Tag: Abbie McKay

Season reviews: TAC Cup Girls – Sandringham Dragons

THE Sandringham Dragons nearly earned themselves a grand final berth with a strong run home. They won six straight games to end their season on a high note, with half of those wins being more than 50 points. The Dragons only lost to the two teams above them on the ladder, demonstrating their ability to put away weaker sides and show their strength in the competition.

Position: 3rd
Win-loss: 7-2
Percentage: 208%

Results:

R1: lost to Geelong Falcons by 20 points
R2: defeated Oakleigh Chargers by 33 points
R3: lost to Northern Knights by 30 points
R4: defeated Dandenong Stingrays by 15 points
R5: defeated Calder Cannons by 55 points
R6: defeated Murray Bushrangers by 15 points
R7: defeated Western Jets by 50 points
R8: defeated Bendigo Pioneers by 71 points
R9: defeated Gippsland Power by 24 points

Key players:

Eleanor Brown: Brown was a prolific ball-user throughout the season, with her clean hands and long kicks allowing swift ball movement. She was a ball magnet in the midfield and could cover ground really well to back up her work in key areas of the ground. Her strong hands were also key in the season, as she took many intercept marks to help penetrate the ball forward for her teammates. Brown has had a busy off-season already, playing a game for both Vic Metro and the Southern Saints in the VFLW, excelling in both matches.

Bella Eddey: Eddey was a great user of the footy in the forward line, often getting on the end of a lot of goals throughout the season. She worked hard in and under the contests to win the footy and also presented well at forward entries to ensure that she could contribute to the Dragons’ fierce attacking. Has a huge tank and can run up and down the ground with the same intensity and effort throughout the game. Eddey was rewarded for her six goals from seven games in the TAC Cup Girls season with a spot in the Vic Metro U16 side in the AFL Women’s National Under 16 Championships.

Jemma Owen: Owen was a great leader for the Dragons and seemed to improve as the season went on. She played every game for Sandringham and was versatile in her approach to winning the football. Traditionally an inside midfielder, Owen always went in hard for the footy and tackled strongly. But she could also work up the ground and make an impact up forward, as she kicked six goals for the season. A hard runner, Owen always did her best to ensure she was first at the footy, which put immense pressure on the opposition. The Dragons captain has already had the opportunity to show off her skills on the big stage, as she lined up for Vic Metro at GMHBA Stadium in Series One of the AFL Women’s National Under 18 Championships.

Abbie McKay: A midfielder that loved to take the game on, McKay was a vital member in the Dragons’ squad. She had the ability to move the ball swiftly through the corridor, which was testament to her clean hands and precise kicking. Had the ability to float into defence where she would use those same attributes as well as strong hands to mop up the footy well for Sandringham. McKay often demonstrated good power to burst out of a stoppage and her work in close was an asset of her game. She was able to display her signature style of football in Vic Metro’s win over Vic Country at GMHBA Stadium, and is training with Carlton’s VFLW side in a bid to play with the club that her father played for.

Eliza McNamara: An exciting young midfielder that showed class and skill on the field. McNamara showed impressive endurance and great ball movement throughout the season, and was a key cog in the Sandringham midfield. She often provided excellently delivered kicks to her teammates and her hands in close were exceptional. It was difficult to identify that McNamara was a bottom-ager as her ball-use and ability to fight hard for the footy against a bigger body displayed extreme maturity on her behalf. Testament to this, she got to pull on the big ‘V’ and run out with Vic Metro in the AFL Women’s National Under 16 Championships.

Holly Bate: Bate was the TAC Cup Girls leading goal kicker of the season, booting through 18 goals from nine games. She particularly hit her straps inside 50 towards the end of the season, where she backed up a five goal performance with a seven goal performance in two consecutive weeks. Bate provided a good target up forward for the Dragons, as she often positioned herself well against an opponent or did enough to put pressure on them to turn the ball over. Her season was capped off with a spot in the Vic Metro side in the AFL Women’s National Under 18 Championships.

Alice Burke: Playing in defence, the Vic Metro Under 16s representative became one of the shining lights throughout a positive season, making the switch from the round ball game to seem natural in the back half. She rebounded well and pushed up the ground when required, named among the best on a number of occasions. One of a number of Under 16s that will continue to develop at the club holding out hope for sustained success.

Season summary:

The Dragons had a strong season where they were able to record some big winning margins and some narrow losing ones. With a long list of players, the Dragons had plenty of options to choose from each week and used young players like Winnie Laing, Sarah Hartwig and Alice Burke to create some excitement in their line-up. With a strong 2018 season, they are right in the mix for a top two spot next year.

Scouting notes: National AFLW Under 18s Championships

VIC Metro made it two from two when it backed up its U16s victory with a win against Vic Country. It was a tight and heated battle throughout, but Metro prevailed thanks to some magic from captain, Maddy PrespakisPeter Williams (Country) and Julia Montesano (Metro) were there to witness the action, and took notes on the players, based on their opinions.

 

Vic Country: 

#1 Shelley Heath

The speedster showed off her trademark running game along the wing and half-back, often picking up the loose ball, taking the game on and booting long inside 50. She particularly came alive in the fourth quarter with a couple of long kicks after runs, but the Metro defence was up to the task, with Georgia Macpherson intercepting a good kick deep.

#2 Julia Harvey

Looked busy early and worked hard across the game, noticeable in bright green boots. She tried to have a shot on goal inside 50 in the first term but was run down and caught holding the ball. Just found space inside 50 and had a shot which dropped short in the second term, and a snap which missed. While she did not kick a goal, she was having shots on goal and just buzzing around. She laid a number of good tackles as well, applying good defensive pressure, before copping a knock in the final term on the wing.

#3 Kodi Jacques

Went in very hard early, hitting the packs, and copped a knock but got up. Continued to battle hard on the inside.

#5 Emily Haeusler

Won a hard ball at half-back in the second term and nullified the contest by forcing a throw-in. She then laid a great run-down tackle on Marnie Jarvis in the third term to win a free inside defensive 50.

#6 Tyla Hanks

Played to expectations and put in a four quarter effort. She was often played down forward as others were tried in the midfield roles, but led up the ground and impacted at half-forward. Moved onto the wing and had a number of touches and worked hard, winning the ball on a wing and then somehow receiving it back inside 50. Had a great kick to Julia Harvey in the second term inside 50, and took a good contested mark under pressure in the third term and delivered it lace out to a leading Rebecca Webster inside 50. Her one set shot from 45 metres missed to the right.

#7 Olivia Purcell

By the end of the game she was one of Country’s highest possession winners with Jordyn Allen. Worked really hard on the inside and continually copped a few hard knocks burrowing under the packs or diving on the footy. She charged out of the midfield and would pump the ball long, turning it over a few times, but was putting it to dangerous areas inside 50. She had a set shot from 40 metres and delivered late in the game after taking a contested mark. One of Country’s better players in the end who consistently put pressure on the ball carrier.

#8 Sophie Van De Heuvel

Had a big run-down tackle in the first term but was found to have caught her opponent high. She used the ball well when she won it, and took a good mark at half-forward in the final term with a kick inside 50.

#9 Nina Morrison

One of the more influential Country players in the first half, constantly putting on the jets and sprinting away through midfield. She showed quick hands and dished off to teammates on the outside, and took a good mark in the second term and not breaking stride, kicked long inside 50. She also produced a fantastic smother on Madison Prespakis at half-forward and let her know about it. Laid a great tackle in the fourth term to win a free kick.

#10 Nikia Webber

Played a good balance of offence and defence, unlucky not to kick a goal. Had a couple of shots with one snap in the final term missing to the left, and an early shot smothered, with a follow-up kick to the goal square. She provided forward pressure on the ball carrier throughout the match.

#11 Lauren Butler

A hard worker for four quarters, she ran throughout the game just covering a lot of ground and putting pressure on her opponents. She was good one-on-one in defence, punching it away, and also showed nice agility to sidestep an opponent and move through traffic. In the fourth term she harassed multiple ball carriers on the wing, forcing them to handball quickly with less time to decide on an option.

#14 Jordyn Allen

One of the best Country players on the day, Allen stood up throughout the game and took some really good intercept marks in the middle of the ground. She used the ball fairly well under pressure and looked to kick long to half-forward or deep inside 50. Her decision making was good and when many others went quiet in the second half, she was still plugging along. Captain of Vic Country, you can see why with the amount of work she displayed throughout the match.

#16 Molly McDonald

Started in the midfield and had some impressive kicks in the opening term. She linked up well in the chain from midfield to half-forward and won a number of possessions.

#19 Tarryn Love

Ran hard in the second term and was involved in a couple of possessions towards goal in the second term, but could not get enough space to kick so had to give off a quick handball. Continued to tackle hard and put pressure on her opponents.

#20 Isabella Shannon

Played predominantly forward and up on the wing, Shannon won a free kick 35 metres out, but her set shot just drifted to the left. She played a good pressure game up the field, laying a couple of tackles on the wing.

#21 Rene Caris

An impressive performance from the ruck. She showed good mobility both in the air and at ground level and played a consistent game throughout. She took a couple of strong marks and provided a target around the ground. Caris was clean at ground level and provided good second efforts after the ruck contest. Smart with her tap placements.

#22 Rebecca Webster

Had a great chase and run-down tackle on an opponent to stop a shot on goal early, and worked into it through the middle of the game winning some crucial touches in all areas of the ground. Took a good mark dropping into space inside the forward 50 but her shot went to the left. She won the ball on the wing later in the game but was pushed as she was kicked, the ball went out on the full but she got a free kick for her efforts.

#23 Lucy McEvoy

Easily Country’s best early and was consistent throughout the four quarters. Played in defence then moved forward late, she rebounded everything she could get her hands to in the opening half. She took.a number of intercept marks, including contested ones, and laid some good tackles. She was tasked with the kick-in duties and kicked long to defensive 50 when possible. McEvoy showed her strength by shrugging off an opponent and kicking cleanly out of the back 50, and laid a good tackle on Prespakis in defence late in the game.

#24 Millie Brown

Brown showed quick hands when winning it in the air and covered ground between midfield and forward.

#25 Georgia Clarke

Played well in defence early, then was moved forward. Pushed up the ground and won a vital one-on-one at high half-back but the kick was intercepted. She had another kick long to the wing but it just missed its target and bounced out. Clarke pulled down a great intercept mark in the second term despite copping front-on contact. Almost took a mark in the forward pocket in the final term but was spoiled.

#26 Amy Dunn

Dunn had the highlight of the game with an amazing set shot from the pocket. Tucked up against the boundary line 30 metres out, she had a dead-eye set shot that split the middle. She put pressure on her opponents throughout the match.

#32 Courtney Jones

Jones played off half-back and pushed up the ground, winning a number of possessions in the defensive half of the ground. She had a nice pick-up clean off the ground on the wing and used good vision to find the running Jordyn Allen in midfield. She showed exceptionally quick hands in the final term to give it to Tyla Hanks on the wing.

#35 Lucinda Cripps

Did not see a lot of it in defence, keeping her opponents tightly guarded. She provided a good highlight with a run-down tackle in the second term for a holding the ball free kick.  

 

Vic Metro: 

#1 Marnie Jarvis

Attempted to pick up a ground ball and when it didn’t work out for her, she followed her efforts up with a nice tackle. Was good in a one-on-one contest and still always tried to push through the bigger bodies, showing great strength. Jarvis’ aggressive tackling was a highlight of her game, which helped Metro to gain a defensive advantage. Also took a nice intercept mark to finish off a good day out for her.

