Wolves hunt Goannas in impressive win

MANLY Warringah Wolves took a huge scalp in the third placed Macquarie University Goannas to the tune of seven points in the AFL Sydney Women’s Premier competition. The Round 8 match saw two finals hopefuls going head-to-head, but the accuracy of the Wolves proved key, running out 6.5 (41) to 4.10 (34) winners after leading at each break.

A powerful thump from the opening centre bounce got Manly going forward and surging and they took control of the first 10 possessions of the match. Mac Uni then managed to force the ball down the other end and two nice intercept marks from Laura Coleman gave them their first opportunities at forward pressure.

After some nice work deep at full-back to intercept and then athletically run off and drive down the ground, an impressive half volley pick up and some nice footwork from Wolves’ London Ashcroft drove the ball forward. Manly would break off the back of the stoppage and, through Kaitlyn Manning, hook the ball towards goal, and was toed through by a teammate after a wicked bounce.

It took less than 10 seconds for Sera Kaukiono to go the other way and have an open running shot at goal, but thankfully for the home fans, it was touched on the line. In the next few minutes, Mac Uni again created quite a few chances forward, but were not able to trouble the scorers.

Things tightened up towards the end of the quarter, and Emily Goodsir was tough on the inside, while Coleman was standing up in defence. Finally, an outstanding handball release out of congestion to a runner by Holly Cooper broke the shackles, and Manly was able to force the ball into the deep pocket, where a set shot registered another behind.

The Goannas coaching staff would have been looking for answers as to how to find that cleaner linkage or final execution to convert their efforts into scores on the board. It would be the story of the match as the Goannas headed into the main break with 1.5 to their name, trailing the Wolves by 11 points.

As expected, the game a ripping contest by contest back and forth and that continued into the third term as the teams held sway with the home side just in front by eight points.

Manly got the breakaway and a nice running effort forced the ball into its attacking zone early in the quarter, but the Goannas held up well and then grabbed their own chance after Lily Kablaeu marked and ran into an open goal to cut the deficit to two points.

Mac Uni would have been frustrated with its continued behinds and missed opportunities, but the Manly threw away a chance as well, with a beautiful piece of footwork and evasion leading to a running breakaway by Ashcroft, only to have the final execution out of bounds.

The Goannas kept attacking but could only hit a couple of behinds for the rest of the term, but it was enough to level the scores and keep the visitors in with a chance. Deep into the quarter, a brilliant smother in the deep forward pocket by Manly’s Jayme Saggers led to a hook shot for a behind that broke the deadlock and was applauded by the home crowd.

With the game on the line and the dying seconds remaining, there was a ball-up 70 metres from Manly’s goal and the Wolves won a free kick and a 50m penalty for not returning the ball to the umpire’s satisfaction. Lauren Bourgeois moved to within range and slotted the set shot goal as the siren sounded to seal the match.

Both teams will be proud of their efforts and looking to play cleaner contested football to try and find the advantage for the next time they meet. Bourgeois was named best on ground for the Wolves, with Goodsir also impressive. For the Goannas, Katie Fogarty and Caitlin Fletcher were among the best.

MANLY WARINGAH WOLVES 1.2 | 3.4 | 5.4 | 6.5 (41)
MACQUARIE UNI GOANNAS 0.3 | 1.5 | 3.8 | 4.10 (34)

J. Green 2, K. Salmon 2, L. Bourgeois, M. Hyde.
Mac Uni: C. Quinn 2, C. Fletcher, L. Kablau.

L. Bourgeois, E. Goodsir, A. Roditis, A. Carter, O. Cameron
Mac Uni: K. Fogarty, C. Fletcher, E. Williams, S. Brown, A. Farrugia


Pennant Hills came away with the four points, but it was a far more competitive effort from Southern Power who had to forfeit last week’s match. The Demons booted six goals in each half, but the Power managed to put three goals on themselves in the 12.12 (84) to 3.2 (20) result.

Brianna Wade slotted five goals in the win, with Laura Donohoe (three) and Eliza McDonald (two), while Kaitlin Noble was nominated as the Demons’ best in the win. Grace Crittenden was a star for the Power, while Sienna Smith booted two goals.

Sydney University found a way to run away from the UNSW-ES Bulldogs and take home a six-goal victory at Henson Park. The Students made it two wins on the trot after comprehensively outplaying the Dogs and restricting them to just one goal in the match, 7.7 (49) to 1.7 (13).

In the final game of the round, East Coast Eagles continued on their merry way, easily dominating North Shore Bombers on the road. The Eagles had 26 scoring shots to six in the 10.16 (76) to 2.4 (16) victory, as Caitlin Reid (three goals) and Caitlin Davidson (two) were both busy in front of the big sticks.

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