PREVIEW | QAFLW Round 3: Hornets travel into Shark den

ASPLEY Hornets will be out to cause an upset against last year’s grand finalists and QAFL Women’s premiership fancies Southport, when they travel to Fankhauser Reserve on Saturday. The top of the table Sharks – who boast a whopping percentage of 1276.92 – will host the Hornets who are third with still a fairly impressive percentage of 262.75.

Saturday, April 29 @ Fankhauser Reserve, 4:45pm

Southport’s first two games have been incredible, running out 89-point winners over University of Queensland in the Round 1 grand final rematch, before storming to a 64-point victory over Wilston Grange in Round 2. Their third terms have been their best thus far, with the Sharks kicking nine of their 25 goals in that quarter.

Aspley looks likely to be the Sharks’ biggest challenge thus far though, having a strong start to the season with a draw against Coorparoo and then a comprehensive 83-point win over the reigning premiers. In the draw against the Kings, the Hornets were the more inaccurate of the duo in the 5.11 to 6.5 scoreline, but fixed that up against the Red Lionesses as they piled on 14.9 (93) to 1.4 (10).

In the absence of older sister Darcie, Georja Davies had a day out on debut with four goals in the win over Wilston Grange. The Sharks tall is a part of a strong Southport forwardline, with Maggie O’Connell booting three goals in the victory. Steph O’Brien is the one to watch from the Sharks who is capable of playing just about anywhere, while ex-Cat Carly Remmos will be a handful for the Hornets.

Aspley brought in Jaida Tabb last week against her former Devils side, while fellow new recruit Mikayla Martin has been enormous as a midfielder who can hit the scoreboard for the Hornets. Versatile utility Lucia Liessi is another who can do plenty of damage with her powerful boot, while skipper Courtney Daniec will find plenty of the ball.

Southport will be favourites for the clash, but Aspley has built form over the first two weeks and will be up for the challenge.

Saturday, April 29 @ Leyshon Park, 4:45pm

Winless Yeronga South Brisbane hosts fifth placed Maroochydore with Roos sniffing out a top four spot if they can win on the road. The Devils are coming off an 83-point defeat at the hands of Aspley after losing to Wilston Grange by three points the week before. After going down to Bond University in Round 1, Maroochydore bounced back to grab the points against University of Queensland in a low-scoring thriller.

Devils skipper Lucy Bellinger and midfielder Lucy Bellinger are ones to watch, while tall Peppa Poultney has made a good start to the season. The Roos have tall forward top-ager Chelsea Gillard and defender Sara-Jane O’Grady among the better players so far, while Demi Norton has made a busy start to her season.

Saturday, April 29 @ Base Architecture Meadows, 4:45pm

Reigning premiers University of Queensland has struggled with the turnover of players over the off-season but will be keen to make amends against a Coorparoo side two points ahead of the Red Lionesses. The Kings have been far more competitive with a draw against Aspley and 12-point loss to Bond University suggesting they will be thereabouts this season. The Red Lionesses kept the Roos to just two goals last week but still went down by five points after an 89-point defeat at the hands of Southport.

The reigning premiers have skipper Madi Crowley-Long who has battled away well, while forward Kadie Fletcher and midfielder Ava Seton are a couple of young talents who can impact games in big ways. Coorparoo has the experience of Lions premiership skipper Emma Zielke, while defender Laura Blue and midfielder Lucy Schneider are natural ball-winners.

Saturday, April 29 @ Hickey Park, 4:45pm

Wilston Grange was unable to repeat its Round 1 win over Yeronga South Brisbane in Round 2, comprehensively beaten by Southport. The Gorillas come up against another tough side in Bond University, who fought past a competitive Coorparoo outfit in Round 2 to win by 12 points, after a 98-point thrashing of Maroochydore in Round 1.

The Gorillas have rising talent Zimra Hussain who is making waves in the midfield alongside Mackenzie Findlay, while Kalista-Jayne Shiner can provide some movement off a wing going forward. For the Bull Sharks, the experience of ex-AFLW defender Leah Kaslar in the back half helps, while the 2007-born Ava Usher unsurprisingly was promising on debut last week. Bottom-ager Tara Harrington is enjoying a great debut season as well.

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