#2 Jemma Owen

Tackled a Country forward then followed up her work with another tackle to stop inside 50 penetration by the opposition. Was versatile across the ground.

#3 Emerson Woods

Woods started the game really well, getting a few early touches. Won herself a free kick in the middle of the ground which got the momentum going for Metro. She also created the first inside 50 of the game with a nicely delivered kick to teammate, Katie Lynch. Her kicking in general was fantastic, demonstrating a nice follow through on her kicking action. This ensured that she got optimal penetration on her kicks, giving them height and precision. Also gave off a good handball while being tackled, often standing up in the contest when she was required to do so.

#6 Maddy Prespakis

Prespakis was the game-changer for Metro, kicking two goals in two minutes to turn the game on its head. Her first goal was from a free kick in the goal square while her second was a work of art, as she picked the ball up off the deck, spun around, and snapped a brilliant goal over her shoulder. She improved as each quarter went on, damaging Country with her elite strength and ball use. In one instance, she hacked a lovely booming kick out of defensive 50 to get the ball forward for Metro and shortly after, she bullocked through a stoppage, backing up so many on-field efforts. Her kicking out of the back half was vital for Metro, as they went long to the centre square and opened up the floodgates for her teammates. Prespakis also demonstrated great agility when she sold a bit of candy, dodged two players then streamed out of defensive 50. Laid a good tackle that affected a forward entry for Country, and ended up straight in teammate, Katie Lynch’s hands. Clearance work was fantastic as she got two in a minute. Her marking was also strong, highlighted by a great contested mark in defensive 50. Prespakis played everywhere and had an impact wherever she went.

#7 Mikala Cann

Cann was another player who showed strong defensive presence in the midfield with plenty of tackles. Laid a strong tackle on Jordyn Allen to create a stoppage, halting Country’s momentum. She then created momentum for Vic Metro when she laid a good tackle that won her a free kick, which started a chain that ended in a Metro goal. Also showed good desperation to win the footy when she dived into the contest to save the ball from going into Country’s forward 50.

#8 Georgia Patrikios

Executed her signature sidestep when she followed up a good passage of run and carry followed by a lovely sidestep to get the ball out of defensive 50. Patrikios’ hands were strong and clean, and was able to use her marking to effect. This was demonstrated when she took a solid grab and bravely played on under pressure, which was effective for Metro and kept the ball moving. Did the little things throughout the game such as when she smothered a Tyla Hanks kick towards goal. Delivered a nice long kick into the centre square off one step, demonstrating her impressive kicking skills. I thought she was a lifesaver in defence, especially when she laid a great tackle on Isabella Shannon that won her a free kick. In the middle of the ground, she gave off a nice handball to a teammate on the outside and when it didn’t work out, she followed it up, showing great second efforts throughout the day.

#9 Daisy Bateman

Bateman created lots of opportunities inside 50, leading well to the ball drop of her teammates’ kicks. She deserved her third quarter goal as she was on the receiving end of every scoring opportunity. Also displayed good forward pressure when she caused her opponent to kick the ball out of bounds on the full.

#10 Maddy Brancatisano

Brancatisano stood up in a tackle multiple times, showing her strength in the contest. Followed these efforts up with quick, clean hands, often finding her teammates running on the outside. Also demonstrated good running when she accelerated well towards the centre of the ground.

#13 Molly Warburton

Held the fort down in defence well when she got a kick away to get it out of congestion. Followed up her efforts when she dropped a mark, as she kept hunting the footy and created a handy stoppage. Got Metro out of trouble when she hacked a kick out of defensive 50. Her kicks out of the back half were good overall.

#14 Isabella Grant

Ball did not come near her that often but played the role she needed to on the day. Her defensive efforts were pivotal and she excelled in that area. Grant tackled an opponent well to stop a forward movement for Country and also laid a good smother in defensive 50.

#15 Hannah McLaren

McLaren took a nice intercept mark, demonstrating her capabilities as a defensive midfielder. She had a brilliant moment when she gave away a free kick for a high tackle then had good awareness to chase down the Country player and win the free kick back for holding the ball.

#17 Georgia Macpherson

Without Macpherson, Country would have had two or three more goals on the board and won the game. This is because she smothered a Country kick for goal and then laid a good bump on an opponent to save another goal. Macpherson also took a great mark running back with the flight of the ball which saved an easy set shot in the goal square for Country. Demonstrated strong body work throughout, getting handballs away while being tackled and bumping opponents to rid them of the ball. As usual, her intercept marking was superb.

#18 Abbie McKay

Had a flying start and looked comfortable in the big ‘V’. Did some good work to run and get a kick away while being tackled. Followed this off by taking a nice mark off a Katie Lynch kick. McKay often created forward run with efforts like these. She then got in the forward line herself when she got the ball from long range and kicked a goal, backing herself to do so. Also did well defensively when she laid a great tackle that affected a Country kick inside 50 as well as chase-down tackle that earned her a free kick. McKay’s hands were sound, as she calmly picked the ball up off the deck, avoiding a rushed movement.  

#19 Laura McClelland

McClelland showed strong hands when she took a lovely juggling mark in a contested situation. Executed great body work to take a mark coming into the side of the contest. Followed this up with a nice kick to the top of the square.

#20 Gabby Newton

A highlight of Newton’s game was when she demonstrated great closing speed to chase down Julia Harvey and win a dropping the ball free kick. Also showed clean hands throughout the game, especially when she executed a good one-two with Knights teammate, Maddy Brancatisano. As usual, Newton’s kicking was great, as she got a kick away while being tackled and executed a nice deft kick that hit Katie Lynch perfectly.

#21 Eleanor Brown

Took a nice one-on-one mark on the wing and centered it nicely to Katie Lynch. As usual, she executed good run and carry, getting the ball forward with some nice kicks as a result of this momentum. Brown also took a great intercept mark to rebound the ball defensively, demonstrating her hard running into various positions on the ground.  She nearly took two intercept marks in a row but when she dropped the second mark, she followed up her efforts with a handball on the outside to Georgia Patrikios, showing good composure. Had a clever moment when she tapped the ball out of her opponent’s hands and trapped it well afterwards.

#22 Katie Lynch

Lynch was on the end of everything, presenting to the ball at every chance she got. Got involved early by getting plenty of the footy and using it well. She executed a nice long kick towards the middle of the ground, which opened up the play for Metro. Lynch’s endurance was on display, as she played forward and then backed up her work in the back line. A highlight of her game was when she had the ball in one hand and fended off strongly with another, getting the ball forward for Metro. Laid a great tackle to win a holding the ball free kick and followed this effort up with a spearing pass to Oakleigh teammate, Daisy Bateman which hit her perfectly on the chest. Lynch’s marking was outstanding as she took a great one-on-one mark and a good intercept mark, following this up with good awareness to handball to a running player behind her. Complemented her strong hands with good run and carry, topping off a great all-round performance.

#23 Sarah Kendall

Kendall did well in the ruck when she was required to go in there, competing well aerially. Was another one who displayed great second efforts, which was shown when she dropped a mark but still tried to win the footy.

#24 Charlotte Wilson

Wilson was a solid rock in defensive 50, controlling the back line well. Her one percenters were particularly a highlight, as she held the ball up well in defensive 50 and created a stoppage to prevent Country from streaming forward. Also did well under pressure, demonstrated when she trapped the ball on the boundary line and found a teammate with a handball over her shoulder. Completed her great defensive efforts by laying a solid tackle that stopped her opponent in her tracks.

#32 Lauren Szigeti

Szigeti was solid on the last line of defence, often saving the ball from going towards goal. This was shown when she took a good juggling intercept mark to halt Country’s momentum going forward. Also laid a great tackle on Olivia Purcell while she was streaming inside 50 which gave her nowhere to go. Szigeti did well to mop up kicks inside defensive 50, hacking the ball out of the back half with purpose.

#35 Carla Rendelmann

As usual, Rendelmann was solid in the ruck, giving her midfielders prime opportunity to run onto the footy. Often punched the ball into space, showing good situational awareness. I thought she showed a hint of versatility when she chased fast midfielders hard when they had the ball in hand.

#36 Holly Bate

Bate was lively inside 50, giving herself a chance to get on the scoreboard. Delivered a nice kick to the top of the square from outside 50, giving it nice height. Always tried to get involved in the inside 50 contests.

Prespakis the game-changer in Metro’s U18 victory

TWO goals in two minutes from Vic Metro captain, Maddy Prespakis opened the floodgates for her side to run away with that exact game-changing margin. Prespakis had been playing in the midfield in the first half but shifted her classy ball-use to the forward line, using her long kicks and strong hands to put the game away in an instant for Vic Metro.

The Sunbury Lions product was complemented by her Cannons teammate, Georgia Patrikios, who was agile across the ground. Her signature side-step was a highlight of her game, and she used it to effect to weave her way out of trouble.

Oakleigh midfielder, Katie Lynch also had an outstanding day, presenting well to the footy at every opportunity she could. Lynch displayed strong hands throughout the contest and used her long kick to penetrate the ball forward. Chargers teammate, Daisy Bateman was also a solid performer, getting a goal on the board in the third quarter. Up the other end, Georgia Macpherson was superb late in the game, marking everything directed at her as Country attacked.

In the middle of the ground, it was Sandringham products, Abbie McKay and Eleanor Brown who stood out on the day. McKay ran hard throughout the match, laying strong tackles on opponents and demonstrating clean hands to get the ball forward for Metro. Teammate, Brown improved as the game went on with her strong hands and clever one percenters that allowed her to pounce on the ball.

To begin the match, Vic Country’s Tyla Hanks was running with Metro’s Prespakis in an intriguing match-up. Hanks then started to come into her own as the game went on, as she ran hard on the outside to penetrate the ball forward for her side. Fellow Gippsland co-captain, Amy Dunn was on the end of such forward movement, as she produced the highlight of the day through kicking a goal from the boundary line.

Vic Country captain, Jordyn Allen had a superb game, never giving up on the day. She worked hard throughout the match, taking some great intercept marks and making good decisions with the ball in hand.

Geelong Falcons premiership captain, Lucy McEvoy looked right at home at GMHBA Stadium, shining for her side early in the contest. She took some great marks, laid some strong tackles and even had a stint in the forward line in what was a great all-round game for her. Murray Bushrangers star Bec Webster showed off her versatility at both ends in a solid performance, while Julia Harvey threatened to take the game by storm early, just missing a couple of shots, but constantly putting pressure on the opposition.

The match was good preparation for both sides, who take off to the Gold Coast for Series Two of the National AFLW U18 Championships. Vic Country will be taking on Queensland while Metro will go head-to-head against Western Australia on Monday, July 9 in what will be a series of three matches for the teams across five days.

 

VIC METRO 1.3 | 1.4 | 4.5 | 4.5 (29)
VIC COUNTRY 1.0 | 1.3 | 1.4 | 2.5 (17)

GOALS:

Metro: Maddy Prespakis 2, Abbie McKay, Daisy Bateman.
Country: Amy Dunn, Olivia Purcell.

ADC BEST:

Metro: Maddy Prespakis, Georgia Macpherson, Katie Lynch, Abbie McKay, Georgia Patrikios, Eleanor Brown, Emerson Woods.
Country: Jordyn Allen, Lucy McEvoy, Tyla Hanks, Rene Caris,Nina Morrison, Olivia Purcell, Bec Webster, Julia Harvey.

AFLW U18 National Championships: Vic Country vs. Vic Metro

THIS year’s Vic Country side may be one of the strongest Vic Country sides ever, with many premiership players set to take the field in their home territory on Saturday. The side consists of 17 and 18 year-olds, with the 18 year-olds having a chance to be drafted by an AFLW side in the AFLW Draft later this year. The TAC Cup Girls sides who feature in the Country line-up are the Bendigo Pioneers, Dandenong Stingrays, Geelong Falcons, Greater Western Victoria (GWV) Rebels and Murray Bushrangers.

