solid performance. Covered a lot of ground with pace, swept up on the backline and moved the ball forward for her team. She ran well through the midfield, shutting down Brisbane’s opportunities to go forward, particularly in the first half. Great final-quarter goal.

#19: Kate McCarthy- Brisbane Lions

Creative midfielder, loves to run in space and can kick long and accurately into the forward line. Lifts the side with her exciting attacking.

#20: Aasta O’Connor- Western Bulldogs

Solid ruck work as usual. Precise long kicking to targets created scoring opportunities for her team.

Scouting notes: AFLW – Round 1

PLENTY of debutants showcased their talent in the first round of AFLW 2.0, while experienced stars continued on their merry way. The AFL Draft Central women’s footy writers watched every game closely, and analysed each player in what was an entertaining first round of AFLW. From our notes, we ranked the top 20 players from each game, and will do so each week.

Carlton v Collingwood

By Julia Montesano 

#1: Chloe Molloy- Collingwood 

Easily the best-on-ground, even in defence. Kept Darcy Vescio quiet, and ran rampage on her own. Her athleticism is second-to-none. 20 disposals on debut is a fair effort!

#2: Brianna Davey- Carlton

Started off quiet but broke into the game in a big way. She was the star for Carlton in the second half. Hard running in defence was outstanding, and her innate ability to find the footy caused some issues for the Pies.

#3: Nicola Stevens- Carlton

Her tackling stood out like a stunned mullet. She was Carlton’s most aggressive player of the night. Dominated against her old side.

#4: Danielle Hardiman- Carlton

Knows how to find the footy. Already looking like a leader in defence.

#5: Tayla Harris- Carlton

Went off with a bang and showcased her athleticism. Could’ve made more of an impact in the second half, but will definitely have a full, solid game during the season.

#6: Amelia Barden- Collingwood

Kicked a goal and was lively throughout the game. Had 12 important disposals for the match

#7: Katie Loynes- Carlton

Superb tackling, and her intent to find the footy was evident throughout the entire game. Was definitely one of Carlton’s best.

#8: Jess Hosking- Carlton

Hard worker and always has an intent to hunt the ball. An exceptional team player.

#9: Shae Audley- Carlton

Good hands and a strong tackler. Watch out for her this season.

#10: Stephanie Chiocci- Collingwood

Not at her usual level of dominance, but still had 13 disposals.Her leadership was felt on the field, particularly in the second half.

#11: Caitlyn Edwards- Collingwood 

A solid game from the Thornlie junior. A good-sized midfielder with plenty of footy smarts. One of the leading disposal-getters for the Pies.

#12: Cecilia McIntosh- Collingwood

Stalwart in the back line, consistent option to kick to. Got away from her opponent frequently, and created space to help Molloy in the backline.

#13: Jaimee Lambert- Collingwood

Hard-nosed player who racked up plenty of disposals. Stalwart in the midfield and continued from where she left off in 2017, but this time, she wore black and white.

#13: Brittany Bonnici- Collingwood 

Showed her courageousness from last year on the big stage. Needs to refine her kicking, but it will come. Always put her head over the footy, and went in hard.

#14: Gabriella Pound- Carlton

A very energetic defender. Showed that she had the goods to become a consistent star defender for the Blues.

#15: Kate Shierlaw- Carlton

Booted a nice goal early. Was up and about throughout the entire game.

#16: Georgia Gee- Carlton

Speedy chaser and always hungry for the footy. Showed signs of being a good pressure forward.

#17: Jasmine Garner- Collingwood 

Kicked the first goal of the game, and season, again! Was the only one who looked proactive in the forward line for a while during the game.

#18: Melissa Kuys- Collingwood 

Missed a crucial goal to get Collingwood back in the game. Had a solid game otherwise.

#19: Emma King- Collingwood 

Won pretty much every hitout. She’s a huge force to be reckoned with in AFLW.

