Tag: alana porter

Season reviews: TAC Cup Girls – Oakleigh Chargers

THE Oakleigh Chargers often had to change their side throughout the season, due to school commitments, injuries and rotation. But this enabled plenty of players to get a chance to experience football at TAC Cup Girls level. Despite only three wins for the season, two were by massive margins and the other was a tough slog near the end of the season.

Position: 9th
Win-loss: 3-6
Percentage: 77%

Results:

R1: defeated Gippsland Power by 67 points
R2: lost to Sandringham Dragons by 33 points
R3: lost to Eastern Ranges by 28 points
R4: lost to Geelong Falcons by 70 points
R5: lost to Northern Knights by 51 points
R6: defeated Bendigo Pioneers by 67 points
R7: lost to Dandenong Stingrays by 28 points
R8: defeated Western Jets by 15 points
R9: lost to Greater Western Victoria Rebels by 25 points

Key players:

Hannah McLaren: The Oakleigh captain led by example throughout the season with aggressive tackling, clean hands and good ball-use in general. McLaren is also a strong marker of the footy, as she could intercept and control the play for her side. She could play anywhere throughout the season, often playing behind the ball to counteract opposition scoring. Her best work was arguably done in the midfield, where she would burrow into contests and also provide good run on the outside to assist her teammates. She is currently playing for Vic Metro in the AFL Women’s U18 National Championships.

Gemma Lagioia: Lagioia often worked in tandem with McLaren to put pressure on the opposition midfield, tackling hard and winning the ground balls. She demonstrated a high footy IQ throughout the season, reading the play well and taking some nice intercept marks. Her long kick was crucial, as it gave her teammates chances to create scoring opportunities. Lagioia showed consistent hunger for the footy, demonstrated by her ability to go hard at the footy and win it cleanly.

Daisy Bateman: Bateman was an exciting forward who came equal second in the TAC Cup Girls goal kicking tally. She had the highest average of the season, averaging two goals per game to register 14 goals from seven games. The highlight of her season was when she kicked five majors against the Bendigo Pioneers, being her dominant self inside 50. Bateman often demonstrated strong hands and her positioning inside 50 was outstanding. Her forward pressure was an asset of her game as was her ball movement. She booted a goal in Vic Metro’s first game of the AFL Women’s National Championships, getting her Nationals campaign off to a good start.

Bridie Winbanks: Was not only a standout ruck for the Chargers, but was also a standout in the competition. Winbanks did well aerially to win the ball and also fought hard for the ground ball, showing constant fight to win the footy. She was able to tackle hard and used her long kick to get her teammates out of trouble. She has already had an opportunity to feature in Essendon’s VFLW side, competing hard in the ruck in new colours. Winbanks also made the AFL Draft Central Team of the Year, which was reward for a consistent year in the ruck.

Katie Lynch: Lynch was a game-changer for the Chargers when she had the opportunity to play, often dominating through the midfield. Her strong hands were a huge asset in her game, as she was able to intercept or mark overhead which helped to open up play for her teammates. Her long kick can clear the ball out of congestion while her tackling is fierce and can give opposition midfields headaches. Lynch had a blistering start to the AFL Women’s National Under 18 Championships, displaying her eite ball use and high footy IQ which we became so accustomed to seeing during the season.

Season summary:

A three-win season would not dishearten the Chargers, as they got the opportunity to unveil some wonderful young talent that will hold them in good stead for years to come. With just two of its six losses being over 50 points, it shows that Oakleigh have been able to keep in the contest for the majority of its games. With players like Alana Porter, Nicola Xenos and Alice O’Loughlin playing exciting footy and the side having a solid connection with Collingwood, the Chargers have a bright future ahead of them.

Weekend wash-up: TAC Cup Girls – Round 9

THE TAC Cup Girls 2018 season came to an end on Saturday, with all 12 teams playing out games at RAMS Arena. The Northern Knights secured a grand final spot with a win against the Bushrangers, joining Geelong in the grand final on Saturday. The Falcons themselves as well as Dandenong got big wins on the day while the Cannons got their first win since round three. 

 

Northern Knights 6.9 (45) defeated Murray Bushrangers 1.9 (15)

By: Julia Montesano 

The Northern Knights eradicated all mathematical grand final probabilities with a 30-point win over Murray Bushrangers in the first game of the day. Although the Bushrangers applied good attacking pressure, they were plagued by inaccuracy thanks to a strong breeze at RAMS Arena. The win sees the Knights claim a grand final spot on Saturday against Geelong.

Fifteen year-old Ellie McKenzie was the star of the day for Northern. She booted three goals and was a proactive presence in the forward line. Nell Morris-Dalton, Alex Pronesti and Alyssa Bannan were the other goal kickers for the Knights. Northern also had a strong presence in the ruck with Gabby Newton and Neve O’Connor rotating throughout the day. The duo won plenty of hit-outs, allowing Knights midfielders such as Madeline Brancatisano and Abigail Bennett to display good ball-use in the convincing win.

The Bushrangers tried desperately to keep themselves in the game with relentless pressure. They were stunned when Northern got out to an early 30-point lead at quarter time but fought hard in the remaining quarters. Unfortunately, they just couldn’t convert in front of goal, demonstrated by kicking 0.7 in the last quarter. Olivia Barber was the only goal-scorer for Murray and provided a good presence around the ground. Usual suspects in the midfield, Tamara Smith, Julia Harvey and Rebecca Webster were once again the stars for Murray, with all of them having good stints in the heart of the contest.

 

Greater Western Victoria Rebels 5.8 (38) def. Oakleigh Chargers 2.1 (13)

By: Taylah Melki 

In difficult conditions the Rebels were off to a quick start, scoring the first two goals of the match. They applied a lot of defensive pressure across the ground and kept that momentum up throughout the game, winning by 25 points over the Chargers. The blustery conditions did not seem to favour either side but the Rebels made the most of it and competed hard to win the footy. On the other hand, Oakleigh struggled to match the intensity applied by the Rebels, only managing to score two majors for the match.

Sophie Molan starred for Greater Western Victoria (GWV) with her ability to win the footy at ground level and impact on the contest. She was rewarded for her hard work, slotting a goal in the second term and impressed with her footy smarts to set up her teammates.  The likes of Lauren Butler and Sophie Van De Heuvel also played important roles in the Rebels win, applying plenty of forward pressure and opening up space with their clever leads. AFLW Academy player Rene Caris starred down back for GWV, controlling the play and imposing herself on the contest.

In the last quarter, the likes of Daisy Bateman and Gemma Lagioia really lifted their intensity around the ball and tried hard to create a contest both in the air and at the ground. Alana Porter also provided some good run and carry and was clean at stoppages for the Chargers, helping to propel them forward. Meanwhile Emily Harley kick-started the Chargers’ account, bagging the first major for them in the second quarter.

 

Gippsland Power 2.6 (18) def. by Sandringham Dragons 6.6 (42)

By: Taylah Melki 

Gippsland and Sandringham came to play in the last game of the season with only three points separating them at three quarter time. Both teams were evenly poised, making for a tight tussle across the ground. The Power dominated the play in the third term but were unable to capitalise on their scoring opportunities. But the tables turned in the fourth with the Dragons coming out firing and bagging four unanswered goals to claim victory by 24 points.

The ever-reliable Tyla Hanks starred once again for the Power with her ability to turn opponents inside out and hit targets even while she’s under immense pressure. Hanks’ composure with ball in hand allowed her to set up play for teammates and create forward thrusts for Gippsland. Nikia Webber also played an important role, slotting the first goal of the match and applying plenty of pressure, while Emily Hauesler and Jazz Ferguson continued their hot form, taking big grabs and competing hard for the footy.

For the Dragons, the likes of Jemma Owen stood tall, bagging two last quarter goals within minutes of each other, showcasing her ability to read the play and hit the scoreboard. In their last quarter berth, Isabella Eddey stood up, taking charge in the forward line to score her first major of the game and get the Dragons back in front. Teammate, Eleanor Brown also starred for Sandringham with her impressive work rate across the ground and willingness to compete hard and win the footy.

 

Western Jets 1.2 (8) defeated by Geelong Falcons 9.9 (63)

By: Peter Williams 

A four goals to one first term into the breeze set minor premiers Geelong Falcons up for a comfortable win over Western Jets. Despite the wind heavily favouring the Jets in the opening quarter, it was the Falcons that put the scores on the board, led by Nina Morrison (two goals) who played exclusively forward and was dominant in the air. Caitlin Greiser kicked the Jets’ only goal of the game in the first term, but in a positive, Western restricted Geelong to just five more goals for the game, including three when the Falcons had the breeze.

Olivia Purcell put in another top performance to be best on ground, her work around the stoppages was a real highlight. Denby Taylor showed she is capable of playing up either end, while Sachi DeGiacomi booted two majors to work well with Morrison (three goals). Renee Tierney also slotted two majors, while Tarryn Love and Lucy McEvoy were others who impressed throughout the contest.

For the Jets, it was Elisabeth Georgostathis who was everywhere, producing plenty of strong tackles, including a rundown one on Purcell, and always fighting hard for the losing side. Taylah Kolevski‘s efforts in the ruck against Zoe Inei were superb, while Olivia Forsythe and Sharnie Whiting were others who stood out for Western.

 

Calder Cannons 5.2 (32) defeated Eastern Ranges 1.2 (8)

By: Peter Williams 

In what was probably considered an upset given ladder positions and form, Calder Cannons proved too good for Eastern Ranges, courtesy of a fast start. The Cannons booted three goals in the first term and then held on well against the Ranges in a dour, wet weather affair. Mikala Cann booted the Ranges’ only goal from a free kick, as Georgia Patrikios put her hat in the ring for one of the goals of the year with a snap from the boundary line in the third term. While neither side could make the Grand Final, Calder got the four points and claimed its second win of the season.

Madison Prespakis was best on ground again after a performance everyone has come to expect from the top star. She was everywhere and just dominated at ground level or in the air, booting a great goal in the first term from an intercept mark inside forward 50. Patrikios was also electric up forward, while Carla Rendelmann and Madison’s sister, Georgie Prespakis were also good in the wet. AFLW Academy member, Molly Warburton was named in the best for her work in defence.

For Eastern, Cann showed clean hands throughout the contest, while Emerson Woods produced another hard-working effort around the stoppages. Laura McClelland tried to be creative up forward and worked hard throughout the match, while Sarah Kendall put pressure on her opponents around the stoppages and down back. Co-captain, Charlotte Wilson took a few strong intercept marks in defence.

 

Dandenong Stingrays 10.8 (68) defeated Bendigo Pioneers 1.2 (8)

By: Julia Montesano 

The Dandenong Stingrays finished their season with their biggest win of the year, defeating the Bendigo Pioneers by 60 points. The rain did not seem to bother the Stingrays, who managed to kick 10 goals in the slippery conditions.

AFLW Academy forward, Courtney Jones was sensational for the Stingrays, kicking three goals and laying some strong tackles. Brooke Borchard also got three majors on the board, working in tandem with Jones to cause some headaches for the Pioneers. Regular contributors, Isabella Shannon and Jordyn Allen also got on the scoreboard. Shannon applied fantastic pressure throughout the afternoon while Allen continued to play her signatory composed style of football to get Dandenong over the line.

It was a hard slog for the Pioneers, but there was no shortage of shining lights. Midfielder Kodi Jacques was outstanding for the Pioneers, with her innate ability to clear the ball out of a stoppage. Jacques handled herself with composure during the match and used the ball extremely well. She was complemented as usual by captain, Megan Williamson who has not put a foot wrong all season. Williamson displayed hard running on the day and was a brilliant leader on the field.

TAC Cup Girls previews: Round 8

There are plenty of big games in round eight with many teams competing for some much-needed wins. The Western Jets and Bendigo Pioneers will be looking to claim their second win of the season while the fight will continue at the top of the table with the Knights and Falcons going head-to-head.

 

CALDER CANNONS v. DANDENONG STINGRAYS?
Round 8 – Friday 4 May, 7.30pm
RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

The Cannons have only secured one win for the season but will be looking to claim their second victory against the eighth-placed Stingrays. Molly Warburton’s addition will help further boost Calder’s defence with the likes of Madison Prespakis and Laura Cocomello also named to take on Dandenong. Terira Fry will also line up for the Cannons and provide a great option up forward for her teammates.   

The Dandenong Stingrays came off a big win in round seven and will be looking to duplicate that form against the Cannons. With the likes of Isabella Shannon starring with two goals and Amie Carroll at her damaging best, the Stingrays will come into the match with some confidence, making for a hotly contested match.

 

EASTERN RANGES v. MURRAY BUSHRANGERS
Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 11.30am
Warrawee Park, Oakleigh

With plenty of big games this round, the match-up between the Eastern Ranges and Murray Bushrangers will be one to watch. Both teams are relatively evenly poised, with the Ranges sitting on five wins and Bushrangers on three. Eastern have named key mid/ forward, Olivia Meagher who wins plenty of footy across the ground. The Ranges will be hoping co-captain, Emerson Woods has a big game, as her clean pick-ups and work around the stoppages are invaluable.

On the other hand, the Bushrangers will be looking to claim a big win over the Ranges but will have to do so without star midfielder, Rebecca Webster. Murray will bring in the likes of dynamic forward, Julia Harvey and Ada Chessor to try and keep their finals hopes alive.

