Demons rise in frantic final quarter

COMING from a deficit at the final break, Pennant Hills managed to stick to the task and come away with a nail-biting one-point win over Sydney University in AFL Sydney Women’s Premier Division Round 2 action on the weekend. The Demons trailed by four points at the final break, but kicked the only goal of the final term to secure a 5.2 (32) to 4.7 (31) victory.

Both sides were coming in off varying results, with Pennant Hills making light work of a young Southern Power outfit to win by 62 points, while Sydney University fell by eight to Macquarie University. Following a week off due to Easter, it was the Demons who started strongly with Brianna Wade threatening to tear the game apart early.

Wade slotted two goals including an excellent snap from distance. Up the other end though, Emma Walsh threw a counterpunch as Sydney Uni hit back. Her two majors matching’s Wade’s efforts had the visitors down by just a goal at quarter time.

But what a difference a quarter makes. The second quarter was an excellent example of adapting to gamestyles on the run. Sydney Uni managed to shut Wade out of the game and took away most of Pennant Hills’ strengths. It meant Pennant Hills found it difficult to even get possession past halfway for most of the quarter.

Though Sydney Uni might have limited their opponents’ scoring to keep them scoreless in the term, the visitors could only boot 1.3 themselves to lead by three points at half-time. The Demons defenders scrapped to make every possession difficult and despite Sydney Uni dominating time in forward half, could not convert all their chances, including six out on the full shots next to the posts.

A couple of 50m penalties seemed to lift the scoring a little in the third term as both sides kicked a goal in the quarter. That meant Sydney Uni lead by four points at the final change after a period that was largely played between the arcs.

The final term saw Pennant Hills strike early to hit the front, then cling on as the Demons lead by two points, then one point as they desperately defended their lead. They had to do so for five minutes, eventually grinding out a hard fought win, 5.2 (32) to 4.7 (31).

Elizabeth Gordon was named best-on for the winners, while the likes of Emily Phelps, Rebecca Ives and Laura Donohue also impressed. Amy Court, who stepped up to Premier Division was also named among the Demons’ best after some crucial plays late in the game.

For Sydney Uni, Ashley Dribbus was best-on for her work in defence, while Maryanne Harley lead from the front with an enormous amount of work around the ground. Walsh’s two goals and constant attacking presence also made her a valuable contributor in the loss.

PENNANT HILLS 3.2 | 3.2 | 4.2 | 5.2 (32)
SYDNEY UNI 2.2 | 3.5 | 4.6 | 4.7 (31)


Pennant Hills: B. Wade 2, E. Gordon, B. Hutchings, H. Lowe
Sydney Uni: E. Walsh 2,. G. Mann, E. Mays


Pennant Hills: E. Gordon, A. Court, H. Lowe, E. Phelps, R. Ives
Sydney Uni: A. Dribbus, E. Walsh, M. Harley, K. Durante, G. Mann


East Coast Eagles remained undefeated with a commanding defensive performance against North Shore Bombers at Kanebridge Oval. The Eagles booted 6.8 (44) to 0.2 (2) to back up their Round 1 win over Many Warringah Wolves. Keeping the Bombers scoreless until the final term, Caitlin Reid put on a show, booting two goals and was named best on ground for her efforts, while Chloe Arndt and Renee Tomkins also impressed. Lauren Crawford was named best for the losing Bombers.

Coming off a bye in Round 1, the UNSW-ES Bulldogs made light work of Southern Power at Waratah Oval, storming to a 94-point victory. It was another tough showing for the young Power side, who went goalless in the first half, and for three of the four quarters, while the Bulldogs stormed home with seven final quarter goals in the 16.11 (107) to 2.1 (13) result. Emily Conlan was ridiculous with seven majors, while captain Shelby Koh kicked five in a best on ground performance. Natalie Smith booted both of Southern Power’s goals in that third term.

In the final game of the round, UTS Bats also remained undefeated thanks to a 32-point victory over Macquarie Uni. The Bats lead at each break, but kicked away in the second half with 4.6 to 1.1 to run away 9.6 (60) to 4.4 (28) victors. April Devine slotted four goals in the victory, with Tanya Kennedy named best-on and Melissa Lindsay also impressive. For the Goannas, Michala Ford booted two goals in an impressive display.

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