#20: Christina Bernardi- Collingwood 

A handy 12 disposals for her to start the year. Will continue to display the good form that we got a glimpse of last year.

 

Melbourne v GWS

By Connor Ferris 

#1: Richelle Cranston- Melbourne 

Efficient day up forward, kicking three goals from eight possessions. Great displays of strength throughout the day, and kicked the game-winning goal in the final moments to get Melbourne over the line.

#2: Phoebe McWilliams- GWS 

Continued to build on a solid campaign last season, providing constant energy and pressure for the Giants, including three goals to keep them in the game.

#3: Daisy Pearce- Melbourne 

Excellent second half after a relatively slow start. Stood up for her side when the game was on the line with a number of crucial plays in the final minutes to lead Melbourne to victory.

#4: Elise O’Dea- Melbourne 

A fantastic game, incredible efficiency all day, and was involved in several key passages of play to set up scoring opportunities. One of the stars of the game.

#5: Courtney Gum- GWS 

Lively around the ground with 17 possessions, displaying high levels of efficiency by foot.

#6: Shelley Scott- Melbourne 

One of the better players on the ground, provided relentless pressure for the Demons all day, laying a team-high seven tackles and kicking two goals.

#7: Alicia Eva- GWS

Gained a high number of possessions and, although not incredibly efficient, made her presence felt with a game-high 13 tackles.

#8: Lily Mithen- Melbourne 

Continued strong form from last season with a 15-possession game, providing strong run and carry.

#9: Maddy Boyd- GWS 

Solid game showcasing improvement from last season. Looking to continue developing throughout the season.

#10: Catherine Phillips- Melbourne 

Nine possessions on debut; potential player to watch. Has a great tank, and knows how to accumulate the footy.

#11: Kate Hore- Melbourne 

Lively up forward throughout the day, however struggled in front of goal, kicking only one goal from three attempts.

#12: Cora Staunton- GWS

Kicked an incredibly important goal for the Giants late in the first half. Will continue to develop throughout the competition as she becomes more familiar with the game.

#13: Meg Downie- Melbourne 

Tallied 13 possessions at an efficient rate, and marked the ball very well.

#14 Erin Hoare- Melbourne 

Impressive game in the ruck, certainly a player to watch throughout the competition. Had over 20 hit-outs, with a number of those going to advantage, allowing Melbourne to gain an advantage from stoppages.

#15: Bianca Jakobsson- Melbourne

Solid in defence. Gained 14 possessions to go with her four marks. Laid five impressive tackles.

#16: Tegan Cunningham- Melbourne 

The basketball convert made a strong first impression, tallying 10 possessions and a goal off the excellent set-up from star, Elise O’ Dea.

#17: Amanda Farrugia- GWS

Able to gain a number of possessions. However, she was inefficient with ball in hand throughout the afternoon.

#18: Renee Forth- GWS

Rather quiet game, made good use of possession when ball was in hand. Was able to apply high levels of pressure when the Demons had the ball.

#19: Erin McKinnon- GWS

Made things happen with the ball in hand, battled hard in the ruck all day, however was beaten by Hoare.

#20: Melissa Hickey- Melbourne 

Provided good energy for the Demons, battled hard all day and provided constant pressure, laying a high number of tackles.

 

Adelaide v Brisbane

By James Halley 

#1: Sabrina Frederick-Traub- Brisbane 

Dominated in the air against Adelaide with 10 marks. She has a big presence around the ground. She just needs to work on her goal kicking with three behinds for the game, which let her down from completely dominating proceedings.  

#2: Kate Lutkins- Brisbane 

Great interceptor across half-back, finished with 15 disposals for the match. Very mature player.

#3: Ally Anderson- Brisbane 

Racked up plenty of possessions early with some lovely kicking. Finished with 15 disposals for the game.

#4: Leah Kaslar- Brisbane 

Played on Sarah Perkins all day and easily won the battle. She was beating her to the footy all day. Finished the day with 14 disposals, and was a general down back.