 

OAKLEIGH CHARGERS v. WESTERN JETS
Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 1.00pm
Warrawee Park, Oakleigh

After a disappointing year the Western Jets will be wanting to claim their second victory for the 2018 season over the Oakleigh Chargers, but the Chargers have been boosted by the return of Alana Porter who offers great composure with ball in hand. Oakleigh came off a big loss last week and will be hoping to bounce back through the likes of classy midfielder, Emily Harley, ruck, Bridie Winbanks and forward, Isabella Gietzmann.

In hope to secure their first win since round five the Jets have brought in goal-kicking machine, Caitlin Greiser who was sorely missed last week. Greiser provides a good target up forward for Western while the battle in the midfield will be one to watch with Isabella Grant and Elisabeth Georgostathis coming off a solid game in the previous round.

 

GEELONG FALCONS v. NORTHERN KNIGHTS
Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 1.15pm
St Mary’s Oval (Kardinia Park West Oval), Geelong

In a top-of-the-table clash the Geelong Falcons and Northern Knights will be looking to keep their undefeated record intact. It could easily shape up to be one of the best games of the round as both teams are littered with star players. The Falcons will be looking to make the most of their home ground advantage and put in a consistent four-quarter effort. With the return of star defender, Denby Taylor, Geelong will look to stop the Knights who are filled with scoring fire-power. After a strong performance last week, Nina Morrison and Sophie Walmsley will be looking to dominate once again in the midfield.

The Knights will welcome back sharp shooters Alyssa Bannan and Abigail Bennett who will look to apply plenty of scoreboard pressure on the Falcons and add to the potent forward line that saw Britney Gutknecht kick six majors last week. The return of Bannan and Bennett will help to boost Northern while the likes of midfielders Gabby Newton and captain Madeline Brancatisano will look to have big games to secure their eighth straight win.

 

SANDRINGHAM DRAGONS v. BENDIGO PIONEERS
Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 1.15pm
Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

Sandringham are coming off a 50-point victory against the Jets and will be looking to dominate once again both in front of goal and across the ground. Holly Bate nailed a whopping five goals and will be hoping to replicate that impressive form against the Pioneers. Nayely Borg and Chelsea Bowen have been named to help boost the Dragons down in defence. The Dragons have won the past four games and will be looking to make it five in a row and secure a spot in the top four.

On the other hand, the Bendigo Pioneers will be looking to claim a big upset and end the Dragons’ winning spree. The Pioneers have only managed to win one game for the season but have made a few changes to their line-up in hope to move up the ladder. Bendigo have brought in Tess Goodrem and will be relying on Kodi Jacques and Elizabeth Snell to stand up for them in the contest.

 

GREATER WESTERN VICTORIA REBELS v. GIPPSLAND POWER
Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 3.00pm
Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

The Rebels are coming off a hard-fought win against Murray and will be hoping that they can bring the same intensity and hunt for the footy again this week. Their forward line will be bolstered with the inclusions of Chloe Leonard and Ella Bibby, while they will be hoping that Sophie Van De Heuvel continues her red-hot form.

The Power suffered a narrow loss in round seven, going down by nine points, and will be seeking some redemption against Greater Western Victoria. Gippsland will be bolstered by the return of damaging small forward Nikia Webber who was sorely missed last week. Tyla Hanks and Jazz Ferguson starred in round seven with their impact around stoppages and ability to read the play. They will be looking to impose themselves on the contest once again to claim their fourth win for the season.

TAC Cup Girls: Team Selection – Round 8

ROUND eight marks the penultimate round of the TAC Cup Girls home and away season, intensifying the fight for a spot in the finals. Many teams have made some big changes through bringing in key players, while others have been faced with some big outs.

CALDER CANNONS v. DANDENONG STINGRAYS

Round 8 – Friday 4 May, 7.30pm
RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

The Cannons will be without Molly Hemburrow and Grace Dicker but bring in a host of other players to fill the void. After missing round seven, forward, Terira Fry will take the field and be a good option inside 50 for the Cannons. They will also be pleased to see the return of star defender, Molly Warburton who will help to boost Calder’s line-up and complement the likes of Madison Prespakis in the middle off the ground.

The Stingrays have brought in six players for their round eight clash against the Cannons, with the likes of Jess Guy-Toogood down in defence. Key forward Brooke Struylaart will also return and will offer a great target up forward for Dandenong, while Natalie Eve Taylor will also take her spot in the forward line alongside Struylaart.

Calder Cannons

 B: 41. G. Prespakis, 46. G. Elarmaly, 8. E. Vale
HB: 11. A. Barba, 48. C. Brown, 21. G. Patrikios
C: 34. Z.  Hardiman, 38. L.  Cocomello, 43. C.  Leahy
HF: 29. S. Elias, 17. E. Cornish, 37. F. Holloway
F: 32. T. Fry , 49. T. Crook, 25. A. Magri
R: 18. C. Rendelmann, 3. M. Prespakis, 2. F. Theodore
Int: 30. S. Cameron, 22. M. Muller, 6. K. Reid, 9. M. Warburton
Emg: 44. I. McNeill-Wren, 33. B. Pepper, 27. E. Woodley

In: M. Warburton, S. Cameron, K. Reid, B. Pepper, T. Fry , I. McNeill-Wren
Out: M. Hemburrow,  G. Dicker,  I. Young

Dandenong Stingrays

 B: 46. J. George, 40. R. Clancy – Dillon, 4. J. Guy-Toogood
HB: 15. J. Allen, 35. L. Cripps, 16. A. West
C: 28. T.  Smith, 12. M.  McDonald, 31. B.  Vernon
HF: 1. S. Heath, 26. I. Shannon, 29. B. Struylaart
F: 48. A. Carroll, 44. S. Ryan, 39. N. Taylor
R: 45. M. Graham, 3. C. Jones, 20. E. Wilson-Macdonald
Int: 19. B. Borchard, 10. A. Jordan, 50. A. Nagtzaam, 30. P. Swayn
Emg: 5. E. Allen-Burns, 21. G. Hodder

In: N. Taylor, A. Nagtzaam, B. Struylaart, J. Guy-Toogood, E. Allen-Burns, P. Swayn
Out: T. Giddings-Constable, S. Stratton, Z. Hill, A. O’Sullivan

 

EASTERN RANGES v. MURRAY BUSHRANGERS

Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 11.30am
Warrawee Park, Oakleigh

After a good win last week, the Eastern Ranges have not made many changes, only bringing in a handful of players. A big inclusion for the Ranges is the return of mid/forward, Olivia Meagher who will provide an extra spark across the ground. Brittany Cubitt, Sophia Zappia and co-captain, Charlotte Wilson have also been named in the line-up.

Murray will be without key player Rebecca Webster who provides great composure and footy smarts with ball in hand but will be boosted with the return of Ada Chessor and damaging forward Julia Harvey. Another big in for the Bushrangers is Sophie Damon who is a consistent and versatile player, while Grace Kelly has also been named to start up forward.

Eastern Ranges

 B: 11. M. Edwards, 23. C. Smith, 41. J. Richardson
HB: 37. G. Macpherson, 49. C. Wilson, 48. L. Szigeti
C: 8. C.  Delbridge, 21. M.  Cann, 24. K.  Ridley
HF: 38. L. McClelland, 40. T. Merrett, 3. E. Woods
F: 18. A. Allsopp, 28. L. Kelly, 22. C. Chamberlain
R: 46. S. Kendall, 6. G. De Angelis, 39. O. Meagher
Int: 10. N. Cormack , 16. E. Horne, 47. J. Provan, 45. M. Wandin
Emg: 34. S. Bowden, 9. P. Buruma, 35. B. Cubitt, 36. J. Grace, 50. S. Zappia

 In: S. Zappia, O. Meagher, L. Kelly, B. Cubitt, C. Wilson

Murray Bushrangers

B: 14. A. Duguid, 39. H. Doohan, 26. E. Nicholson
HB: 16. E. Ashley-Cooper, 32. N. Watts, 5. C. Hargreaves
C: 6. K.  Adams, 22. T.  Smith, 3. P.  Crelley
HF: 21. C. Boschetti, 1. J. Harvey, 41. Z. Spencer
F: 11. A. Chessor, 37. S. Damon, 10. G. Kelly
R: 34. E. McPherson, 4. C. Knight, 19. M. Brown
Int: 13. E. Balaburov, 40. M. Burke , 35. M. Jones, 33. M. Trethowan
Emg: 44. M. Eze, 25. E. Freeman

 In: G. Kelly, E. Freeman, S. Damon, J. Harvey, E. Balaburov, A. Chessor, M. Jones, M. Eze
Out: S. Locke, C. Mckimmie, G. Egan, E. Jones, O. Hall, R. Webster

 

OAKLEIGH CHARGERS v. WESTERN JETS

Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 1.00pm
Warrawee Park, Oakleigh

In hope of claiming their third win for the season, the Oakleigh Chargers have made a few changes to their line-up, bringing Elisabeth Jackson and Tricia Cowan. Speedy midfielder Alana Porter has also been named which will help to boost the midfield depth for the Chargers. Absent from the clash will be Zoe Makris and Georgia Byrne who will watch from the sidelines.

The Western Jets will be pleased to see the return of talented forward, Caitlin Greiser who is a scoring machine while Eden Cassar has also been named as an emergency for the Jets clash against the Chargers. The likes of Allison Chivell and half-forward Jasmine Goodman have been not been named in this week’s squad.

Oakleigh Chargers

B: 2. M. Hill, 45. T. Cowan, 13. T. Morton
HB: 14. H. McLaren, 68. A. Dyer, 50. C. Nancarrow
C: 30. G.  Lagioia, 19. E.  Harley, 5. A.  van Oosterwijck
HF: 3. J. D’Amato, 29. M. Bertuna, 10. A. Oloughlin
F: 38. D. Bateman, 18. I. Gietzmann, 9. E. Jackson
R: 11. B. Winbanks, 32. C. O’Malley, 16. A. Porter
Int: 70. P. Fennell, 43. E. Hastie, 31. K. Hunter-Scott, 15. A. Ling, 26. A. Micallef, 51. G. Relph

In: P. Fennell, E. Jackson, A. Ling, G. Relph, A. Porter, T. Cowan
Out: L. Mayne,  T. Nichols,  Z. Makris,  G. Byrne

 Western Jets

B: 8. E. Gardner, 31. K. Rebuffo, 2. C. Gashi
HB: 27. P. Ozols, 30. I. Pritchard, 40. S. Whiting
C: 19. O.  Forsythe, 13. C.  Jansen, 14. I.  Grant
HF: 43. C. Greiser, 39. C. Saxon-Jones, 12. K. O’Keefe
F: 34. T. Evans, 41. S. Forbes, 38. E. Hitch
R: 25. T. Kolevski, 16. E. Georgostathis, 33. L. Basto
Int: 5. M. Daw, 21. M. Fenech, 17. I. Freeman
Emg: H. Bult, E. Cassar, M. Gregory, E. Hannett

In: E. Cassar, C. Greiser, H. Bult, E. Hitch, S. Forbes, I. Freeman
Out: A. Chivell, J. Goodman, A. Bolt

 

GEELONG FALCONS v. NORTHERN KNIGHTS

Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 1.15pm
St Mary’s Oval (Kardinia Park West Oval), Geelong

Both teams have brought in the big guns for the top-of-the-table clash. The Falcons have made five changes to their line-up in hope to keep their undefeated record in-tact. After missing round seven, star defender, Denby Taylor is set to take the field along with midfielder Tarryn Love who has been absent from the team due to injury. Jemma Dover and Eliza Shannon have also been named in Geelong’s extended squad.

The Knights have brought in the cavalry ahead of their clash against the first-placed Falcons, naming leading goal-kicker Alyssa Bannan to help cause havoc up forward for Geelong. Abigail Bennett will also return for the Knights, helping to boost their forward line while the likes of Maeve Chaplin and Sarah Moore will be watching on from the sidelines.

Geelong Falcons

B: 37. S. Dinneen, 36. A. Chapman, 21. K. Haustorfer
HB: 32. M. Sheppard, 23. L. McEvoy, 27. D. Taylor
C: 18. N.  Morrison, 39. T.  Love, 35. S.  Walmsley
HF: 10. S. Atkins, 42. S. DeGiacomi, 16. L. Gardiner
F: 31. E. Mahoney, 38. R. Tierney, 50. S. Williams
R: 33. Z. Inei, 7. O. Purcell, 6. P. Sheppard
Int: 15. J. Devarakonda, 40. E. Shannon, 20. D. Smith, 2. E. Vella
Emg: 5. J. Dover, 34. S. Hungerford, 26. M. Skinner

In: T. Love, S. Williams, D. Taylor, J. Dover, E. Shannon
Out: L. Ryan, B. Thompson

Northern Knights

B: 27. P. Kearney, 26. E. Clayton, 32. A. Snow
HB: 10. P. Chisholm, 18. S. Sansonetti, 13. M. Suzuki
C: 12. O.  Dikranis, 5. M.  Brancatisano, 2. M.  Jarvis
HF: 7. A. Bennett, 6. A. Bannan, 21. E. McKenzie
F: 1. M. Antypas, 24. A. Pronesti, 22. B. Gutknecht
R: 4. N. O’Connor, 23. G. Newton, 14. J. Fitzgerald
Int: 17. C. Fitzgerald, 20. J. McCarthy, 3. N. Morris-Dalton, 29. T. Pulcino
Emg: 8. G. Ceravolo, 33. T. Curavic, 30. M. Rodezno

In: G. Ceravolo, A. Bannan, M. Rodezno, J. McCarthy, C. Fitzgerald, A. Bennett
Out: G. Malloy, M. Chaplin, S. Moore

SANDRIGNHAM DRAGONS v. BENDIGO PIONEERS

Round 8 – Saturday 5 May, 1.15pm
Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

Though Sandringham are going from strength to strength they have made a host of changes, bringing in key defenders Nayley Borg and Chelsea Bowen to help shut down the Pioneers forward line. Isabella Stutt has also been included for their clash against the Pioneers while Molly Denahy Maloney and Ruby Woods have been listed as omissions.

