PROFILED | Undefeated 2023 South Australia squad

SOUTH Australia remained undefeated from its three games at the AFL Women’s Under 18 Championships and looms as the favourite to win back-to-back titles. Vic Country – yet to play – is the only side that could also possibly go undefeated, with the Croweaters achieving the feat already.

In this article, we profile each of the South Australian players and how they went through the championships from the full squad.


#1 Elaine Grigg (Central District)
23/12/2005 | 161cm | Midfielder/Forward

Stats: 17.7 disposals, 1.3 marks, 6.0 tackles, 2.3 clearances, 2.3 inside 50s, 1.0 rebound 50s, 1 goal

Spending the majority of her time through the midfield and mostly resting forward, Grigg had a pretty impressive carnival and was one of the more consistent South Australians as you would expect. Her tackling pressure was outstanding and she worked well in close, extracting it out to teammates and always playing the team role. Is among the top 10 players in the country and should be in consideration for All-Australian honours.

#2 Coby Morgan (Norwood)
14/11/2006 | 173cm | Forward

Stats: 11.0 disposals, 2.0 tackles, 2.0 inside 50s (one game)

A developing forward who has some fundamentals still to develop, Morgan held her own in the first game against Western Australia, and then being a bottom-ager could not crack back in. Though her technique is an area to work on, she showed she find the ball at a higher level working up the ground, and is a good size at 173cm. Has pace to burn as well.

#3 Violet Patterson (Glenelg)
09/01/2006 | 168cm | Winger/Forward

Stats: 14.7 disposals, 3.3 marks, 3.3 tackles, 2.3 inside 50s, 1 goal

Collingwood fans will be keeping a close eye on the bottom-ager who is the daughter of former Magpie, Stephen. She is a pressure-first player with a high running capacity and showed she can add forward to her inside-outside balance. Still slight, Patterson punches well above her weight division and is as tough as they come. One who will assume a key role at the championships next year.

#4 Laela Ebert (North Adelaide)
17/04/2006 | 165cm | Defender

Stats: 6.7 disposals, 3.0 tackles

Spent her time in defence often shutting down an opposition forward, but the bottom-ager got a good taste of national carnival action. Still a bottom-ager, Ebert will likely play higher up the field next year, and is capable of having a mix of offensive and defensive roles. She could also take over Whitcombe’s role as the number one lockdown defender in 2024.

#6 India Rasheed (Sturt)
29/11/2006 | 172cm | Forward

Stats: 22.3 disposals, 4.3 marks, 6.3 tackles, 1.3 clearances, 3.3 inside 50s, 4 goals, 4 behinds

An All-Australian lock after a superb carnival that will have her right up in MVP calculations along with Goody and Young. Though a year younger – and only 33 days off being a double bottom-ager, there is plenty to like about the daughter of Roger. Her left foot is as deadly as anyone’s and she showed she can not only hit the scoreboard – kicking the second most goals for her state – but also brought her defensive pressure, averaging more than six tackles including nine in the win over Queensland.

#8 Ruby Ballard (West Adelaide)
07/11/2006 | 155cm | Forward

Stats: 10.7 disposals, 3.0 marks, 2.3 tackles, 2.0 inside 50s, 2 goals, 2 behinds

Boasting another link to the top level, the sister of Crows’ Abbie has some similar traits with her toughness and footy IQ in the forward half. She is only small at 155cm, but is perfect for a crumbing, pressure forward, with the work rate to push up the ground and deliver inside 50. She is clever at finding gaps inside 50, and converted two goals at the championships, playing her role.

#9 Shineah Goody (WWT Eagles)
08/11/2005 | 162cm | Midfielder

Stats: 24.6 disposals, 4.3 marks, 3.0 tackles, 5.3 clearances, 3.0 inside 50s, 1.7 rebound 50s, 1 behind

Another lock for the All-Australian team, Goody put her hand up for the South Australian, and overall MVP for the second year running. Her numbers immediately jump off the page with 24.6 disposals, 5.3 clearances and 3.0 inside 50s. Last year she was the standout choice, and this year she was just as impressive with some others stepping up in big way. Absolute class and will have no problems stepping up to the elite level.

#10 Jasmine Evans (Central District)
05/02/2006 | 165cm | Wing

Stats: 16.0 disposals, 3.0 marks, 2.0 marks, 4.3 inside 50s, 1.0 rebound 50s, 1 goal

The bottom-ager is one of the most impressive draft bolters for next year, having not had exposure to senior level prior to this year. Taking that next step and fulfilling a key role on the wing and rotating forward for the South Australians, Evans is that outstanding kick who can distribute, but also hit the scoreboard. Helped win Central District a few games too. She will potentially fly under the radar next year but has the talent to be a first round prospect.

