Playing fresh after a mid-season bye, Round 8 was a consolidating one for many of the Northpark NFLW top teams as they strengthened their finals chances.
In Division 1, Diamond Creek Women’s reinforced its position in the top-four with a 15.12 (102) to 1.0 (6) win over Deer Park. After Deer Park kicked the opening goal of the match, Diamond Creek was able to dominate across the field and produce a strong all-round performance. Nicole Hales was outstanding for the Creekers and Beth Cruickshank kicked four goals. Chloe Portelli was the Lions only goal scorer.
The VU Western Spurs kept in touch with ladder-leader Bendigo after a 14.8 (92) to 2.6 (18) victory over La Trobe University. The Spurs proved to be too potent for a La Trobe outfit who tried hard all day. Mickayla Ward, who has been named one of the best for the Spurs in every game, continued her brilliant season, while Olivia Storer was also great. Kate Bond and Claudia Gunjaca continued to lead the way La Trobe.
Melbourne University won its third game on the trot with a 7.7 (49) to 2.7 (19) win over Kew. Only leading by nine points at three-quarter time, Melbourne University produced a four-goal last quarter to put the game out of reach. Elizabeth Keaney and Alexandra Gittings stood out for Melbourne University. The result keeps Melbourne University in fourth place, having now established a two-game and percentage gap on the fifth-placed Bears.
Bendigo showcased why it has yet to be defeated this season with a comprehensive 19.12 (126) to 2.5 (17) win over Whitehorse. Bendigo played fantastic throughout and a nine-goal last quarter put the finishing touches on its eighth-consecutive win. Tiahna Cochrane was outstanding for the Thunder and Kerryn Harrington was also terrific with six goals. Lucy Watkin and Kaitlin Richards were the Colts best.
Darebin pushed within one win of the top-five after it recorded its third victory of the season in a 11.9 (75) to 1.1 (7) result over Pascoe Vale. The Falcons led at every change but really stamped their authority after half time at Raeburn Reserve. Leading by five goals at the main break, the visitors piled on 6.2 to nil in the final two quarters to run away with the 68-point result.
In Division 2, the VU Western Spurs continued their superb season, defeating bottom-placed La Trobe University 16.17 (103) to 0.0 (0) at Henry Turner Reserve. The Spurs’ strong performance sees them hold onto top position on the ladder with the highest percentage in the competition. Brittany Wunhym and Georgia Smith were brilliant for the Spurs and Nadine Rabah kicked six goals, taking her tally to 12 goals in three games.
In an important match-up for both sides, West Preston-Lakeside defeated Diamond Creek Women’s 4.11 (35) to 1.1 (7). The Roosters had control for much of the match but were unable to convert their scoring opportunities to goals until the final quarter, where they kicked away with three unanswered majors. Jessica Bamblett and Monique Dematteo continued their exceptional seasons for the Roosters, while Tiahn Cowan and Tayla Little were the Creekers best as their side slipped out of the top-five.
Darebin secured its seventh win of the season with a 6.7 (43) to 1.3 (9) away victory over Laurimar. The win ensures the third-placed Falcons remain only percentage away from the top position on the ladder and two games clear of fourth-placed South Morang. Kristin Stensholt, Toni Alexandrow and Jem Wilson were all important in the Falcons’ 34-point win at Laurimar Reserve.
South Morang’s 13.15 (93) to 0.0 (0) victory over Whitehorse moved it a game clear in the top-four. The fast-starting Lions outfit added 4.6 (30) in the opening quarter and the Colts were unable to fight their way back into the match. Sarah Tarrant and Cassie Hurst were excellent for the Lions, who had five multiple goal kickers, while Ebony Jones was the Colts best for a second consecutive week.
Montmorency made it two wins in a row to jump into fifth-place on the ladder with a 7.10 (52) to 2.1 (13) win over Kew. After a close first half, which saw the Magpies take only a four-point lead into half-time, the home side kicked away and proved to be too strong for the Bears. Ashleigh Bayes was superb and Sian Capito kicked four goals for the Magpies. Danielle Gills was fantastic once again for Kew, while Alexandra Monteiro also tried hard for her team.