Premier Division Reserves – Magoos Celebrate A Sensational Win In Jimmy Regan’s 100th
CHING CHING. Need I say more. The Magoos found themselves playing under lights at Kanebridge for the first time in a while, with the boys facing a long eager wait on the sidelines, before ripping into Manly. It was definitely worth the wait. On a day where the club were celebrating popular Clubman Jimmy Regan’s 100th game, an awesome achievement considering all the injury setbacks he has suffered over the years, his teammates certainly made it one to remember. 10 scoring shots but only 2 goals meant Manly were still in the game at quarter time, but after kicking 6 goals straight in the second term, East Coast knew the game was their’s to win. Inaccuracy returned in the second half, but we kept the pressure up and won by 37 points. In the perfect finale, Regan kicked a goal on the final siren. You can’t write this stuff. CHING CHING.
Final Score: ECE 11.17.83 to MWW 7.4.46
Women’s Division One – EAGALS Do It Easy Against Manly To Get Their Season Rolling
After a remarkable draw in Round 1, our Div 1 EAGALS were determined to respond in Round 2 against Manly. They were on their home turf, and protecting the nest was at the forefront of their mind. We kept Manly scoreless in the first half, a strong reward for our bruising defence and constant pressure. The Wolves just could not keep up with us. It was a positive bounce back from the Div 1 EAGALS, who looked sensational going forward, registering 23 scoring shots across the 4 quarters to just three for Manly. Bre Jones was strong, kicking 3 goals, but it was Paris Mooney, Elyse Fifield and Jacqui Smith who claimed BOG honours. Great win team.
Final Score: ECE 10.13.73 to MWW 3.0.18
Men’s Under 19’s – Young Eagles Go Down In Close Affair Against Wolves
They led at both the first and second breaks, but our young Eagles could not close it out against Manly. These two sides have built quite the competitive rivalry over the last few years, with East Coast bowing out to Manly in Week One of last year’s Finals Series. Yesterday’s game was no different. It was fiery, and it was full of excitement. The Wolves like to play their brand of footy at their pace, and it was our job to throw them off course. Unfortunately, we struggled to do so for extensive periods, and were caught out too often in the second half. Manly controlled the game in the later stages and were good enough to win by 11 points. There were plenty of positives for East Coast however, with Kody Spencer kicking 2 goals in a BOG performance. As the weeks go by, this side will become more familiar with each other, and their time will come to go boom. Just wait, you’ll see.
Final Score: ECE 7.14.56 to MWW 9.13.67
Women’s Division Four – EAGALS Achieve Maiden Win In Div 4 Competition
What a cracking way to start the day. Our Div 4 EAGALS had the first game of the day at the Nest, taking on arch rivals Pennant Hills Demons. For many players, this was their first taste of the East Coast vs Penno rivalry, and it did not disappoint. There were plenty of big hits and gritty plays, but the EAGALS would not be denied. The game started slowly from a scoreboard perspective, with no goals for either side in the first quarter, but the intensity was there in bunches. 3 goals to none in the second term and we were away, no chance the Demons were catching us. In a victory which set the tone for both the Prems and Div 1 girls later in the day, we held Penno goalless for four quarters and comfortably won by 41 points.
Final Score: ECE 6.7.43 to PHD 0.2.2
Men’s Division Two – Div 2 Continue Building With Fantastic Win At Wollondilly
Trekking down to Wollondilly for a game of footy is no picnic, but our Div 2 boys made it look like a cake walk, as we stuck it to the Knights on their home turf. It was always going to be physical, a real battlefield, but we owned the contest especially in the second half. With some fresh faces in the side, the teamwork and energy that Div 2 is bringing is absolutely outstanding for the footy club. A 2-0 start to the season is just what we wanted after a long pre-season. We earnt every inch yesterday and deserved to win by more but we will definitely cop a 39 point victory. And as per usual Jake Mindham was always classy, kicking 6 goals, one of which was a barrel from the boundary. How far out was it? Depends who you ask, but it was definitely at least 80 metres.