#11 Sophie Eaton (Central District)
23/04/2007 | 169cm | Forward/Wing

Stats: 8.0 disposals, 1.5 tackles, 1.0 clearances, 1.5 inside 50s, 1 goal (two games)

As the youngest player in the team, Eaton showed some promising signs against older opponents and had some time up the field to go with her inside 50 moments. She is an incredibly gifted player, and already has an Under 16s MVP and All-Australian gong to her name, and expect her to be the Rasheed of next year who has a massive impact as a bottom-ager. Class personified and can play just about any role.

#12 Poppy Scholz (Glenelg)
31/12/2006 | 179cm | Key Defender/Ruck

Stats: 14.7 disposals, 3.7 marks, 3.0 tackles, 6.3 hitouts, 1.3 clearances, 2.0 rebound 50s

The ultimate utility will come in hot demand next year, as the sister of recently drafted Power ruck, Matilda forges her own journey in 2024. No doubt her sights will be set on joining her sister at Alberton, but she is equally a talented netballer. Playing mostly as an intercepting defender, while chopping out on in the ruck, Scholz can play on a wing or forward, and is the definition of the heavily used recent footballing term, ‘unicorn’.

#13 Piper Window (Glenelg)
30/07/2005 | 167cm | Forward/Midfielder

Stats: 17.3 disposals, 3.3 marks, 6.0 tackles, 3.7 clearances, 3.7 inside 50s, 1 goal

The South Australian skipper has had a massive year and she was again a tough, contested player throughout the championships. With a lot of midfielders to rotate on-ball, Window spent time forward as she did at SANFL level. Though she only kicked the one goal, she brought the tackling pressure and was able to impact on the inside and outside. Though she has had some bigger games, her second match against Vic Metro in particular was outstanding.

#14 Molly Brooksby (Norwood)
18/07/2005 | 172cm | Defender/Midfielder

Stats: 17.3 disposals, 3.0 marks, 4.0 tackles, 3.0 clearances, 3.3 inside 50s, 1.7 rebound 50s

After injury interruptions in the preseason, Brooksby really stepped up and showed her class at the national carnival. She is the best opposite foot kick that one could hope for, and her kicking skills are so rare. Averaging more than 17 disposals, she rated elite in two of her three games for her kicking efficiency, and she had a mix of play playing off high half-back, kicking out and also pushing into the midfield. Brooksby is the player you want the ball in the hands of if you are a forward.

#15 Jacinda Schunselaar (South Adelaide)
06/04/2005 | 180cm | Ruck

Stats: 8.3 disposals, 1.0 marks, 3.7 tackles, 16.0 hitouts, 2.3 clearances

An athletic ruck who spent her time primarily at development level, Schunselaar has some traits that will catch the eye. She can jump and works hard around the ground, while able to impact at ground level. Her aerial ability and consistency are still areas of improvement, but with the lack of available rucks in some states, she might be a good candidate for non-South Australian clubs to look at as a long-term prospect.

#16 Melissa Anderson (South Adelaide)
17/08/2005 | 173cm | Forward

Stats: 6.3 disposals, 2.0 marks, 2.0 tackles, 2.0 inside 50s, 3 goals, 1 behind

It is tough to gain the inside minutes you need when the South Australian squad is as deep as it is, but Anderson still took her opportunity in the tri-colours with both hands. She played almost exclusively forward – though played a key role in the midfield for the trial game against the Under 23s – where her statistics do not do justice to her impact. She kicked a goal in each of the three games, with her, Young and Rasheed the only South Australian players to do so.

#17 Esther Schirmer (South Adelaide)
08/06/2006 | 177cm | Defender

Stats: 8.0 disposals, 1.7 marks, 2.3 tackles, 1.3 rebound 50s

Another defender who just plays her role, Schirmer has some athletic traits that suggest she can have a more offensively-minded role next year, but she does her due diligence with her opponent. Possessing great closing speed and a natural competitive nature, Schirmer backed up her SANFLW Team of the Year effort with a solid all-round championships. Her role is not usually one that causes fanfare, but coaches love her effort and ability to shut down her opponent.

#18 Holly Ifould (South Adelaide)
02/09/2005 | 167cm | Wing

Stats: 15.7 disposals, 5.0 marks, 1.0 clearance, 1.7 inside 50s, 1.0 rebound 50s

Ifould had an incredible game against Vic Metro, was very hand against Western Australia, and quieter against Queensland. All in all, Ifould had a carnival indicative of most wingers, with a mixed bag. She has a great running capacity, finds space well and with time and space can do some damage by foot. There are areas to work on and she is definitely an outside player, but showed at times for South Adelaide she can get her hands dirty. Another player which might see clubs outside South Australia consider.

