With teams beginning to find their feet, Round 2 of the ANZ NFNL Women’s competition delivered a little bit of everything.
In Division 1, reigning premier Bendigo sent a strong statement to the rest of the competition in its first match, defeating last year’s runners up, Diamond Creek Women’s, 22.17 (149) to 0.0 (0) at Plenty Park. The Thunder took a 40-point lead into the main break and became more potent as the match went on, generating 17 goals in the second half while holding a new-look Creekers scoreless. New skipper Andrea Walsh opened her campaign with eight goals and Phoebe Cuttriss added four of her own for the Thunder. Karly Cobern and Claire Papaleo battled hard for the Creekers. The Creekers will chase their first win of the season in an away match against Darebin in Round 3 while Bendigo will play VU Western Spurs in an important clash.
Darebin bounced back from its Round 1 defeat to grab a 11.12 (78) to 1.4 (10) win over Whitehorse. With the rain falling in the first quarter, the Falcons struggled to convert their opportunities, managing just two goals from 10 scoring shots but were able to rectify their early inaccuracy as the match went on and proved to be too good for the Colts. Janelle Bertoni and Sara Mohamed were named best afield for the Falcons, while Alexandra Kelly played a key role in defence for the Colts. Whitehorse will play at home and face an undefeated Keilor in Round 3.
Keilor made it back-to-back wins after a fantastic 5.2 (32) to 3.7 (25) win over VU Western Spurs at Joe Brown Reserve. Kicking the opening two goals, Keilor took a handy 14-point lead into half time but the Spurs hit back in the second half to close the gap to one point by three-quarter time. Keilor finished strongly however, and produced two final quarter goals to run out 7-point winners in a great contest. Nicole Zammit and Shenay Thomas were mighty for Keilor, while Kirralee Myers and Tayla Dinuccio were great for the Spurs.
In Division 2, West Preston-Lakeside made it two wins from two starts, with a 7.19 (61) to 0.0 (0) victory over Laurimar. The Roosters quickly adjusted to the away conditions and put on a clinical display. Belinda Gicevski kicked two goals for the Roosters in a best on ground performance, while Courtney Corr and Danielle Spaull were among the Power’s best. The Power will look to bounce back against Darebin at A.H. Capp Reserve in Round 3.
South Morang grabbed its first win of the season with a 5.9 (39) to 0.1 (1) victory over Darebin. Adding scoreboard pressure early, the Lions had a 13-point break at quarter time and played consistent football to carry on with the win. Cassie Hurst delivered another stand-out performance, alongside teammates Shenay Reeves and Jacinta Campbell. The Lions will host the undefeated VU Western Spurs in Round 3.
The VU Western Spurs backed up its thrilling opening round win with a 7.6 (48) to 1.8 (14) victory at Montmorency. The Spurs worked well as a team once again, with three multiple goal kickers proving to be too much for the Magpies to handle. Savannah Forbes and Danielle Mazzocca were great for the Spurs, while Megan Allan and Ashleigh Bayes were the Magpies’ best in defeat.
In Division 3, St Mary’s secured its first win in women’s football, defeating Eltham 7.7 (49) to 1.2 (8) under lights at A.K. Lines Reserve. The Panthers held strong in the opening quarter, restricting the Burra to just a nine-point lead. However, the Burra played out a strong final three quarters and ran away 41-point winners. Jessie Bickerton and Taylor Marshall got plenty of the footy for the Burra. Leah Darcy and Rhiannon Sinclair played their roles for the Panthers. St Mary’s will be looking to carry its winning momentum into its Round 3 match-up against Mernda and Eltham will face the VU Western Spurs.
Greensborough delivered a dominant performance away from home to defeat Mernda 8.14 (62) to 0.0 (0). Ebony Spencer produced another strong performance with four goals and Nicole Hales played fantastic to held the Boro to their first win. Fay Ristevski and Breanna Meadows tried hard all day for Mernda in the club’s inaugural match.
In what was a low-scoring affair, Bundoora got reward for effort with a 2.9 (21) to 2.0 (12) victory over VU Western Spurs at Yulong Reserve. After generating five scoring opportunities that resulted in only five behinds in the first half, the Bulls left the door ajar for the Spurs, who took their chances with both hands in the third quarter, kicking two goals to take a one-point lead into the final change. The Bulls managed to secure their second win after producing a 1.4 to zero in the last quarter to hold the Spurs at bay. Chloe Jonkers and Ashleigh Del Romano stood tall for the Bulls, while Kirsten Pocock and Brittany Salt were gallant for the Spurs.