The finest Victorian metropolitan female footballers will face Vic Country in the side’s first hit-out in the AFL Women’s Under 18 National Championships. The game will take place at GMHBA Stadium in Geelong on Saturday at 1pm. Players featured are born in the years 2000 and 2001, with those born in 2000 being eligible for this year’s AFLW Draft. The TAC Cup Girls sides featured in the Vic Metro squad are the Calder Cannons, Eastern Ranges, Northern Knights, Oakleigh Chargers, Sandringham Dragons and Western Jets.

Vic Country:

B: 35. Lucinda Cripps – 23. Lucy McEvoy – 11. Lauren Butler
HB: 5. Emily Haeusler – 25. Georgia Clarke – 22. Bec Webster
C: 8. Sophie Van De Heuvel – 16. Molly McDonald – 9. Nina Morrison
HF: 10. Nikia Webber – 24. Millie Brown – 20. Isabella Shannon
F: 2. Julia Harvey – 26. Amy Dunn – 7. Olivia Purcell
R: 21. Rene Caris – 14. Jordyn Allen – 6. Tyla Hanks
INT: 3. Kodi Jacques – 1. Shelley Heath – 32. Courtney Jones – 19. Tarryn Love
EMG: 13. Tamara Smith – 33. Sophie Molan

Vic Country squad:

Kodi Jacques
Balanced Midfielder | 163cm | Bendigo Pioneers

Jacques is the definition of never giving up. She always applies herself to every contest and has a beautiful deft kick, quick hands and an ability to enforce plenty of pressure acts to trouble opponents.

Courtney Jones
Inside Midfielder/General Forward | 168cm | Dandenong Stingrays

A powerful player with good body work, which allows her to win the ball plenty of times in dangerous positions. Her kick is one of the longest in the competition, and when she uses it inside 50, it is quite damaging.

Isabella Shannon
Inside Midfielder/Tall Forward | 169cm | Dandenong Stingrays

Shannon’s strong hands and long kicking allows her to create scoring opportunities for her side. She was able to put away a couple of goals for the Stingrays during the TAC Cup Girls season, kicking 11 goals from nine games.

Jordyn Allen
Inside Midfielder/Tall Defender | 174cm | Dandenong Stingrays

Allen has one of the best sets of hands in the TAC Cup Girls competition, intercepting everything that comes her way. She also has a very accurate kick that allows her to pinpoint opponents, demonstrating her ability to always find the right option.

Lucinda Cripps
Key Position Utility | 175cm | Dandenong Stingrays

Cripps has a really clever kick and utilises it to spear passes to teammates perfectly. She also runs hard and displays good movement in space to penetrate the ball forward.

Molly McDonald
Outside Midfielder/General Defender | 167cm | Dandenong Stingrays

McDonald’s versatility held her in good stead throughout the Stingrays season. This was recognised by her coaches as she was named in the best four times throughout the season.

Shelley Heath
Outside Midfielder/General Defender | 160cm | Dandenong Stingrays

Has immense speed that can break a game open. Bobs up at every contest and uses her quick hands to get teammates out of trouble.

Lucy McEvoy
Tall Utility | 172cm | Geelong Falcons

McEvoy’s strong hands and long kicking combined for plenty of forward thrusts for the Falcons during the season. Her quick hands on the inside are invaluable and she is a player that can play solid footy throughout the game, never seeming to drop off in effort and stamina.

Nina Morrison
Balanced Midfielder | 167cm | Geelong Falcons

One of the best chase-down tacklers in the TAC Cup Girls competition, Morrison always put on the afterburners to cause turnovers and headaches for the opposition. Her precision kicking and quick hands on the outside also provided an opportunity for her teammates to run into space and create scoring opportunities.

Olivia Purcell
Inside Midfielder | 161cm | Geelong Falcons

Purcell is one of the strongest tacklers in the TAC Cup Girls competition, as she can stop an opponent in their tracks instantly. Her work on the inside can often be game-changing, as she uses her long penetrating kick to create movement or her slick handballing to gradually build up a scoring opportunity.

Tarryn Love
Balanced Midfielder | 165cm | Geelong Falcons

Love has a huge tank as her running on the outside seems to never stop. She always goes in hard for the footy and can utilise space with speed and power when she gets it.

Amy Dunn
Ruck | 180cm | Gippsland Power

Has really strong hands and isn’t afraid to take powerful contested marks. Presents a valuable target for her teammates as she is able to use the ball well both by hand and by foot.  

Emily Hauesler
General Defender | 163cm | Gippsland Power

Hauesler seemed to improve in each TAC Cup Girls game, patrolling the back line with hard running and strong hands. Her kicking is an asset in her game as her rebound out of defensive 50 provides teammates with the opportunity to move forward.

Nikia Webber
General Forward | 169cm | Gippsland Power

An exciting forward who hunts the footy well inside 50. Webber managed to kick 12 goals from eight games and complemented this with a high level of forward pressure.

Tyla Hanks
Balanced Midfielder | 157cm | Gippsland Power

Hanks is one of the most influential players in the TAC Cup Girls competition, demonstrated through being named in the best in each game that she played throughout the season. Her quick hands and clearing kicks were invaluable for the Power, and her strong tackling complemented this, never allowing her opponents to have an inch of space.

Georgia Clarke
Key Position Defender | 177cm | GWV Rebels

Clarke was one of the best defenders in the TAC Cup Girls competition, as her strong hands and ability to win one-on-one contests is second to none. She always positions herself well across half-back and can rebound the ball fiercely out of defensive 50, giving the opposition no chance to slingshot the ball back inside 50.

Lauren Butler
Balanced Midfielder | 170cm | GWV Rebels

One of the most consistent players in the competition, Butler hurts opponents with her ability to nullify their impact through great defensive efforts in the midfield. Always plays the team role and applies herself at every contest.

Rene Caris
Ruck | 184cm | GWV Rebels

An agile ruck that has a great vertical leap, but can also work around the ground to get herself in dangerous offensive and defensive positions. Matched it up with a mature ruck in the AFLW Academy’s hit-out against Geelong VFLW.

Sophie Van De Heuvel
Inside Midfielder/ General Forward | 171cm | GWV Rebels

Had one of the best kicks in the TAC Cup Girls competition, and used it well wherever she played. She is especially lively in the forward line, where she was able to kick six goals this season.

Rebecca Webster
Inside Midfielder/General Defender | 172cm | Murray Bushrangers

A player that wins the hard ball on plenty of occasions in the depths of congestion. Has a really long kick that is useful both in the midfield and in defence, where she would often play to steady the ship for the Bushrangers.

Julia Harvey
Inside Midfielder/General Forward | 164cm | Murray Bushrangers

A tough inside midfielder that is not afraid to go in hard for the footy. Can also rotate up forward where she uses her precise kicking to create scoring opportunities.

Millie Brown
Tall Utility | 176cm | Murray Bushrangers

Provides penetration with her kicking and strength in marking contests. Can also move into the ruck, using her strong overhead ability to her advantage.

Emergencies:

Tamara Smith
Inside Midfielder | 161cm | Murray Bushrangers

Has great agility and can move well laterally. Also has a good set of hands and always applies herself at the contest.

Sophie Molan
Tall Utlity | 176cm | GWV Rebels

Although her best work is done on the outside, Molan can play in other positions on the field, demonstrating her versatility. Wherever she plays, she moves the ball well and finds plenty of it, allowing her to showcase her consistency during the TAC Cup Girls season.

Vic Metro:

B: 13. Molly Warburton – 24. Charlotte Wilson – 32. Lauren Szigeti
HB: 17. Georgia Macpherson – 20. Gabby Newton – Hannah McLaren
C: Emerson Woods – 7. Mikala Cann – 21. Eleanor Brown
HF: 14. Isabella Grant – 19. Laura McClelland – 9. Daisy Bateman
F: 14. Maddy Brancatisano – 36. Holly Bate – 23. Sarah Kendall
R: 35. Carla Rendelmann – 6. Madison Prespakis – 22. Katie Lynch
INT: 1. Marnie Jarvis – 2. Jemma Owen – 8. Georgia Patrikios -18. Abbie McKay

Vic Metro squad:

Carla Rendelmann
Ruck | 182cm | Calder Cannons

Really powerful in the ruck and is able to manipulate her taps to her midfielders. Can get good penetration on her taps and is a good ball-user, especially by foot.

Georgia Patrikios
General Forward | 171cm | Calder Cannons

An exciting forward who knows where the goals are. Her agility is arguably the most impressive in the TAC Cup Girls competition, as she would easily side-step opponents and surge forward with her lovely kicking.

Madison Prespakis
Balanced Midfielder | 164cm | Calder Cannons

Prespakis is arguably the most damaging player in the TAC Cup Girls competition. She was named best-on-ground by her coaches in seven of the eight games she played, thanks to her brilliant long kicking, strong tackling and outstanding leadership, allowing herself to make an impact both in the midfield and in the forward line.

Molly Warburton
Tall Defender | 174cm | Calder Cannons

A strong defender who excels at playing a lock-down role. Warburton has strong hands and can penetrate the ball forward with her long kick out of defence.

Charlotte Wilson
Ruck/Key Position Defender | 177cm | Eastern Ranges

Wilson holds up the fort immensely well in defence, often creating a wall of her own to block opposition forwards from surging inside 50. The Ranges co-captain can also double up in the ruck and make an impact thanks to her impressive endurance and high footy IQ.

Emerson Woods
General Forward/Inside Midfielder | 171cm | Eastern Ranges

Woods is a forward who can be extremely damaging once she gets on a roll. She has strong hands and gets good penetration on her kicks.

Georgia Macpherson
Tall Defender | 173cm | Eastern Ranges

One of the strongest sets of hands in the TAC Cup Girls competition, Macpherson is a contested and uncontested marking beast. Her high level of endurance enables her to patrol the back line and divert opposition players from kicking the ball near her, as she mops up the footy immediately.

Laura McClelland
Tall Forward | 175cm | Eastern Ranges

McClelland booted 11 goals from nine games this season, including a bag of four against the Oakleigh Chargers. She is dangerous whenever she gets the ball in hand and is an accurate kick for goal.

Lauren Szigeti
Small Defender | 162cm | Eastern Ranges

An aggressive defender who applied herself to every contest, the Ranges players sure enjoyed having Szigeti around their side. She always goes in hard for the footy and is usually found at the bottom of every contest, showing her desperation to win the footy.

Mikala Cann
Balanced Midfielder | 173cm | Eastern Ranges

A speedy midfielder who has incredibly good hands. Cann’s aggressive tackling was also a highlight of her TAC Cup Girls season, which she used to complement her smart kicking.

Sarah Kendall
Ruck | 178cm | Eastern Ranges

Kendall is a dangerous ruck who makes an impact whenever she gets the ball in hand. Her ruck-work is impressive but it’s her follow-up work that makes all the difference, as she hunts the ball down and manages to hit targets, whether it’d be through a quick-fire handball or a booming kick.

Gabby Newton
Tall Utility | 178cm | Northern Knights

At just 16, Newton is immensely talented and one of the most influential players in the TAC Cup Girls competition. She can turn a game on its head thanks to her powerful kicking and swift ball-use, whether it’d be in the ruck or in the midfield.

Maddy Brancatisano
Inside Midfielder | 169cm | Northern Knights

Brancatisano is a hard inside midfielder that has an outstanding defensive game. Not only can she move the ball well through the contest, but she can also play a shut-down role on an opposition player and tackles hard, not giving her opponent an inch of space.