#19 Alissa Brook (South Adelaide)
23/05/2005 | 176cm | Defender

Stats: 6.0 disposals, 1.0 marks, 2.7 tackles

A raw, developing defender, Brook has come on in a short space of time and though she is not a high production player, she is comfortable in that defensive role. Able to get into the right positions and intercept, or at least bring the ball to ground, Brook stepped up to SANFLW level later in the year and held her own, with her athleticism – in particular her vertical leap – catching the eye. A potential draft chance and another tall for clubs across the nation to consider.

#20 Zara Walsh (Sturt)
12/03/2005 | 172cm | Forward

Stats: 10.0 disposals, 3.0 marks, 3.0 tackles, 1.7 inside 50s, 3 goals, 1 behind

Did her draft chances no harm by playing her role in attack and kicking three goals in three games, including two in the final match against Queensland. Boasting elite speed and being able to burn off opponents on the lead, Walsh is creative in the forward half of the ground and has that upside that clubs love. At 172cm, she can take a strong mark, but also do the crumbing, and once she gets goalside, it is game over for any opponent.

#22 Grace Martin (WWT Eagles)
01/09/2006 | 162cm | Forward/Midfielder

Stats: 10.0 disposals, 2.0 marks, 3.0 tackles, 2.0 inside 50s, 1 behind (one game)

The bottom-ager fronted up against Western Australia in the first game and was okay, but ultimately had to make way for some other bottom-agers for game two. She has some class and can hit the scoreboard as she did for the Eagles in the SANFLW, but is developing other aspects of her game. Only small, Martin will likely be that clever forward inside 50 who can rotate into the middle.

#27 Brooke Boileau (South Adelaide)
28/01/2005 | 170cm | Midfielder

Stats: 21.3 disposals, 2.7 marks, 5.0 tackles, 4.7 clearances, 3.7 inside 50s, 1 goal, 1 behind

Winning the third most disposals of any player in the South Australian team, the inside midfielder was rock solid consistent yet again. Her 2023 season has hardly had a dip, and she became the prominent inside midfielder alongside Goody. After missing out on playing last year, Boileau has made up for lost time and her numbers of 21.3 disposals, 5.0 tackles, 4.7 clearances and 3.7 inside 50s should put her name in contention for the All-Australian team.

#28 Lily Whitcombe (Sturt)
02/03/2005 | 173cm | Defender

Stats: 6.7 disposals, 1.3 marks, 1.7 rebound 50s

Whitcombe continued her thankless, but important role as a lockdown defender. She often had some big tasks on some quality forwards and kept them quiet, while being that calm and composed user in the defensive 50. She might not come with the frills that others possess, but she does not make too many mistakes, and is ultra competitive one-on-one. The top-ager looks comfortable inside the defensive 50.

#30 Lucy Boyd (West Adelaide)
12/10/2006 | 172cm | Forward

Stats: 4.5 disposals, 1.0 marks, 4.0 tackles, 4.0 hitouts, 2 goals, 2 behinds (two games)

After missing the first game against Western Australia, Boyd returned via the Under 23s friendly, then played in the last two carnival matches. After looking a little rusty against Vic Metro, Boyd was more dangerous against Queensland, kicking 2.1 as a key target inside 50. Capable of playing at both ends, she has another year of development to go, and will be one to watch next year.

#31 Lauren Young (West Adelaide)
16/09/2005 | 178cm | Forward

Stats: 17.3 disposals, 7.0 marks, 3.0 tackles, 2.3 inside 50s, 9 goals, 3 behinds

Along with Goody is right in the mix for not only the South Australian MVP, but overall carnival MVP and has an All-Australian spot locked in. Averaging three goals per game – including hauls of five and three in her first two games – Young also handed off many more when she could have filled her boots with some ridiculous numbers. Despite missing last year due to injury, the top draft talent has not missed a beat and was the spearhead of the South Australian attack.

#32 Jemma Charity (WWT Eagles)
06/06/2006 | 170cm | Defender

Stats: 16.3 disposals, 4.7 marks, 2.3 tackles, 1.0 inside 50s, 4.0 rebound 50s, 1 behind

Missing out in her double bottom-age year despite being named in the squad due to the strength of the squad, Charity stepped straight in from game one and played all three this year. Though known for her work up the other end with the Eagles, Charity showcased her versatility playing as a defender, and both intercepted and distributed from defence. She was one of the more consistent defenders this tournament and has really bolstered her draft stocks for 2024.

#39 Charlotte Riggs (Central District)
02/11/2006 | 179cm | Defender

Stats: 7.3 disposals, 2.0 marks, 3.1 tackles, 3.0 rebound 50s

Coming off an ankle injury in the SANFLW Grand Final, Riggs was rested for the Under 23s friendly, but returned to play a full carnival. Though not having massive games, she still had some great movements, with strong hands overhead, and then getting her hands dirty at ground level. A key position player who will be among the best in 2024, and incredibly versatile, with an ability to play on all three lines.

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