Final Score: ECE 11.8.74 to WK 5.5.35
We’re all about protecting the nest at East Coast in 2021, but unfortunately our Premier Division Men’s side were unable to gain their first win of the season in Round 2, falling short against Manly. With plenty of changes to the side, including young debutant Lachlan Mason, the clubs 4th debutant in just two weeks after Corey Dowle, Nipper Adams and Nathan Fox debuted in Round 1, cohesion was going to be the biggest challenge.
An overcast day at Kanebridge Oval played host to a physical affair between the two sides, with both determined to get the early jump and assert dominance. The Eagles got on top, starting the game really well with strong attack on both the footy and the opposition. In addition, East Coast’s ball movement was strong, our offensive work singing with some sensational passages of play. Coach Damien Truslove went as far as to say the ball movement against Manly was better compared to Round 1 vs. St George.
Ultimately, the first quarter was a shootout, both teams kicking 2 goals a piece to draw 12-12 at the first break.
East Coast looked to gain that team chemistry it was looking for. However, it was then when things started to go pear shaped. Injuries befell the Eagles once again, with Ruckman Andrew Browning and Centre Half-Back (and co-captain) Zach Johns, going down with painful injuries. Two key injuries will throw any footy side out of whack, and this left the remaining players with a big job to continue on. Manly took a 9 point lead into half-time, kicking 1.5 in the 2nd term, to our 0.2.
Manly looked to put their foot down in the 3rd term, however the Eagles remained competitive, despite putting little scoreboard pressure on. Also, it was in this quarter that the debuting Mason kicked a wonderful goal from the forward pocket, which raised the sides energy. 16 points down at 3QT, and the ball was in Manly’s court. We needed to respond.
The Wolves were howling too loudly but, dominating the last quarter. East Coast’s contest method and team defence fell away, as the scoreline blew out. With greater accuracy in front of goal, perhaps Manly may have won by more, but nonetheless they happily claimed a 42 point win over the Eagles.
Leadership Team Member Karl Merson had a strong game, as did other key players in Brandon Clark and Aaron Drinkwater, as well as youngster Kyle Spencer.
0-2 to start the season is not where we wanted to be, but this is the situation we are in and it is up to us to get ourselves out of the hole. A do or die clash against Camden next week is the next task, and we must lift.
East Coast Eagles
Best Players: K. Merson, B. Clark, A. Drinkwater, C. Dowle, K. Spencer, B. Coxall
Manly Warringah Wolves
Goal Kickers: J. De Angelis 2, L. Behagg 2, N. Marsh 2, J. Bennett, K. LeJeune, J. Field
Best Players: J. Field, L. Channell, N. Marsh, T. Wright, A. Butler, J. De Angelis
2021 Sydney AFL Men’s Premier Division Ladder After Round 2
|1||UNSW Eastern Suburbs Bulldogs||2||2||0||0||300||52||576.92||8|
|2||North Shore Bombers||2||2||0||0||195||87||224.14||8|
|3||Inner West Magpies||2||1||0||1||120||115||104.35||6|
|4||UTS Australian Football Club||2||1||1||0||194||134||144.78||4|
|5||Manly Warringah Wolves||2||1||1||0||124||87||142.53||4|
|6||St George Dragons||2||1||1||0||126||116||108.62||4|
|7||Pennant Hills Demons||2||1||1||0||107||136||78.68||4|
|9||East Coast Eagles||2||0||2||0||70||147||47.62||0|
Premier Division Men’s Reserves – Magoos Never Say Die But Cannot Claim Win Against Dragons
We are built on trust, mateship and courage at the Eagles in 2021. The Magoos proved this in Round 1, as they came up against a speedy St George side boasting plenty of youth. It was a tough start, as St George seized early momentum and earnt an early lead. However, our experienced players stood up and got us back in the game to trail by just a point at quarter time. We lost key troops throughout the game, meaning a brave effort was required from the whole squad. Ryan Van Vliet was doing his best Jeremy McGovern impersonation down back, taking a stack of intercept marks. Scoring was hard to come by for both sides over the next two quarters, such was the tightness of the contest. In the end, St George found some crucial goals, and ran out 18 point winners. We will lift, we will fight hard, and we will return stronger and hungrier next week.