#5: Kaitlyn Ashmore- Brisbane

Good hands. Didn’t have an opponent for a large period of the game and enjoyed the free reign. Has good contested marking skills and good finishing ability.

#6: Emily Bates- Brisbane 

Really good body strength to hold off opponents in the contest to her advantage.

#7: Jess Wuetschner- Brisbane 

Vision outstanding, sold candy multiple times. She is very classy with hands and feet. Good reader of the ball in the air. Great shot on goal.

#8: Chelsea Randall- Adelaide 

Playing behind the ball down back and is cool and composed for the Crows. Great tackler. Kicked the Crows’ third goal from a 50m penalty in the second term, smart game sense. One of the best on ground.

#9: Deni Varnhagen- Adelaide 

Great explosive speed and kick on the run to set up Jones for Adelaide’s first goal. Capable of taking big contested marks. Long accurate kick.

#10: Ruth Wallace- Adelaide 

Speed is evident through heavy traffic and had the goal sense and skill to snap the Crows’ second goal in the second quarter.

#11: Ebony Marinoff- Adelaide 

Likes to play-on quick to advantage. High- risk, high-reward type player. Just needs better composure.

#12: Emma Zielke- Brisbane

Great kick and accumulator of the ball. Created plenty of opportunities for her team.

#14: Sharni Webb- Brisbane 

Good hands in the contest. She is small, but her netball background gives her an advantage with a bigger leap than most girls. Impressive rundown play in the last quarter.     

#15: Rhiannon Metcalfe- Adelaide 

Won the ruck dual convincingly. Has an impressive leap.

#16: Nicole Hilderbrand- Brisbane 

Came off in the first quarter with a shoulder issue, got strapped up, and came back on. Knows how to use her body in a contest to her advantage.

#17: Stevie-Lee Thompson- Adelaide 

Speedster, just needs to polish up kicking on the run. She needs to improve on her spatial awareness as there was multiple times where she was caught holding the ball.

#18: Sophie Conway- Brisbane 

Booted the first goal of the day and was up and about. Kept the energy going throughout the match, making an impressive debut for the Lions.

#19: Angela Foley- Adelaide 

The Adelaide midfielder racked up 13 possessions against the Lions, although it had little effect, with her going at less than 40 per cent kicking efficiency. Key cog in the Adelaide midfield.

#20: Tahlia Randall- Brisbane 

Got her fair share of taps, tried hard all day, but was beaten by Metcalfe.

 

Western Bulldogs v Fremantle

By Carly McClen 

#1: Ellie Blackburn- Western Bulldogs

Played mainly in the midfield last year, averaging three goals. Moved to the forward line for this game and was effective. Quick hands and good clearing kicks from O’Connor’s ruck work. Kicked the Bulldogs’ third goal from Ernst’s strong ruckwork in the centre. Shared it around and delivered a perfect kick to Lochland for a 15m slight-angled kick for goal. Great at maintaining possession of the ball in the forward 50, as most of the Bulldogs’ forwards did on the day.

#2: Katie Brennan- Western Bulldogs 

After the long road back, she kicked the first goal of the day, a 45-metre set shot, into a strong breeze with ease. Understanding the Bulldogs’ home ground, she worked her second goal back in with the breeze from right to left, hurting the Dockers on the scoreboard. Fremantle moved Ebony Antonio off Brennan early, giving Alex Williams the job. Great display of goal kicking and effective leadership.

#3: Isabel Huntington- Western Bulldogs 

Strong debut and a performance that showed great promise. Good strong overhead marks and an influential presence in the forward line. Phenomenal forward 50 pressure. With her first game under her belt, we’ll see more of what she really can do in attack.

#4: Emma Kearney- Western Bulldogs

Cool, calm and pivotal in the midfield, which showed on the scoreboard. Fed it in cleverly to Katie Brennan for first goal in the game. Creative and exciting player.

