JUST four teams remained in the South Australian National Football League (SANFL) Women’s as the 2022 semi-finals got underway. We took a look at those State Academy members from the finalists and noted down how they performed.
All notes are the opinion of the individual author.
The speedy winger had a quieter game by her standards but still worked hard on the outside, having a number of long inside 50s and clever moments. Though her kicks were often picked off by South Adelaide defenders, Patterson’s ability to take grass and make sure each disposal game with a high amount of territory gained, meant she still had an influence. Her best play came 13 minutes into the second term where Patterson gathered at half-forward, composed herself and hit up Caitlyn Swanson who kicked Glenelg’s first goal of the match. Patterson finished with 10 disposals, four inside 50s and two rebound 50s.
#8 Piper Window
Splitting her time between midfield and forward once again, Window was so clean by hand and still very shaky by foot, but plays her inside midfield and defensive forward role to perfection. Once she can just tidy up her kicking she could be one of the better players in next year’s draft, with her strength at the stoppages and quick hands to outside runners from congestion very impressive. She is so strong in marking contests, pulling down a contested grab late in the third term, and had a chance on goal early in the match from 15m out but just sprayed the set shot. Window recorded 14 disposals, four tackles and four clearances.
#11 Sarah Goodwin
Starting off with a rare fumble, Goodwin worked her way into the game to be her usual damaging self. She still looked a little rough in terms of her efficiency – having missed last week due to injury – but by the second half found her groove. Goodwin has had bigger games, but was a key reason the Bays came back from a deficit, and continued to win the ball and take grass. Sold candy to Nicole Campbell in the final term but almost got caught by the experienced midfielder, just getting her handball away in time. Her aerial ability and athleticism was still at its eye-catching best, with her usual elite skills a touch off this week but will no doubt be better for the run and back at it next weekend. Goodwin amassed 18 disposals, three marks, four tackles, two inside 50s and three rebound 50s.
#28 Matilda Scholz
Took full advantage of playing against undersized rucks, Scholz was a dominant force around the stoppages, with her tap work being first class. At times she had to rush the ball down the ground, but covered it well and was able to quickly dish off to teammates when given the opportunity. Still a raw, developing talent, she has some high upside and will be one to watch next season. Scholz picked up 29 hitouts to go with eight disposals, five tackles, three inside 50s and two rebound 50s.
#43 Ella Boag
Almost kicking a vital goal midway through the third term, Boag was just unlucky not to connect boot to ball before an opponent touched it. She provided some nice run and carry and took a couple of good intercept marks, pushing high up the ground to drive the ball inside 50 on a number of occasions. Boag with time and space can pinpoint passes, and though she did not win a lot of it, still played her role and created run down the ground. Boag managed 11 disposals, three marks, two clearances, three inside 50s and two rebound 50s on the day.
#38 Shae Archbold
An inside midfielder in the making, Archbold continues to rotate between that midfield and forward role, getting used to impacting at ground level like she has in the air so well. A lovely long left-foot kick, she would have been disappointed to miss her first chance, which was a set shot from 35m, eight minutes into the opening term. She did kick a goal in the third term after winning a free kick for a high tackle against Goodwin, then kept cracking in throughout. Another chance rom 40m just went wide to the right in the second term, where at her best, Archbold would have finished the day with three majors. Instead, she still played her role and was able to provide support for the Panthers’ midfield when in there. Archbold had 12 disposals, three marks, six tackles, three inside 50s and booted 1.1.
#49 Jemma Ellis
The undersized ruck was up against it taking on Scholz, but still tried her heart out across four quarters. Though not winning as much of it as she has in the past – like the time they met in Round 3 – Ellis was still able to work hard around the ground and provide an option, and had a nice kick down the wing midway through the fourth term. Ellis only had three disposals, but worked hard for 10 hitouts.
#22 Amelie Borg
The strong one-on-one defender did not win a heap of the ball, but had some great moments, such as a clever tap to a teammate having used good bodywork on Georgia Swan in the first term. She took a number of intercept marks with strong hands, and was able to kick into dangerous spots down the ground, but had a high-level of defensive acts, with a fierce tackle on Georgia Bevan, and a forced rushed behind to save a goal in the third term. Borg had the six touches, three marks and three tackles in the win.
#30 Elaine Grigg
The saying ‘it might not be your game, but it could be your moment’ could ring true for Grigg who did not win a touch until the 17th minute mark of the third term. She still applied defensive pressure prior to that, and even won a hitout, but in the space of a few minutes, provided a goal assist to Katelyn Pope, and then finished with a fantastic goal herself in the last minute of the third term. She got her confidence up to then force a rushed kick on Alisha Gepp, and late in the final term set up two more goals to Pope, and Jade De Melo, making it at least three goals she directly had a hand in assisting. Grigg recorded six disposals, two tackles, two inside 50s and a goal.
#31 Hannah Ewings
It is probably not possible to summarise what she did to the Double Blues in just a paragraph, but it was just another ridiculous performance. In the first eight minutes, Ewings had hit two elite passes in traffic, set up a scoring option that Jaimi Tabb unfortunately missed, then went about hitting the scoreboard herself with a snap in traffic. She had another chance 15 minutes into the third term from outside 50 on the run that just missed, but would finish with another two goals. Her second looked like she had pressed pause on every other player around the stoppage as she won it down 40m out, sidestepped and opponent, composed herself and slotted the goal before anyone was aware what had happened. Her third came in the third term when an opponent tugged on her jumper as Ewings tried to burst through the pack, earning her a set shot and goal. When she was done kicking goals herself, she was breaking the lines by foot with powerful kicks out of defence going long down the ground. It was simply a sublime performance. Ewings amassed 3.1 from 25 touches, five clearances, two inside 50s and five rebound 50s.
#24 Lily Whitcombe
Playing a full game in deep defence, Whitcombe was tasked with stopping her direct opponent, and though she is not naturally a high possession winner, went stat-less for the match. In saying that, she did well to spoil Ewings in the third minute of the third term and kept competing hard one-on-one.
#29 India Rasheed
The talented medium-tall forward looked lively in attack early, clunking a terrific one-on-one mark 30m out and converting the set shot. Though quieter after that, it was largely due to the ball being up the other end. She pushed up to take a good mark at half-back in the third term and continued to apply pressure across the ground, having a flying shot on goal 15 minutes into the final quarter that was touched off the boot but went out of bounds. Rasheed managed 12 disposals – seven in the first term – three marks – one contested – four inside 50s and a goal in the win.
#33 Kiera Mueller
It was an unusually quiet start for Mueller, who earned her first touch 13 minutes into the contest, but then business resumed to normal as she provided that run and drive out of defence that has characterised her play all year. Her work rate was high, and defensive work up there with the best, and though she was not as clean or potent as she has been at her best, still ended up as one of the best Double Blues. She made a number of good spoils or taps to clear the danger which might not get a statistic but still helped her side. By the end of the match, Mueller picked up 15 disposals, three marks and three tackles, and though it was a quieter outing for her, she was still able to find a way to stay involved.