Eagles fly into semis as Goannas stay alive
EAST Coast Eagles moved to within one win of another AFL Sydney Women’s Premier League Grand Final after defeating Manly Warringah Wolves by 17 points in the qualifying final on the weekend. The Eagles will take on minor premiers UTS Bats for a spot in the decider, while the Wolves face off against Macquarie University Goannas who knocked off Sydney University in the elimination final.
Manly Warringah started off its campaign in style with a goal to Lauren Bull in the opening minute of the game. In what was a hotly contested first term, Abbey Martin responded a few minutes down the other end. Though both sides had their chances – especially the Wolves – it was the Eagles who, through a 50m penalty to Amelie Prosser-Shaw, kicked their second goal.
It would give the Eagles confidence going into the second term, where Caitlin Reid plucked out a contested mark in a pack and made no mistake from close range. Then when Erin Naden nailed an opponent inside 50 and fully delivered from the set shot, the reigning premiers were up and about. The lead got out to three goals by the half-time break and the favourites looked in control.
Just when the Wolves looked in a bit of trouble, Bull converted a set shot from a tight angle five minutes into the third quarter. With the momentum on their side, the Wolves continued to dig deep, and got reward for effort via London Ashcroft who roosted home a massive goal. Trailing by just five points at the final break, the Wolves were still in with a sniff.
Unfortunately that hope would soon turn when Martin won the ball goalside against her opponent, drew the defender and handballed to the loose Caitlin Davidson. The competition’s leading goalkicker needed no time to snap home a major and reinvigorate the Eagles. By the five-minute mark, Laura Moran had converted a sixth goal, and the lead was out to an equal game-high 18 points again.
That was enough to get the job done with the Eagles coming away with the 6.3 (39) to 3.4 (22) victory. Renee Tomkins was named best on in the victory, with Prosser-Shaw and Jess Whelan also impressive. Unsurprisingly, the two Caitlin’s up forward – Reid and Davidson – also impressed the coaches.
For the Wolves, Bull was the only multiple goalkicker with two majors, as top-age draft hopeful Holly Cooper was among the better players. Andrea Roditis and Hannah Woolf maintained their strong seasons despite the loss.
EAST COAST EAGLES 2.1 | 4.3 | 4.3 | 6.3 (39)
MANLY WARRINGAH WOLVES 1.2 | 1.3 | 3.4 | 3.4 (22)
East Coast: C. Reid, A. Martin, L. Moran, E. Naden, A. Prosser-Shaw, C. Davidson
Manly Warringah: L. Bull 2, L. Ashcroft
East Coast: R. Tomkins, A. Prosser-Shaw, J. Whelan, C. Reid, C. Davidson
Manly Warringah: A. Roditis, H. Woolf, J. Green, J. Layton, H. Cooper
AROUND THE GROUNDS
Macquarie University kept its premiership hopes alive with a hard-fought 15-point win over Sydney University. The fourth placed side was level with the Students at the main break, but kicked away in the third term to stretch the margin out to a 13-point lead. Though inaccuracy kept the opposition in it, Macquarie University conceded one behind in the second half to run away with the 5.12 (42) to 4.3 (27) win.
Sophie Kavanagh booted two goals in the win, with former GWS GIANTS skipper Amanda Farrugia, and Charlotte Latsombath kicking goals and also being named among the best. Sera Kaukiono was impressive in the win for the Goannas, while Allies’ Under 18s representative Megan Mifsud also caught the coaches eye.
For the Students, Arabella Price was named as her team’s best, with Mikaela Mahony booting two of her side’s four goals. Skipper Maryanne Harley, as well as Natalie Murray and Keiley Mead were also among the better players for the losing side.
MACQUARIE UNIVERSITY 1.3 | 3.8 | 5.10 | 5.12 (42)
SYDNEY UNIVERSITY 2.2 | 4.2 | 4.3 | 4.3 (27)
Macquarie University: S. Kavanagh 2, A. Farrugia, M Jansen, C. Latsombath
Sydney University: M. Mahony 2, S. Gillon, S. Tutt
Macquarie University: C. Latsombath, A. Farrugia, S. Kaukiono, M. Mifsud, S. Brown
Sydney University: A. Price, N. Murray, M. Harley, M. Mahony, K. Mead