#5: Monique Conti- Western Bulldogs 

Third-highest possession winner, played under the radar because she is small and nips in and out of trouble. Strong presence in the forward line. Unselfish kicking in the forward 50 to Kirsty Lamb in the first quarter. Had her first touch in the first quarter inside 50 when she wheeled around but kicked it into the mark, exciting and fast player.  Good overhead mark for a small player.  Great ability to run up the wing.

#6: Brooke Lochland- Western Bulldogs 

Strong pressure in the forward line from the beginning, near miss from left snap, bounced through for a point in the first quarter. Accurate kicks inside 50. Great ability to wheel and go. Good kicking through the ball.

#7: Aisling Utri- Western Bulldogs 

Strong in defence and able to shrug tackles. Strong marks overhead. Good scrapping which stopped Fremantle’s midfielders, and created stoppages. Good defensive clearing kicks. Explosive 19 year-old. Strong leadership for a young player.

#8: Aasta O’Connor- Western Bulldogs 

Solid ruck work and follow-up tackles. Played a strong midfield role, running into space and kicking on the run. Created lots of opportunities inside 50. Was moved into the ruck to start the second quarter, and created the play to Brennan’s snap goal. Huge goal in the final term, O’Connor style, distance and accuracy no issue.

#9: Lauren Spark- Western Bulldogs 

Courageous defender running back into blind marking contests, and effective disposals generally.

#10: Amy Lavell- Fremantle 

Vice Captain displayed strong marks and long kicks. Kicked Fremantle’s first goal convincingly with a strong breeze helping. Backed herself and lifted the team.

#11: Bonnie Toogood- Western Bulldogs 

Brilliant hands as well plucking marks on the run. Kicked a clever snap in the final quarter to stop the momentum of the Dockers. Strong and confident play exerting influence, especially in the final quarter.

#12: Daria Bannister- Western Bulldogs 

Quick on her feet and accurate kicking. Didn’t threaten in the forward line but created opportunities in the midfield, and fed down to the forward 50 well in the first half. Debutant who went down in the final quarter with an ACL injury sadly.

#13: Ebony Antonio- Fremantle

Good strong marking in defence. A bit slow moving and too ambitious at times, which resulted in Antonio being tackled. Gave away a notable free kick, leading to the Bulldogs’ second goal. Was moved off Katie Brennan early, but seemed to learn from it and picked it up in the second half to deliver four strong tackles.

#14: Deanna Berry- Western Bulldogs 

Strong tackling early in Fremantle’s forward line. Has quick hands and was able to cleverly snaffle the ball from Fremantle’s control without fuss. Was easily tackled and lost possession at times. Quick bursts out of defensive 50, creates pace and kicks long.

#15: Nicole Callinan- Western Bulldogs 

Applied pressure well and chased hard. Tackled well in the forward line, waited and chipped in cleverly to her captain in the first quarter. Out-ran her opponent on several occasions to deliver kicks into the forward line, including to Ellie Blackburn in the first quarter, where the ball just bounced through against the breeze. Lifted the team.

#16: Hannah Scott- Western Bulldogs 

Good kick of the footy and had plenty of inside 50s. Good defensive marks.

#17: Libby Birch- Western Bulldogs 

Great defensive bursts from the midfield, and accurate kicking into the forward line. Strong leadership.

#18: Naomi Ferres- Western Bulldogs 

Quick and accurate hands, including to Katie Brennan for her third goal of the day. She is fast and pivotal in the Bulldogs’ forward group.

#19: Lara Filocamo- Fremantle 

Strong mark-taker in the midfield. Some easy fumbles but went hard at the ball.  Outplayed by Emma Kearney. Fit on-baller, covered a lot of ground. Work rate good all day.

#20: Kara Donnellan- Fremantle 

Agile midfielder. Some untidy play, and was risky with the new out-of-bounds rule. Quiet in first half, but it was a dominant half by the Bulldogs.