On the other hand, the Bendigo Pioneers have only made three changes to their starting line-up with Tess Goodrem returning. The Pioneers will be without Dayna Kelly Guthrie, Maeve Tupper and forward Grace Barton for the trip to Sandringham.

Sandringham Dragons

B: 40. N. Borg, 60. G. Strangio, 65. C. Saultry
HB: 23. C. Bowen, 32. S. Hartwig, 58. G. Bridges
C: 30. E.  Brown, 43. A.  McKay, 5. J.  Tait
HF: 3. S. Rothfield, 39. M. Purcell, 53. I. Stutt
F: 50. H. Bate, 1. M. Wilson, 38. M. Cairns
R: 20. A. Dalley, 36. J. Owen, 25. I. Eddey
Int: 31. B. Arnold, 46. A. Burke, 24. T. Grasso, 64. E. McNamara
Emg: 49. L. Amelung, 2. W. Laing, 13. D. Walker

In: N. Borg, L. Amelung, I. Stutt, D. Walker, M. Cairns, C. Bowen
Out: G. Cooper, M. Denahy Maloney, R. Woods

Bendigo Pioneers

B: G. Murley, 24. E. Gretgrix, 32. S. Reilly
HB: 27. B. Hards, 20. K. Douglass, 3. C. Isaac
C: 12. T. Coad, 28. M.  Williamson, 29. E.  Snell
HF: 26. L. Newton, 8. S. Knoll, T. Shepherd
F: 16. E. Cooper, 17. G. Sladden, 22. M. Ward
R: 25. T. Stewart, 2. M. Baldwin, 19. K. Jacques
Int: 6. M. Curran, 11. J. Finning, T. Goodrem, 5. E. Turnbull

 In: T. Shepherd, T. Goodrem, G. Murley
Out: D. Kelly-Guthrie, M. Tupper, G. Barton

 

GREATER WESTERN VICTORIA REBELS v. GIPPSLAND POWER

 Round 8- Saturday 5 May, 3.00pm

Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

The Rebels rung in the changes for their match against the Power, making eight changes to their squad. The changes will see the inclusion of Chloe Leonard and Ella Bibby who will start in the forward line for Greater Western Victoria (GWV). Georgia Pidgeon and Hannah Simpson will be missing from defence but the Rebels have included the likes of Lauren Sykes to help fill the void down back.

After narrowly going down in round seven, the Gippsland Power will be pleased to see the return of forward, Nikia Webber who provides a great target inaide 50 and across the ground. Leila Raymond and Jennifer Ross are also set to take the field while Hayley Balmer and Tylah Whitehead have been named as emergencies for the match.

Greater Western Victoria Rebels

B: 11. T. Marra, 45. A. Humphries, 14. L. Sykes
HB: 15. T. Jasper, 25. G. Clarke, 4. A. Nicholson
C: 27. N.  Dojiok, 34. S.  Glover, 28. I.  Simmons
HF: 13. C. Leonard, 41. K. Harris, 18. S. Van De Heuvel
F: 44. E. Bibby, 43. M. Caris, 2. R. Saulitis
R: 35. R. Caris, 16. L. Butler, 23. S. Molan
Int: 6. N. Butler, 20. T. Heath, 5. V. Jewell, 33. I. Robson
Emg: 9. J. McAuliffe , 1. A. Trigg

In: A. Trigg, E. Bibby, A. Nicholson, L. Sykes, J. McAuliffe , C. Leonard, N. Butler, V. Jewell
Out: L. Moloney ,  G. Pidgeon,  I. Rustman,  B. Gregory,  H. Simpson,  D. Henson

 Gippsland Power

B: 17. S. Trewin, 65. J. Redmond, 45. L. Van Berkel
HB: 6. E. Haeusler , 8. C. Abrahams , 49. M. Shaw
C: 48. C.  Prestidge, 28. T.  Hanks, 30. A.  Rippon
HF: 13. H. Andrews, 27. N. Webber, 12. M. Fitzsimon
F: 1. E. Jones, 60. E. Williams, 11. S. Walker
R: 58. A. Dunn, 10. T. Dower, 57. J. Ferguson
Int: 29. C. Bray, 7. L. Raymond, 4. J. Ross, 50. M. Van Berkel
Emg: 21. H. Balmer, 9. T. Whitehead

In: J. Ross, N. Webber, L. Raymond, T. Whitehead, H. Balmer
Out: C. Bird, S. Beaton, E. Cornish

TAC Cup Girls previews: Round 7

WITH only three weeks left before the the grand final, there are plenty of new faces coming in for round seven along with some big time players that are also back in the mix. The Geelong Falcons and Northern Knights will be looking to keep their undefeated record in tact while the Eastern Ranges will be hoping to secure their spot in the top four.  With Oakleigh notching up their second win of the season last week they will be hoping to bring that form into their round seven clashes.

OAKLEIGH CHARGERS v. DANDENONG STINGRAYS

Round 7 – Saturday 28 April, 12.00pm
Warawee Park, Oakleigh

Both teams are coming off big round six wins, making for a hotly contested match between the two sides. The Oakleigh Chargers will be looking to make the most of their home ground advantage against the Stingrays. Unfortunately, they lose the likes of midfield duo, Alana Porter and Katie Lynch along with defender Nicola Xenos, who is a general down back for the Chargers. With two wins under their belt the Chargers will be looking to storm home and claim their third win of the season.

The Stingrays claimed a 54-point win in last weeks’ match with the likes of Courtney Jones dominating up forward and slotting two majors while captain, Jordyn Allen imposed herself in and around the contest. But Dandenong will be missing the class of AFLW Academy forward, Brooke Struylaart who has gone down with an injury, making for an interesting clash on Saturday.

GREATER WESTERN VICTORIA REBELS v. MURRAY BUSHRANGERS

Round 7 – Saturday 28 April, 12.00pm
RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

With three wins each, both the Greater Western Victoria (GWV) Rebels and Murray Bushrangers will be looking to notch up their fourth win of the season, making for a good contest across the ground. The Rebels will be pleased to see the likes of forward, Renee Saulitis and talented midfielder Stephanie Glover – who has predominantly played in defence – both take the field for their clash against Murray. But the Rebels have some key outs for the match with Ella Wood joining a number of talented players on the boundary.

The Murray Bushrangers will be looking to bounce back after a loss last week. They will be bolstered by the return of key players, Eloise Ashley-Cooper and Chelsea Knight who provide good composure with ball in hand. Unfortunately, Murray will be without some of its most consistent players such as Sophie Damon and Julia Harvey for the trip to Craigieburn. The Bushrangers will be hoping to secure another win for the season and look to climb back into a spot in the top four.

 

EASTERN RANGES v. GIPPSLAND POWER

Round 7 – Saturday 28 April, 1.00pm
Healesville Sporting Complex, Healesville

After two losses in a row, the Eastern Ranges will be hoping to peg one back against the Gippsland Power who are hot on their heels on the ladder. Eastern will look to the return of Georgia Macpherson and Paige Buruma in the absence of key defender, Abbey Tognazzini and gun forward, Olivia Meagher. A win on Saturday will keep them in the hunt for a top four finish with the end of the season near.

The Gippsland Power will be looking to bounce back after a tight battle against the undefeated Northern Knights. Unfortunately, they will be without potent forward, Nikia Webber, who will be hard to replace with her accuracy in front of goal. Gippsland have brought in forward, Sophie Walker to apply some scoreboard pressure, while the Power will continue to look to the likes of star midfielder, Tyla Hanks to provide a spark for them across the ground against the Ranges.

 

SANDRINGHAM DRAGONS v. WESTERN JETS

Round 7 – Saturday 28 April, 1.00pm
Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

The Sandringham Dragons secured their fourth win of the season in round six against the Murray Bushrangers, moving themselves into the top four. The Dragons will be hoping to bring that type of intensity and pressure this week against the Jets, bringing in forward, Taylah Grasso and defender, Grace Bridges to continue their winning streak.

For the Jets, their leading goal-kicker, Caitlin Greiser will be absent from their clash against the Dragons on Saturday. The Jets have notched up one win for the season and will be looking to secure their second against Sandringham.

 

NORTHERN KNIGHTS v. BENDIGO PIONEERS

Round 7 – Sunday 29 April, 12.45pm
Preston City Oval, Preston

After six rounds of footy the Northern Knights are still undefeated and will be looking to bring that pressure against the Bendigo Pioneers. Playing at home the Knights will want to make the most of their home ground advantage and play an impressive four quarters of footy. The Knights have named scoring machine, Alyssa Bannan and the versatile Abigail Bennett as emergencies, but have brought in the likes of Jessica Fitzgerald and Neve O’Connor to help balance out the team.

The Pioneers have won just one game for the season and would love to cause a big upset against the undefeated Knights. Though they will be missing a few major players such as Olivia Taverna and Bree Heiden, they have brought in the likes of defender Sharmaine Reilly for the clash at Preston.

 

CALDER CANNONS v. GEELONG FALCONS

Round 7 – Sunday 29 April, 2.00pm
RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

The Geelong Falcons are yet to lose a game and will be hoping to continue their hot form against the Calder Cannons. The Falcons have been strong up forward with the likes of Sachi DeGiacomi dominating in front of goal. Though the Falcons may be without one AFLW Academy player Denby Taylor, Geelong have brought in the likes of another AFLW Academy member in Eliza Shannon, which is testament to their depth of players. The Falcons will have to contend with not just Calder Cannons gun midfielder, Madison Prespakis but so too her sister, Georgie Prespakis, which will make for an interesting match up.

The Calder Cannons have notched up only one win for the season and would love to claim a huge scalp in the undefeated Falcons. The Cannons will have their hands full trying to contain Geelong but with the return of Makeisha Muller and Laura Cocomello, the Cannons could put up a good fight and create a strong contest.

Team Selection: TAC Cup Girls – Round 7

WITH only three rounds left in the TAC Cup Girls competition, team selection is becoming increasingly unpredictable, with many exciting young new faces coming into line-ups this week. However, there are also some big outs with a few teams having to take the field without some of their stars this weekend.

 

OAKLEIGH CHARGERS v. DANDENONG STINGRAYS

Round 7 – Saturday, April 28, 12pm
Warrawee Park, Oakleigh

Oakleigh will be without star midfielders, Alana Porter and Katie Lynch as well as their dominant force in the ruck, Charlotte Moon. Nicola Xenos will also be watching from the sidelines instead of playing her usual role in defence. But there is no shortage of talent among the incoming players with two Bulleen Templestowe players in Elisabeth Jackson and Georgia Relph making their way into the line-up.

Dandenong enjoyed its first win in round six but lose AFLW Academy forward, Brooke Struylaart to injury this weekend. The Stingrays will be glad to see Grace Hodder come into the side this week and will be hoping to see her continue to play some good footy. Abbey Jordan and Brooke Borchard are also among the other ins for the Stingrays.

Oakleigh Chargers

B: 13. T. Morton, 51. G. Relph, 5. A. van Oosterwijck
HB: 14. H. McLaren, 39. T. Nichols, 26. A. Micallef
C: 31. K.  Hunter-Scott, 50. C.  Nancarrow, 30. G. Lagioia
HF: 3. J. D’Amato, 43. E. Hastie, 19. E. Harley
F: 29. M. Bertuna, 38. D. Bateman, 18. I. Gietzmann
R: 11. B. Winbanks, 32. C. O’Malley, 2. M. Hill
Int: 33. G. Byrne, 9. E. Jackson, 15. A. Ling, 22. Z. Makris, 69. L. Mayne, 10. A. Oloughlin

In: T. Morton, L. Mayne, E. Jackson, A. Ling, G. Relph, G. Byrne, A. Oloughlin
Out: N. Xenos,  A. Porter, K. Lynch,  C. Moon, T. Cowan

Dandenong Stingrays

B: 21. G. Hodder, 40. R. Clancy – Dillon, 28. T. Smith
HB: 15. J. Allen, 51. Z. Hill, 1. S. Heath
C: 12. M.  McDonald, 3. C.  Jones, 31. B. Vernon
HF: 48. A. Carroll, 26. I. Shannon, 2. S. Stratton
F: 19. B. Borchard, 44. S. Ryan, 46. J. George
R: 45. M. Graham, 35. L. Cripps, 20. E. Wilson-Macdonald
Int: 8. T. Giddings-Constable, 10. A. Jordan, 42. A. O’Sullivan, 16. A. West
Emg: 5. E. Allen-Burns, 18. S. Bayne

In: T. Giddings-Constable, A. Jordan, B. Borchard, G. Hodder
Out: L. O’Connell-Webb, B. Struylaart

 

GREATER WESTERN VICTORIA REBELS v. MURRAY BUSHRANGERS

Round 7 –  Saturday, April 28, 12pm
RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

One of Greater Western Victoria’s (GWV) best players last week, Ella Wood will miss this week, and will join Katie McAloon, Ally Trigg, Ayesha Nicholson, Chloe Leonard and Nekaela Butler on the sidelines. But the Rebels have bought in key players, Renee Saulitis, Stephanie Glover, Isabella Simmons and Rene Caris to fill the hole left by the outs, giving them a chance to compete strongly against Murray.