Final Score: ECE 6.9.45 to STGD 8.15.63
Under 19’s Division One – Young Guns Can’t Find An Answer Against Hot Dragons Outfit
With a lot of new players, it will take time for our Under 19’s to develop a strong chemistry across the park. However, we never stopped chasing, just lacked that little bit of polish against a strong St George side who came ready for a fight. We could not find the goals in the first quarter, but we didn’t drop our heads. Instead we got ourselves back in the game, and kicked three second term goals. A hefty comeback was still need in the second half, but St George never looked uncomfortable, eventually winning by 35 points. Co-Captain Bailey Beattie was best on, whilst Jayden Brien also impressed kicking two goals.
Final Score: ECE 6.9.45 to STGD 12.8.80
Women’s Division One – EAGALS Play Out A Spirited Draw In Ferocious Contest
Popular clubman Jimmy Regan was placed in charge of our booming Women’s Div 1 side for 2021, and our girls played with plenty of character to kick off the season. We never held back, and attacked the footy hard. Brianna Barr attacked the footy so hard, she succumbed to a nauseating finger injury on the verge of quarter-time. It was a squeamish look, but there were all smiles afterwards. Unfortunately for all our hard work, we just could not convert enough and this let St George back in the game. After a thrilling four quarters, nothing could split the two sides and Season 2021 at Kanebridge began with a draw. Unbelievable scenes. Great game girls.
Final Score: ECE 4.10.34 to STGD 5.4.34
Men’s Division Two – Eagles Make A Statement With Phenomenal Round 1 Win
The club has gone through a big revamp this year, but perhaps none as large as in the Div 2 side. With a stack of new players, to the point where Coach Lambo had 30 plus players to choose from which is unheard of for Div 2, there was plenty of excitement heading into Round 1. Facing a St George side who had dropped from Div 1 back to Div 2 for this season, was going to be a tough challenge first up. However, we have had a fantastic pre-season, and were ready to reap the rewards. We played hard for four quarters, and all 22 players did their job expertly well. We were not going to be denied on this day, and we were the better side. Period. 10 points was the winning margin, but it could of been more. What a day for Div 2. New players Cam Veerhuis and Justin Harding were immense in the midfield, as was Troy Jones on the wing.
Final Score: ECE 7.7.49 to STGD 5.9.39
Women’s Division Four – EAGALS Hustle And Bustle But Go Down With Plenty Of Fight
Such is the strength of our Women’s program at East Coast, that we have added a 3rd EAGALS side in 2021. We had no choice with the amount of numbers wanting to play for this great club, and there was a ton of excitement for their first hit out in Round 1. Playing Coach Alicia Ford took her troops into battle against Sydney Uni, and they did not let the jersey down at any point. There are lots of fresh faces in this team, so it will take time to find a winning combination, but there were some great signs coming out of this game. We went down by 13 points, but we definitely made Sydney Uni earn the win.
Final Score: SYDU 4.4.28 to ECE 2.3.15
Under the bright lights of Kanebridge Oval, the EAGALS hit the field for their season opener against fellow 2020 semi-finalists Souther Power, in what was the final game of the day at the Nest. Just like the Men’s Prems, the women had a new head coach – former clubman Ash Moeller, who has a brought a wave of coaching experience back to the Eagles.
We have had a long pre-season, and gained a ton of confidence from the abundance of numbers at training. The vibe of our women’s program has been unreal so far. Taking this into Round 1 would be the biggest challenge.
The Power always bring their A Game against us, and it was no different this time, with the South-siders starting hot early kicking the first goal of the game. We responded well, with our senior players leading from the front, regaining momentum and taking a 9 point lead into quarter-time.
We controlled the game for large parts of the second term, but proved inaccurate in front of goal, allowing Southern Power to narrow the half-time margin to just 6 points. We needed to come out of the sheds fired up in the third quarter. Coach Moeller laid down the challenge, and you best believe we matched it. The EAGALS dominated the Premiership quarter, kicking 4 goals to 1, blitzing the Power to no return.
Southern Power came home with a wet sail, kicking two goals to nil in a scrappy final quarter, but it was the EAGALS who deservedly got the chocolates by 15 points.
Returning Super Forward Rylee McGartland was a colossus for us down forward kicking two goals, whilst co-captains Sarah Ford and Ally Dallaway were sensational as always.