Marnie Jarvis
Outside Midfielder | 160cm | Northern Knights

Jarvis’ outside run provided plenty of X factor for the Knights this year. She was able to move the ball quickly on the wing and either utilised or created space whenever she had the opportunity to do so.

Daisy Bateman
General Forward | 166cm | Oakleigh Chargers

Bateman is a goal-kicking machine, kicking 14 goals from seven games which included a bag of five in round six. She has a high footy IQ and positions herself really well deep in the forward line.

Hannah McLaren
Tall Utility | 176cm | Oakleigh Chargers

McLaren’s strong hands are a huge asset in her game. She also has a long kick that gets her teammates out of trouble, and can back up her work behind the ball to stop any forward penetration by the opposition.

Katie Lynch
Balanced Midfielder | 179cm | Oakleigh Chargers

Lynch is a ball magnet and can use it well when she accumulates it. She can clear the ball out of a stoppage in an instant and her tackling is fierce.

Abbie McKay
Inside Midfielder | 171cm | Sandringham Dragons

McKay has a high work ethic in the middle of the ground and uses her clean hands to get the ball forward. She is strong overhead and provides some great X factor moments that can influence the game.

Eleanor Brown
Outside Midfielder | 176cm | Sandringham Dragons

Brown is one of the most classy and mature players in the TAC Cup Girls competition. Her ability to find space is second-to-none and she can even create space for her teammates with her long kick and strong hands on the outside.

Holly Bate
Key Position Forward | 180cm | Sandringham Dragons

The leading goal kicker of the TAC Cup Girls competition with 18 goals from nine games, including seven goals in round eight. Bate is a mobile forward who positions herself well against an opponent and applies great forward pressure.

Jemma Owen
Inside Midfielder | 165cm | Sandringham Dragons

A hard-nosed midfielder who tackles strongly and moves the ball well both by hand and by foot. Owen can also float up forward and make an impact inside 50, showcasing her impressive endurance and high work ethic.

Isabella Grant
Tall Utility | 176cm | Western Jets

A key player for the Western Jets this year, Grant was an impact player that utilised her powerful marking and long kicking to surge her side forward. She always knows where to position herself on the ground and often sees the opportunity to play on into space and move the ball quickly.

Emergencies:

Gabriella De Angelis
Inside Midfielder/Small Forward | 155cm | Eastern Ranges

De Angelis is a pint-sized pocket rocket, as her speed and endurance enable her to apply herself at every contest. She is a clever ball-user, and can get a few goals on the board when she gets the chance.

Britney Gutknecht
General Forward/Inside Midfielder | 167cm | Northern Knights

Gutknecht is a versatile player that can make an impact in any position. She excels at both being a midfielder and being a forward, shown by her booming kick from the stoppage and her bag of seven goals against the Bendigo Pioneers.

Abbie McKay’s football family inspires her success in Aussie Rules

SANDRINGHAM Dragons midfielder, Abbie McKay might the daughter of former Carlton player, Andrew McKay, but she is making a name of her own in football.

McKay starred in the middle of the ground for the Dragons this year, being named among the best players five times during the nine-round season.

With a father who played 244 games for the Carlton Football Club, footy was always in McKay’s veins. Her early memories of the game were not watching her dad play, but simply kicking the footy with him at the park.

“My dad played 240 games or something like that so I always grew up with it (footy),” she said. “I had to go and kick the footy at the park with my brother and him so that’s how I got into it.”

Despite his illustrious career, McKay admits she was oblivious to her dad’s role at the Blues.

“He was just my dad so to be honest, I probably didn’t realise he played for Carlton,” she said.

After a couple of Auskick stints, McKay turned her attention to basketball, netball and tennis. Then at 15 years of age, she found her love for football, but this time, she had her mum to thank.

“When I was about 15, my mum just thought it would be fun to start up a team at the local club,” the now 17 year-old said. “So we got together with lots of school friends and my love grew from there. I just got out there and I was like this is so much fun, I get to tackle!”

In her short football career, McKay has already achieved so much. When she was asked to play for the Sandringham Dragons in the TAC Cup Girls competition, she was given the belief that she needed to pursue her footballing career further.

“I got asked to join Sandy Dragons and I was like ‘oh maybe I actually have a shot at this’,” McKay recalled. “I thought I may as well give it a go. I didn’t really know what it was so I just got asked about it and thought I’ll just go down and see what it’s like. Then people told me about how big it actually is. I was like that’s pretty cool!”

After a solid season at the TAC Cup Girls club, McKay received the shock of her life when she was named in the Vic Metro squad for this year’s AFL Women’s National Under 18 Championships. The 17 year-old says she didn’t see the selection coming, but is thankful for the opportunity.

“Never in a million years!,” she said about her thoughts on ever being selected for Vic Metro. “I got asked and I was like ‘really? You want me?’ It’s so cool and getting to know all the girls is really nice.”

On top of that, she is keeping the McKay name alive at Carlton, as she is currently training with the Blues’ VFL Women’s side. But above all, McKay is a role model to her younger sister, who loves the game and wants to be just like her big sister when she grows up.

“She is obsessed (with football),” McKay said. “Every time I get back from Vic Metro she asks ‘are you going to become a footy player yet?’ I’m like ‘don’t get your hopes up too soon!’ But no she loves it, she wants to be the same when she’s older.”

Weekend Wash-up: TAC Cup Girls – Round 8

GEELONG has booked a spot in the TAC Cup Girls grand final after they got the job done over the Northern Knights. Sandringham improved to six wins and two losses in season 2018 while the Dandenong Stingrays got over the line in a thriller over the Cannons. Although the season is coming to a close, the teams are still fighting hard to end their season on a high note. 

 

Calder Cannons 4.1 (25) defeated by Dandenong Stingrays 3.9 (27)

By: Julia Montesano 

The Dandenong Stingrays kept their winning streak alive, but only just, as the Cannons fought hard all game to limit the victory to just two points. Although Dandenong had most of the play, their inaccuracy hurt them and nearly cost them the game.

Captain, Jordyn Allen starred yet again for the Stingrays, creating her own wall behind the ball. She marked everything that came her way and moved the ball swiftly and cleanly. Down forward, it was Courtney Jones who was putting in the hard yards with plenty of forward pressure and a couple of goals. Tyanna Smith was important on the wing and through the middle of the ground, running hard throughout the night and using the ball well both by hand and by foot.

The Cannons tried to nullify Allen’s impact through throwing star midfielder, Madison Prespakis up forward. Prespakis ended up making an influence herself, kicking two goals and doing all the nice things we have gotten accustomed to seeing from her. Her teammate, Georgia Patrikios played one of her best games for the Cannons all season. Patrikios laid damaging tackles, and her inside 50 pressure was fantastic. Georgie Prespakis starred in her second game for Calder, starring with a long kick that looks incredibly similar, and has the same damaging impact as her sister’s. 

 

Eastern Ranges 7.5 (47) defeated Murray Bushrangers 0.1 (1)

By: Peter Williams 

A terrific performance by the Eastern Ranges has resulted in a 46-point victory over the Murray Bushrangers at Warrawee Park. The Ranges were on top for the entire game and put in a four quarter performance, restricting the Bushrangers to just one behind – a late score in the final term – while booting seven goals themselves with seven individual goal kickers. The win means the Ranges will finish top four, having just two losses from eight games this season with one match to come.

Mikala Cann put in a best on ground performance and was everywhere early, booting a sensational goal on the run under pressure to get the momentum flowing, then assisting in some more scores as she really stood out in the victory. Emerson Woods was strong early up forward, being involved in most passages of play with the co-captain impressing, as did fellow co-captain, Charlotte Wilson in defence. But it was the multi-pronged forward line that caused headaches for the opposition with Ashleigh Allsopp, Gabriella De Angelis, Jess Provan and Laura McClelland showing Eastern’s depth inside 50.

For the Bushrangers, the midfield of Millie Brown, Tamara Smith and Julia Harvey worked hard throughout without top star, Rebecca Webster, while Eloise Ashley-Cooper stood up in the absence of Grace Egan down back. Chelsea Knight also stood up in spite of a dominant Ranges’ midfield in what was a tough day at the office for the Bushrangers.

 

Oakleigh Chargers 5.8 (38) defeated Western Jets 3.5 (23)

By: Peter Williams 

A three-goal performance by Oakleigh leading goalkicker, Daisy Bateman has helped the Chargers record a solid 15-point victory over the Western Jets at Warrawee Park to take out the inaugural Zaidee’s Cup. In a great initiative by the two teams, the players worse Zaidee’s Rainbow Shoelaces to help raise awareness for organ and tissue donation. On the scoreboard, Oakleigh proved too good early to boot five goals to one in the opening three quarters – including two opportunistic goals in the third term to Bateman – to secure the victory. The Jets booted two goals in the final term to reduce the final deficit.

Bridie Winbanks was important in the ruck, while Alice O’Loughlin and Gemma Lagioia were crucial between midfield and forward for the Chargers. Captain, Hannah McLaren was strong in defence, in what was a great team effort for the Chargers who were missing Katie Lynch, Charlotte Moon and Nicola Xenos – three of their more consistent players – due to school football commitments, allowing others to stand up in their place.

For the Jets, full-back Sharnie Whiting stood up against constant pressure, while Elisabeth Georgostathis was consistent once again with some strong tackles across the ground. Caitlin Gashi and Payton-Ani Ozols were also among the best for Western, while talls, Caitlin Greiser and Cleo Saxon-Jones got on the scoresheet.

 

Geelong Falcons 4.7 (31) defeated Northern Knights 3.5 (23) 

By: Julia Montesano

The Geelong Falcons made it eight from eight against fellow undefeated team, Northern Knights with an eight-point win. The Falcons came out of the blocks with a three goal to none first half, then the Knights fought back with a three goal to one second half. 

AFLW Academy members, Lucy McEvoy, Denby Taylor, Olivia Purcell and Nina Morrison were some of the best players on the ground yet again. McEvoy and Taylor held down the fort well in defence while Purcell and Morrison chased and tackled in the midfield. They were complemented by Zoe Inei in the ruck, who delivered some nice taps towards her gut-runners. In the forward line, it was Sachi DeGiacomi who put in all the hard yards to keep her side’s undefeated streak alive. 

For Northern, midfielder, Marnie Jarvis found herself up forward on a couple of occasions, slotting through two of the Knights’ three majors. Gabby Newton was a star, this time in defence, proving she can play just about anywhere on the field. Young gun, Ellie McKenzie had another standout performance for the Knights, as did Nell Morris-Dalton. Other solid contributors included Paije Kearney and Ashleigh Snow. 

 

Sandringham Dragons 10.14. (74) defeated Bendigo Pioneers 0.3 (3)

By: Matt Balmer 

The Sandringham Dragons kept their slim TAC Cup grand final berth alive with a strong 71-point win over the Bendigo Pioneers at Trevor Barker Beach Oval on Saturday.

The Pioneers got an early score, but after that moment they struggled to get the ball inside their half of the ground, as the Dragons dominated. Forward, Holly Bate booted five first half goals, eventually finishing the match with 7.2 and a set shot after the siren on a very very tough angle not scoring to finish the match. Eleanor Brown marked exceptionally well during the contest and was the best player on the ground, as a marking machine. Abbie McKay had a strong second half, while captain, Jemma Owen led from the front as always in the midfield.

Despite not booting a goal, Megan Williamson was the Pioneers’ clear best, working very hard in the defensive half of the ground. Williamson hit up multiple targets on her left boot and competed well during the match.

