AFLW Round 4 – Fremantle v Adelaide: First Quarter Blackout
Fremantle v Adelaide
4.05 pm (AWST), Sunday, 26 February 2017
Fremantle Oval, WA
Anne Cahill Lambert
Nope. It wasn’t a game of two halves. It was a game of three quarters.
This game highlighted a few pointers for those involved:
- The players continue to learn that if they evacuate the defence, the other team will get goals.
- The players will eventually learn that if you get the ball, you really need to kick it.
- And they will learn that when they get the mark, or free kick, they need to ensure that the opposition doesn’t encroach their mark. And they need to move quickly from time to time to ensure they can get a goal or a good shot at goal. In these fifteen-minute quarters with no additional time-on, there is zilch opportunity to spin these kicks out, even though they are complying with time rules.
- The umpires will learn that they need to be closer to the action – not 50 or 100 metres away. If they were closer for Fremantle v Adelaide, they may have pinged a few round the necks, needlessly rough play, in the backs and holding the ball.
- Oh, and the commentators really shouldn’t have a current player from one of the participating teams (but I love that there are female commentators too). So, the commentary that it was a “whoopsadaisy” moment was just ridiculous and silly, when Stephanie Cain was indeed reported for forceful high contact on Angela Foley.
The hero for Adelaide was Jenna McCormick who kicked two goals. She’s a soccer player, hailing from Adelaide originally. She played for Adelaide United for three years before moving to the nation’s capital in 2015, playing for Canberra United in the W-League. So, there’s a nice Canberra link with Adelaide’s coach, Bec Goddard*. Jenna turned the game around with her goal to level the scores at the start of the third quarter.
And for those interested, Heather Anderson is also from Canberra. She plays for Belconnen and wears a pink helmet when playing. This helps her vision impaired mother to see her. No doubt it protects her head too. Anderson is a medic in the Australian Defence Force.
Since we’re on fun facts: Rhiannon Metcalfe (Crows) also works for the ADF, in the Navy as an electronic warfare seaman. How many footy players can put that on their CV?
The Dockers were incredibly impressive in the first quarter and held the Crows scoreless. It looked as if the practice match between these two teams in January where the Dockers overcame a green Crows’ team by 22 points would be repeated. They were able to play their running game and hit the scoreboard with success, seemingly at a whim. Ashley Sharp and Amy Lavell were brilliant in kicking the first two goals and gave the Dockers a lot of confidence. But then, no more goals for the Dockers until the last quarter.
The Fremantle Doctor was quite blustery and it was difficult to kick goals against it. However, this is the big league and players will need to practice kicking into the wind. While the “Freo Dr” is called a sea breeze, it is often a gale and it certainly looked that way on Sunday afternoon. The other trying conditions included the heat – the temperature at the start of the match hovered around 30 degrees.
Ultimately, it was a game of a premiership quarter. Adelaide stepped up to the plate: they started during the second quarter when they had the wind blowing with them. Which is why their premiership quarter (against the wind) was so impressive. The Crows kicked 3.4 to the Dockers one behind, stamping their authority on the match.
It was to the coach’s credit that she was able to keep a lid on the enthusiasm of her players heading into the last quarter. It was a bit rough out there for the final stanza.
Fremantle coach, Michelle Cowan, was gracious in defeat, as always. It was lovely to see her lauding the efforts of my fave for Adelaide, Sarah (Tex) Perkins, who also had a marvellous game.
There’s so much to say about this game. But I’ll leave it at it being a game between the two (and only) female coaches. A hard fought game that was mesmerizing.
Fremantle: 2.1 2.3 2.4 3.5 (23)
Adelaide: 0.0 1.3 4.7 6.10 (46)
Fremantle: Sharp, Lavell, Bentley
Adelaide: McCormick 2, Phillips, Sedunary, Holmes, Perkins
Fremantle: Donnellan (3), Antonio (2), Filocamo (1)
Adelaide: McCormick (3) Phillips (2), Perkins (1)
REPORTS: Stephanie Cain (Fremantle) for forceful high contact on Angela Foley (Adelaide)
UMPIRES: Power, Paton, Dugan
CROWD: 4,578 with seemingly 4,577 supporting the Dockers!
*As readers will know by now, I am one of the coach’s thousands of aunts, which I continue to declare lest anyone thinks I’m not being open and honest.