Great start to the season, plenty to improve on, but we are heading in the right direction.
|East Coast Eagles||2.3-15||3.7-25||7.7-49||7.10-52|
East Coast Eagles
Best Players: A. Dallaway, E. Hurley, N. Gray, S. Ford, B. Parker, C. Arndt
Best Players: C. Stanton, J. Wrigley, E. Eaves, N. Murray, K. Mead, K. Tracey
|1||North Shore Bombers||1||1||0||0||51||20||255.00||4|
|2||Manly Warringah Wolves||1||1||0||0||50||27||185.19||4|
|3||UTS Australian Football Club||1||1||0||0||45||27||166.67||4|
|4||UNSW Eastern Suburbs Bulldogs||1||1||0||0||34||24||141.67||4|
|5||East Coast Eagles||1||1||0||0||52||38||136.84||4|
|7||Pennant Hills Demons||1||0||1||0||24||34||70.59||0|
|9||Inner West Magpies||1||0||1||0||27||50||54.00||0|
There was renewed hope and excitement in the Kanebridge Oval air going into Round 1, with the East Coast Eagles ushering into a new era. Damien Truslove is the new man at the helm for the Men’s Premier Division side, and he faced a tough test first up, meeting 2020 semi-finalists St George Dragons.
With a bunch of new players, and some returning veterans, team chemistry would perhaps be the biggest challenge. However, with Truslove’s positive mantra of development and competitive hunger, anything is possible in 2021.
The Dragons brought a side with plenty of youth to the Nest, looking to ambush us with speed and skill. We knew it wasn’t going to be easy, but we were ready for the battle.
Injuries are a large part of every footy clubs season, but you never want to see too many this early. Unfortunately, we lost some key players towards the beginning of the contest, making our job even tougher. A 4 quarter effort would still be key, despite being down on troops.
St George could only manage one major in the first quarter, whilst we grinded hard in defence to rebound out of our D50, with former and current captains Ben Bourke and Zach Johns leading the way for East Coast.
Returning youngster Brendan Coxall kicked our first goal of 2021 in the second quarter, as again St George only slotted one major in the second term. Clearly, our manic pressure at the stoppages was having an impact, as the Dragons could not seize momentum.
In was a tight contest in the Premiership quarter, as we looked to get on top and build some scoreboard pressure. We were strong through the centre of the ground, going forward with plenty of Inside 50s, but St George took a 13 point lead into 3QT.
Round 1 is always tough no matter the place, time or opponent. Bodies aren’t quite match fit yet, and legs are sore to cramp up the longer the game goes. We seemed to suffer from this late, as St George ran away with the game, kicking 5 goals to 2 in the final term. Although, the 35 point margin did not reflect the competitiveness of the match, with the game being far closer for the majority.
Coach Damien Truslove had this to say:
“It was a pleasing first hit out, and the boys fought hard for 4 quarters. Losing a couple to injury early, meant we had few rotations available. We were very good at stoppage and looked good going Inside 50. We will work hard at training on our ball movement and contest method. Can’t wait to crack into Manly next week. Our best were Andrew Browning in the Ruck, new Co-Captains Brandon Clark and Zach Johns, as well as Ben Bourke and Aaron Drinkwater”.
After a tough 2020, we needed to come into this season and show some fight, and boy did we. The Eagles did the Nest proud, and showed a lot of renewed promise.
|East Coast Eagles||0.1-1||2.3-15||4.3-27||6.6-42|
|St George Dragons||1.4-10||2.7-19||5.10-40||10.17-77|
East Coast Eagles
Best Players: A. Browning, B. Clark, A. Drinkwater, B. Bourke, Z. Johns, B. Stewart
St George Dragons
Best Players: N. Kenny, B. Hodgson, K. Pfrengle, D. Soffe, J. Dol, T. Coenen
|1||UTS Australian Football Club||1||1||0||0||142||25||568.00||4|
|2||UNSW Eastern Suburbs Bulldogs||1||1||0||0||87||33||263.64||4|
|3||North Shore Bombers||1||1||0||0||86||35||245.71||4|
|4||St George Dragons||1||1||0||0||77||42||183.33||4|
|5||Inner West Magpies||1||1||0||0||59||54||109.26||4|
|6||Manly Warringah Wolves||1||0||1||0||54||59||91.53||0|
|7||East Coast Eagles||1||0||1||0||42||77||54.55||0|
|9||Pennant Hills Demons||1||0||1||0||33||87||37.93||0|
The club is excited to announce the signings of the promising young duo of Jordyn Jollife and Eloise Hiller-Stanbrook to the nest for 2021.