 

Greater Western Victoria Rebels 3.4 (22) defeated Gippsland Power 1.2 (8)

By: Matt Balmer 

The Greater Western Victoria Rebels collected their fifth win of the 2018 TAC Cup Girls competition with a hard fought 14-point victory over the Gippsland Power at Trevor Barker Beach Oval on Saturday.

The match started in overcast conditions, before the heavens opened for the next hour after quarter-time, with constant rain keeping the scoring close, making for a great contest. Georgia Clarke was exceptional across half back, rebounding the ball well, while Nekaela Butler was judged the Rebels’ best. Sophie Van De Heuvel booted the best goal for the Rebels, snapping truly in the second quarter – with the AFLW Academy member playing a good game as a high half-forward.

For the Power, Tyla Hanks was the clear standout, tackling hard and winning the contested ball. Hanks had multiple inside 50s and showed why she is one of the leading performers from the TAC Cup Girls this season. She also booted a great goal in the last quarter, keeping the Power in the contest – but ultimately they left their run too late, after trailing 16-2 at three-quarter time.

Victorian squads named for National AFL Women’s Under 18 Championships

VICTORIA’S top youth girl prospects have been selected to represent Vic Metro and Vic Country at the upcoming AFL Women’s Under 18 and Under 16 National Championships.

The players will begin training immediately after the TAC Cup Girls Grand Final on Saturday, May 19, with the first training session to be held at Ikon Park the following day. A second training session will be held at Windy Hill on June 3 ahead of the competition with Vic Country Under 16s hosting Vic Metro on May 27 in both Albury and Horsham. On June 16, both Under 16s and Under 18s will face off against each other at GMHBA Stadium in Geelong. The teams then fly north to compete in the AFL Women’s Under 18 National Championships with three games held on July 9, July 11 and July 13.

Murray Bushrangers’ coach Sam Ahmet and Eastern Ranges’ coach Tom Humphrey will lead Vic Country and Vic Metro respectively. Geelong Falcons’ Jason Armistead and Geelong VFLW assistant coach Natalie Wood were named as Vic Country assistants, while Northern Knights’ coach Marcus Abney-Hastings and Calder Cannons’ coach Paul Tilley will be the Vic Metro assistants.

AFL Victoria Female Talent Manager Darren Flanigan said it is pleasing to have a number of current TAC Cup Girls head coaches overseeing the U18 teams.

“Both Sam and Tom have good knowledge of the competition and the players within it,” Flanigan said. “We have been able to attract strong assistant coaching staff as well, which the players will benefit from.

“The Academy program provides players with the perfect opportunity to test themselves against the best players at this level, and start to showcase their capabilities to recruiters for the upcoming AFLW draft later in the year.

“Draftees such as Darcy Guttridge, Eden Zanker, Bridie Kennedy and Maddy Guerin all performed well at the 2017 championships, which certainly helped their draft chances later in the year. “It is a great learning experience to be part of the U18 Academy program, learning from other players and coaches in the competition.”

At Under 16 level, players selected will benefit from being mentored by current and former AFLW and VFLW players Mel Hickey, Emma Grant, Katherine Smith and Lauren Morecroft.

“The ability of these players to provide their time will only benefit the those selected in our program,” Flanigan said.

“Playing at the highest level possible, they will be able to share their experiences from the various levels of the female talent pathway, and help educate and develop these players to be ready to take the next step with their football.

In the under 18s, the Vic Metro midfield could contain the likes of top prospect Madison Prespakis, and fellow AFLW Academy teammates Emerson Woods and Gabby Newton, while the likes of Georgia Patrikios, Britney Gutknecht and Daisy Bateman add some X-factor up forward. Mikala Cann, Maddy Brancatisano, Katie Lynch and Eleanor Brown are a number of other players likely to roam through the midfield, while in defence, Georgia Macpherson, Molly Warburton and Hannah McLaren will hold up the fort.

For Vic Country, their midfield will include an AFLW Academy littered centre line featuring Tyla Hanks, Nina Morrison, Rebecca Webster and Olivia Purcell, who will rove to fellow AFLW Academy ruck Rene Caris. Lucy McEvoy, Georgia Clarke, Lucy Cripps, Denby Taylor and Jordyn Allen provide some strong numbers in defence, while up forward, Courtney Jones, Nikia Webber and Sophie Van De Heuvel will be key targets.

Under 18s:

Vic Metro:

Calder Cannons: Grace Dicker, Georgia Patrikos, Madison Prespakis, Carla Rendelmann, Felicity Theodore, Molly Warburton
Eastern Ranges: Mikala Cann, Gabriella De Angelis, Sarah Kendall, Georgia Macpherson, Laura McClelland, Jenna Richardson, Lauren Szigeti, Charlotte Wilson, Emerson Woods
Oakleigh Chargers: Daisy Bateman, Gemma Lagioia, Katie Lynch, Hannah McLaren, Bridie Winbanks, Nicola Xenos,
Northern Knights: Maddy Brancatisano, Britney Gutknecht, Marnie Jarvis, Neve O’Connor, Gabby Newton, Sarah Sansonetti
Sandringham Dragons: Holly Bate, Eleanor Brown, Molly Denahy Maloney, Abbie McKay, Jemma Owen, Jasmine Tait
Western Jets: Elisabeth Georgostathis, Isabella Grant, Cleo Saxon-Jones

Vic Country:

Bendigo Pioneers: Maddie Baldwin, Kate Douglass, Kodi Jacques, Megan Williamson
Dandenong Stingrays: Jordyn Allen, Lucy Cripps, Shelley Heath, Courtney Jones, Molly McDonald, Isabella Shannon
Geelong Falcons: Abbey Chapman, Zoe Inei, Tarryn Love, Lucy McEvoy, Nina Morrison, Olivia Purcell, Denby Taylor
Gippsland Power: Amy Dunn, Emily Haeusler, Tyla Hanks, Nikia Webber
GWV Rebels: Lauren Butler, Rene Caris, Georgia Clarke, Nyakoat Dojiok, Sophie Molan, Sophie Van De Heuvel, Ella Wood
Murray Bushrangers: Julia Harvey, Millie Brown, Tamara Smith, Rebecca Webster

The championships will begin June, with list reductions made in the lead-up to the first game.

The full Under 16s squads will be named on Wednesday.

 

Scouting notes: TAC Cup Girls – Round 8

THERE were some big margins this week, with the Eastern Ranges getting a 46-point win and the Sandringham Dragons getting a 71-point win. But perhaps the most important win of the round went to the Geelong Falcons, who handed the Northern Knights their first loss of the season while keeping their winning streak intact. With only one round to go in the competition, the Falcons have booked themselves a spot in the grand final. 

Calder Cannons vs. Dandenong Stingrays

Calder Cannons:

#2 Felicity Theodore

Has incredible acceleration and wonderful speed in general. She always goes hard for the ball and continues to follow it up even when she continues to get bumped and crunched. Theodore has the composure to back-track and kick. Displayed great speed to follow up on a missed kick.

#3 Madison Prespakis

Her long kick was on display once again and helped the Cannons penetrate forward. Prespakis got a high handball while being tackled, using her body to get the ball away. As usual, she just gets and kicks, and her kicks are often too hot for the opposition to mark. She displayed immense strength again, getting a kick away while being pushed over and displaying strong tackling. Kicked a great snap that bent back perfectly for Calder’s first goal. She is at the bottom of every contest, yet gets up so quickly, taking a great chest mark running at full speed. Kicked her second goal of the game with another lovely snap at a crucial moment. Displayed great gut running and even got strong penetration on her handballs.

#18 Carla Rendelmann

Dominated in the ruck again, winning nearly every hit-out. Has great acceleration and hunts hard for the ball. Took a good defensive mark and her kick was composed out of defensive 50, instead of being hacked out of there. Rendelmann got penetration on her taps and followed them up like a rover.

#21 Georgia Patrikios

Played her best game for the Cannons on Friday night. Ran really well and was able to deliver some long kicks down the field. Laid a strong tackle after she dropped the mark and continued that strong tackling throughout the contest. Her hands were clean, especially on the boundary line, where she was able to cleanly pick up the ball and turn her opponent inside out. Burst well out of the midfield and worked really well with Prespakis. Showed great agility when she picked the ball up off the ground, side-stepped and kicked the ball to Prespakis for her second goal of the day. Patrikios was able to get the ball and spin out of trouble on multiple occasions.

 

Dandenong Stingrays:

#15 Jordyn Allen

Allen’s footy IQ really stood out in this game. She displayed quick hands and did the little things, such as trapping the ball at her feet. Displayed excellent gut running to follow up the ball, and beat all her opponents to trap and kick it long. Allen always managed to get back behind the ball and displayed good composure. She effectively set up her own wall off half-back. Displayed some nice deft kicking. Took a fantastic contested mark after conceding a free kick. The Cannons could not get anything past her. Always applied strong pressure on her opponent and made them hesitate the kick.

#3 Courtney Jones

Jones read the footy well throughout the game. Kicked a great snap around the body for Dandenong’s second goal. Ran well on the wing and kicked great under pressure. Delivered a beautiful centring kick, having good awareness to not blaze away at goal. Kicked a long ball off one step and has an innate ability to kick around her body. Jones is one of the best in the league at around-the-body kicking. Took a good mark to stop the Cannons in their tracks and send it back inside 50.

#26 Isabella Shannon

Kicked a great mid-air snap while being pushed over. Did some good work to wrestle the ball out of the pack. Broke away well from a tackle, and still got the kick away while being pursued hotly. Shannon converted Dandenong’s first goal with a nice snap on an angle. Her courage showed when she bravely got up after a heavy hit.

#28 Tyanna Smith

Took a great mark and took her time to ensure she used the ball well. Her marking was on display throughout the match when she took another good mark and pursued with the footy despite tripping. In that instance, she did well to keep running, showing her intent to hunt the footy. Laid a great tackle and was able to quickly get a kick away. Picked up the ball cleanly and displayed nice movement through the ground.

#35 Lucinda Cripps

Ran well throughout the game and was able to follow up on her kicks. Displayed good movement from the stoppage to kick the ball away. Delivered a magnificent spearing pass to Jones inside 50 which beat all the players and fell out the back of the contest. Jones missed but deserved a goal because it was such a clever kick by Cripps.

 

Eastern Ranges vs. Murray Bushrangers

By: Peter Williams 

Eastern Ranges:

#3 Emerson Woods

A strong performance from Woods, particularly early in the game when the game was hot. In the opening term when the game was on the line she was huge. Her first contact was impacting a contest on the wing and killing a ball across the line, and proceeded to win a number of free kicks for fierce tackles. She had a set shot which went wide in the windy conditions, but continued to work hard on the inside, moving well through the stoppages. She also has that trademark handball where she gets her arms free of a would-be tackler and had the vision to execute to a teammate outside the stoppage. She reads the opposition taps well, sharking one from Sophie Damon, and played a good role between midfield and half-forward.

#21 Mikala Cann

Cann was the best player on the ground early, kicking a fantastic goal on the run under pressure and then giving off a second one to Catherine Chamberlain. She almost could have had three, but Ashleigh Allsopp’s set shot just missed. Her tackling pressure was very good and won a couple of free kicks under the holding the ball rule. Was quieter in the second half, but had a huge first half, both offensively and defensively.

#37 Georgia Macpherson

Worked into the game well after a quiet opening term given the ball hardly reached her vicinity. She took a number of strong marks across the four quarters and kicked long with penetration to half-forward or wide to the wing. She has a unique ability to mark the ball at full-speed and keep moving, or win the contested ball one-on-one and just burst a few steps before kicking long. She took a strong grab in the third term leaping high, and hit up Laura McClelland late in the fourth term after charging through the midfield.

