2 rounds in, and I’m beginning to think Conference B might be the Death Conference.
Poor old St Kilda and West Coast are going to get routinely tortured every week.
Melbourne (4.8-32) defeated Western Bulldogs (2.0-12) @ Whitten Oval
Only bad kicking from the Demons prevented this from being a 30-40 point blowout, which was somewhat excused by the shizen weather that really hammered down in the 2nd Half, turning the conditions into something resembling Darwin.
It felt like the Demons were playing tactical 4D chess – After they went into the half with a 2 goal lead (Skipper Karen paxman the standout), they were able to take full advantage of the rain and pin the Dogs down in their own half, which resulted in lead going out to 26 points (Basically goodnight in the AFLW) amidst a lopsided Inside 50 count.
With the sting gone from the game, Bonnie Toogood’s (By name and nature) consolation goal was the only score of the 4th quarter, but unfortunately for the Dees, there was yet another serious knee injury – Ainslie Kemp tore her left ACL quite literally seconds before the final siren, the latest in a long line of crap luck for Kemp, who tore her right ACL in the VFLW, but elected not to have surgery on it.
Still, there have been many athletes who have simply played without an ACL…. Although, not many of them have played Aussie Rules.
North Melbourne Tassie (6.1-37) defeated GWS (2.7-19) @ York Park
For the first time in 2020, GWS played a game that didn’t require them to wear floaties.
To be honest, they’d probably have preferred it, because in the perfect Tasmanian weather with the customary cross breeze, North had their way with the Giants with some clean ball movement, and quite simply, better goalkicking.
Case in point, the pivotal moment of the match came deep into the 2nd Quarter, when Giants small forward Haneen Zreika was unchallenged to an open goal to put GWS in front, and despite having the chance to run right to the goalline, she kicked on the run from about 10m out.
You probably guess where I’m going with this.
A few minutes later, Emma King goaled from a free kick, the Roos went into the break 9 points up after another missed chance to GWS, and yada yada yada, the hosts were never in any serious danger in the final quarter.
Gold Coast (5.3-33) defeated Richmond (2.10-22) @ Metricon Stadium
A very healthy crowd of 7,071 at Carrara for the Suns’ inaugural AFLW home game, which for all I know, could be the biggest sporting crowd for any sporting event on the Gold Coast this year.
This appears to be the only way the expansion teams are going to look any good in 2020 – When one of them plays the other.
Although, that statement was almost made irrelevant by St Kilda.
The Tigers had dozens of chances to make the contest interesting, and yet, after the scores were level at Quarter Time, the Suns would kick 3.1 for the rest of the evening.
Richmond kicked 8 behinds, 5 of them in the final quarter, in which the Suns were scoreless.
They had their chances, and yet it was as painful to watch as that hit Courtney Wakefield put on Jamie Stanton.
Tigers captain Katie Brennan noticeably targeted Stanton’s injured shoulder for the rest of the evening, which is interesting to me, in that players in the men’s game have been suspended for targeting injured body parts.
Apparently it’s just not cricket.
Fremantle (9.6-60) defeated West Coast Eagles (2.3-15) @ Optus Stadium
In Soviet AFLW, Fremantle beat up West Coast in a Derby.
To be honest, that scoreboard isn’t totally surprising to me – The matchup was like Carlton vs Richmond last weekend, in that you’ve got a team with players that have been playing together for at least 2 years, versus a team together for roughly 5 minutes.
Not that Dockers fans could give two hoots, given they’ve finally felt what it’s like to win a Derby after 5 years.
Celebrate you buggers, before Eagles fans whip out the 4 premierships argument.
Kiara Bowers was named best afield, finishing up with 13 disposals and 18 tackles (Short of the record of 21) in a lopsided battle with former teammate Dana Hooker, and the other name to pop into our heads was rookie forward Roxy Roux, apparently no relation to Siouxsie Sioux, with her 4 marks and 2 goals.
18 tackles was Bowers’ official total, but it should be corrected to 19, given she also stopped that vegan ground invader dead in her tracks during the 2nd Quarter.
That protester also pulled a leg muscle running onto the ground, but full credit, she made more of an impact in the middle of the ground than any Eagles player.
Anyway, Dockers fans rejoice, because that’s probably the only Derby they’ll win in 2020.
Brisbane Lions (6.3-39) defeated Geelong (3.2-20) @ GMHBA Stadium
I remember a classic Trevor Marmalade joke about Kardinia Park, which went that the reason it was called Shell Stadium (Back 20 years ago) was because when you put your ear to it, you will hear the ocean.
To be honest, I should have used that joke on Western United.
After the Cats kicked 3 of the opening 4 goals to lead by 11 points at the half, the Lions turned the screws in the middle, dominating the clearances, and kicking 5 goals to zip in a huge turnaround – One of which was Dakota Davidson’s first AFLW goal, on the run from 40m out, which got the celebration it deserved.
So for the second week running, the Cats get run over in the 2nd Half, while the Lions are now 2-0 thanks to a pair of very solid wins, and they’re the only unbeaten team left in Conference A.
Collingwood (6.3-39) defeated Carlton (3.6-24) @ Princes Park
It’s appropriate that Tayla Harris has a statue, because Magpies defender Stacey Livingstone (Best Afield if you ask me) sure did make her play like one, with the exception of when Harris almost shattered her elbow going for a hanger.
Livingstone was pretty blunt about how she did it.
This is year four, so I would like to think that I know how to play on her already – But you’ve just got to stop her in the air, that’s her game – If you can do that, she’s useless.
Good on her, hopefully this is the start of the AFLW’s first proper beef – And in a Carlton-Collingwood rivalry nonetheless.
Still, a fantastic performance by the new-look Pies, as they go 2-0, and finally manage to defeat their arch-nemesis in the women’s game, blowing the game open in the 2nd Quarter with some slick run and gun ball movement, while the Blues had as much luck in front of goal as my mate Jay trying to get a quaddie home.
I reckon there were at least 4 shots at goal that missed by about half a metre – They lost by 3 goals.
And let’s not mention that shot that just didn’t want to go over the line.
The Channel 7 team thought it was a goal, but considering they were several hundred metres away, versus a goal umpire that was a metre away over the top of the ball, we’ll have to say play on.
What was also very noticeable was how effective Collingwood’s pressure was in the 1st Half – The Blues had to drop the extra player into defence just to deal with the entries, and as a consequence, every time they went forward, it was a complete ghost town, and Livingstone and friends just mopped up time and time again.
Also, was it just me, or was there a vacuum cleaner at work out the back of the Channel 7 box?
Adelaide (6.4-40) defeated St Kilda (4.3-27) @ Hisense Stadium (West Adelaide)
After losing Chelsea Randall before the season began (Joining co-captain Erin Phillips in the infirmary), getting beaten convincingly in Queensland by the Lions in Round 1, and looking set to become the first ‘established’ team to lose to the 2020 expansion teams, it’s fair to say the Crows were floating up the creek until 14 minutes into the final quarter.
And then the experience kicked in, and the defending premiers kicked a lazy 3 goals in the last 5 minutes to show that cruelty inflicted on St Kilda isn’t restricted to the AFL.
The Saints led until 13:45 into the final quarter.
Unfortunately, they are St Kilda.