Jordyn and Eloise are both country girls who have strong aspirations to play at the AFLW level. Both have been through the Talent Pathway in previous years with both representing the U18 NSW/ACT Rams & Eastern Allies in the 2019 State Championships.
Jordyn is a 20 year old strong bodied forward from the country town of Balranald, who will also be able to pinch hit in the midfield. Jordyn is a strong overhead mark and has a powerful kick, so she will definitely add to the EAGALS already strong scoring ability.
Eloise is a 19 year old, 183cm athletic Ruckman from Dubbo. She has a strong aerobic capacity and is an intimidating force when the ball hits the ground. Eloise will add further artillery to the midfield brigade.
It will be an exciting adventure for the girls who strive to take their game to the next level, and as a club we are excited to provide the platform and support for them to do that.
Please make the girls feel welcome.
The East Coast Eagles are excited to announce the key signing of Alyce Parker to the nest for 2021.
20 year-old Alyce is the reigning Gabrielle Trainor Medalist (GWS Giants AFLW Best and Fairest), and achieved selection in the 2020 AFLW All Australian team.
She had a very decorated junior footy career, notably captaining the NSW/ACT U18s from 2016-2018. Alyce was also named in the All-Australian side in each of those years, before being taken at Pick 12 by the GWS Giants in the 2018 NAB AFLW Draft.
Alyce is a country girl through and through, and works tireless hours on the family farm just outside of Holbrook in NSW’s South, however looks forward to plying her winter footy trade in Sydney for the first time post her AFLW season.
Whilst most would be familiar with Alyce’s footballing ability and on field achievements, those who haven’t met her wouldn’t realise that her footballing ability is only rivaled by her humble and caring nature. Alyce is a natural leader, and will be an asset to our footy club for the 2021 season, as she looks to further develop her footy at East Coast.
Welcome to the East Coast Eagles Alyce.
Finals footy is about rising to the occasion. Despite a four quarter effort and a never say die attitude, our EAGALS could not pull out the victory against an aggressive Inner Wests Magpies outfit.
After a slim loss to Manly last week in the first Grand Final Qualifier, East Coast ventured to Henson Park for their final bite of the cherry. It was do or die footy, with a spot in the big dance on the line. There was no tommorow for the loser.
Adding even more gravitas to the narrative, Inner Wests Magpies was one of only two sides to beat our EAGALS in the home and away season, back in Round 1.
The Magpies play a bruising style of footy. They really throw their weight around, and seek to use momentum to their advantage. We had to counter that if we wanted to secure a Grand Final berth.
The first quarter was a tough affair, both sides had plenty of the footy yet neither could kick a goal. The EAGALS struggled with forward 50 entries, despite their strong ability to earn clearances.
With a score of just 2-1 at Quarter-Time, we were only just behind in this stalemate.
Both sides returned to the field fired up, and after Inner Wests worked their way towards their goal, our defence faltered for only a second, as the Magpies scrambled to kick the first goal of the day.
Never fear EAGAL fans, as it wasn’t too long until we got one back through Shannon Smit. Smit was able to capitalize on a fortunate 50 metre free kick, before roosting one from 30 out straight through the sticks at the carpark end, before launching into a fired up celebration to pump up the side.
A stalemate resumed after this, and the scores were locked at 8-8 going into half-time.
The old saying in footy goes: The 3rd Quarter is the Premiership Quarter. Boy how this was proven true on Saturday.
Inner Wests came out of the blocks determined to make their move. As they won the clearance battle and made few mistakes with their skills, the Magpies began to run away with the game. The EAGALS lost key players to injuries, and it began to unravel for us. Down 40-8 at 3QT, we needed a response and quick.
Kicking with the wind in the final quarter, we had to go straight away; and we did. Skipper Sarah Ford went to her danger zone, and led her side back into the battle in an inspired effort. Ford, Georgia Garnett and Em Hurley kicked three rapid goals in a flurry to bring the game back to life.
