September 24, 2023

Saint-sational Sunday: St Kilda storm home to down Magpies, notch first win of season

September 24, 2023 — 9.46pm
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St Kilda kicked five unanswered goals in the final quarter to claim their first win of the AFLW season with a come-from-behind 12-point victory over Collingwood.

The Saints trailed by 26 points during the third term but stormed home to secure a 7.5 (47) to 5.5 (35) triumph at RSEA Park on Sunday.

St kilda players take in the moment after beating Collingwood.Credit: Getty Images

Ex-Magpies midfielder Jaimee Lambert (18 disposals, three clearances) starred against her former club, with Olivia Vesely (19, four) and Georgia Patrikios (15, five) also influential.

Lambert and Patrikios were among St Kilda’s seven goal-kickers in a win Saints star and former Collingwood captain Steph Chiocci said was “pretty insane”.

St Kilda’s first-ever AFLW win over the Magpies relieved some pressure on coach Nick Dal Santo, who now has a 6-18 record at the helm.

Jaimee Lambert starred for the Saints.Credit: Getty Images

“There’s mixed emotions and relief is definitely one of them, but my main feeling is just pride,” Dal Santo told reporters. “I’m really proud of the girls’ performance.

“I’ve stood here three times this year and spoken about the journey that we’re on and the need to improve as individuals and as a collective.

“I stand here knowing that we’ve done that … and it’s been over the course of four rounds to get to this point.”

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Brianna Davey in action on Sunday.Credit: Getty Images

The result was a huge blow to the Magpies’ finals hopes, leaving them with just one win from four rounds.

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It could have been even worse, with Bri Davey sending a huge scare through the camp when she hobbled off with an ankle injury during the third quarter. She spent more than 10 minutes off the ground but returned to play out the match and finished with 16 disposals.

Davey has been one of Collingwood’s best players this season after missing almost all of 2022 with a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament.

St Kilda had only registered one goal until Nat Exon added a second in the dying stages of the third quarter to cut the margin to 20 points at the final change.

Even then, victory seemed highly unlikely. But Patrikios and Nicola Xenos breathed life into the contest with quick goals early in the last quarter to spark the home side’s match-winning surge. The Saints piled on 5.2 from 11 forward entries in the final term while keeping Collingwood scoreless.

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Lions roar back to down North Melbourne

The Brisbane Lions’ undefeated AFLW record over North Melbourne remains intact after they stormed home for an enthralling two-point victory on Sunday.

Down by 18 points at half-time, the Lions kicked four goals to one after the main break to pinch a 5.5 (35) to 5.3 (33) victory at UTAS Stadium in Launceston.

Jasmine Garner gets a kick away for the Kangaroos.Credit: Getty Images

Emma Kearney was paid a free kick in the dying seconds, but North’s captain was 60 metres out from the Kangaroos’ goal and her shot dropped well short. The Lions’ theme song had already started playing as Kearney made her attempt.

Shannon Campbell, best-on-ground as a defender in the Lions’ grand final loss to Melbourne last year, kicked the match-winning goal on her 27th birthday.

Swans hold off Eagles for second AFLW victory

Ally Morphett on the run for the Swans in the win over West Coast.Credit: Getty Images

Rising star Ally Morphett starred as Sydney fought off a scrappy West Coast to hand the Eagles a fourth consecutive loss at Henson Park on Sunday.

Morphett’s brilliance steered the Swans to a 5.4 (34) to 2.9 (21) victory in their first AFLW meeting with the Eagles.

The 19-year-old led her team hit-outs with 33 to the Eagles’ combined 17, racked up 20 disposals and 10 clearances, and was well supported by ball magnet Laura Gardiner (18 disposals, three clearances, 11 tackles).

Swans co-captain Chloe Molloy lit up the 4595-strong crowd with a 40-metre goal to open the game, as well as snapping a major from the left pocket to start the second term.

Cynthia Hamilton (one goal) and Bella Smith (two) were also among the Swans’ contributors to the scoreboard.

The Eagles went goalless in the first stanza before Kellie Gibson finally broke through to give her side their first major just 30 seconds before half-time, reducing the margin to 14 points.

A scare went through the Swans’ camp when Molloy left the ground with a potential elbow injury. But she returned soon after.

Essendon notch third AFLW win

Essendon have surged into the top-eight after securing a third win from four starts with a 20-point victory over Fremantle.

Despite starting in the competition two years after their opponents, the Bombers showed up the Dockers in an impressive display at Windy Hill on Sunday.

Bonnie Toogood kicks a goal for the Bombers against Fremantle.Credit: Getty Images

Essendon trailed at half-time but kicked five goals to two after the main break to run out winners 7.8 (50) to 4.6 (30), continuing the Bombers’ rise in just their second season in the competition.

Co-captain Bonnie Toogood starred with two goals and a game-high 22 possessions and Jacqui Vogt also stepped up with two majors.

“It’s unbelievable here at Windy, to play a heartland venue,” Toogood told Fox Footy. “To see the Reynolds Stand packed like that, it’s fantastic. Us engaging Essendon fans of women’s footy is phenomenal and it’s good to get the win, that’s for sure.?

Angelique Stannett was the Dockers’ only multiple goal-kicker with two, while Emma O’Driscoll was their leading possession winner with 22.

Suns rise to eclipse Bulldogs

Gold Coast are ready to shake off their rank-outsider status after surviving an almighty scare from the Western Bulldogs.

Withstanding a late-term surge from the visitors to snatch their third consecutive win on Sunday, the Suns stood up in their second meeting with the Bulldogs to win 7.6 (48) to 7.2 (44) at Heritage Bank Stadium.

Maddy Brancatisano of the Suns looks to break free.Credit: Getty Images

True to form, Charlie Rowbottom (28 disposals, seven clearances) starred for the Suns, while Lucy Single diligently played a tagging role on Ellie Blackburn, limiting the Bulldogs skipper to 20 disposals and three score involvements.

A free kick for tripping to Kirsten McLeod opened the game and gave the Bulldogs their first major, though Suns defender Vivien Saad was adamant the ball was touched.

The hosts found an immediate response when Gaelic football convert Niamh McLaughlin snatched her first AFLW goal to reduce the margin to six points before quarter-time.

The arm wrestle continued into the third quarter, with both sides kicking two goals apiece to go into the final term with the Suns’ leading by 13 points.

A mammoth effort by Deanna Berry (one goal) and Kirsty Lamb (two) kept the Bulldogs alive as the deficit shrank to just one-point with 10 minutes to go.

But though dogged by wayward kicking, the Suns held on.

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