From bridesmaids to top Cats, Lions are Queens of the Jungle again
BRISBANE Lions are the Queens of the AFL Women’s once again, defeating North Melbourne by 17 points at Ikon Park today to claim their second ever premiership.
In a match befitting of its AFLW Grand Final name, it was a hard-fought match that was not determined until the final quarter where Brisbane kicked four goals to nil – including back-to-back goals to Dakota Davidson to run away with the contest, 7.2 (44) to 4.3 (27). Captain Bre Koenen was unanimously voted in as best on ground for her 19 disposals, seven marks, 10 tackles and kicked the game sealer in the final minute.
It was tight, tough and congested early. Although both sides had plenty of inside 50 chances, but both sides’ intercepting defenders – particularly the likes of Koenen, Shannon Campbell, Emma Kearney and Jasmine Ferguson – running rampant but defensive pressure was high across the ground.
As the seconds ticked down to quarter time it was looking like there may be no score at all in the first quarter, but with just under two minutes to go Jasmine Garner slotted through a major in what was the only score of the quarter to give North Melbourne a narrow lead at the first change.
After it initially looking like that Garner goal was the catalyst North Melbourne needed to really keep momentum in their favour, Brisbane got the spark of magic the Lions required through Charlotte Mullins and were finally on the board early in the second term.
However Garner was quick to crush any new found spark the Lions had mustered with her second goal of the game to cement the Kangaroos’ forward territory dominance on the scoreboard.
As the quarter progressed the forward half territory game started to swing in Brisbane’s favour, but it took them a long time to finally make the most of it on the scoreboard. They finally did with about three minutes to go when Ellie Hampson slotted one through, which returned the margin to a mere point.
Hampson’s goal would be the last score for the half, and as such North Melbourne’s lead was now only a single point at the main break.
North Melbourne started the second half with more of the forward 50 momentum but could not make it count with no goals coming from their six early inside 50s. Brisbane were then able to work it down the other end and thanks to Orla O’Dwyer slotted through a major from Brisbane’s first inside 50 of the quarter to give the Lions the lead.
Although much of the third term was spent in Brisbane’s forward half, the Kangaroos worked the ball back up their end late in the quarter, and thanks to Kate Shierlaw finally got a major in the third term and the lead was once again theirs.
They got a second for the term only minutes later thanks to some strong tackle work from Alice O’Loughlin, and things were starting to swing back in the home side’s favour.
At the final change the Roos’ lead was out to seven points, but it really was still anyone’s game.
Brisbane struck first in the last quarter thanks to Davidson, and the margin was back to one point.
Although there were some hairy moments for the Lions through the middle part of the final quarter, Davidson then slotted through a second goal for the term and retook the lead.
Hampson added to her tally to make it three final quarter goals for the Lions, and momentum was very much with the Lions with only a couple of minutes to go.
The Lions were not done there, with skipper Koenen slotting through a major with under a minute to go to seal the win for the Lions.
NORTH MELBOURNE 1.0 | 2.2 | 4.3 | 4.3 (27)
BRISBANE 0.0 | 2.1 | 3.2 | 7.2 (44)
North Melbourne: J. Garner 2, K. Shierlaw, A. O’Loughlin
Brisbane: D. Davidson 2, E. Hampson 2, B. Koenen, C. Mullins, O. O’Dwyer
North Melbourne: J. Garner, A. O’Loughlin, M. King, A. Riddell, K. Rennie
Brisbane: B. Koenen, I. Dawes, N. Grider, A. Anderson, C. Hodder