Inner Wests were flustered but they regained footing, and played a very defensive game from here on out. They were hanging by a thread, all they could do was try and hold on.
It was a fantastic game of footy for the final 10 minutes, but time was fast running out.
We never gave up, our hearts were always in it, but alas the siren sounded and the EAGALS were still behind.
Inner Wests got the job done, and ran out 14 point winners, booking their spot in an intriguing 2020 Grand Final against Manly.
As mentioned Sarah Ford and Shannon Smit were unbelievable, with both throwing themselves into every contest with incredible desire for the footy, especially when Smit became the makeshift Ruckman late. Ally Dallaway and Georgia Garnett were additionally tremendous, showcasing a strong skill set and hunger for the footy all over the ground.
It wasn’t to be in 2020, but wow what a year it has been.
The entire East Coast Eagles family commend and applaud our EAGALS on their achievements this season, as they continue to show why they are one of the best endorsement for women’s sport in our community.
|East Coast Eagles||0.1-1||1.2-8||1.2-8||4.3-27|
|Inner West Magpies||0.2-2||1.2-8||6.4-40||6.5-41|
East Coast Eagles
Best Players: G. Garnett, A. Dallaway, C. Arndt, S. Ford, S. Smit, B. Hourigan
Inner West Magpies
Best Players: L. Kassem, E. Heads, M. Convery, R. Privitelli, M. Montgomerie, L. Lodge
It had the potential to be one of the greatest games ever seen at Kanebridge Oval. Although difficult conditions, namely frustrating winds, prevented the contest from reaching its apex, this Grand Final Qualifier was still an outstanding battle between two sides desperate for a win.
The EAGALS had the ball in their court. A home semi-final against Minor Premiers Manly, and a returning EAGAL in Em Goodsir, where the winner would launch into a Grand Final.
“We Never Lose At Home” was the message of motivation for the EAGALS in the sheds prior to the game, a true fact, since our Premier Division Women had yet to be beaten at home in 2020. There was a job to do, and it was up to our EAGALS to complete their mission.
As mentioned, frustrating winds kept both teams at bay early, making it increasingly challenging to hit targets with the boot and put together too many strong passages of play. Straight out of the gate, it became clear that this contest would be a grind for four quarters, with goals coming at a premium.
Despite the conditions, Manly were able to win the first clearance and quickly enter Inside 50, before kicking the first goal of the game. The EAGALS looked for a response all quarter, with midfielder Ally Dallaway impressing with her run and speed through the middle part of the ground to provide her forwards with scoring opportunities. Shannon Smit was also playing a massive role, throwing herself at every contest and becoming a real strong marking presence up front. Unfortunately, still we couldn’t find a goal and went into Quarter-Time down by 5 points.
We went into the next term determined to get back on top. Em Hurley was awarded a free kick and slotted our first goal of the day, before Manly countered with a major of their own. It was tough going for our EAGALS, with unfortunate injuries beginning to affect structures, making it a challenge to keep focused and switched on at times. Nevertheless, we were right in the game at half-time as Manly kept their 5 point lead.
The 3rd quarter had to be our best, as this is the time where the big games are won and lost. We gained first momentum, and were on song defensively, becoming a fortress with Renee Tomkins running the show and destroying anyone who came near. Manly defended well themselves, but after a build-up of untidy errors from the opposition, Georgina Fowler took advantage and kicked our second goal. Still, Manly kept the lead at 3QT, 6 points up.
The final term took an age, with multiple Manly injuries causing a halt in play, and even the boundary umpire unfortunately going down injured. Therefore, it was hard to get any real rhythm going, but the ball started moving faster than it had all game. The game saw plenty of stoppages late, with both teams looking for a crucial goal. However, it never came and after a scoreless final quarter, Manly did enough to win by 6 points and book themselves a Grand Final spot.
We stayed in the fight for four quarters, but could just never cling to a lead long enough to get us over the line. It was a heartbreaker, but we have no time for moping because we thankfully get a second bite of the cherry next week.
Henson Park will be the scene, 1:10 the time.
It will the EAGALS vs Inner Wests Magpies in a Preliminary Final Showdown. Winner goes to the big dance, loser goes home empty handed.