#38 Laura McClelland

McClelland continued to present throughout the match and is a one-grab player. She took a great mark leaping in from the side in the second term, and took another on the lead in the third term. Her set shot dropped short, but she continued to show good aggression and defensive pressure. In the final term she took a good mark going back with the flight and hit-up Woods coming out of the attacking 50. She took a strong grab and shot for goal on the final siren, but it was rushed through, or counted as a behind.

#46 Sarah Kendall

Another solid performance rotating between ruck and defence. She quite often punched the ball clear for a teammate to run onto it, and took a strong intercept mark on the wing late in the first term. She laid a great tackle not long after to win a free kick, and then moved into defence where she was able to take a couple of good marks and perform well.

 

Murray Bushrangers:

#1 Julia Harvey

The small midfielder/forward never stopped trying and while Eastern was controlling most of the play early, Harvey was buzzing around winning the contested ball and trying to release her teammates. She showed good tackling pressure and won a free kick for being caught high. Sometimes she rushed a little and threw the ball on the boot, but showed good leadership at the stoppages and directed teammates where to run and stand.

#16 Eloise Ashley-Cooper

One of the more impressive Bushrangers, Ashley-Cooper provided plenty of run out of defence. She showed smart decision-making and found herself opposed to the dangerous McClelland at times. She was able to intercept the ball at half-back and took on the opposition in a number of occasions. She laid a strong tackle on Mikala Cann in the defensive 50 to lock the ball up when the Ranges were attacking, and just got better as the game went on. Put her body on the line on a number of occasions too.

#19 Millie Brown

Without Rebecca Webster in the midfield, Millie Brown stood up and did her best to try and drive the ball forward. She floated into the back half and took vital intercept marks and used her penetrating kick to clear the defence. Strong overhead and a textbook kicking action, Brown caused some headaches for the opposition and moved well along the wing often sending the ball back inside 50 for the Bushrangers. She even had a hit-out in the ruck showing off her versatility.

#22 Tamara Smith

A really solid game from Smith who never stopped trying. Worked hard through the middle of the ground and is really good at changing direction quickly and compose herself to kick long like she did in the second quarter. She laid a great smother in the third term and put her body on the line. Ran back with the flight and took a mark inside 50 but rushed to play on and her kick was affected by the opposition pressure.

 

Oakleigh Chargers vs. Western Jets

By: Peter Williams 

Oakleigh Chargers:

#2 Mimi Hill

A quick thinking midfielder, Hill is really good one-on-one and has good strength for a smaller player. She is able to dish off a quick handball and time her release well, and also lays some strong tackles. Hill won a free kick at half-back and was able to hit-up Bridie Winbanks in the middle of the ground in the second term with good vision.

#10 Alice O’Loughlin

A lively player up forward, O’Loughlin was busy around the 50m arc. She took a few marks, had shots on goal and was worrying the opposition defence. Did not end up finishing with a major, but opened up the forward line with her strong hands, including a good grab in the third term in front of a big pack of players.

#11 Bridie Winbanks

Used her height to advantage around the stoppages and often got the ball clear to the outside. She drifted around the ground and took a good contested grab at half-back in the third term and then brought down a mark on the goal line from an Isabella Grant set shot.

#14 Hannah McLaren

Another tireless effort from the Chargers captain who continually forced a contest at ground level. She played in the back half and provided plenty of pressure to the ball carrier and at the coal face. She won a big one-on-one contest and managed to free her arms to handball to a teammate in the second term. She also won a free kick in the final quarter for a great tackle.

#30 Gemma Lagioia

Really created drive and run across the ground, always on the move. She uses her vision to kick into space and opens up the other side of the ground with kicks to her teammates advantage. She nailed a great kick on the run to O’Loughlin in the third term, and had a perfect pick-up at top speed, collecting the ball off the deck and handballing almost in the same motion – a real one-touch player. Later in the game she continued to win a fair chunk of the football and took a good intercept mark on the wing.

#38 Daisy Bateman

Could sniff out a goal in a submarine. Kicked three majors, all of which were opportunistic, right-time, right-place type goals. She could have had another had it not been punched across the line in the second term by Isabelle Pritchard. She is smart and positioned herself well in the one-on-one marking contest where she took a mark in the goal square in the third term, turned around and booted it home. Shortly after, she kicked it off the deck after the ball bounced between two Jets opponents. She dropped into the hole 30m out from goal to almost kick a third in the term but couldn’t convert with the heavy ball dropping short.

 

Western Jets:

#14 Isabella Grant

Grant covers the ground quite well and moves nicely in transition from defence to attack. She teamed up well with Isabelle Pritchard in the second term in one instance where Pritchard handballed through traffic and Grant took off, kicking long to half-forward, where it was marked by Nikita Wright. Grant seems to love to go direct because when she wins the football she takes off and kicks long down the middle of the ground. It gained some really good meterage for the Jets. She had a shot on goal in the final term but her shot was marked on the line by Bridie Winbanks.

#16 Elisabeth Georgostathis

Georgostathis put in a hard-working performance through the midfield and was one of the better Jets players on the day. Some of her most noticeable traits were her ability to pick the ball up cleanly despite the weather and be able to change direction and dispose of it quickly. She showed good vision at a centre stoppage in the second term to handball over a couple of opponents to a teammate on the outside. In the second half she made a number of strong tackles, letting her opposition know that she was there. In the final term she took a strong mark in defence, marking the ball at full flight over the top of Isabella Gietzmann.

#30 Isabelle Pritchard

Stood strong in defence with a couple of crucial one-on-one wins. Pritchard spoiled the ball in the second term to punch it across the line and stop a Daisy Bateman goal. She then took a good mark at half-back in the third term and handballed to Isabella Grant who kept the play moving. She won a one-on-one at ground level by wrestling the ball back and handballed to a teammate whilst under pressure in the third term, then laid a fantastic tackle to lock the ball up 30m from goal a few minutes later. She won an intercept possession at half-forward in the final term and showed quick hands in the middle of the ground to give it off to a teammate streaming forward.

#39 Cleo Saxon-Jones

Stood up in the final term booting a powerful goal from a set shot, which she navigated the breeze well and went straight through. She showed good defence in the third term where she found herself opposed to the speedy Gemma Lagioia and did well to punch the ball away and out of bounds but was unlucky to be called for deliberate.

#43 Caitlin Greiser

Had an early shot on goal in the first term but didn’t quite get through the big sticks, then showed her strength and smarts in the second term. Greiser was one-on-one deep and indicated to her teammate to kick it long. She positioned herself at the back, taking a mark and then not breaking stride and running into goal, backing herself in and kicking a major from the top of the goal square. In the third term she had a shot from long range but just missed to the right.

 

Geelong Falcons vs. Northern Knights

By: John Van Noorden

Geelong Falcons: 

#7 Olivia Purcell

Was wherever the team needed her all day. Her hard work in the contest was evident and her tackling was ferocious. A highlight of her game was when she executed a Dusty-like fend-off to perfection. With her efforts on the inside and in the clearances, she was best on ground for me. 

#18 Nina Morrison

She is a great reader of the play, and her intercept and contested marking was on display all day, allowing Geelong to rebound quickly and turn defence into attack. She was clean and efficient throughout the day, and laid some important tackles. She is one of those players that makes all her teammates look better.

#23 Lucy McEvoy

Her long kicking out of defence was a highlight, and never hesitated to go back with the flight. She was composed when her team needed it in the second half, and provided great structure to the Falcons backline.

#27 Denby Taylor

She was very quick, and her long kicking saw off many of Northern’s forward entries, and also set up her team well to rebound.

 

Northern Knights:

#4 Neve O’Connor

She had a big presence on the field, and was very effective at winning the hit-outs to space, and was always quick to follow up. She moves exceptionally well for a taller player, and she took a couple of great contested marks. O’Connor also delivered long kicks inside 50 to the advantage of Northern. 

#21 Ellie McKenzie

Was quiet in the first quarter (although most of the Knights were), but had an explosive patch in the middle of the second quarter. She chased and tackled, winning a free kick for her team on the back flank. She followed that with a long kick down the wing hitting her target on the chest, then sprinted forward and made a contest in the forward 50 to force a ball-up. A minute later, she was sitting on a player’s shoulders as she flew for a high mark, but could not bring the ball down. McKenzie was very influential. 

#22 Britney Gutknecht

Very classy and displayed excellent clean pick ups. Got high-quality possessions in the contest, and drew a free kick inside 25 metres but didn’t convert. Gutknecht’s composure was one reason why Northern was able to get back into the game in the second half. 

#23 Gabby Newton

She was composed under pressure and looked a level above at times. On a few occasions she displayed the awareness to change her decision at the last minute, making a better one and opening up space for teammates. Newton was strong in defence, and held the fort down well in the third quarter, enabling her teammates to mount a comeback against the breeze. Her unselfish team play was a highlight, and was best on ground for Northern in my opinion. 

 

Sandringham Dragons vs. Bendigo Pioneers 

By: Matt Balmer 

Sandringham Dragons:

#30 Eleanor Brown

Brown was a marking machine throughout the afternoon where she would’ve taken 10 plus marks. Standing at 176cm, her presence in the air made her a tough match-up for the Pioneers players. One of her standout marks was in the second quarter, where she smartly intercepted the ball. She was good marking overhead, as well on her chest. The left foot kicker also had a huge run down the ‘scoreboard’ wing in the final quarter, and was one of the Dragons’ best for the day.

#36 Jemma Owen

The Sandy Dragons skipper has the ability to break the lines, making her a damaging player. She is also willing to take players on to help get the ball moving forward. In one passage of play, she smartly ran hard to get the handball off the stationary player and used her good kick to get it moving forward. She also showed throughout the contest that she was willing to kick the ball on either foot if required.

#43 Abbie McKay

One thing I noticed about McKay was the noise that was made everytime she kicked the ball – the “thump” after every kick was obvious compared with some of the other girls and she had a long distance on her right foot. McKay also had an impressive passage of play, kicking the ball well inside 50 in the second quarter.

#46 Alice Burke

She had a quieter first half, but she got going in the second half playing a really good half. She won the opening contest of the third quarter, getting the ball and clearing it from the stoppage and kicking it inside 50. Similar to McKay, she also has a long right foot kick.

 

Bendigo Pioneers:

#19 Kodi Jacques

Played most of the game in the midfield trying hard during the contest, but the Pioneers were well and truly beaten during the match. She took an outstanding contested mark in the opening quarter and competed hard during the match. Her effort won her a free kick in the second quarter, while another highlight was a thumping right foot kick in the final quarter that hit the target up the ground.

#28 Megan Williamson

Was the Pioneers best player in my eyes, working exceptionally hard in the defensive half of the ground. The left footer did show she was willing to use it off her right foot if required, but hit most of her targets on her natural left foot. She was strong in the contest and at times, was willing to tuck it under her arm and run forward. She showed she was willing to put her head over the ball and deservingly won a free for high contact in the third term. Despite the score, she fought hard in the final term with multiple inside 50s – including a kick straight out of the middle early in the fourth quarter that ventured inside 50.

 

Greater Western Victoria Rebels vs. Gippsland Power 

By: Matt Balmer 

Greater Western Victoria Rebels:

#15 Tara Jasper

She did some nice things throughout the contest, but an outstanding piece of play had to be recognised in the third quarter. On the ‘scoreboard’ side of the ground, she laid an absolutely superb run-down tackle in the third quarter that stopped a certain inside 50 and possible goal for the Power.

