SANFLW Development league – Round 7 vs Norwood at Coopers Stadium Tuesday March 29th
Our final reserves game against Norwood was postponed until Tuesday night last week due to Norwood being unable to field two sides on the weekend. A win would see us equal top of the development league table and finish our season on a much-deserved high note.
We made nine changes to the side from the previous week including first gamer in Kathleen Beer from our under 18’s program. It was humbling to see players go to such extraordinary efforts to play in this final round, with Alex Mason flying in and Erin Horsnell and other country players driving many hours on a Tuesday afternoon to play.
Ins: Sam Ramm, Scarlett Griffiths, Lauren Hoffmann, Ashley Biddell, Ruby Ballard, Charlee McDonald, Simi Dhaliwal, Maddy Zacher, Kathleen Beer
Outs: Astrid Powell (Concussion), Georgie Pater (Concussion), Jess Chyer (Covid), Ella Summers (League), Grace McNicol (League), Melanie Elsegood (N/A), Gretel Ramsey (Covid), Tiana Fernandez (League), Tash McKay (Knee)
The focus of the night was to play with freedom, flair and passion and the energy of the playing group was positive and focused.
The first quarter was an arm wrestle with numerous stoppages and the high tackling pressure brought about many skill errors and turnovers. Neither side could score a goal and we went into the first break leading by a point.
QT: West 0.2 – 0.2 to Norwood 0.1 – 0.1
The second quarter continued to be a hard-fought affair as we edged our way to the lead, finally scoring a goal from Mikaela Lappin who continues to grow as a footballer, week in week out.
Our small midfielders in Ruby Ballard and Lucy Moloney were in and under and finding plenty of ball, while the experience of Maddy Zacher and Tiarna Harfield kept our defence strong. It was exciting to see first gamer, Kathleen Beer competing so strongly and showing great intent, while Sadie Lienert showed a glimpse of what we knew she was capable of with an explosive run and rebound from half back. We unfortunately lost Abbie Butler with a hand injury but went into the main break leading.
HT: West 1.3 – 9 to Norwood 0.4 – 4
The 3rd quarter saw some exciting football as we lifted the intensity to another level. Alex Mason marked strongly in goal square to stretch our lead before 2nd game player in Ash Biddell found space up forward to kick a wonderful goal and take us into the final quarter 16 points in front.
Sadie Lienert might have found her position and was excellent, rebounding continuously across half back and Serena Lienert and Saraid Kustermann were also impacting the game.
3QT: West 3.3 – 21 to Norwood 0.5 – 5
The last quarter was played with high intensity and when Ruby Ballard surged forward to kick our fourth goal, we were looking strong. A late two goals closed the margin slightly, but we finished in front and equal on top of the table with North Adelaide. It was a fitting result for a group of players that that showed such positive development throughout the season. To see the growth in so many players new and old to the game in our West Adelaide women’s program made myself and the other coaches immensely proud.
Final scores: West 4.3 – 27 defeated Norwood 2.7 – 19
Best players: Ruby Ballard, Sadie Lienert, Tiarna Harfield, Lucy Moloney, Saraid Kustermann, Serena Lienert
Goal Kickers: Mikaela Lappin, Ruby Ballard, Ash Biddell, Alex Mason 1