It’ll be an intriguing battle considering Inner Wests won the previous matchup in Round 1 earlier this season.
If you bleed Blue and Gold like our EAGALS, then make sure you’re there in support.
|Manly Warringah Wolves||1.0-6||2.1-13||3.2-20||3.2-20|
|East Coast Eagles||0.1-1||1.2-8||2.2-14||2.2-14|
Manly Warringah Wolves
Best Players: C. Johnson, A. Roditis, J. Layton, H. Graham, E. Goodsir , E. Graham
East Coast Eagles
Best Players: A. Dallaway, S. Ford, B. Tarrant, B. Parker, R. Tomkins, B. Hourigan
Can you smell it in the air?
Finals Footy baby, it’s here.
There is no better month in footy, then when the finals series rolls around, and in this year’s Sydney AFL Women’s Premier Division Competition, five teams headed into finals all looking to make an impact.
For our EAGALS the task was simple:
- Beat Southern Power, and go on to book a date with Manly at home in a Grand Final Qualifier.
- Lose to Southern Power, and face either Inner Wests Magpies or North Shore Bombers (the only two sides we did not beat in the Home and Away season) in an Elimination Semi-Final.
With the added occasion of finals, there was an enhanced degree of pressure imposed on East Coast approaching the game, knowing full well they were meeting a fired up Power army from the South.
However, I firmly believe that finals footy it is not about the skill.
If you weren’t a skilful footy side, you wouldn’t be in finals. To win finals footy, you have to want it more than your opponent in every facet of the game. You’ve got to find that extra effort to go all the way.
In all the drama and excitement of finals footy, we also welcomed an EAGAL debutant, with athletic forward Abbey Martin earning her first Prems Jersey. Hell bent on kicking off her Prems Career in style, Martin kicked the first goal of the game, letting Southern Power know she was here to make a statement.
Elsewhere, East Coast looked to play a physical brand of footy and intimidate their opponents. To see proof of this, look no further then EAGAL Ruckman Em Hurley’s brutal hip and shoulder to one poor Southern Power soul. The poor girl was rattled, but this didn’t led to EAGAL domination straight away.
On a whole, the first quarter saw a lack of consistent connection amongst the EAGALS, with Southern Power winning tons of hard footy right under our noses to apply forward pressure. Brenna Tarrant, Bailee Hourgian and Renee Tomkins were outstanding in defence nonetheless, collecting plenty of crucial intercept and rebounding possessions.
7 all at QT.
It was an arm wrestle going forward, with momentum so hard to capture for long periods. Both sides looked to use their speed through the midfield to gain an advantage, and East Coast took the bogey lead into half-time by just 13 points. It would take some strong leadership from senior EAGALS to get the W.
The Premiership 3rd Quarter was a tantalizing contest, personifying the back and forth notion that so often appears in finals footy. Southern Power looked to make their move, kicking three goals to East Coast’s two, but their inaccuracy in front of goal let the EAGALS off the hook as we tired defensively. With a 5 point lead at 3QT, it was there for the taking for both sides.
As bodies began to cramp up, we gritted our teeth and pulled together for one final surge. We knew what lay ahead, and what a victory would mean. We had that added desire, determination and dedication and we would not let this game slip. We powered home against a Southern Power side who lacked power late, winning by 23 points.
Georgina Fowler played her best game of the season, as the wiry young speedster kicked two goals whilst wreaking havoc in the forward line. Sarah Ford played a real captains knock, and debutant Abbey Martin starred with 3 goals.
As mentioned above, we now face Manly at our Kanebridge Oval home next week with the winner going through to the Grand Final, and the loser getting one more bite of the cherry. Believe me, we could be about to bear witness to one of the best games of footy Kanebridge Oval has ever seen. Make sure you get down there, to witness our EAGALS play for a spot in the big dance.
|East Coast Eagles||1.1-7||3.2-20||5.4-34||8.6-54|
East Coast Eagles
Best Players: G. Fowler, S. Ford, R. Tomkins, A. Martin, A. Dallaway, B. Tarrant
Best Players: N. Murray, R. Sargent-Wilson, B. Mowbray, J. Whelan, B. McGuire, M. Smith