#16 Lauren Butler

Was impressed with her work during the match, where she competes well around the ground, mostly playing across half-back. She puts her head over the footy, showing she is willing to win the footy in the contest.

#18 Sophie Van De Heuvel

Played almost exclusively across half forward, rarely pushing into the midfield. She did play as a high half-forward at times. What was most impressive about Van De Heuvel was her tackling, where she laid over five for the match, putting pressure on her opponents. Another impressive aspect is her recovery, while she did drop a mark in the opening term, she immediately laid a tackle on her Power opponent forcing a stoppage. She recovers well when the ball hits the turf and picks it up cleanly. She snapped a beautiful goal in the second quarter at the south end of Trevor Barker Oval.

#25 Georgia Clarke

Clarke was the player I was most impressed with for the entire day. She played almost as a quarterback role as a rebounding defender, repelling multiple Power attacks on goal. Her rebound work was outstanding and she used the ball well off her right foot. She is very agile and moves well around the ground. An intercept possession in the third quarter was a highlight and there was no doubting that Clarke was one of the Rebels’ best players.

#35 Rene Caris

Caris played in the ruck and it was the first throw-up of the day that was the most impressive, where she got up and over at the first ruck contest and hitting the ball down to a teammate. The right footer did find some football around the ground and was reasonable below her knees when the ball hit the ground in the wet conditions.

 

Gippsland Power:

#6 Emily Haeusler

Haeusler is a strong tackler, playing most of the game in the attacking half of the ground. She can use the ball reasonably well on either her left or right foot, but she hit a superb pass on the left on the wing in the second quarter. Her hands in close in the contest were good despite the slippery ball.

#28 Tyla Hanks

You only need one look at Hanks to know she is going to be an outstanding footballer in the future. Her opening quarter was superb and she almost single handedly got her Power side over the line in the tight contest. She would’ve had close to 10 disposals in the opening quarter, where she begun the contest with a big inside 50 from the stoppage. She is strong in the contest and reads the taps from the rucks exceptionally well. She has a zip of speed and gets the ball moving forward whenever possible. She exits very well from the stoppages and booted an outstanding goal in the final quarter, snapping the ball and dribbling it through the goals – which in the end was the Power’s only goal of the day.

#58 Amy Dunn

The tall played most of the match in the ruck where she competed very well. Despite the wet conditions, she took a good mark inside 50 in the second quarter. A set shot on goal went for a point on her right foot. She marked well early in the match.

Scouting notes: TAC Cup Girls – Round 7

THE Geelong Falcons and Northern Knights have proven themselves as powerhouses of the TAC Cup Girls competition, with both teams keeping their winning streaks intact. Dandenong also made it two consecutive wins, getting the job done over Oakleigh. While the top two has already been determined, the two sides will go head-to-head in round eight in a season that continues to deliver. As with last week, we narrowed our focus on a number of players who had been consistent over the past month.

GWV Rebels vs. Murray Bushrangers

GWV Rebels:

#2 Renee Saulitis

An exciting player who uses her outside run to good advantage off a wing and down forward. She just bursts away with a few quick steps and seems to know where to crumb the ball down forward. She snapped a goal off the side of the boot in the second quarter and showed a clean pair of hands picking the ball up at speed but just rushed her snap on goal a little. She took a good mark later in the game but her set shot just dropped short, however continued to buzz around though there was not much action deep inside 50 in the final term for the Rebels.

#16 Lauren Butler

Butler seems to pop up at the right times and get to positions where she can switch play or drive momentum forward. She is quick to dispose of the ball when under pressure, raising her arms in a tackle and handballing clear. Butler drifted into defence at one stage, took a strong intercept mark and kicked long to Saulitis on the wing. With ball in hand, she looks composed and in one instance, took a mark and just calmly side-stepped her opponent with good agility to kick deep inside 50. She defended well through the middle of the ground in the final term, pumping the ball long into the forward line, and took an important intercept mark at half-forward from a kick-out but unfortunately her set shot drifted to the left.

#18 Sophie Van De Heuvel

Across the first three quarters I thought she was best on ground because of the damage she was causing up forward and her ability to bring teammates into the game. The first memorable moment for Van De Heuvel was a great kick in the opening quarter tight against the boundary under pressure. The AFLW Academy member had the composure to hit-up Alyssa Humphries leading out at her. The most noticeable trait about Van De Heuvel is her ability to not waste a possession and she is also strong overhead. She finished the game with two goals, had another from close range in the third term which just missed, and a set shot later on that hit the post. She did kick one of her goals from a powerful set shot. Laid some good tackles as well which was good to see.

#23 Sophie Molan

I have not seen her play a bad game to date, Molan is just that consistent midfielder who is still bottom-age but stands out with or without her AFLW Academy teammates. Molan is clean at ground level with a good burst of acceleration, kicking a great goal after hard running out of midfield. She set up another goal to Saulitis with a fantastic smother on Rebecca Webster, winning the ball and kicking long to the forward. In the third term she found herself all alone inside forward 50 for an uncontested mark, but her set shot just missed. Finished a great game with a lovely kick on the run to hit-up Saulitis again.

#25 Georgia Clarke

The centre half-back was enormous in the first half, pushing up into the midfield when required and winning some crucial one-on-one battles. She laid a couple of tackles to stop Bushrangers in their tracks, and she just reads the ball so well from the half-back line. She positions herself in dangerous positions to both intercept and rebound, and just keeps running all day. She picked up three disposals in one chain of possession in the third term, running from half-back to half-forward.

#35 Rene Caris

Caris had a solid game, particularly standing out early. Her ruckwork is very good, knowing where her midfielders are, and palming down to them with effect. She has quick hands in close and moves well for a taller player, offering up as an option across the ground.

Murray Bushrangers:

#16 Eloise Ashley-Cooper

Returned to the Bushrangers side and had a few solid moments throughout the game. Playing off half-back, she was opposed to Van De Heuvel at times and created some run out of defence. She put pressure on her opponent and is able to defend in the air or at ground level. She moved up into the midfield at times, providing an inside presence at the stoppages.

#17 Rebecca Webster

A typical hard working performance from the AFLW Academy member. She continually hit the packs hard and never took a backwards step. She was often accompanied by a crowd of Rebels, but still stood out with her good vision and quick hands. She was particularly involved heavily early and she reads the game so well through the midfield. Webster’s strength was underlined at one stage in the third term, fending off two players consecutively. She had a thumping shot on goal from outside 50 but her attempt just fell short. She kicked an important goal in the final term, evading an opponent inside 50 with a feint snap before actually snapping on her other side and nailing the goal.

#22 Tamara Smith

A tireless worker throughout the game, Smith just continued to work hard over four quarters. Early on she won a good one-on-one contest against Molan, showing good body work, but her kick forward was intercepted by Clarke. Smith was composed under pressure and moved well through traffic, laying a good smother to start the third term which saw her win the footy, kick forward and lead to a goal to Claudia McKimmie. A great piece of defensive play was a huge rundown tackle in the fourth term, winning the football moments later on the wing, taking a couple of bounces and kicking forward. Overall, Smith has a good balance of inside and outside traits, showing fantastic closing speed with some bone-crunching rundown tackles.

#25 Grace Egan

Wore a different number in the clash strip to her traditional #42, and was solid, particularly through the middle patches of the game. She often looks for the quick handball off half-back and laid a few great tackles pushing up the ground or as a wall at half-back. She rebounded well and looked to switch play on different occasions. Moved forward in the last term and laid a bruising hip-and-shoulder in the final play when the ball was deep inside 50 and the Bushrangers almost got a score-levelling goal.

 

Eastern Ranges vs. Gippsland Power 

By: Taylah Melki 

Eastern Ranges:

#3 Emerson Woods

She was one of the best on field for the Ranges with her clean hands in and around the stoppages and her ability to compete well in the air. Even when she did not win the footy in the air she competed hard and brought the ball to ground to give her teammates the chance to win the footy. She took a few strong marks and provided a good option when coming out of defence for the Ranges. Woods was not afraid to go in hard for the footy and scrap for it at ground level to win the ball credit to her courage and commitment to the game.

#37 Georgia Macpherson

She had some really good patches throughout the game laying an impressive smother in the third quarter that stopped her opponent from banging the ball inside their forward 50. Macpherson applied plenty of physical pressure in and around the contest and was clean at ground level, helping to release the run and carry of her teammates.  

 #38 Laura McClelland

Her physical pressure was really good, harassing players and trying hard to win the footy. She laid plenty of strong tackles and used her body well to set up play. McClelland also showcased her ability to read the play and create an option for the Ranges to kick to up forward.

Gippsland Power:

#6 Emily Haeusler

She worked really hard throughout the match for Gippsland and was probably one of the best for the Power. She was very clean across the ground and consistently imposed herself on the contest. Haeusler was very agile and good in tight spaces, helping to release her teammates. She used her good strong kick and running ability to help propel her team forward especially in the fourth quarter. Her follow-up efforts in the last quarter helped to inspire her teammates.

#28 Tyla Hanks

She was a clear standout for Gippsland once again. She dominated across the ground, taking plenty of strong marks and creating space to help release her teammates into space. Her clean hands in and around the contest were invaluable along with her ability to run and carry. Hanks laid plenty of strong tackles and copped plenty of attention from her opponents, but that did not seem to bother her as she went on to slot an important goal on a tight angle. She showcased her footy smarts and her ability to turn and hit a target, credit to her good kicking ability. Her work at stoppages and clean pick-ups helped to propel the Power forward.

 

Sandringham Dragons vs. Western Jets 

By: Carly McClen 

Sandringham Dragons:

#50 Hannah Bate

Dominant in her role at half-forward. Nobody could get near her. Strong marking and delivery into attacking 50. Great third-quarter goal from 30 metres out, threading it straight though the middle. Kicked another good goal in the last quarter. She kicked the ball into the mark from 20 metres out early on but recomposed and took her time to secure goals for her team. Good marking at half-forward and delivery into attacking 50.

#25 Isabella Eddey

Strong tacking all day and hustling at half-forward. Huge impact in keeping the ball in the attack for the Dragons. 

#30 Eleanor Brown

Good marking and setting up opportunities for goal. Good team play in shepherding and following through. Great running and kept her feet, showing good agility. 

#64 Eliza McNamara

Played the roving position well. Ran all day with quick hands and following up, pushing the ball forward for her team. Creative inside midfielder who showed great attack on the ball.

#43 Abbie McKay

Good running to collect the ball on the run and jab it through for goal. Played her centre role convincingly. 

 Western Jets:

#16 Elisabeth Georgostathis

Strong tackling creating turnarounds in defence and nice left-foot kicking on the run. Laid a great tackle in the last quarter against the running Eleanor Brown, who is tough to catch.

#30 Isabelle Pritchard

Strong kicking out of defence and pressure on forwards particularly in the last quarter. Great long kick left-foot kick.

#39 Cleo Saxon-Jones

Good direct kicking and was dominant in the ruck. 

#40 Sharnie Whiting

Strong and long kicking out of half-back.

 

Northern Knights vs. Bendigo Pioneers 

By: James Halley 

Northern Knights:

#23 Gabrielle Newton

She is very good at picking up the footy below her knees. She was playing out of full-forward at stages and won herself a shot on goal with a great lead, but pulled the kick to the right-hand side.

#4 Neve O’Connor

Dominated the ruck taps all day convincingly. She had a big presence on the field.

#24 Alex Pronesti

She showed great footy knowledge to set up Britney Gutknecht for a goal when she had a set shot on an acute angle. Early in the last quarter she was unselfish once again to set up Gutknecht for a centering pass. Pronesti is becoming a well-rounded player.

