Carlton continues to establish himself as a team to be reckoned with in the AFLW, plowing the Saints to move to second place in Conference B. EACH RESULT OF THE AFLW
Nearly a year after coach Daniel Harford joked that his wives were “just that Conference B shit team that can’t play,” referring to suggestions that the Blues pool was the less competitive in 2019, they are more than showing the damage they are capable of inflicting.
It was a 21 point victory over the Saints that propelled the Blues to a 4-1 record and on the road to action in April – a true team victory in the spotlight at the club’s historic home.
While the games have yet to take place on Sunday, the Blues are at the top of the Conference B ladder, shaping next week’s clash with Melbourne at Alice Springs as vital to the immediate future of the two teams.
And everyone is doing their part.
Forward Tayla Harris remains in contention for all of Australia with another performance with attacking presence. She eats criticism for breakfast and shows that it only fueled her in her fourth AFLW season.
Teammate Sarah Hosking did her share with two goals, while Madison Prespakis delivered another brilliant showdown in the middle to advance her case as one of the best midfielders in the game in just her second year of competition.
But the Saints held out, even when the Blues jumped.
“They’re just going on – you have to admire this,” said former Western Bulldogs coach Nathan Burke on ABC Radio.
BAYSIDE TIDE RISING
Could the Rising Star Prize be awarded to Moorabbin?
The first nominees Georgia Patrikios and Caitlin “G-Train” Greiser only continue to build their repertoire until their first season of competition.
Patrikios finished with 18 eliminations and two tackles.
First round candidate Lucy McEvoy took some time to work in the game and, although it was limited to four hits, she made eight tackles, including a bone-cruncher while the Blues were picking up momentum.
SAINTS MADE TO PAY … STILL
For the second week in a row, the Saints had to pay a heavy price for a split second brain fade.
Lucy McEvoy – who had a calm first half – received a goal in the third quarter to extend the Blues’ lead after a Saint entered the protected area, resulting in a penalty of 50 meters.
Just hours after Prime Minister Bec Goddard’s coach said it would be “paternalistic” to reduce the penalty to 25 or 30 meters, Burke said some just shouldn’t be paid.
“It had no impact on the play,” said Burke on ABC Radio.
“You get a feel for the game and let them go.”
CARLTON BLUES 3.0 4.1 7.2 8.2 (50)
ST KILDA SAINTS 2.0 3.0 3.2 4.5 (29)
Carlton: S Hosking 2 B Walker G Egan G Gee L McEvoy N Stevens T Harris
St kilda: C Greiser 2 K Shierlaw R Watt.
LAUREN WOOD VOTES
3 – Madison Prespakis
2 – Kerryn Harrington
1 – Olivia Vesely
THE BEST OF LAUREN WOOD
Carlton: Prespakis, Harrington, Vescio, Harris, Egan, Hosking
St kilda: Vesely, Patrikios, Dillon, Exon
Kaitlyn Ashmore scored four goals for North Melbourne, who beat Adelaide by 42 points in Tasmania for a fourth straight AFLW triumph.
Ashmore thrived in wet and slippery conditions at North Hobart Oval, scoring in each of the first three quarters, including a pocket free kick, while the Kangaroos won 9.9 (63) to 3.3 (21) .
The Crows went aimless in the second term, when the Kangaroos opened the competition with 21 points after a tight first quarter.
Emma Kearney was at its peak and picked up 26 possessions, followed by Jenna Bruton (25) and Jasmine Garner (24) for the “Roos”.
Garner also scored the first two goals in the final.
The Crows struggled in midfield without superstar Erin Phillips, who missed the game with knee pain after returning to the last round of a torn ACL.
Ebony Marinoff tried hard in the middle and ended up matching Kearney’s 26 touches.
Adelaide opened the scoring with Danielle Ponter and was in the match 14-7 at the first break.
But it was all downhill from there, the Kangaroos having scored nine goals in a row.
Adelaide looked on track to eclipse her lowest score, 17 points against the Western Bulldogs in the first round last year, until Stevie-Lee Thompson scored the last two goals of the match to end on a positive note.
The defeat is Adelaide’s second straight and leaves them on eight points, level with Geelong who will meet North Melbourne in the next round.
