AFLW U18s SA vs. WA: Talking Points

THOUGH the game itself might have been one-sided, South Australia’s 84-point victory over Western Australia had plenty of talking points ahead of the remaining carnival. We take a look at some of the key takeaways from the match.

Cream rises to the top

Both sides had some serious quality on their lists coming into the contest, and it certainly shone. The top two in our AFLW Draft Power Rankings were stars for their respective sides, with Ella Roberts finishing with 15 disposals, four marks, two tackles a goal and a game-high seven inside 50s, whilst Hannah Ewings slammed home four majors from six scoring shots, and had 20 disposals, five marks, three tackles, three clearances and four inside 50s on the winning team.

Bottom-age talents stand up

Two players who are among the best for their state stepped up to be strong on the day. Current AFLW Academy member Shineah Goody racked up 11 more disposals than anyone else on the field (33), and also had a match-high 10 marks, to accompany seven tackles, five clearances, two inside 50s and one goal. Meanwhile, Jaime Henry continued her remarkable state league form over the past 18 months to pick up a team-high 17 disposals, take three marks and lay eight tackles.

South Australia’s depth is going to be a problem for opposition sides

It was always a talking point coming into the match, but South Australia’s depth – particularly through midfield – was a real difference between the sides. They had 28 clearances to 12 and 42 inside 50s to 16, with 12 different players picking up a clearances and 16 individuals having an inside 50. It showed just how well the team is able to not only extract the ball from the stoppage, but get it heading forward and that is a credit to the coaching staff and development program in place.

SA having to juggle Under 16s

South Australia is limited to three Under 16s players and it will be mighty difficult to make changes given Georgia McKee slotted three goals from 20 touches to be one of the best afield. India Rasheed had 12 touches and four inside 50s, whilst Lucy Boyd had the eight disposals. With South Adelaide’s Shae Archbold, Eagles’ Jemma Whitington-Charity and Central District’s Charlotte Riggs all impressing, it will be tough to swap players in and out for next week’s clash against Vic Country at Adelaide Oval.

WA to hopefully gain a reprieve in the coming weeks

Western Australia was minus a number of players from its best side heading into the clash, with Emily Elkington a late out for the Sandgropers. Among those set to be in consideration barring recovery, the likes of Aaliyah Ugle and Abbygail Bushby should be available for the remaining matches. Currently injured, Liliana Grassenis would be a welcome inclusion into the defence, though Western Australia will lose Georgie Cleaver to her netball nationals.

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