#5 Madeline Brancatisano

She is a smooth mover, and dangerous in the small forward role. In the third term she got through two opponents to kick her first goal on the run, in what was a very impressive passage of play.

#22 Britney Gutknecht

Gutknecht was dangerous all day, presented well and was very influential. She capitalised perfectly from a set shot straight in front in the second term from a wonderful Alex Pronesti pass. She kicked her second for the term when she played on from a set shot in a lack of concentration from Bendigo’s defence. This allowed her to ease the pressure and create an easier shot on goal for herself. Late in the third term she kicked her third major from a scrimmage in the goal-square. Pronesti and Gutknecht combined for the second time, where a selfless act from Pronesti displayed the epitome of putting the team first. Gutknecht absolutely dominated the last quarter, finishing off with adding another two goals to her total of six.

Bendigo Pioneers: 

#11 Jemma Finning

She played a role on Northern’s Ellie McKenzie and was beaten, but was able to curb her influence at times, such as winning a holding-the-ball decision in the last quarter.

#19 Kodi Jaques

Won a high free kick in the third term and kicked truly for Bendigo’s first goal since the first quarter. She played in the midfield and laid countless tackles. Jacques recorded numerous pressure acts, as the Knights had the ball most of the time. She was amongst the best for Bendigo, and was often found at the bottom of the pack all day, trying her heart out for her side. 

 

Calder Cannons vs. Geelong Falcons

Calder Cannons:

#3 Madison Prespakis

Dominant game as usual by the Cannons star midfielder. What impressed me most during this game was her leadership. When she went off in the first quarter, she was pacing up and down the boundary line and following the play. She yelled out spirited instructions to teammates and even the runner. Prespakis is a player who not only knows her own game but also knows her teammates’ games. She has a great ability to execute structures and can play anywhere. This was shown when she was moved to full forward in the second half and had an immediate impact, kicking two goals. It was the first time I’ve seen her in a one-on-one role and you guessed it- she can do that as well!

#21 Georgia Patrikios

Patrikios was her usual aggressive self. She ran hard all game and worked well up the ground. She kicked a great goal at start of the third quarter which gave Calder some momentum. Patrikios worked hard up forward and got deep into the contest at times. Took a good mark running back with the flight of the ball and cleverly kicked it to the top of the square. Demonstrated her high footy IQ with a really smart kick to hack the ball out of a tight stoppage. Patrikios of course executed her famous side-step wonderfully, continuing to demonstrate her impressive agility. She got to play on-ball at times, which suits her. This gave Patrikios the opportunity to find some space and dominate.

#18 Carla Rendelmann

Played her best game for the Cannons this season. Has an incredible leap in the ruck and won plenty of hit-outs. She also had an impact around the ground, using her body to keep the Falcons away from the ball. Took a huge mark later in the game and demonstrated great hands throughout the day. Had good awareness to be on the goal-line inside defensive 50 when Geelong was pressing forward.

 

 Geelong Falcons:

#7 Olivia Purcell

Purcell’s gut-running was really impressive against Calder. This was shown when she sprinted forward to assist Renee Tierney, who tripped in a one-on-one in the goal-square, keeping the ball in the hot zone for Geelong. Delivered nice kicks into space and demonstrated good run and carry. Purcell moved across the ground well and when she couldn’t pick up the footy, she provided a good defensive effort through a shepherd or a tackle. In one instance, she cleverly side-stepped her opponent to buy her some time and find an option.

#23 Lucy McEvoy

McEvoy’s handballing was on display against Calder. She gave away plenty of quick-fire handballs and at times, gave stronger, loopier handballs to create the run and carry for the Falcons. The highlight of her game was when she laid a goal-saving smother in the defensive goal-square, which demonstrated huge courage and simultaneously halted the momentum that the Cannons had in the third quarter. In one instance, McEvoy did really well to trap the ball with her feet rather than bend down and pick it up. She was really calm and composed on last line of defence, shown when she still got a handball away while being tackled.

#18 Nina Morrison

Morrison took a composed chest mark and perfectly hit a target inside 50, something she has been able to do consistently throughout the season. Had good run and carry throughout the game and was speedy with the ball in hand as usual. Had good agility and picked the ball up cleanly off the deck when she needed to. Morrison consistently stopped Cannons midfielders in their tracks while hunting the ball herself. Always completed one effort then followed up with another. Took a great contested grab where she just snatched it out of her opponent’s hands. Morrison is ball magnet and a fantastic reader of the footy. She consistently provided an option for her teammates.

Weekend wash-up: TAC Cup Girls – Round 7

ROUND seven confirmed the two grand finalists for the TAC Cup Girls competition. The Geelong Falcons and Northern Knights have now won seven games in a row, and sit two games ahead of Sandringham and Eastern at third and fourth (respectively). All four teams had a win on the weekend and were joined by Greater Western Victoria (GWV) and Dandenong on the winners’ list.

Greater Western Victoria Rebels  5.8.38 defeated Murray Bushrangers 5.2.32

By: Peter Williams

The Greater Western Victoria (GWV) Rebels continued their fantastic form with their third straight win, following a thrilling six-point victory over the Murray Bushrangers. The Bushrangers have found themselves on the opposite side of the formline, with the loss making it three consecutive defeats since going nine games without a loss in the first season and a half of TAC Cup Girls football. Both sides were impressive throughout with a number of AFLW Academy stars putting on a show.

For the winners, Georgia Clarke was immense at centre-half back in the first half, rebounding all the Murray attacks, while up the other end, Sophie Van De Heuvel booted two goals and could have had a couple more had it not been for a few unlucky misses, or unselfish plays. Sophie Molan continued her fantastic form through the midfield and around the ground, while up forward, the exciting Renee Saulitis booted a goal and almost had a second, just looking dangerous every time she went near it. Captain Lauren Butler was another consistent player across four quarters playing all across the ground.

The Bushrangers’ midfield was the shining loss in the defeat, with Rebecca Webster leading the way despite being closely watched by her opponents, while Tamara Smith, Chelsea Knight and Millie Brown all threw themselves into the contest. Kate Adams was lively between midfield and forward, while Grace Egan was solid off half-back, producing some good rebounds and run-and-carry.

Oakleigh Chargers 4.4.28 defeated by Dandenong Stingrays 8.8.56

The Dandenong Stingrays backed up their first win of the season last week with a clinical 28-point win over the Oakleigh Chargers. The Stingrays led all day but in a positive for the Chargers, they outscored the away side by a point in the last quarter.

Alice O’Sullivan was the best afield for the Stingrays and was joined by usual suspect, Jordyn Allen among the top Dandenong players. The Stingrays captain has been a consistent performer in the back line all season and Saturday was no different. Isabella Shannon backed up her two-goal performance last week with another two goals against the Chargers. Amie Carroll was one of seven goal-kickers for the Stingrays, and also found her name in the best for the away side.

Playing without last week’s best-on-ground, Katie Lynch was always going to be a big challenge for Oakleigh. But the Chargers had plenty of players who stepped up in her place, including Chloe O’Malley, Melanie Bertuna and captain, Hannah McLaren. Bridie Winbanks was named the best player for Oakleigh after having another dominant performance in the black and white. Cricketer Isabella Gietzmann got on the board with a goal and also featured among Oakleigh’s best.

Eastern Ranges 4.5.29 defeated Gippsland Power 3.2.20

By: Taylah Melki

In a close encounter, it was the Eastern Ranges that came away with a nine-point win over the Gippsland Power. Both teams brought their a-game and competed hard throughout the game, with plenty of good match-ups across the ground. The Power threw everything at the Ranges in the last quarter but the Ranges showed great composure and held on to claim their fifth win for the season.

For the Ranges, Emerson Woods impressed both in the air and at ground level, going in hard to win the footy. Woods took a few good strong marks and consistently provided an option for her teammates. Nicole Cormack also played a big role in the Ranges win, slotting an important goal in the dying minutes to help secure the victory for Eastern. Georgia Macpherson applied plenty of pressure and was clean in and around the contest while Catherine Chamberlain imposed herself on the scoreboard, slotting a major.

Tyla Hanks was in impressive form yet again for the Power, slotting a big goal to keep them in the game and racking up plenty of touches. Her ability to read the play allowed her to release her teammates into space and propel her team forward. Jazz Ferguson also had a stellar game for the Power, laying plenty of strong tackles and taking a heap of intercept marks. Ferguson was really strong around the contest and showed her clean hands in tight. Emily Haeusler was in fine form once again winning plenty of the footy while teammate Chelsea Bray slotted an important goal for the Power.  

Sandringham Dragons 8.9.57 defeated Western Jets 1.1.7

By: Carly McClen and Julia Montesano

Sandringham kept the Western Jets goalless until late in the last quarter, making more noise on the ground than ever before and proving it near impossible for the Jets to get the ball- not just into their attacking 50, but across the halfway line. Nobody could get near Dragons forward Holly Bate, who kicked five majors for the day while Kaitlyn O’Keefe kicked the only goal for the Jets late in the last quarter.

Midfielder, Eliza McNamara was among the standouts on the weekend, continuing to show how much of an asset she is to the Dragons line-up. Alice Burke and Bryanna Arnold stood up in defence and had solid performances. But it was Holly Bate who stole the show for Sandringham, kicking five goals in a dominant performance inside 50. Abbie McKay also got on the board with two majors, and was named among the Dragons’ best players. 

For the Jets, Elisabeth Georgostathis had another fine day through the middle of the ground and never gave up throughout the match. Isabelle Pritchard was solid once again in defence and continues to trouble opposition forwards. Cleo Saxon-Jones had another commendable performance while Isabella Grant found her name in Western’s best once again, proving how valuable she is to the side. 

Northern Knights 14.7.91 defeated Bendigo Pioneers 3.2.20

By: James Halley

After an even first quarter, it was all the Knights from then on as they piled on 12 goals to two to stay undefeated after seven rounds. At quarter time, the match could have gone either way, but the Knights flicked the switch and kicked five goals to none in the second term to give themselves a game winning 35-point lead at half time.

Britney Gutknecht was enormous with six goals, jumping to second on the league’s top goal kickers list. Ellie McKenzie was influential in the middle of the ground, and was assisted by Neve O’Connor dominating the ruck and getting plenty of hit-outs throughout the game.

Kodi Jacques was clearly the best for the Pioneers, digging in deep in the midfield all day while also kicking a goal. Captain, Megan Williamson and Dayna Kelly-Guthrie were among the other leading performers for the Pioneers. 

The Knights will look to claim top spot in round eight against Geelong Falcons in a top-of-the-table clash, while Bendigo will face another tough game against third-placed Sandringham.

Calder Cannons 4.2.26 defeated by Geelong Falcons 7.4.46

At the end of the first quarter, the Cannons were leading the Falcons, prompting them to go bang with a six-goal second quarter. Calder fought back in the third quarter with three goals but Geelong’s second quarter was dominant enough to secure the victory at RAMS Arena.

Sophie Walmsley had a dominant performance for the Falcons, kicking two goals for the day and having a strong presence around the ground. Ella Mahoney also got on the board with two majors in her first game of the season. Nina Morrison continued her stellar season in the midfield with a high work ethic throughout the match, and was complemented by Zoe Inei in the ruck.

Madison Prespakis again starred for the Cannons, playing in the midfield and contributing at full forward. Prespakis kicked two goals for the day and her on-field leadership was second-to-none. Carla Rendelmann starred in the ruck and absolutely dominated, winning plenty of hit-outs. Midfielders, Felicity Theodore and Grace Dicker were among the best for the Cannons, providing important run throughout the day.