Some of the Bushrangers’ most consistent players in Sophie Damon, Julia Harvey and Ada Chessor will not take the field at RAMS Arena on Saturday. They will be replaced by some key ins though, with Eloise Ashley-Cooper returning to defence while Chelsea Knight rejoins fellow midfielder, Claudia McKimmie, who is fresh off a two-goal game.

Greater Western Victoria Rebels

B: 15. T. Jasper, 26. G. Pidgeon, 11. T. Marra
HB: 22. I. Rustman, 25. G. Clarke, 10. H. Simpson
C: 27. N.  Dojiok, 34. S.  Glover, 7. A. McAuliffe
HF: 28. I. Simmons, 21. D. Henson, 18. S. Van De Heuvel
F: 45. A. Humphries, 41. K. Harris, 2. R. Saulitis
R: 35. R. Caris, 16. L. Butler, 23. S. Molan
Int: 43. M. Caris, 20. T. Heath, 3. L. Moloney , 33. I. Robson
Emg: 42. B. Gregory

In: R. Saulitis, A. Humphries, S. Glover, I. Simmons, I. Robson, M. Caris
Out: K. McAloon,  A. Trigg, A. Nicholson,  C. Leonard, E. Wood, N. Butler

Murray Bushrangers

B: 21. C. Boschetti, 39. H. Doohan, 14. A. Duguid
HB: 16. E. Ashley-Cooper, 32. N. Watts, 26. E. Nicholson
C: 3. P.  Crelley, 22. T.  Smith, 33. M. Trethowan
HF: 8. O. Hall, 5. C. Hargreaves, 31. S. Locke
F: 6. K. Adams, 40. M. Burke , 23. E. Jones
R: 43. T. Verhoeven, 4. C. Knight, 36. C. Mckimmie
Int: 19. M. Brown, 42. G. Egan, 41. Z. Spencer, 17. R. Webster
Emg: 11. G. Kelly, 34. E. McPherson

In: M. Burke , E. Jones, E. Ashley-Cooper, Z. Spencer, C. Knight, A. Duguid
Out: S. Damon, J. Harvey, R. Winiata, A. Chessor

 

EASTERN RANGES v. GIPPSLAND POWER

Round 7 – Saturday, April 28, 1pm
Healesville Sporting Complex, Healesville

Following two consecutive losses, the Ranges have bought in all their big guns for this week’s clash against Gippsland. AFLW Academy defender, Georgia Macpherson, along with the likes of Paige Buruma and Emma Horne come into the Eastern line-up to fill the gaps of key outs, Abbey Tognazzini and Olivia Meagher.

Gippsland forward, Nikia Webber will not have a chance to continue her climb up the goal-kicking tally this round, but will hopefully return next week to continue her blistering form inside 50. The Power will be hoping that Sophie Walker, who comes into the side this week, can kick some goals in Webber’s absence.

Eastern Ranges

B: 18. A. Allsopp, 23. C. Smith, 11. M. Edwards
HB: 37. G. Macpherson, 49. C. Wilson, 48. L. Szigeti
C: 41. J.  Richardson, 21. M.  Cann, 24. K Ridley
HF: 16. E. Horne, 40. T. Merrett, 38. L. McClelland
F: 22. C. Chamberlain, 36. J. Grace, 47. J. Provan
R: 46. S. Kendall, 6. G. De Angelis, 3. E. Woods
Int: 34. S. Bowden, 9. P. Buruma, 10. N. Cormack , 8. C. Delbridge
Emg: 35. B. Cubitt, 45. M. Wandin, 50. S. Zappia

In: G. Macpherson, E. Horne, M. Wandin, C. Smith, J. Grace, S. Bowden, P. Buruma
Out: J. McCormick,  A. Tognazzini, O. Meagher,  L. Kelly, J. Torney

Gippsland Power

B: 2. S. Beaton, 65. J. Redmond, 47. E. Cornish
HB: 6. E. Haeusler , 45. L. Van Berkel, 17. S. Trewin
C: 13. H.  Andrews, 28. T.  Hanks, 30. A. Rippon
HF: 10. T. Dower, 8. C. Abrahams , 12. M. Fitzsimon
F: 1. E. Jones, 32. C. Bird, 11. S. Walker
R: 58. A. Dunn, 57. J. Ferguson, 49. M. Shaw
Int: 29. C. Bray, 48. C. Prestidge, 50. M. Van Berkel, 60. E. Williams
Emg: 21. H. Balmer, 9. T. Whitehead

In: S. Walker, S. Beaton, E. Williams, C. Prestidge, H. Balmer, M. Van Berkel
Out: J. Ross, C. Beale, N. Webber, L. Raymond

 

SANDRINGHAM DRAGONS v. WESTERN JETS

Round 7 – Saturday, April 28, 1pm
Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

The Sandringham Dragons are flying at the moment and as a result, Georgia Emberton is the sole omission from the round six side. Taylah Grasso and Grace Bridges are among the ins this week, and will be hoping to keep the Dragons’ winning streak going.

The Western Jets will be without their leading goal-kicker, Caitlin Greiser this week but welcome in Taylor Rose Evans and Taylah Kolevski into the forward line to fill the gap. Mollie-Ann Gregory, Chelsea Jansen and Abbi Bolt are the other players who have been named in the Jets’ line-up this round.

Sandringham Dragons

B: 2. W. Laing, 32. S. Hartwig, 60. G. Strangio
HB: 58. G. Bridges, 65. C. Saultry, 42. R. Woods
C: 30. E.  Brown, 43. A.  McKay, 5. J. Tait
HF: 61. G. Cooper, 50. H. Bate, 25. I. Eddey
F: 24. T. Grasso, 3. S. Rothfield, 1. M. Wilson
R: 33. M. Denahy Maloney, 36. J. Owen, 64. E. McNamara
Int: 31. B. Arnold, 46. A. Burke, 20. A. Dalley, 39. M. Purcell
Emg: 49. L. Amelung, 23. C. Bowen, 13. D. Walker

In: T. Grasso, G. Cooper, R. Woods, G. Bridges
Out: G. Emberton

Western Jets

B: 5. M. Daw, 31. K. Rebuffo, 8. E. Gardner
HB: 21. M. Fenech, 30. I. Pritchard, 40. S. Whiting
C: 14. I.  Grant, 13. C.  Jansen, 27. P. Ozols
HF: 36. J. Goodman, 39. C. Saxon-Jones, 12. K. O’Keefe
F: 34. T. Evans, 41. S. Forbes, 2. C. Gashi
R: 25. T. Kolevski, 16. E. Georgostathis, 19. O. Forsythe
Int: 42. A. Bolt , 22. A. Chivell, 1. M. Gregory, 28. E. Hannett
Emg: 33. L. Basto, 44. C. Myors-Moore

In: T. Kolevski, M. Gregory, T. Evans, C. Jansen, A. Bolt
Out: E. Cassar, C. Greiser, A. Lowe

 

NORTHERN KNIGHTS v. BENDIGO PIONEERS

Round 7 – Sunday, April 29, 12.45pm
Preston City Oval, Preston

The Northern Knights have had a huge shake-up to their side, naming goal-kicking forward, Alyssa Bannan and mid/ forward, Abigail Bennett as emergencies this week. But the Knights welcome back some important players this week, including Jessica Fitzgerald, Ellie McKenzie and Neve O’Connor, who will look to make it seven from seven on Sunday.

Key players including Bree Heiden and Olivia Taverna will be watching from the sidelines in round seven, but Bendigo has brought in some talented players for the trip to Preston. Emily Cooper, Sharmaine Reilly, Mia Ward and Tess Goodrem come into the side and would love to cause an upset win over the high-flying Knights.

Northern Knights

B: 33. T. Curavic, 26. E. Clayton, 12. O. Dikranis
HB: 10. P. Chisholm, 27. P. Kearney, 32. A. Snow
C: 2. M.  Jarvis, 13. M.  Suzuki, 18. S. Sansonetti
HF: 22. B. Gutknecht, 1. M. Antypas, 21. E. McKenzie
F: 24. A. Pronesti, 5. M. Brancatisano, 29. T. Pulcino
R: 4. N. O’Connor, 23. G. Newton, 14. J. Fitzgerald
Int: 9. M. Chaplin, 19. G. Malloy, 28. S. Moore, 3. N. Morris-Dalton
Emg: 6. A. Bannan, 7. A. Bennett, 16. T. Manson, 20. J. McCarthy, 30. M. Rodezno

In: J. Fitzgerald, G. Malloy, E. McKenzie, M. Rodezno, N. O’Connor, T. Pulcino, S. Moore
Out: G. Ceravolo,  T. Shell

Bendigo Pioneers

B: 24. E. Gretgrix, 32. S. Reilly, 25. T. Stewart
HB: 27. B. Hards, 20. K. Douglass, 3. C. Isaac
C: 11. J.  Finning, 28. M.  Williamson, 29. E.  Snell
HF: 26. L. Newton, 8. S. Knoll, T. Shepherd
F: 12. T. Coad, 7. G. Barton, 17. G. Sladden
R: 9. D. Kelly-Guthrie, 2. M. Baldwin, 19. K. Jacques
Int: 16. E. Cooper, 6. M. Curran, 1. M. Tupper, 5. E. Turnbull, 22. M. Ward

In: E. Cooper, S. Reilly, M. Ward, L. Newton
Out: B. Heiden, T. Goodrem, O. Taverna, H. Spencer

 

CALDER CANNONS v. GEELONG FALCONS

Round 7 –  April 29, 2018
RAMS Arena, Craigieburn

Calder consistent players, Kellie Sutton and Terira Fry will not take the field against Geelong, but the host of ins are quite remarkable for the home side. Important players such as Makeisha Muller and Laura Cocomello come into the side as well as Madison Prespakis’ sister, Georgie Prespakis, which could spell trouble for the Falcons!

Versatile AFLW Academy member, Denby Taylor will not make the trip to Craigieburn this round but Geelong has brought in fellow AFLW Academy member, Eliza Shannon to take her place. Other ins for the Falcons include Sophie Dinneen, Ella Mahoney and Jemma Dover.

Calder Cannons

B: 46. G. Elarmaly, 48. C. Brown, 8. E. Vale
HB: 11. A. Barba, 17. E. Cornish, 2. F. Theodore
C: 29. S.  Elias, 3. M.  Prespakis, 9. M.  Warburton
HF: 34. Z. Hardiman, 15. G. Marsland, 37. F. Holloway
F: 10. M. Hemburrow, 49. T. Crook, 25. A. Magri
R: 18. C. Rendelmann, 21. G. Patrikios, 23. G. Dicker
Int: 30. S. Cameron, 38. L. Cocomello, 43. C. Leahy, 22. M. Muller, 41. G. Prespakis, 27. E. Woodley, 35. I. Young

In: L. Cocomello, S. Cameron, M. Muller, G. Prespakis, T. Crook, E. Woodley, C. Leahy, I. Young
Out: B. Tolson,  K. Sutton, E. Vukovic,  L. Philippou, T. Fry

Geelong Falcons

B: 37. S. Dinneen, 36. A. Chapman, 21. K. Haustorfer
HB: 32. M. Sheppard, 34. S. Hungerford, 20. D. Smith
C: 16. L.  Gardiner, 18. N.  Morrison, 35. S. Walmsley
HF: 6. P. Sheppard, 42. S. DeGiacomi, 2. E. Vella
F: 26. M. Skinner, 38. R. Tierney, 4. B. Thompson
R: 33. Z. Inei, 7. O. Purcell, 23. L. McEvoy
Int: 10. S. Atkins, 15. J. Devarakonda, 31. E. Mahoney, 28. L. Ryan
Emg: 5. J. Dover, 40. E. Shannon

In: S. Dinneen, E. Mahoney, J. Dover, E. Shannon
Out: L. Lesosky-Hay, D. Taylor

Story so far: TAC Cup Girls – Metro

THE Story so far continues on from the Country sides, with a review of the TAC Cup Girls Metro sides. There have been plenty of impressive players and team performances across the first five rounds, with one metro team sitting second on the ladder. If the first five rounds are anything to go by, the next four rounds will be full of fantastic battles.

