State Academy notes: 2024 WAFLW – Round 8

WESTERN Australia’s State Academy members continued their seasons for Round 8 of the WAFL Women’s, with just one more round until the league-wide bye. While Zippy Fish was among those not out there, the other two West Australian AFLW Academy members stood up in their games.

  • Team
  • East Perth
  • East Fremantle

East Perth:

#3 Lucy Greenwood (Forward/Midfielder)
Stats: 17 disposals, 7 tackles, 3 inside 50s, 1 goal

The talented bottom-age Royal spent more time in midfield this week and held her own against bigger and stronger opponents. Greenwood showed her class last in the first term, kicking a nice goal from 40m on the run. Each time she goes near it, exciting things happen and she is one who will be one to watch as East Perth develop. Very quick to dispose of the ball and as clean as anyone else running around.

East Fremantle:

#12 Taya Chambers (Defender/Midfielder)
Stats: 7 disposals, 2 marks, 2 tackles

Followed Greenwood into the midfield in the fourth term to start at the centre bounce which was a change of scenery for the tall defender. She did not win a lot of it, but took a nice intercept mark early, and had an eye-catching moment late in the second term by running off half-back, sidestepping an opponent and even taking a bounce.

#21 Tiani Teakle (Forward)
Stats: 11 disposals, 2 marks, 4 hitouts

The tall foward provided a target inside 50 even though she did not end up converting any majors. A snap off a step midway through the second term registered the one behind and a set shot from 25m out late in the third term was marked on the line. Teakle pushed up the ground at times to get involved, and produced a slick handball at half-forward under pressure late in the game.

#29 Natasha Entwistle (Defender)
Stats: 16 disposals, 4 marks, 7 tackles

Provided a good amount of run and carry from defence, and brought the heat with enormous defensive pressure. Her execution under pressure at times wa not as efficient as usual, but her follow-up and contest-to-contest work in the back half of the ground was really impressive. Provided a presence in the air and at ground level with her attack on the ball and ball carrier.

#39 Grace Freeman (Forward)
Stats: 5 disposals, 1 goal, 2 behinds

Coming in for her first League game of 2024 after playing one Rogers Cup match last week, Freeman had her first impact with a huge tackle in the opening term, but it was deemed a dump tackle. She had a set shot chain in the ninth minute of the second term that missed, but finished off with a classy snap just outside the goalsquare in traffic later that quarter.

  • Team
  • Swan Districts
  • West Perth

Swan Districts:

#5 Carys D’Addario (Midfielder/Forward)
Stats: 17 disposals, 2 marks, 4 tackles, 3 inside 50s

D’Addario provides a consistent level of contested pressure each and every week, always looking to attack it hard. Her work through the middle often combining with Lily Paterson is telling, and she has a thumping kick that can clear the danger zone. MIdway through the second term she took a nice mark against Norbury by protecting the ball drop, and delivered cleanly by foot. Not her biggest game, but was still very impressive nonetheless.

West Perth:

#1 Megan Norbury (Wing)
Stats: 15 disposals, 3 marks, 2 tackles, 6 inside 50s

Norbury produced one of her best games in recent times, making just about every post a winner. She was sizzling with her disposal, delivering with precision by both hand or foot, and even pulled out the party tricks at times. Her run-and-gun game was back, confidence was up and she looked every bit the high-upside player she has threatened to be. Her disposal was the standout aspect, but she took the game on and was clean each time she went near it.

#7 Mia Russo (Forward/Midfielder)
Stats: 17 disposals, 3 marks, 3 tackles, 4 inside 50s, 1 goal

Starting forward and rolling into the midfield rotation, Russo once again found her fair share of the ball. She showed strong hands overhead and backs her speed to take on the opposition. Late in the game, Russo got on the board with a great running goal – her third of the WAFLW season – and then went straight back to the middle and won the subsequent clearance as well.

  • Team
  • Subiaco
  • South Fremantle


#22 Olivia Wolmarans (Ruck/Forward)
Stats: 12 disposals, 4 tackles, 11 hitouts, 2 behinds

Wolmarans started in the ruck as she has the last few weeks, then pushed forward to have a couple of set shots on goal in the second half. Though not winning a lot of it, Wolmarans was still clean below her knees and provided great pressure on the opposition defence. A booming kick of the ball, Wolmarans had her moments, even if she was up against more experienced opposition at times.

