EASTERN Allies have started the AFL Women’s Under 18s Championships off with a good win over Central Allies on the back of a three goals to zero final term. Lillian Doyle was the inspiration in the last term, nailing two majors and three for the game, while Alyce Parker was superb through midfield.
The Central Allies started strongly as Parker won the opening two clearances. She led the team through the midfield and her work ended up leading to a goal on the board in the opening couple of minutes courtesy of a great snap which saw a tussle in the goal square and a goal to Brea Quinlivan. Chloe Haines‘ ability to cover the ground was evident early on, taking an intercept mark at half-back, then finding herself on the receiving end of a free kick down forward. Her set shot just missed, but Eastern Allies were doing all the attacking. Running into another open goal, Hannah Munyard stopped her in her tracks. Doyle then made it two with a goal on the line courtesy of a great opportune kick. Then in one of the Central Allies’ first opportunities, dominant goal kicker, Katelyn Rosenzweig stepped up for a strong mark, but her set shot faded. South Australian captain Esther Boles was battling away, continually cracking in hard. The quarter came to an abrupt end after the scoreboard clock did not start for some time and quarter time siren sounded just five and a half minutes in to the term with Eastern Allies leading by 11 points.
The second term started with a couple of shots on goal to the Eastern Allies including a snap from Alyce Parker off the deck. It resulted in a behind, and then the work of Arthurina Moreen off half-back to clear by breaking the lines was impressive. Parker’s work through congestion was very eye-catching, managing to remain calm under pressure and somehow got out of a stoppage with four opposition players surrounding her. A subsequent shot on goal fell short, as did Chloe Haines’ snap which went out on the full and then dribbled a behind shortly after. All the play was up the Eastern Allies’ end but they were not capitalising on their chances. Then Brianna McFarlane did capitalise, with a flying shot on goal that managed to bounce through before a desperate defender could touch it. Rosenzweig had a chance to get on the board for Central Allies late in the quarter but her shot drifted wide for another behind. Then a kick forward put it to the advantage of Moreen who won a free kick then converted the set shot perfectly. It was the last meaningful disposal of the game, with Moreen dragging her team back to within 13 points at the main break. Central Allies’ star Nikki Gore had a strong second term, lifting up and maintaining intensity across the term.
McFarlane started the third term how she left off in the second term, having a shot on goal. It dropped short, but Eastern Allies were still pushing hard early in the opening couple of minutes. Jemima Wrigley produced a good tackle to dispossess her opponent and have a shot on goal, but it too just fell short. Doyle had a shot for her second but it also just missed. Boles and Montanna McKinnon were working hard on the wing to make something happen, but the strength of the Eastern Allies defence repelled their efforts. Madeline Gault was having a nice patch in the third term, going in hard and winning some possessions through hard running. Parker had a spell on the bench then immediately had an impact upon return late in the quarter, taking a strong mark on the lead and having a set shot from long range. It was just touched on the line and brought down. Gore continued to have the ball on a string, running hard and dropping back into defence to help out her defenders. Jaimi Tabb had a rare inside 50 for the Central Allies, but once again Eastern Allies’ defence was up to the task. Gore’s fierce tackling was on show on the wing and she was beginning to have a massive influence on the game and her efforts led to Rosenzweig pounced with the final kick of the third quarter to add a bit of spice to the final term.
The final term continued as had been the game so far with Eastern Allies taking control early. Doyle pounced on a loose ball and ran into goal kicking a major. McKinnon was strong in the opening minutes, taking a powerful mark at half-back, while Gault was busy in midfield. But Eastern Allies’ relentless attack on the ball was starting to pay dividends on the scoreboard, with Zoe Hurrell kicking a great goal on the run. Then Doyle made it two for the term and three for the game, with a great dribble goal for Eastern Allies’ sixth of the game. But not to lie down without a fight, a long kick inside 50 found Rosenzweig. Unfortunately her shot missed, but Central Allies were beginning to even out the contest in the quarter. It would not be enough though, held goalless in the final term, going down 6.8 (44) to 2.4 (16). Gore, Rosenzweig and Boles were clear standouts for the Central Allies.
EASTERN ALLIES 2.1 | 3.4 | 3.5 | 6.8 (44)
CENTRAL ALLIES 0.2 | 1.3 | 2.3 | 2.4 (16)
EASTERN ALLIES: Lillian Doyle 3, Zoe Hurrell, Brea Quinlivan, Brianna McFarlane.
CENTRAL ALLIES: Arthurina Moreen, Katelyn Rosenzweig.
EASTERN ALLIES: Lillian Doyle, Alyce Parker, Chloe Haines, Zoe HurRell, Brianna McFarlane.
CENTRAL ALLIES: Nikki Gore, Katelyn Rosenzweig, Esther Boles, Montana McKinnon, Arthurina Moreen.