MELBOURNE NORD 2.2 5.5 7.8 9.9 (63)
ADELAIDE 1.1 1.1 1.2 3.3 (21)
North Melbourne: Ashmore 4, Abbatangelo 2, Garner 2, King
Adelaide: Thompson 2, Ponter
North Melbourne: Ashmore, Garner, Kearney, Abbatangelo, Bruton, Wright
Adelaide: Hatchard, Marinoff, Foley, Rajcic
North Melbourne: None
North Melbourne: None
Adelaide: Najwa Allen (calf) replaced in the selection by Chelsea Biddell
Crowd: 2843 at North Hobart Oval
ALWAYS NO WINNER FOR TIGERS SUCH AS STAUNTON IS TALL TALL
AFLW’s miserable winless start to Richmond continued at Wagga Wagga, where Ireland’s career-best Irishwoman Cora Staunton helped Greater Western Sydney win a 45-point victory yesterday.
Staunton, in a remarkable comeback this season after breaking the tibia and fibula bones of his right leg, played with four goals on Saturday as the Giants triumphed from 7.14 (56) to 1.5 (11).
GWS started the club’s highest score in AFLW history and had its biggest win – and it could have been an even more emphatic shellacking without a serious case of yips.
“We knew we had to come back from a poor performance last week against the Lions,” Staunton told Fox Footy after helping the Giants climb to the top three in Conference A.
“A great victory, but it probably should have been more important. We beat 14 behind and it’s an improvement we need to look at this week. “
There were fears that the 38-year-old, who has won four Irish football titles for all of Ireland, will be forced into retirement after last year’s terrible setback.
Instead, she spearheaded the club’s efforts to participate in the finals for the first time.
One of the notable tales of this AFLW season has been the struggles of expansion cellars on the sides of Richmond, St Kilda, West Coast and Gold Coast.
The other three newcomers at least sang their respective songs.
Based on yesterday’s performance, it is entirely possible that the Tigers will cross the season without a win.
Captain Katie Brennan was a forced omission to Robertson Oval due to a concussion.
Monique Conti, Sabrina Frederick and Phoebe Monahan all had their moments but, otherwise, Richmond was simply upgraded throughout the park.
The frustration of the Tigers boiled several times, including a fight at the end of the last quarter.
GWS ‘only flaw, apart from his inaccurate goalkicking, was Nicola Barr’s hamstring injury. Barr should be sidelined for a few weeks.
She Bennetts returned to the field after fear of injury in the third quarter, when her left leg twisted awkwardly in a tackle.
GREAT WESTERN SYDNEY 2.5 3.8 4.13 7.14 (56)
RICHMOND 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.5 (11)
Giants: Staunton 4, Privitelli 2, Halvorsen
Giants: Staunton, Parker, Beeson, Privitelli, Tully, Bennetts
Richmond: Conti, Monahan, Dempsey
Giants: Nicola Barr (hamstrings)
Crowd: 3,377 at Robertson Oval
CATS DIM SUNS
Geelong sweated a second straight AFLW victory, avoiding the Gold Coast on a hot Friday night in Mackay to win by 20 points.
The Cats held on as the Suns controlled procedures in the first half before winning from 5.8 (38) to 2.6 (18).
The Suns led 16-10 at half time, Kalinda Howarth dominating for Gold Coast and Jamie Stanton rewarded with a goal after coming close three times in the first quarter.
But the Cats took over after the main break, Howarth remained silent while Georgia Clarke’s set kick restored the visitors’ lead.
The shot of Richelle Cranston while the siren sounded for three quarters was a crucial moment, Cranston compelling when some defenders of the Suns seemed to time in the last seconds of the term.
Nina Morrison was a star for the Cats with 14 disputed possessions from 23 eliminations, while Phoebe McWilliams kicked her team’s first two goals and Olivia Purcell further improved her reputation with 21 hits.
The victory followed Geelong’s breakthrough against Richmond last weekend and propelled them to fourth place – and ahead of the Suns – in an overcrowded conference led by Brisbane.
“It’s huge, two consecutive wins should put a lot of confidence in the group,” said Morrison.
“All of our attackers have just participated in a contest… it was sometimes a game of territory.
“This is a really contested team, we are tackling the pressure they are proud of, so we really wanted to match that.”
Purcell said the improved form of the team had a lot to do with its efficiency up front.
“They pull off some good bloody notes and if they can’t mark it, they bring it to the ground for us, little before, they have been amazing for us this year,” she said.
GOLDEN COAST 0.3 2.4 2.6 2.6 (18)
GEELONG 1.2 1.4 4.6 5.8 (38)
Golden Coast: Yorston, Stanton
Geelong: McWilliams 2, Clarke, Cranston, Teague
Golden Coast: Howarth, Stanton, Prejelj, Yorston, Perry
Geelong: Morrison, Purcell, Cranston, M.McDonald, Crockett-Grills
Golden Coast: None
Crowd: 2788 at the Great Barrier Reef Arena (Mackay)