Calder Cannons

Position: 11th
Win-loss: 1 win – 4 losses
Percentage: 43%

Results:

R1: lost to Murray Bushrangers by 46 points
R2: lost to Northern Knights by 48 points
R3: defeated Western Jets by 12 points
R4: lost to Gippsland Power by 3 points
R5: lost to Sandringham Dragons by 55 points

The Calder Cannons enjoyed a premiership last season so coming into this year, they would have been hoping to continue their hot run of form. Unfortunately, they did not get off to the start that they would have liked, with heavy defeats against Murray Bushrangers and Northern Knights. But the competition was high as both are top four sides, and Calder were without draftees, Monique Conti, Chloe Molloy and Sarah Dargan, who were integral to their 2017 program. But this year, being the Calder captain has allowed the already talented Madison Prespakis to spread her wings. Prespakis has been unstoppable in the midfield and has really been able to lift her team when needed. She has been complemented by some great young talent in Felicity Theodore, Zoe Hardiman and Grace Dicker, who have all shown great signs throughout the season. The next four weeks could be tough for the Cannons, but with a young side willing to throw everything on the line, expect some close contests to finish off their 2018 campaign.  

Fixtures:

R6: vs. GWV Rebels
R7: vs. Geelong Falcons
R8: vs. Dandenong Stingrays
R9: vs. Eastern Ranges

Eastern Ranges

Position: 3rd
Win-loss: 4 wins – 1 loss
Percentage: 189%

Results:

R1: defeated GWV Rebels by 19 points
R2: defeated Dandenong Stingrays by 39 points
R3: defeated Oakleigh Chargers by 28 points
R4: defeated Bendigo Pioneers 17 points
R5: lost to Western Jets by 5 points

The Eastern Ranges’ season has been spectacular, despite a round five loss against the Jets. The TAC Cup Girls competition is all about development, meaning losses are often a good learning curve for the players. This is particularly good for the Ranges, who face ladder-leaders, Geelong in round six, where they would love to fix their mistakes from round five and claim a win. Players like Georgia Macpherson and Emerson Woods have been fantastic for Eastern and are showing no signs of slowing down. Forward Laura McClelland is the joint leading goalkicker in the competition with 11 majors, and has been prolific inside 50. In the midfield, it has been Gabriella De Angelis’ quick hands and Mikala Cann’s explosive speed that have been the catalyst behind the Ranges’ admired ability to swiftly penetrate the ball forward.

Fixtures:

R6: vs. Geelong Falcons
R7: vs. Gippsland Power
R8: vs. Murray Bushrangers
R9: vs. Calder Cannons

Northern Knights

Position: 2nd
Win-loss: 5 wins – 0 losses
Percentage: 268%

Results:

R1: defeated Dandenong Stingrays by 35 points
R2: defeated Calder Cannons by 48 points
R3: defeated Sandringham Dragons by 30 points
R4: defeated GWV Rebels by 16 points
R5: defeated Oakleigh Chargers by 51 points

The Northern Knights have been a surprise packet this year, going undefeated so far from five rounds. The wins have been extremely convincing, winning four out of five games by over 30 points. The Knights have an innate ability to burst the game open through one quarter of blistering footy, and leaders such as Madeline Brancatisano, Gabrielle Newton and Britney Gutknecht have been pivotal in these electric passages of play. Abigail Bennett has shown her versatility for the Knights with impressive stints both in the forward-line and in the midfield. Alex Pronesti and Alyssa Bannan have been a dangerous duo inside 50, kicking eight and 11 goals for the season, respectively. The Knights’ lesser-known players have also been standouts, with Ellie McKenzie running amok in each of her three games for the Knights, while Marnie Jarvis has provided fantastic speed throughout the season. Northern’s talent has stood up so far, and will need to continue to do so, as they face their fellow top-four sides in the last rounds of the season. These next four rounds could significantly shape the Knights’ season.

Fixtures:

R6: vs. Gippsland Power
R7: vs. Eastern Ranges
R8: vs. Geelong Falcons
R9: vs. Murray Bushrangers

Oakleigh Chargers

Position: 10th
Win-loss: 1 win – 4 losses
Percentage: 55%

Results:

R1: defeated Gippsland Power by 67 points
R2: lost to Sandringham Dragons by 33 points
R3: lost to Eastern Ranges by 28 points
R4: lost to Geelong Falcons by 70 points
R5: lost to Northern Knights by 51 points

The Oakleigh Chargers enjoyed a magnificent win in round one to open their season, however the next four rounds have not been ideal for the Chargers. They have not won a game since, but their development has been good. Gemma Lagioia, Alana Porter and Katie Lynch have been important in the midfield and have stood up when the side has been down. Captain Hannah McLaren has shown great leadership throughout Oakleigh’s 2018 campaign, demonstrating her versatility across the backline and through the middle of the ground. Players like Chloe O’Malley, Mimi Hill and Nicola Xenos have also had convincing performances in patches throughout the season. The Chargers play four of the bottom six teams coming up, in which they can prove a point to the rest of the competition.

Fixtures:

R6: vs. Bendigo Pioneers
R7: vs. Dandenong Stingrays
R8: vs. Western Jets
R9: vs. GWV Rebels

Sandringham Dragons

Position: 6th
Win-loss: 3 wins – 2 losses
Percentage: 136%

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

The Sandringham Dragons have plenty of talent in their side, with players like Sarah Hartwig holding up the backline, Eliza McNamara dominating in the midfield, and Maddison Wilson playing well up forward. Eleanor Brown has been damaging all over the ground and has proved that she can have an impact in any position, while captain Jemma Owen has been in fine form of late. The Dragons have now won two consecutive games and have a chance to keep their momentum going against a Murray side who experienced its first loss in the TAC Cup Girls competition in round five. Despite no AFLW Academy members in the side, Sandringham still has the firepower to match it up against the sides that do.

Fixtures:

R6: vs. Murray Bushrangers
R7: vs. Western Jets
R8: vs. Bendigo Pioneers
R9: vs. Gippsland Power

Western Jets

Position: 9th
Win-loss: 1 win – 4 losses
Percentage: 57%

Results:

R1: lost to Bendigo Pioneers by 37 points
R2: lost to Gippsland Power by 15 points
R3: lost to Calder Cannons by 12 points
R4: lost to Murray Bushrangers by 25 points
R5: defeated Eastern Ranges by 5 points

It was extremely pleasing to see the Western Jets get their first win of the TAC Cup Girls competition as their development has been positive throughout the season. Isabelle Pritchard has been solid in defence, Isabella Grant can make an impact wherever she plays, and Elisabeth Georgostathis has been sensational through the middle of the ground. Despite four losses to start the season, the losses were not heavy, with the biggest loss coming in round one against Bendigo. But in the last two weeks in particular, we have seen the emergence of forward, Caitlin Greiser. Greiser has kicked seven goals in two rounds and will continue to be a key cog inside 50 as the Jets approach the Stingrays in round six, who are yet to win a game in 2018.

Fixtures:

R6: vs. Dandenong Stingrays
R7: vs. Sandringham Dragons
R8: vs. Oakleigh Chargers
R9: vs. Geelong Falcons

Weekend Wash-up: TAC Cup Girls – Round 5

THE Geelong Falcons remain on top of the ladder, getting revenge against Murray after a close loss last season. The Northern Knights are the other undefeated team after a clinical performance at Preston. Gippsland moved closer to the top four with a win over Bendigo while the Western Jets created history at Williamstown. Round five was one of the most eventful rounds of the season, with plenty of new standouts flexing their muscles across the weekend. 

Western Jets 6.0 (36) defeated Eastern Ranges 5.1 (31)

The Western Jets got their first ever TAC Cup Girls victory in style, beating the undefeated Eastern Ranges. It was goal-for-goal throughout the whole game and only one behind was scored, which came late in the last quarter. Both teams fought incredibly hard for the victory.

Elisabeth Georgostathis was the hero for Western, making her presence known in every contest. She was able to lay strong tackles and put her head over the ball to create some impressive passages of play for the Jets. Caitlin Greiser was dominant in the forward-line once again, backing up her three-goal performance in round four with a four-goal performance in round five. Isabelle Pritchard was solid in defence one again, displaying immense strength and courage to hunt the ball and tackle the strong Eastern forwards deep in defence.

Sarah Kendall dominated for Eastern, playing in the ruck and making some nice contributions across half-back. She was like a brick wall, marking everything that came her way. She was complemented by Mikala Cann, who was always there to assist and deliver some great kicks to help her team regain control of the seesawing contest. Gabriella De Angelis was an absolute work-horse throughout the whole game, taking brave marks and moving the ball freely throughout the contest. She kicked two goals to top off her hard work, and was joined by Laura McClelland on the scoreboard, who continues to dominate inside 50.

 

Bendigo Pioneers 3.4 (22) defeated by Gippsland Power 5.4 (34)

By: Peter Williams 

Gippsland Power continued it’s fantastic form of late, winning its third game in four starts, and collecting 14 of a possible 16 points in that time. It was a Nikia Webber three-goal haul that was the difference on the scoreboard, as the Power booted three goals to zero in the third term to lead by 20 points at the final break. A Kate Douglass goal in the final term gave Bendigo some hope, but the Power were good enough to hold on for a 12-point victory.

Emily Haeusler was outstanding off half-back for the Power, while Amy Dunn gave the Power midfielders first use at the stoppages. The likes of Ebony Jones, Chandra Abrahams, Jazz Ferguson and Maddison Shaw all impressed across the ground for Gippsland. Abrahams’ goal from long range was a highlight, as was a huge Julia Redmond pack mark on the wing.

For Bendigo, Kodi Jacques was superb in midfield, aided by usual suspect Megan Williamson, as well as Maddy Baldwin and Carly Isaac. Brooke Hards was sensational in defence, while Maeve Tupper roved to the likes of Shelby Knoll, who took a few strong grabs leading out of the forward 50. There was plenty to like about the way Bendigo played in a highly competitive and contested game.

 

Northern Knights 14.4 (88) defeated Oakleigh Chargers 5.7 (37) 

By: Michael Alvaro 

Northern Knights kept their perfect record in tact with what ended up being a comfortable win over Oakleigh Chargers at Preston City Oval. The home side burst out of the gates with three quick majors and went on to dominate the first half with seven goals to two, opening up a 30-point buffer at the main break. Oakleigh charged back in the third quarter, keeping the Knights scoreless while managing to pinch three goals of their own to set up a tense final term. It did not quite work out that way for the Chargers though, as the Knights piled on four goals to round out the game and notch up an impressive total of 88 points in the process.

For Northern, star midfielder Ellie McKenzie contributed three of her side’s last quarter goals to cap off a best afield performance. Sarah Sansonetti and Alexandra Pronesti formed a formidable partnership up forward, managing four goals between them, while Alyssa Bannan chimed in with two of her own. Neve O’Connor another key player for the Knights, battling it out with Oakleigh’s Bridie Winbanks in an enthralling ruck contest.

Winbanks was joined by bullocking midfielder Emily Harley as the Chargers’ best, while midfielders Alana Porter and Nicola Xenos provided dash all day. The undefeated Knights were again just too good for their opponents, but Oakleigh were more than worthy adversaries on the day having pushed them for the best of three quarters.  

 

Dandenong Stingrays 3.6 (24) defeated by Greater Western Victoria Rebels 4.4 (28)

By: Peter Williams 

Greater Western Victoria (GWV) Rebels won its second consecutive game with a four-point win over Dandenong Stingrays at Epsom Huntly Recreation Reserve. The Stingrays were the only ones to score in the first term, but booted three behinds, before the Rebels found their kicking boots with a four-goal second term to race to a 20-point lead by the main break. The Stingrays clawed their way back into the game with the only three goals of the second half, but just ran out of time as the Rebels bravely defended in the last few minutes to secure the win.

It was a team effort from the Rebels, with the likes of Stephanie Glover and Nyakoat Dojiok rebounding off half-back, and Lauren Butler controlling the midfield with Denver Henson. The Rebels had four individual goal kickers on the day, while Hannah Simpson, Chloe Leonard and Lauren Sykes were other players named among the best. It was a good win for the Rebels against a defensively strong side.

For the Stingrays, Tyanna Smith booted two goals, while Shelley Heath and Abbey Jordan were prominent through midfield. Saige Bayne and Eliza Wilson-Macdonald won their fair share of the ball, while Isabella Shannon provided a target up forward. With the Stingrays missing three of their top players to the AFLW Academy game, Lucy Cripps was a rock in defence, providing good composure and stability across the ground.

 

Sandringham Dragons 10.11 (71) defeated Calder Cannons 2.4 (16)

With a full-strength side, the Sandringham Dragons ran amok over the Cannons. They were able to capitalise on a Cannons outfit without Madison Prespakis, Georgia Patrikios and Molly Warburton through flexing their muscles and showing the depth in their squad.

A new player seemed to step up every quarter for the Dragons, and in the first quarter it was Maddison Wilson’s three goals that set Trevor Barker Beach Oval alight. Bella Eddey and Laura Amelung also did well to chip in some goals and were proactive inside 50 throughout the whole game. But Eleanor Brown was the star of the day, making it difficult for players to defend her. She displayed great movement on the wing and became an unintentional target for the Cannons, leading up to every kick that came her way.

Despite a dour day for the Cannons, they should be extremely impressed by Felicity Theodore’s performance. Theodore seemed to be everywhere and did everything she could to help penetrate the ball forward for Calder. She had plenty of great bursts out of stoppages and even leapt over an opponent to take a memorable mark for a small midfielder. Zoe Hardiman was able to make an impact across half-forward thanks to her ability to get the ball and quickly dish it off to keep the play flowing. Georgia Marsland and Gloria Elarmaly were Calder’s goal-kickers.

 

Geelong Falcons 4.4 (28) defeated Murray Bushrangers 3.1 (19)

By: Peter Williams 

In the final game of the round, Geelong Falcons held off a determined Murray Bushrangers with a nine-point win. The Falcons booted four of the first five goals of the game and looked seemingly home at three quarter time, holding a 22-point lead. To that point the Bushrangers had looked well and truly in the contest, winning their fair share, if not a majority of the possession. But straight out of the final break huddle the Bushrangers booted two goals in the opening six and a half minutes to suddenly come within 10 points and it was game on. But the Falcons held strong, winning crucial one-on-one contests and getting home in a contested affair.

It was hard to pick a best player for the Falcons with defenders Abbey Chapman and Sarah Hungerford putting in a superb effort in the back half, as did Sophie Walmsley, who snuck forward and booted a goal too. Luka Lesosky-Hay was the Falcons top midfielder in the absence of Olivia Purcell and Nina Morrison, while Samantha Atkins brought the tackling pressure, and Tarryn Love was impressive before going off injured in the third term.

For the Bushies, the midfield core of Tamara Smith, Grace Egan and Julia Harvey was superb, while Sophie Damon was a standout in the ruck and used as a playmaker across the ground. Chelsea Knight and Hayley Doohan were among the others named in the Bushrangers best. It was Murray’s first ever loss in the TAC Cup Girls competition, but they could be proud of the fight they put in until the very end.

Scouting notes: TAC Cup Girls- Round 5

ONLY two teams remain undefeated after round five delivered some cracking contests. The Western Jets got their first ever TAC Cup Girls win while ending Eastern’s undefeated streak in the process. Over in Bendigo, the Falcons managed to get up over Murray despite missing five AFLW players. Although the Knights were given a scare by the Chargers, they stormed home to remain undefeated after five rounds of competition. This may have been the hardest week to pick the best players, with each team showing their depth in their respective matches. Below are our opinion-based notes on each of the six TAC Cup Girls games.

Western Jets vs. Eastern Ranges 

Western:

#16 Elisabeth Georgostathis

Smothered the ball twice after giving away the free kick then gave a quick-fire handball to a teammate to set up a forward thrust. This was just one of her great plays on the day, she was simply everywhere. Displayed great run and carry after good mark and was able to clear the ball from congestion multiple times. She had an innate ability to get the ball moving whilst also doing a good job defensively with strong tackles. Georgostathis was able to display good composure to spin out of trouble on some occasions. Started to get targeted in the fourth quarter with the Eastern players trying to get in her head. Ended off a brilliant day with a big tackle in the goal square. 

#43 Caitlin Greiser

Greiser just read the ball better than her opponents and knew how to work her opponent under the ball. Eastern players did not know how to defend her. Booted two goals in the third quarter to get the Jets’ spirits up. Finished with four for the game. Continues to be a huge presence up forward. 

#19 Olivia Forsythe

Never stopped tackling the whole game. Her tackles were strong and often stopped Eastern players from playing that running game that we are so used to seeing from them. She was fierce around the contest and really got into the game in the third quarter. She tackled anyone that came near her and created so many stoppages. She was one of Western’s game-changers.

#26 Isabella Negri

Had a really good ability to move towards the ball on a long kick rather than waiting for it and trying to judge it in the air. In one instance, she took a huge contested mark inside 50 and was slow to get up. But she was brave enough to go back for the set shot, displaying incredible courage.

#40 Sharnie Whiting

Was able to snap through a nice goal after being really lively in the forward line. Was able to hunt the ball down, get it and kick it quickly to create space on the field. 

Others:

#27 Payton-Ani Ozols: Was able to burst out of stoppages a lot of times. Displayed nice acceleration and quick hands. Followed up when she missed the target with her kick, showing great determination.

#30 Isabelle Pritchard: Also displayed quick hands, was a rock in defence. Was able to provide good run and carry and was really strong in congestion. She laid a goal-saving tackle on the dangerous Laura Mcclelland in the last 30 seconds of the game.

#4 Leah Spargo: Kicked a nice ball to the top of the square which helped the tall forwards who were keen to take some contested marks. Like Georgostathis, she was lively and everywhere. Really aggressive on the wing.

#41 Savannah Forbes: Pushed off a player and kicked strongly on the run. She was aggressive all game and was right at the bottom of contest a lot of times.

#8 Emily Gardner: Another lively Jet. Laid some nice and strong tackles especially through the middle of the ground. Stepped up her game in the third quarter.

 

Eastern:

#46 Sarah Kendall

Was able to mop up well in the back-line and dominated the ruck. Played a sweeper role and did not let her team down. Kendall would often pick up the ball quickly, get it and kick it, and not just hacking it- following through for the kick to hit a target. Took a great sliding mark running at full flight towards the ball. She was a huge force especially at the top of the defensive 50, playing a great rebounding game. Nobody could get past her as she would mark everything that came her way.

#37 Georgia Macpherson

Stalwart in defence as usual! Displayed good run and carry and had a long penetrating kick. She took some great contested marks in this game and dominated. She usually takes a lot of uncontested marks but showed she is a contested marking beast as well. Read the footy really well when she took a mark right in the goal-square off a clever high kick by Caitlin Greiser. Sold the candy at one point and kicked off the other side of her body to get the ball into the middle, showing that she is one of the most clever ball-users in the competition.

#6 Gabriella De Angelis

Played a fantastic game for Eastern and just did not stop trying throughout the whole game. Took a great overhead mark under pressure, which was great to see for a small midfielder. Then she did what small midfielders do, when she took the ball and burst through the middle of the ground, hitting her target perfectly with a skillful kick. Kicked two goals to top off her hard work. They were well-deserved, she was outstanding.

#21 Mikala Cann

Really proactive in the middle of the ground. Delivered a nice kick to the middle of the ground at one point and did it on repeat occasions in other areas of the ground. At one point, she was barely looking at the ball and still hit a target. Displayed good hands under pressure and always managed to follow up her efforts with the ball in hand. She had good speed to chase the ball on the deck, showing off her impressive sprinting capabilities. Delivered a beautiful kick into the forward line and kicked a beautiful ball off one step. There was simply no other word to describe her game!  

#49 Charlotte Wilson

The co-captain made good contributions throughout the game. She kicked the ball nicely to the wing at one point and was a huge presence in the ruck. Kicked the ball well to her forwards, especially with a nice kick to Laura McClelland later in the latter stages of the game. Stepped up well in the absence of Emerson Woods. 

Others:

#48 Lauren Szigeti: Displayed nice movement throughout the game and her constant effort to fight for the footy was outstanding. Laid a huge goal-saving tackle at one point in the game. She was so aggressive throughout the game and did not ease her pressure at all.

#38 Laura McClelland: Had a good penetrating kick and kicked it well out of congestion. Took a huge contested mark and kicked it truly, already showing signs of an experiences forward. Had good eyes for the ball throughout the game.

#17 Mietta Kendall: Displayed nice hands to leap for a mark but just could not hold it on the way down. Still managed to build on her performance quarter-by-quarter. Had good quick hands.

 

Bendigo Pioneers vs. Gippsland Power

By: Peter Williams 

Bendigo:

#3 Carly Isaac

Showed off a lot of speed throughout the game, spreading to the outside and showing composure with ball-in-hand. She put in a consistent effort across the game, winning the footy and getting back to help out the defence and break the lines down the wing.

#19 Kodi Jacques

Thought she was one of the best Pioneers for her sheer work rate and ability to get to the football. She provided good pressure on the inside and a knack for quick hands. In the second term she snapped inside 50 which led to a goal to Bree Heiden. When inside 50 she was lively and took a good intercept mark from a kick out and kicked long to the square. In the third term she worked hard out of the midfield, had three possessions in a chain from the clearance through to a snap which just missed.

#27 Brooke Hards

Really liked her game off half-back, particularly early in the peace. Had it not been for Hards’ efforts then no doubt Gippsland’s lead would have been higher in the opening half. She worked really hard in the back 50 and won the footy at half-back thinking her way through her touches going forward. She also showed off a good turning circle when she managed to swing onto her preferred side to kick forward.

#28 Megan Williamson

Another consistent effort from the captain who consistently showed no fear in her attack on the ball. She buzzed around the stoppages and showed good intensity when tackling the opposition ball carrier. She organised the midfield well and won a few free kicks from going in hard, and getting to the ball first. One of the Pioneers’ most consistent on the day.

#30 Bree Heiden

Attacks the football with vigour and used her strong body to bump an opponent off the ball and win a crucial one-on-one. She earned a goal through hard running to lead into the central corridor and kick truly from the set shot.

Others:

#1 Maeve Tupper: Packs plenty of excitement and almost snapped a miraculous goal in the second quarter from a tight angle, but was dragged down and the shot just missed.

#2 Maddy Baldwin: Created some good run on the outside and was able to get into space to win the ball. Baldwin was another Pioneers midfielder who stood up when it counted and put in a consistent performance.

#8 Shelby Knoll: Provided a target inside 50, taking a couple of good marks out on the lead, including a juggling mark in the third term. She worked well with Kodi Jacques in the third term, marking the pass and then handballing back to Jacques to keep the play moving.

#9 Dayna Kelly-Guthrie: Played through the ruck and was solid in her tapouts, then got forward and kicked a great goal from a set shot in the second term.

#11 Jemma Finning: Another midfielder who was up for the fight defensively. Laid some huge tackles and worked hard with Jacques and Williamson through the midfield.

#20 Kate Douglass: Played in defence for most of the game before swinging forward. Provided a target in the final term, taking a couple of marks and kicking a long goal from 45 metres out.

#32 Sharmaine Reilly: Showed good pressure in defence, stopping a certain goal on the line in the opening quarter with a dive, and then laying a particularly memorable tackle later in the game to lock up the ball from escaping in the Power’s forward 50.

 

Gippsland:

#1 Ebony Jones

A composed user of the football, Jones played on the wing but also worked hard to get back into defence and help out. She covered the ground well and took a couple of marks in the defensive half of the ground. Jones also showed off a high defensive awareness and great speed, when in one instance she shepherded a teammate to allow them to kick inside 50, and later produced a great run-down tackle on the wing.

#6 Emily Haeusler

Her best performance of the year and put together a four quarter performance. Camped at half-back she rebounded everything, keeping a firm line between half-back and the centre of the ground. Her first interaction was a good one, side-stepping an opponent and kicking long inside 50 to a one-on-one. Moments later she took a great overhead mark one-on-one and kicked to Alana Rippon on the wing. She showed off her fleet-footedness using agility to turn her opponent inside out and showed composure while on the move. Her first term was superb but it did not stop there, consistently providing rebound for the power, intercepting anything in her area and laying some great, fierce tackles. Her mindset was also promising. In one instance in the fourth quarter where she missed a kick out of defence after winning the ball at ground level, but rather than berate herself, ran forward, bumped the opponent and locked the football up to stop the Pioneers getting it forward.

#8 Chandra Abrahams

A player who impressed with some great highlights. She laid a good tackle on the wing in the second term, and provided great forward pressure throughout the match. In the third term she showed quick thinking and goal sense to kick a goal off a step from 45m out. In the final term she laid a great goal-saving tackle, earning her a free. Her versatility to play up either end was on show on the weekend.

#27 Nikia Webber

A player who is in ripping form currently, Webber continues to provide a forward target for the Power, finishing the game with three majors and moving to second on the goal-kicking table. She kicked a huge goal from 40m out in the first term, then got her second in the second term through some hard running, and capped off with an impressive third goal just after that. Aside from hitting the scoreboard, Webber also provided strength and a keen goal sense inside 50.

#58 Amy Dunn

Played through the ruck and certainly held her own, showing good strength and giving her midfielders first use most of the time. A strong body, she assisted her teammates with good defensive efforts. The co-captain was a good leader in the absence of co-captain Tyla Hanks on game day.

Others:

#10 Tahlia Dower: Provided some good dash out of defence and got forward to kick a goal for her hard running efforts. She covered the ground really well and was one of the better Power players on the day.

#30 Alana Rippon: Worked hard through the midfield and provided some good dash. It was clear if the opposition gave her a centimetre she would take a mile. Got some quick first few steps and is able to find the ball.                     

#57 Jasmine Ferguson: Constantly applied pressure to the opposition and pumped the kick long inside 50. Ferguson took a huge grab in the middle of the ground and moves well for a taller player.

#65 Julia Redmond: Had a memorable moment in the second term, pulling down a huge pack mark on the wing.

 

Northern Knights vs. Oakleigh Chargers

By: Michael Alvaro 

Northern:

#4 Neve O’Connor

Fought valiantly all day against Bridie Winbanks in a very even ruck battle and made her presence felt. She moves really well for a player of her height and was not afraid to take her opponents on when pushing the ball forward with her booming kick. In a very strong Knights midfield, it felt like O’Connor was a fourth rover with her efforts around the ground proving valuable.

#6 Alyssa Bannan

She always finds a way to hit the scoreboard and today was no different. Starting on the wing, Bannan provided touches of class and some good run through the midfield. Her spread from the congestion proved to be damaging, and her ability to repeatedly be the option to carry the ball inside 50 is a real asset. She booted both of her goals in the final term, with one of them coming off the back of a nifty side-step to get rid of her opponent.

#18 Sarah Sansonetti

Kicked the first goal of the game but spurned the chance to kick another moments later as she could not manage to poke the ball through from the goal-square. She was ever-present inside 50 and provided a solid option all day, often acting as the link in the chain between the arc and the goals. She had the chance to kick another goal in the final quarter but gave it off, which was typical of her score involvements for the game.

#21 Ellie McKenzie

Arguably the best player on the ground, McKenzie dominated in all areas. She started the game in the centre bounce and won a stack of clearances to go with two goal assists early on. The highlight of her game also came early in the first term when she received the ball at half-back and went on a winding four-bounce run through the centre square. She lost the ball momentarily but bounced straight back up, won it back and hit up a teammate inside 50. She was thrown forward late in the last quarter and kicked three goals in as many minutes to seal the win for her side, capping off a complete and dominant display.

#24 Alexandra Pronesti

Another Knight who always seems to find the goals, Pronesti was again at her dangerous best. Her three first-half goals helped the Knights to set up a handy buffer going into the main break, and she stood up when needed. Playing as a deep-lying forward, she was able to position herself well at every contest and proved to be a real handful when working in tandem with Sarah Sansonetti.

Others:

#2 Marnie Jarvis: There is not much of her, but Jarvis was everywhere and had some nice moments. Working mainly off half-back and the wing, she looked lively with ball in hand and provided some spark going forward. Her speed and nifty sideways movement allow her to stand out.

#5 Madeline Brancatisano: The skipper was lively early as she attended most of the stoppages. She provided a cool head to go with her tough edge in the contest and burrowed in well to set the tone for her side. While she faded out later on and was caught in possession a couple of times, she showed signs of her usual accumilating best.  

#7 Abigail Bennett: Was used in varying roles around the ground but was mostly effective behind the ball and through the midfield. Her best moment came in the last quarter where she picked up the loose ball, weaved through two opponents and set on a dangerous forward run. A smooth mover, Bennett also impressed with her clean hands in a frantic contest.

 

Oakleigh:

#11 Bridie Winbanks

Was a standout as the Chargers’ best player alongside midfield bull Emily Harley with a massive contribution in both the ruck and at ground level. While the ruck battle was relatively even, it was Winbanks’ follow-up efforts and fierce tackling that were most impressive. As a mobile tall, she was able to show off her admirable work rate and strong hands in what was a physical contest. Her lone goal came at the end of the third term, which the Chargers won with three goals to zip thanks largely to her efforts. 

#16 Alana Porter

Porter spent the majority of the game in the midfield and had a few good moments. Her speed and willingness to take the game on was a highlight, and she was able to give her side a nice bit of outside drive. While her attacking style is exciting, she was caught in possession a couple of times, opting to bounce or hold the ball when she had the chance to quickly dispose of it.

#17 Nicola Xenos

Was quiet early but found her feet and a way into the game during the third quarter. She had a five minute purple patch where she showed off her speed in a mazy run, caught an opponent holding the ball, and put in a courageous effort at half forward in quick succession. Her hands are clean and she has good natural pace, proving to be quite evasive throughout the game.

#19 Emily Harley

Harley was a bullocking force through the Oakleigh midfield and provided some real grunt when they needed it. She started off the game dishing out a couple of fend-offs and doing her best to side-step opponents with her turn of pace, and continued on with much of the same. Her forward drive and competitiveness was a real standout, with many of her runs finished off with a long inside-50 ball. A highlight for her was her handy slips catch while she was thrown deep forward in the second term, which she capped off with a goal.

Others:

#41 Katie Lynch: Having started in the centre square for most of the first half, Lynch struggled to make an early impact. A move deep forward in the second half proved fruitful, as she looked to have gained some confidence and found a lot more of the ball. She looked dangerous at times and finished the game with a goal.

#38 Daisy Bateman: There were limited opportunities for the Oakleigh forwards but Bateman took advantage of the ones that fell her way, booting two of her side’s five goals for the game.

 

Dandenong Stingrays vs. GWV Rebels

By: Peter Williams 

Dandenong:

#1 Shelley Heath

One of the Stingrays prime movers through the midfield and constantly pushed back to help out the defence. Had a busy first term with a couple of eye-catching dashes in the opening minutes, and also laid some tackles later that quarter. After a quieter patch in the middle of the game, Heath picked up in the second half with a huge tackle later in the third quarter just outside 50 with the clock counting down. Her last quarter was great, winning plenty of the football pushing back at half-back and along the wing, working hard to use her pace to drive the ball forward.

#10 Abbey Jordan

Has pace to burn and constantly tried to break the lines. She worked in tandem with Heath along the wing and covered plenty of ground. In particular she moved well in the final term, driving the ball out of defence to help propel the Stingrays forward.

#18 Saige Bayne

One of the better Stingrays throughout the game, played on the outside and managed to get into ball-winning positions. I thought it was her best performance of the season and she adds a bit of pace and grunt to the outside, a solid performance across the four quarters. Just keeps battling hard and was able to get free on a number of occasions to kick the ball long.

#28 Tyanna Smith

Booted two goals for the Stingrays and was lively in the front half of the ground. Early in the third term, Smith positioned herself well in front of her opponent and protected the ball drop to mark. Not long after she kicked one of the goals of the day from long range. One of the better Stingrays on the day and a creative option inside 50.

 

#35 Lucy Cripps

As consistent as ever in defence hardly put a foot wrong and just so consistent, when the going got tough she got going. Cripps even pushed up to a wing at times in the third term to provide extra support in the midfield and drive the ball forward. Good long kick deep in the third term, as she had pushed up to half-forward at the time. Knows when to push up the ground and when to stay back. Versatile and can play anywhere on the ground.

Others:

#5 Eloise Allen-Burns: A composed defender in the back 50, Allen-Burns repelled a number of Rebels attacks with some good intercept marks and clearing kicks. Just does her job and is rarely beaten one-on-one.

#20 Eliza Wilson-Macdonald: Buried herself under packs again and laid a number of fierce tackles. She just continues to work hard and win one-on-one contests or at least put her body on the line. Earned a free kick in the final term at a crucial stage to drive her team forward.

#26 Isabella Shannon: Played forward in the third term and presented well and then started to show it on the scoreboard with a goal and then a centering pass to the square. With her leading out the Stingrays looked much more dangerous. Great long kick at half-forward to deep.

#55 Harmony Thomas: Continues to present as a forward target, just needs to capitalise on her opportunities. She took a great one-on-one mark early in the game but missed the set shot. A last quarter free for going in hard presented another opportunity but just missed. She laid a great tackle in the third term to stop a forward thrust and provided a neat kick to Shelley Heath.

 

GWV Rebels:

#2 Renee Saulitis

She has a bit of pace and class about her, kicking a goal and looking dangerous at times through the midfield. She had a good deep pass forward in the second term and is a good mover, sidestepping her opponent.

#16 Lauren Butler

Just a consistent leader in midfield, she positions her kicks well to the danger zone and has that powerful penetration. In the third term she won the ball at midfield and hit up her team-mate leading out of the forward 50. Early on with Dandenong having the breeze, Butler drifted back to help the defence and took a good intercept mark in the hole in defence.

#21 Denver Henson

Really liked her performance through the ruck and around the ground. She continued to push hard and kicked long to gain serious metres. She laid a fierce tackle in the opening quarter and showed quick hands to her runners. I think the bigger highlights were her efforts around the ground.

#23 Sophie Molan

Really consistent performance again from Molan who seemed to be everywhere. She settled down the side and was used in transition, winning the football across the midfield and being an important link in the chain going forward.

#34 Stephanie Glover

Provided some great drive out of defence, and was particularly prominent early. She showed good agility to sidestep opponents and kick long down the wing, and was one of the better Rebels across the course of the game. Seemed to have a no-frills approach of winning the ball and keeping it moving in transition, working hard to win it defensively and drive it forward.

Others:

#9 Jordie McAuliffe: A hard runner who was rewarded with a great goal in the second term. She also was a reliable kick, hitting up Isabella Simmons who lead at the football in the forward 50.

#19 Katie McAloon: Kicked a great goal off a step in the second quarter.

#27 Nyakoat Dojiok: Created some great run and carry early on in the match, and almost pulled down a high leap but just dropped it. Good acceleration and has a penetrating kick, she had some impressive plays.

#28 Isabella Simmons: Positions herself well down forward, leads for the footy and then camps under the drop zone protecting the ball drop.

#45 Alyssa Humphries: Early on in the game she was damaging up forward, booting a goal and then using her quick hands after a mark to give it off to Jordie McAuliffe for a goal. Played well out of full-forward, and almost kicked a second goal, hitting the post in the final term.

 

Sandringham Dragons vs. Calder Cannons 

Sandringham:

 

#1 Maddison Wilson

Was lively around goal, especially in the first quarter. She kicked the first two goals for the game and finished up with three. Bended it nicely around the body for a confidence-boosting goal after stoppages started to come into play more frequently. Wilson read the ball well in the goal-square, crumbing the ground balls and snapping them through. Was killing it inside 50, taking great uncontested marks and trapping to the ball deep inside 50.

#25 Bella Eddey

Her goal was a stunning pick up and snap around the body from the boundary line! This was set up by Alice Burke’s high ball, which set the small forwards up nicely to run onto the footy. Eddey displayed good work to hunt the ball down and got plenty of it. She was involved in a lot of passages of play, which was highlighted by a spearing pass to Sophia Rothfield on the lead. Even brought her teammates into the game with a good one-two to get the Dragons out of trouble.

#30 Eleanor Brown

Did all the little things right for Sandringham. Managed to kick the ball well even off a burst of acceleration. Delivered a beautiful kick into the middle of the ground to get the Dragons out of trouble. Displayed pinpoint accuracy with her kicking. Had good run and carry especially down the wing. Brown leads well towards the ball even in defence, and doesn’t wait for the ball to come to her so she can spoil. She didn’t allow opponents to lead to the footy because she always meets it first.

#36 Jemma Owen

Really starting to find some good form in these past couple of rounds. Was able to stand up in the stoppages and did some nice things to clear the ball out of congestion. Kicked a nice goal after a good assist from Georgia Emberton. Kicked two for the game which really got her confidence up.

#49 Laura Amelung

Amelung can make an impact wherever she plays. Spent some time up forward and kicked a goal courtesy of a nice snap. Had some great one percenters with some really strong tackles, some great work to run into space and even a nice attempt to thread the needle through goals! She had a nice moment where she grabbed the ball off the deck, accelerated and ran towards goal. Ended up with two majors for the day, showing her versatility.

 

Others:

#2 Winnie Laing: Was able to trap the ball well and handball it out of congestion. Displayed great work to get the ball out with three Cannons players tackling her.

#3 Sophia Rothfield: I witnessed one of the best leads to the footy I’ve seen after Rothfield burst off her opponent with immense speed when she read Bella Eddey’s spearing pass immensely well. Gave her opponent no chance to chase her down in that instance. Displayed some really good work to chase the ball down in the goal-square and kick off one step while being tackled.

#31 Bryanna Arnold: Read the footy beautifully, shown by a kick just landing into her arms after all eyes were on it. Displayed good work to hold up play while the Cannons attempted to run away out of a stoppage.

#32 Sarah Hartwig: Displayed good composure down back. Was able to kick well under pressure. She’s a good defender and a great leader in the back-line.  

#46 Alice Burke: Had plenty of score involvements throughout the match. Most memorable one was a high kick to set up a Bella Eddey goal. Delivered some really nice kicks for the forwards to run onto, and one of them ended up in a great boundary-line snap from Eddey once again.

 

Calder:

#2 Felicity Theodore

Theodore was everywhere for the Cannons and tried extremely hard to keep her side in the game. Did well to hold the dangerous Alice Burke up in stoppage to create another stoppage. Was reading Carla Rendelmann’s taps perfectly and was able to get some clearances. Even had a couple of good ‘don’t argues’ to clear the kick away from congestion. In another instance, she fended off well to evade her opponent and dashed out of the middle. Theodore was able to pick up ball with pace, making it look like the other players were just staring at it. Often got the Cannons out of trouble. Leapt and marked against two Sandringham players to send the ball straight back inside 50 after a kick-out from full-back. Really filled Prespakis’ shoes.

#32 Terira Fry

Applied great pressure to cause a stoppage with four Sandringham players around her. Laid a huge tackle in the goal-square to keep the ball alive for the Cannons inside 50. Continues to improve each game and is one of the Cannons’ best players. Caused some headaches for the Dragons thanks to her aggressive manner and hunt to penetrate the ball forward through defensive acts.

#34 Zoe Hardiman

Hardiman did some really nice things around the contest. She picked up the ball well and evaded her opponents to deliver a nice centring kick, took a really nice mark which set her up for a set shot in the second quarter,  and delivered a fantastic run-down tackle. Also read the ball well when she marked a kick that dropped short. Accelerated towards it rather than waiting for it. Was active around the half-forward flank especially.

#38 Laura Cocomello

Got heaps of kicks away and did not seem to stop trying for the Cannons. She was proactively keeping the game moving for Calder. Kept herself in the game through some good running and following up her teammates’ nice work around the contest. Was able to just grab the ball and kick it without fuss.

#42 Kellie Sutton

She was really strong in defence. She took a great mark to create a turnover and delivered a nice handball under pressure. Displayed great work to hack the ball out of inside 50 when Dragons looked dangerous. Strong tackling was also evident in one of her best games of the season.

 

 

Others:

#15 Georgia Marsland: Took a nice mark off a high kick. Kicked the Cannons’ first goal of the day.

#18 Carla Rendelmann: Was impressive in the ruck and won lots of hit-outs. Tapped the ball down well to her small midfielders, especially Felicity Theodore.

#37 Faith Holloway: Broke away from the contest well and got a kick away. Had a lively start to the game. Smothered the ball well to save a certain goal for the Dragons.

#46 Gloria Elarmaly: Did some nice work to thread through a goal for Calder. Was lively inside 50.

 

Geelong Falcons vs. Murray Bushrangers 

Geelong:

#10 Samantha Atkins

I was impressed with her performance across half-forward, providing some fierce tackles and keeping the opposition honest. Earned an important free kick in the first term when she dispossessed Grace Egan, and then worked hard inside 50 to win the ball at half-forward and centre it to a dangerous position, leading to a goal. She laid quite a few strong tackles, with one in particular in the third term causing an important turnover in the forward half.

#11 Luka Lesosky-Hay

Arguably Geelong’s most prominent midfielder, Lesosky-Hay really stood up in the absence of Olivia Purcell and Nina Morrison. She went head-to-head with Grace Egan throughout the day and had some great battles, never taking a backwards step. She went in hard and won some crucial contested possessions, shovelling the ball out to teammates in space.

#32 Mia Sheppard

I thought she was one of the better Falcons given her strong work in defence. On a couple of occasions, she positioned herself well in the marking contest, and had a desire to win the football. In the final term when Murray was attacking, Sheppard won a crucial one-on-two and locked the ball up. Had she lost that contest, Murray would have surely goaled and put the margin within a kick.

#36 Abbey Chapman

It was almost impossible to name a best player from the Falcons such was their team effort, but Chapman probably came the closest with her sensational work in defence. It was not just her consistency that was impressive, but she just had a number of “big” moments which could be considered game-changing. In the third term she saved a certain Grace Egan goal with a mark on the line, and then in the fourth term, took a huge intercept mark with five minutes to play, settling down the team as the Bushrangers attacked. Across the course of the game she was very good one-on-one.

#39 Tarryn Love

I thought she was one of the best on ground early, until injury curtailed her match in the third term. She just hunts the ball and harasses the opposition, providing pressure on the ball carrier. When in control of the football she has clean hands and a great first touch. Her awareness of her teammates’ positioning is also important and she is able to execute handballs through traffic. Love set up a goal to Paige Sheppard with a kick to her advantage up forward.

Others:

#6 Paige Sheppard: Kicked a couple of goals to spur on the Falcons with one from a set shot, and another from a snap courtesy of a Tarryn Love kick inside 50.

#16 Laura Gardiner: Seemed to cover the ground well, playing off half-back and also getting forward to kick a goal. She is a long kick who is often on the move.

#37 Sophie Dinneen: Another Falcons defender who worked hard to win the football and repel the Bushrangers attacks. She was smart with ball in hand and kicked long out of the defensive zone.

#35 Sophie Walmsley: A lively player who kicked a great goal courtesy of a snap in the pocket. She provided run on the outside, received a good handball to keep the ball moving along the wing, and showed good pace at times, highlighted by a spin around and kick long to the danger zone inside 50 in the third quarter.

#38 Renee Tierney: Did not kick a goal after a bag last week but played a team role with the way she pushed up to the wing and hit the packs hard, providing support for her teammates. She moves pretty well and is strong one-on-one. Had more of an impact up the field than closer to goal this week.

 

Murray:

#1 Julia Harvey

The pocket rocket stepped up into the midfield and had a huge opening term against the Falcons. She seemed to be everywhere, buzzing around the stoppages and weaving her way through traffic. A noticeable strength is her great hands in close and cleanliness at ground level. She is a good user of the football and quite composed with ball in hand. Was quieter later in the game – still had some impressive plays – but her first quarter was sensational.

#22 Tamara Smith

Was Murray’s best player across four quarters and the attributes that stand out are her ability to move through traffic, and her game smarts. She is good above her head and in the second term, showed the awareness while under pressure, to punch the ball forward mid-air rather than take possession and be dispossessed. Smith is a clever player who in the third term also did the team thing, going in to assist her teammate Kate Adams at a stoppage, providing a vital shepherd to allow Adams clear passage for disposal. She also assisted with a goal to Melanie Cook after a nice pass in the fourth quarter.

#37 Sophie Damon

Had a huge first half in particular, being somewhat of a playmaker through the middle with her teammates looking to her to kick long and deep. She was often on the end of handballs, and moved really well for a taller player. In one instance she calmly sidestepped an opponent and managed to kick with composure. She had a shot on goal but that just missed to the left. Her ruck work was also impressive, giving her teammates first chance at possession. She was also involved in the Melanie Cook goal, hitting up Tamara Smith with a piercing pass.

#39 Hayley Doohan

The most notable moments for me were when she won some crucial one-on-ones late in the match. She was able to win a hardball and handpass to Grace Egan under pressure, then beat her opponent late in the final term in a one-on-one contest.

#42 Grace Egan

One of the stars of the Bushrangers’ line-up, Egan was consistent across the game, but particularly picked up in the second half. She worked hard through the midfield, burrowing under packs, putting pressure on the opposition. She stands strong during tackles and found a lot of the ball in close. In the third quarter she ran forward and had a shot on goal, but it was marked on the line. She has clean hands and a one-grab player, spreading well to cover the ground. One of her best passes was in the final term when she had the ball at half-back. She sent a bullet, hitting up a teammate on the wing, switching up play and disrupting the opposition’s set-up. Really stood up as a leader in the final minutes, trying to assist in directing players.

Others:

#4 Chelsea Knight: A classy midfielder who assisted Julia Harvey, Tamara Smith and Grace Egan through the midfield. She stepped up at points and had a few good touches in the midfield, especially in the third term.

#8 Olivia Hall: Got her side up and about in the final term with a great goal to put the Bushrangers back within 10 points at the six and a half minute mark of the final term.

#40 Melanie Cook: Continually presented at the football and was often under tight watch from the opposition. She took a good mark and kicked to the danger zone in the second term to set up Mikayla Jones’ goal. In the final term, Cook got the ball rolling and the atmosphere going with a goal from a snap.

TAC Cup Girls previews: Round 5

WITH the AFLW Academy stars out of TAC Cup Girls action this week, it will undoubtedly be a test of depth for all sides across the board. Headlining the round five action is the battle between two undefeated teams in Murray and Geelong. This will be the last of a triple-header at Bendigo in what is set to be a huge day, and round, of TAC Cup Girls football.

WESTERN JETS V. EASTERN RANGES

Round 5 – Saturday April 7, 12.15pm
Williamstown Football Ground, Williamstown

In the first true home match for the Jets, they go into the game relatively unscathed with Isabella Grant being the only AFLW Academy member for Western. But they come up against the Eastern Ranges who remain undefeated after four rounds of TAC Cup Girls football.

This will be an opportunity for Western’s defence to mimic the efforts of the Pioneers last week, who kept Eastern to four goals. Katarina Rebuffo has been one of the standouts for the Jets this season and could play a big role on the weekend. Caitlin Greiser has been named in the ruck, but could assert her dominance up forward after being the sole goal-kicker for the Jets last round.

For the Eastern Ranges who have to travel to the other side of town, it will no doubt be a big test for them to get a win. Although they are undefeated, Western is hungry for a victory and Eastern’s depth will have to match the pace of the young Jets. The Ranges can trust in Lauren Szigeti who played a wonderful game against Bendigo in defence. They will also have the speedy Mikala Cann in the midfield to provide some inside run and speed.

 

BENDIGO PIONEERS V. GIPPSLAND POWER

Round 5 – Sunday April 8, 11am
Epsom Huntly Reserve, Epsom

This will be an intriguing battle between two young sides. The Pioneers boast the likes of Megan Williamson and Kodi Jacques in the midfield while the Power have plenty of depth to fill Tyla Hanks’ absence this week.

Co-captain Amy Dunn will have the opportunity to take the reigns on her own at Epsom and will undoubtedly be complemented by Jazz Ferguson and Alana Rippon, who have been among Gippsland’s best players each week. The Power also have a strong defensive set-up this week with Julia Redmond and Emily Haeusler floating across half-back.

Bendigo comes into the game with an unchanged side after restricting top side Eastern Ranges to just four goals last week. Keep an eye out for Jemma Finning and Maddie Baldwin who have been playing some wonderful footy for the Pioneers. Kate Douglass has been outstanding in defence and will look to minimise the impact of Chandra Abrahams and Nikia Webber, who booted two goals in a row last week in a match-winning performance.

 

NORTHERN KNIGHTS V. OAKLEIGH CHARGERS

Round 5 – Sunday April 8, 12.15pm
Preston City Oval, Preston

All eyes will be on Oakleigh in this game as gun players Hannah McLaren and Gemma Lagioia will sit out the match at Preston this week after being involved in a head clash in round four. The story is not any better for the Knights as they will be without versatile leader, Gabby Newton who is in the AFLW Academy.

However Northern has a strong line-up of players and they will certainly step up in Newton’s absence. Abigail Bennett played another stellar game last week and would be keen to get on the scoreboard in this match, starting on the half-forward flank. A key name on the team sheet is Ellie McKenzie in the midfield. McKenzie has been playing fantastic in defence since her round three debut, and will be tested against Oakleigh’s Alana Porter and Mimi Hill .

One of the biggest ins for the Chargers is star midfielder, Katie Lynch who will undoubtedly provide some firepower through the middle of the ground. Lynch was one of the best performers in her last TAC Cup game in round three and she is likely to be up there again at Preston. Daisy Bateman and Melanie Bertuna also come into the side and will be looking to tear it up in the forward-line against a formidable Northern backline.

 

DANDENONG STINGRAYS V. GREATER WESTERN VICTORIA REBELS

Round 5 – Sunday April 8, 12.45pm
Epsom Huntly Reserve, Epsom

In the second game of a triple-header at Bendigo, the Stingrays and the Rebels will go head-to-head with some key players missing from the game. For Dandenong, Jordyn Allen, Courtney Jones and Brooke Struylaart will sit out the round five clash while Sophie Van De Huevel, Rene Caris and Georgia Clarke will watch from the sidelines for Greater Western Victoria (GWV).

But the Rebels still have plenty of firepower in their side, with Lauren Butler likely to dominate in the midfield. Nyakoat Dojiok has hardly put a foot wrong this season and will be looking to put the pressure on the Stingrays with her pace. Sophie Molan will also be a huge presence in the midfield alongside Butler and Dojiok, getting shifted there in the absence of Caris in the ruck.

Shelley Heath will line up for the Stingrays in the midfield as she always does and could go head-to-head with the likes of Butler and Molan, which should be an intriguing battle. Also keep an eye out for Eloise Allen-Burns and Lucinda Cripps, who have been as consistent as ever in defence. Samantha Ryan will start at full-forward for the Stingrays and will be hungry to kick some goals to lead her side to their first win of the season.

 

SANDRINGHAM DRAGONS V. CALDER CANNONS

Round 5 – Sunday April 8, 1.15pm
Trevor Barker Beach Oval, Sandringham

The Sandringham Dragons are arguably one of the strongest sides going into this round with no AFLW Academy absentees holding them back. It is a different story for the Cannons though as captain, Madison Prespakis as well as Georgia Patrikios and Molly Warburton will have to sit out the match.

Prespakis has been Calder’s best player in pretty much every match they have played this season so her loss will be a massive test for the Cannons. To soften the blow of her absence, the Cannons have the speed and acceleration of Grace Dicker as well as the endurance of Faith Holloway to provide some run through the middle of the ground. Zoe Hardiman will line up forward alongside Georgia Marsland, who was proactive inside 50 last week.

But Hardiman and Marsland could have a battle on their hands with Sarah Hartwig, Alice Burke and Laura Amelung in great form across the back-line. Eliza McNamara and Jasmine Tait will look to nullify the impact of Dicker and Holloway in the midfield, and could also float around the ground to add some versatility to the Dragons line-up. Jemma Owen played a true captain’s game against Dandenong and will be looking to lead her side to a win at home.

 

GEELONG FALCONS V. MURRAY BUSHRANGERS

Round 5 – Sunday April 8, 2.30pm
Epsom Huntly Reserve, Epsom

Round five has saved the best until last with two undefeated teams going head-to-head at Epsom. But both teams have quite a lengthy list of outs. Geelong will be without Lucy McEvoy, Olivia Purcell, Denby Taylor, Eliza Shannon and Nina Morrison. The Bushrangers will be without Rebecca Webster, Eloise Ashley-Cooper and Millie Brown.

But Murray still has star player Grace Egan, who will start forward after playing in defence throughout the season. Julia Harvey and Tamara Smith will also still be running around for the Bushrangers, and will be looking to continue their red-hot form against Geelong. Chelsea Knight and Sophie Damon will be key players in the midfield as they aim to combat the Falcons who are fresh off a 70-point victory.

Despite the absence of five key players, Geelong’s side still looks strong as Sophie Walmsley, Paige Sheppard and Tarryn Love headline the midfield. Abbey Chapman and Mia Sheppard will look to hold down the fort in defence in the absence of Denby Taylor. The Geelong forward-line is still strong with Sachi DeGiacomi dominating at half-forward while Renee Tierney is coming off a four-goal performance last week.