|De La Salle||1||4||10|
Morning sunshine and a ground in pretty good condition greeted the Guns as we looked to get one back on UHS-VU who came down to Division 4 with us in round 4 and beat us by a goal in tricky conditions in Kensington.
On that occasion, we played on a surface with a significant amount of surface water and some rain hit at different stages through the game. This time around, the sun was out but the significant winds would cause trouble for both sides.
The opening play of the game was as textbook as you will get, a tap out from Emma B1 Carson in the ruck and it landed in the hands of Grace ‘Doc’ Martin who showed off her trademark athleticism and burst out of the centre stoppage, ran with the footy and set sail for the goals. It would have been the most incredible start, only for the ball to just bounce wide of the goals, but the Guns intent was clear early on! The opening quarter pressure was enormous from the Guns, but similarly to the last time we played this team, it was quite a congested and contested game and the wind proved tricky to get any free flowing ball movement in the game.
We had a couple of really good opportunities going inside forward 50 but were not able to convert and went in leading at 3 points to 0 having dominated the majority of the opening quarter.
The second quarter was a carbon copy of the first but the roles were reversed. UHS were able to get on top in that quarter without capitalising for a large portion of it before hitting the scoreboard late, once again, our defense stood up strongly led by our Vice Captain Michelle ‘BTF’ Bourke and Jess ‘John’ Coleman who was repelling opposition attacks seemingly with ease, reading their defensive 50 exits well, getting in the right spots and giving us more opportunities going forward.
We went into half time at 3 shots at goal each, however they were able to convert one of those shots and lead by 3 at the main break. There was no reason for panic at this stage however, the Guns were still competing hard, pressuring well and if we were able to continue that, we felt our chances would come.
The early part of the third quarter was a real scrap, we couldn’t find away to break the game open, with regular stoppages and minimal scoring, as the wind picked up, it challenged us with some of our ball use and ball handling which made chains of possession and scoring hard to come by. Our best and probably only real likely chance to draw back level was in the dying seconds of the quarter as Kirstie ‘Oak’ Constantineas broke clear of a pack running towards goal, steadied and and as she steadied, the siren sounded before she had the chance to kick. She probably needed 3 more seconds because her kick went through the goals and would have given us a one point lead going into the final quarter.
Despite not having a goal on the board, the enthusiasm at ¾ time from the Guns was great, remaining optimistic about what they could do.
This enthusiasm and optimism translated into their footy as they came out really strongly to begin the final quarter. For the first 10 minutes of the final quarter the Guns had the ball in our forward half for the majority, our opposition were able to clog the space quite well and make it difficult for us to score, however we eventually broke through with a nice chain of play ending in the hands of Poppy ‘Chicken’ Palma who slotted the goal and gave us the well deserved lead.
We had about 10-12 minutes to hang on for against the breeze and we did quite well to control UHS in the conditions, before a long shot at goal went through for a point to draw the scores level with around about 7-8 minutes to play. Our defenders continued their stoic role, repelling many inside 50s trying to hold on.
An unfortunate passage where an opposition player put a fair bump onto Phoebe ‘Red Bull’ O’brien saw her hit the ground in screaming pain and a number of players in the area stop before a UHS player ran away with the ball and kicked what would end up being the winning goal of the game.
All of the Guns certainly have our fingers crossed for Phoebe that she will recover quickly and be back out on the field asap, because the way she has improved in her first season of football has been amazing to see and we are super excited to see more of it!
Whilst we sit 2 games out of the top 4, this division is incredibly tight and we are confident that with the way we are playing and training that we will challenge the top 4 in the weeks to come. Given we started 3 games behind some of the teams above us, it may take right to the end of the season, but we are confident that we can give ourselves the best chance of competing in finals.
We are looking forward to a big game against the ladder leaders Elsternwick this coming weekend as we look to edge closer to the top 4, before what should be a great night at the Blue and Gold Ball with 25 players of our squad attending, with 3 or 4 overseas, it is great to see the buy in to our club from this group and the connections that they have built as a playing group on and off the field on show here.
|June 17, 2023||9:20 am||Womens||2023||9|
|Waverley Oval, 425 Waverley Rd, Malvern East VIC 3145|