WAFLW R8 wrap: Bulldogs back in top four after Subi squeeze

REIGNING preliminary finalist South Fremantle is back in business after winning its third consecutive match, and fourth in five games to sit inside the top four on the WAFL Women’s ladder. The Bulldogs have lost to the top three sides but beaten the bottom four teams at the midway point of the season with seventh placed East Perth to come next week.

Top AFLW draft prospect Molly O’Hehir put on a clinic against the Lions, providing constant run and drive, winning the ball both on the inside and outside. She played a direct hand in multiple goals, as well as assisting in scoring chains, while taking several bursting multi-bounce runs. Her defensive game was just as good throughout the contest as she and fellow State Academy member Noa McNaughton both brought the heat around the ball.

It was Subiaco who struck first after several South Fremantle turnovers inside the defensive 50, where winger Hayley Corlett would kick the first of her three goals. Though the Bulldogs would have their own chances, it was not until Zoe Huggett converted a set shot off a neat Lauren Vecchio short pass that the visitors got a major on the board.

Five minutes later, great pressure inside 50 from McNaughton set up a clever Kahra Sprylan goal and the Doggies headed into the first break up by four points. Within three minutes, O’Hehir drilled a pass into Huggett who kicked her second goal, only for it to be counted by Corlett a few minutes later. Her ability to find space and bomb long for it to bounce home was keeping her side in it.

Before half-time, Corlett would have her third goal, but not before another goal assist from O’Hehir bulleted another kick straight onto the chest of the leading Poppy Stockwell. For all of Corlett’s hard work and singlehandedly ticking over the goals, salt was rubbed into the wound late when Sprylan produced an important set shot goal to stretch the buffer to 10 points at the main break.

The scoring died down in the third term with a major each from the two sides, with Huggett yet again finding the big sticks, with an early O’Hehir clearance leading to the tall forward finishing off well. However despite the Bulldogs having the forward half dominance, Subiaco would not go away with Krstel Petrevski and Eva Popovsky taking control on-ball and Corlett providing the outlet.

A late goal to Taya Strickland put the deficit back to eight points at the final break, giving the Lions a sniff. South Fremantle peppered the goals in the final term early, and when Stockwell missed a set shot at the 13-minute mark, the lead was still at 11 points. However a costly turnover a minute later proved fatal for the Lions’ chances with Stockwell converting a much easier set shot to seal the game.

Corlett almost kicked a fourth late in the match but the bounce went astray and through for a behind, though the winger was easily Subiaco’s most damaging player. Petrevski and Popovsky were also consistent through the midfield, with Clare McCarthy and Jess Pillera among the best.

For the winners, O’Hehir starred racking up 33 disposals, five marks and eight tackles in the win, while McNaughton largely played through midfield and finished with 21 disposals, three marks and five tackles. Vecchio was a playmaker in the front half alongside Stockwell and Sprylan who both slotted two goals, as Huggett kicked the three.

SUBIACO 1.3 | 3.4 | 4.7 | 4.8 (32)
SOUTH FREMANTLE 2.1 | 5.2 | 6.3 | 7.6 (48)

H. Corlett 3, T. Strickland
South Fremantle: Z. Huggett 3, K. Sprylan 2, P. Stockwell 2

Subiaco: H. Corlett, K. Petrevski, E. Popovsky, C. McCarthy, J. Pillera
South Fremantle:
M. O’Hehir, N. McNaughton, P. Stockwell, K. Sprylan, L. Vecchio


East Fremantle brought East Perth back down to earth after the Royals’ maiden win last week, storming to a nine-goal victory in their clash. The Sharks kicked 6.6 to 0.1 after quarter time, with Philipa Seth (three goals), Emmelie Fiedler (two) and Mylee Leitch (two) all prominent goalkickers.

Sharks skipper Ashleigh Gomes (28 disposals, three marks and seven tackles) was a huge ball-winner once again, well supported by the likes of Beth Beckett, Chloe Wrigley and Amber Kinnane who all racked up more than 20 touches. Royals midfielder Jess Verbrugge was the best for the losers with 21 touches, while dangerous forward Lucy Greenwood was her side’s only goalkicker and had 16 disposals and laid seven tackles.

West Perth snapped a two-game losing streak to hold onto third spot on the ladder with a comprehensive 57-point win over Swan Districts. The Falcons kicked away after an inaccurate first term to finish with eight goals to one after quarter time and four goals to nil in the second half. Imahra Cameron (four goals) was simply sensational inside 50 in the 10.14 (74) to 1.11 (17) win.

Swan Districts was its own worst enemy at times with 11 behinds from 12 scoring shots, as talented midfielder Lily Paterson racked up 36 touches and six marks, but also kicked six behinds. Cameron had 21 disposals from 4.3, while Emily Bennett and Taylor Ferguson were among the bigger ball-winners. Brooke Hongell had plenty of chances but was also inaccurate with 1.5, while Carys D’Addario and Emma Humphries were solid for the Swans.

As anticipated, ladder leaders Claremont made light work of last placed Peel Thunder, recording a 64-point win. The Tigers were inaccurate at times booting 9.12 (66) but kept Peel scoreless in the first half, and to only two behinds for the entire match. They also dominated the inside 50 count (42-15), and had 87 more disposals in the win.

Claudia Wright (31 disposals, nine marks, six tackles and a goal) was outstanding, while fellow midfielders Jayme Harken, Kate Orme and Emily Bonser all found truckloads of the ball. Teenagers Juliet Kelly and Eva O’Donnell were damaging across the ground. For the Thunder, the usual suspects wee busy with Ebony Bilcich, Evie Cowcher and Ebony Dowson all recording 20-plus disposals.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments