Round 4 of the ANZ NFNL Women’s competition was highlighted by undefeated teams going head to head and others backing up some great performances.
In Division 1, two undefeated sides in Keilor and Bendigo clashed at Joe Brown Reserve. The visiting Bendigo came away 5.10 (40) to 4.2 (26) winners and moved to the top of the table. Bendigo got away to a 13-point lead after kicking the opening two goals of the match, but Keilor fought back and scored the next two, to trail by a single point at half time. Up to the challenge, Bendigo responded with the next three goals to take a 23-point lead into the final change. Despite Keilor’s best efforts to close the gap in the last quarter, Bendigo’s defence held strong to keep the home side to just two final quarter goals. Isabella Ayre’s three-goal performance played a crucial role in getting Bendigo over the line, while Gemma Wright and Sarah Wright were Keilor’s best for the second week in a row. Bendigo will aim to keep its impeccable record in tack against Whitehorse, while Keilor will look to respond against Diamond Creek in Round 5.
Darebin proved too potent for Whitehorse, running away 15.22 (112) to 0.1 (1) winners. The win ensured that the Falcons maintained third position on the ladder, with the club now sitting a game clear of fourth-placed VU Western Spurs. Esther Honybun continued her great form with her second best on ground performance in three weeks and full-forward Nikita Magriplis kicked four goals. Amelia Dawborn and Paris Flowers played their roles for the Colts. The Falcons will now travel to Henry Turner Reserve to face the VU Western Spurs in an important top-four clash.
The VU Western Spurs returned to the winners’ list with a 16.15 (111) to 0.1 (1) victory over Diamond Creek Women’s. The Spurs produced their best performance since Round 1, showcasing fantastic defensive efforts and generating 11 goal kickers, four of which yielded multiple goals. Nicole McMahon and Taylor Moss stood out in impressive all-round performances for the Spurs.
In Division 2, Montmorency bounced back to defeat Darebin 12.16 (88) to 0.4 (4). In a mighty first quarter, the Magpies piled on six goals to open a 39-point lead by quarter time. The Falcons were unable to close the deficit with the Magpies defence holding the Falcons goalless throughout the match. Tanisha Giordano backed up last week’s strong performance with four goals and Madison Bayes was fantastic alongside her. Georgia Mcerlain and Kristin Stensholt battled hard for the Falcons. The Magpies will look to make it two wins in a row against Laurimar and the Falcons will face the VU Western Spurs in Round 5.
Fresh off a bye, West Preston-Lakeside maintained its undefeated start to the season with a 6.7 (43) to 1.2 (8) win over the VU Western Spurs in a replay of last year’s grand final. After a hotly contested opening quarter, the Roosters clicked into gear to take a 22-point lead into half time. Despite Stacy Rigon stemming the Roosters momentum and nailing a goal for the Spurs in the third quarter, the Roosters proved to be too strong and ran away 35-point winners. Claire King and Teresa Cassar were excellent for the Roosters while Ashleigh Ford and Tamara Cole were the best performing Spurs.
La Trobe University secured successive wins with a 4.9 (33) to 3.3 (21) triumph over South Morang. Unable to convert their chances, La Trobe went into quarter time with only a four-point lead after kicking 1.4. The Lions then seized their opportunities and controlled the second quarter to create a 10-point lead. La Trobe however, came out after the main break with a renewed fighting spirit and kicked the final three goals of the match to produce a superb 22-point turnaround. Kate Bond was named best afield for for a second week running, while Cassie Hurst excelled for the Lions. La Trobe will look to carry their form into their Round 5 clash against undefeated West Preston Lakeside and South Morang will regroup with a bye.
In Division 3, VU Western Spurs won its second consecutive match with a 2.3 (15) to 2.2 (14) victory over Greensborough. Kirsten Pocock and Maria Soldatos were terrific for the Spurs, while Rita Slewa and Naomi Pickford were great for the Boro. The close win places the Spurs in second position on the ladder, with a huge clash against third-placed St Mary’s to come. Greensborough will enjoy a bye.
Eltham earned its second win, defeating La Trobe University 6.14 (50) to 0.0 (0). The Panthers proved to be good across the field and benefited from Georgina Banfield’s fantastic performance, as well as Kylie O’Reilly’s three goals. Claire Henderson and Rachel Hickey did their bit for La Trobe. Eltham will return home to face ladder-leader Bundoora and La Trobe will travel to meet Mernda at Waterview Recreation Reserve.
Bundoora continued its undefeated run with a comprehensive 10.17 (77) to 0.1 (1) win over Mernda. The Bulls proved to be inaccurate in front of the big sticks, but generated enough opportunities to seal another strong win. Rainbow Ebert produced another great display and was named in the Bulls’ best for a third-consecutive week and Candice Dyson was also excellent. Alexia Galatas played her best match for Mernda.
Photo courtesy of Star Weekly