Rams topple Tassie in AFLW Under-18 Champs
Written by Madison La Pira
The 2019 NAB AFL Women’s Under-18 Championships kicked off over the weekend with the AFL NSW/ACT Rams taking on Tasmania in Round One.
Friday night saw the first match get underway at the Blacktown International Sportspark with the Rams looking at ease at their home ground.
Tasmania kicked the opener – as they would in both matches – creating a close first quarter with only a single goal separating the two sides at the break.It would be the goals of Jessica Whelan and Tarni Evans that would provide the Rams a six-point lead.
The narrow margin seemed to give the Rams everything they needed to spur into action as they extended their lead, while keeping Tasmania scoreless for the entire term.
Jordyn Joliffe and Olivia O’Donnell each scored the first of their respective two goals during this quarter, while teammate Olivia Edwards also put herself on the scoreboard.
They were able to carry their momentum into the third quarter as they booted yet another four goals to Tasmania’s one. Joliffe picked up her second and then Hayley Fell, and AFLW Academy members, Lillian Doyle and Georgia Garnett, began contributing to their team’s scoreline.
The Rams were determined to bring this match to a close in the fourth as they extended their lead with another two goals, while keeping Tasmania scoreless for another quarter.
Rams Ruck, Eloise Hiler-Stanbrook, who bore the brunt of the ruckwork with Alice Mitchell sitting out the match, was a standout performer for the home side.
Wanting to repeat last year’s performance against Tasmania with a two from two performance, the Rams were surprised by the spirited attack of the visitors in the opening stages of their second match on Sunday.
Once again, Tasmania shot out of the blocks, scoring the opening goal before the Rams steadied the ship via Brenna Tarrant.
The Rams regained control in the second term and took the lead from Tasmania through goals from Lillian Doyle and Hayley Fell.
It was in the third quarter, however, where things changed for the better for the home side.
While keeping Tasmania goalless, the Rams added four goals to their lead, courtesy of Tarrant, Doyle and a double from Whelan.
The final quarter saw the Rams explode, kicking an extra five goals to Tasmania’s zero. Zoe Hurrell, Olivia Edwards, Paris Crelley and Abby Favell all came to the party, each scoring as a part of the 13 goal match for the Rams. Tarrant also added two more to her goal tally, bringing her to a total of four goals and earning her best on ground for the Rams.
Overall, Tarrant and Garnett were named as joint Round One NAB MVPs for the Rams, while Mia King sealed her second NAB MVP Award for Tasmania in a row.
From here, the Rams and Tasmanian sides will join forces as the Eastern Allies, competing in Round 2 of the 2019 NAB AFL Women’s Under-18 Championships on the Gold Coast in July. The Eastern Allies team will be announced this week.
AFL NSW/ACT Rams – 11.5.71
Tasmania – 2.1.13
AFL NSW/ACT Rams Best – E. Hiller-Stanbrook, G. Garnett, A. Favell, O. O’Donnell, J. Whelan, J. Hamilton
AFL NSW/ACT Rams Goals – J. Joliffe (2), G. Garnett (2), O. O’Donnell (2), J. Whelan, T. Evans, O. Edwards, L. Doyle, H. Fell
AFL NSW/ACT Rams – 13.6.84
Tasmania – 2.4.16
AFL NSW/ACT Rams Best – B. Tarrant, G. Garnett, H. Stewart, S. Phillips, L. Doyle, O. O’Donnell
AFL NSW/ACT Rams Goals – B. Tarrant (4), L. Doyle (2), J. Whelan (2), H. Fell, Z. Hurrell, O. Edwards, P. Crelley, A. Favell