South Fremantle:

#4 Noa McNaughton (Midfielder/Forward)
Stats: 19 disposals, 3 marks, 4 tackles, 3 inside 50s

McNaughton started the match on-ball rather than waiting until later in the game, and as able to win her first share of the pill in the opening term. Her pressure is an obvious strength in her game, and she evades opponents with ease. She can take some good marks and win it in close or on the outside, setting up a goal to Kahra Sprylan through her repeat pressure acts deep inside 50.

#9 Kate Newson (Ruck/Forward)
Stats: 3 disposals, 13 hitouts

Newson started in the ruck coming into the side and used her height to advantage at times. She was fairly quiet outside the ruck stoppage, but got first hands to it on a number of occasions to help her midfielders.

#19 Zoe Keley (Forward)
Stats: 9 disposals, 1 mark, 1 tackle, 3 hitouts

Playing full-forward, Keley worked hard to provide a leading target in a forwardline with multiple options. She took forward ruck stoppages as well, and looked comfortable roaming around and looking to bounce on loose balls at ground level.

#33/36 Molly O’Hehir (Midfielder)
Stats: 30 disposals, 3 marks, 5 tackles, 9 inside 50s

It was a phenomenal performance from O’Hehir who dominated from stat until finish. She lifted the team up when Subiaco was challenging and tore through the Lions with her metres gained. Often taking a couple of bounces and backing herself, the 179cm talent did just about everything. She took some strong marks, laid bone-crunching tackles and pumped the ball inside 50, setting up a couple of goals directly, as well as a few more indirectly. The clear best-afield.

  • Team
  • Claremont
  • Peel Thunder

By: Liam Badkin


#29 Claudia Wright (Midfielder)
Stats: 30 disposals, 9 marks, 6 tackles, 11 inside 50s, 1 goal, 2 behinds

The premier ball winner on the ground, Wright found herself in all the right places during Claremont’s big win over the weekend. Finishing with a game-high 30 disposals, Wright drove the ball forward at all costs, finding space ahead of the ball and helping her side move the ball into their forwardline with ease. With a whopping 11 inside 50s, she popped up everywhere, keeping her arms free and brushing off any would-be tacklers to rack up the metres gained in the process. Wright also chimed in for a classy major, and could have had an even bigger day with two behinds to her name too.

#33 Juliet Kelly (Defender/Midfielder)
Stats: 25 disposals, 3 marks, 3 tackles

Kelly used her elite running ability to break lines and play a crucial role in Claremont’s win over the Thunder. Her change of direction was excellent, evading defenders and giving herself plenty of time and space with ball in hand. Although slightly handball heavy (17 of her 25 disposals), she was excellent in and around the contest, never looking rushed with the ball and finding an open teammate more often than not. Her zippy pace was on display as she dodged the outstretched arms of would-be tacklers, and she helped set up plenty of plays.

Peel Thunder:

#2 Evie Cowcher (Defender/Midfielder)
Stats: 25 disposals, 5 marks, 5 tackles

Again a shining light on a tough day for the Thunder, Cowcher was her usual busy self around the ground against Claremont. Working hard from contest to contest, she was everywhere at times for Peel, working hard back into defence to try and drive the ball forward wherever possible. Although there were some mistakes thrown in there when trying to make attacking plays, it was not for a lack of trying given the rest of her team struggled to generate inside 50s as well. A well deserved highlight came towards the end of the game, sitting on an opponent’s back for a screamer on the wing, as a mark that will be on a few highlight reels come season’s end.

#4 Holly Britton (Midfielder)
Stats: 15 disposals, 4 marks, 1 tackle

Although she may not have found as much of the ball as she would have liked, Britton was strong around the contest and determined to create something for the Thunder. Making aggressive runs off half-back to try and break the stagnant nature of the game, she did not always pull off what she was trying to achieve, but the speed and intent were evident to everyone watching. She finished the game with 15 disposals and four marks, including a strong contested grab late in the match.

#8 Dakota Sexton (Defender)
Stats: 13 disposals, 4 marks, 3 tackles

Despite not being among the highest disposal getters on the ground, Sexton was certainly one of her side’s best. Doing some crucial work on the last line of defence, she saved several scores with her ability to gather the ball in defensive 50 and find a target either by hand or foot. She looked strong through contact and was desperate to not concede a score, although she was up against it given the sheer number of inside 50s the Thunder conceded. Sexton gave it her all and finished the contest with 13 disposals and some important plays around the ground.

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