Stoppage dominance key to Crows’ win

A REMARKABLE stoppage differential in both the hitouts and clearances helped Adelaide defeat a gallant West Coast on the road, securing the all-important minor premiership. Though many expected the Crows to romp to an easy victory over the bottom four side, the Eagles never gave in, and Adelaide fought to the line to win, 11.5 (71) to 6.9 (45).

The second term of 6.0 to 2.1 proved the difference in the game, with the Crows only kicking 5.5 to the Eagles’ 4.8 – just three points more – for the remaining three quarters. With the minor premiership – and a potential home grand final should they make it, Adelaide had its work cut out for itself against a side with only pride on the line.

Ultimately, it was the midfield that stepped up to the plate when it counted, dominating the inside game with a plus-39 advantage in hitouts, plus-17 differential in clearances and plus-seven in centre clearances.

Though clearances are not always the best indicator of winning sides this year, Adelaide certainly made it count, kicking three goals from centre clearances, at an average of a goal every 3.7 centre clearance. Overall, the Crows kicked seven goals from 26 clearances, which is an identical ratio.

FUN FACT: Adelaide kicked seven goals from 26 clearances at an average of a goal every 3.71 clearances.

Crows talented forward/midfielder Danielle Ponter had a massive six centre clearances – more than the entire Eagles outfit and over half of the Crows’ total – with eight clearances for the match. Though she only had the 14 disposals, she also had four score involvements and laid six tackles.

Usual inside ball-winners Ebony Marinoff and Teah Charlton combined for 12 clearances, while laying eight tackles each. They had 10 score involvements between them. In the ruck, Montana McKinnon showed why she should be a lock in Season 9 for the Crows, racking up 35 hitouts from 15 disposals, three marks, three tackles and six score involvements.

By securing the win, Adelaide now hosts Brisbane in the qualifying final next week. Should the Crows win, they will remain in South Australia for a home preliminary final a fortnight later, and any grand final place will ensure another decider in the City of Churches.

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