2023 WAFLW State Scouting notes: Round 3
IN the latest edition of our WAFL Women’s State scouting notes for Round 3 of the 2023 season, we highlighted nine players across the four games who stood out as either current or prior members of the 2022/23 WAFLW State Academies, while mentioning others who also showed signs in their respective matches.
#12 Taya Chambers (East Fremantle)
Assuming her usual role off half-back, the bottom-ager provided some great drive from the back half, even providing a couple of highlights with a sidestep and fend-off late in the game. She is skilled at intercepting the ball, and while the polish going forward is an areas to continue to improve, Chambers has a booming kick and natural athleticism that catches the eye.
#29 Natasha Entwistle (East Fremantle)
In her best game of the season, Entwistle was quite prolific en route to a busy game roaming between the arcs. She often looked to put it back into the corridor with aggressive kicking, and was equally aggressive when it came to her tackle. She often thumped the ball inside 50, and while it did not always pan out, she worked hard across the four quarters to be one of the more prominent Shark ball-winners.
#15 Olivia Crane (Subiaco)
The Subiaco double bottom-ager played at her usual high standard and took a number of strong intercept marks as she mopped up in the back half of the ground. Her aerial presence has been a key aspect of her debut season, and she was thrown forward in the final term by coach Michael Farmer, with the teenager taking a strong mark back with the flight and converting a set shot goal from 35 metres.
All the East Fremantle state representatives played a role in some capacity, with key forward Anjelique Raison making the most of limited opportunities with two goals, while AFLW Academy member Georgie Cleaver further improved from the week before as that more permanent forward. Zippy Fish was her clinical self coming off half-back.
#9 Kayla Van Den Heever (West Perth)
In her highest production game of the year, Van Den Heever found plenty of the ball through the midfield and in defence, working hard to crash in and collect the hard balls. She showed good strength in defence to shrug off a tackle and was able to do a few clever plays such as a tap out to a teammate while she was in a contested situation during the second term. Had an overall solid four-quarter performance.
#33 Molly O’Hehir
It was a shame O’Hehir had to come off late in the third term after a friendly fire aerial clash with teammate Tahleah Mulder. Prior to that, she was eye-catching around the ground with a lot of ‘almost’ moments, particularly in the front half. She almost kicked a ripping goal from the boundary 45m out that just sat up in the goalsquare, then set up scoring opportunities for her teammates. She even had a couple of trademark bursts going forward in transition.
Megan Norbury and Liliana Grassenis both did some nice things with the former providing run out of defence, and the latter providing a contest in the air up forward. South Fremantle forward Noa McNaughton was tightly watched by the Falcons defence and did not hit the scoreboard, but showed some classy moves in the win.
#2 Evie Cowcher (Peel Thunder)
Another eye-catching performance from the double bottom-ager who was calm and composed in the defensive 50. Often finding herself further afield due to the high line being held by the defence, Cowcher again found her fair share of the ball and was able to pinpoint passes down the ground. Though she did get pinged for holding the ball a couple of times, she was able to impact the game with her movement in transition.
Ruby Burgess was one of East Perth’s better players in the loss, taking control in the ruck with the extra height over her opponents and having a good battle with fellow youngster, Kate Newson. Peel Thunder’s Dakota Sexton also had some nice moments including shrugging off an opponent to kick inside 50 in the opening minute of the match. Other bottom-agers to catch the eye included Holly Britton – whose set shot in the first half was touched on the line – and Jorja Haines who had to come off late in the third term after getting her leg caught in a tackle, but had some nice bursts around the ground.
#10 Carys D’Addario (Swan Districts)
The 2007-born tall provided great run from the defensive half of the ground and along the wing, with her long kicking on display. She found more of the ball than she has in her first two games, but also applied her fair share of defensive pressure, even if the tackles did not always stick. She has clean hands and is a raw talent with plenty of upside for the future.
#11 Jaime Henry (Swan Districts)
It was business as usual for Henry as she was industrious in her second League game for the season. Working hard across the four quarters, the left-footer again battled away en route to being one of the more prominent ball-winners. She showed good strength when tackled and though often under pressure having to thump it forward, when afforded the time and space, she was clean and precise with her disposal, making good decisions with ball-in-hand.
Claremont wing/forward Eva O’Donnell ran hard up and down the ground and was one of eye-catchers for the Tigers in the win, while a trio of Swans also had their moments. Riley Fisher kicked a great goal on the run in the first term, while Indiana West just dropped a chance 10m out but looked dangerous, while Lily Paterson was competitive and knuckled down across the match.