AFLW Round 6 – Adelaide v Fremantle: Four Points

AFLW Round 6 – Adelaide v Fremantle

3.35pm Friday 9 March

Traeger Park, Alice Springs

Danae Gibson


The game was barely 90 seconds old before I thought ‘how bloody hot is it?’


I’m sure Siri or one of the expert broadcast team would have told me but I watch footy on TV with the volume muted 90% of the time. I think it’s because for most of the twenty odd years I’ve watched Fremantle play in the AFL, every other commentator has confused Chris Mayne with David Mundy or Heath Black with Garrick Ibbotson or … you get the picture. Besides I don’t need any help to identify number 13 for the Adelaide. First goal of the game kicked by Erin Phillips, of course. What a player, I hope she plays ‘til she’s 40. Seriously.


The Dockers responded with a couple of behinds from Cain and O’Sullivan before Filocamo got the ball deep in the attacking 50, drawing a 50 metre penalty against Jenna McCormack. It looked like the Dockers would score again with repeated attacking thrusts but the Adelaide defenders tackled, intercepted and counter attacked in the sapping conditions. The Crows looked good on the burst. In the centre of the ground Ebony Antonio took possession before Sarah Perkins read her mind, picked her pocket and put the ball in the path of Phillips. Working on 20 metre leg rope attached to the left goal post proved no hindrance to the semi-fit MVP.


Phillips 2.0 (12) Fremantle 1.2 (8) looked to be the quarter time score until a costly 50 metre penalty awarded to Marijana Racic resulted in a goal to the Crows with 15 seconds left. Another goal in red time against the Dockers, it seems like that has happened a lot this season (like the Australian Men getting out around breaks in the Test Cricket in South Africa) but this was not the time for research. With 15 seconds left, the Dockers moved the ball quickly into their forward line when play resumed but ran out of time to reduce the margin. Another quarter time deficit for Freo, but not insurmountable.


QT: Adelaide 3.0 (18) v Fremantle 1.2 (8)


The Crows did not waste time getting on the board in the second quarter. Ruth Wallace, Phillips and Sarah Perkins combined to score a team goal within the first minute. Ashlee Atkins slotted Fremantle’s second from a free kick while Ebony Marinoff was off the ground with a nasty bleeding cut on her tenacious face. Marinoff is such a full bodied footballer I’m pretty sure she tackles with her face as well.


Again and again the ball pinged between the 50 metre arcs with one desperate lunging effort after the other. The game was a good un’, despite the conditions. Muttering ‘geez, it must be hot’ was stating the obvious so I kept questions about how to measure humidity and ball slipperiness to myself. With 3 and a half minutes to go the Crows were in their attacking goal square. Antonio took her eye off the ball and it looked like Phillips had another goal to add to her tally but the Dockers escaped. Moments later Phillips appeared to take a mark in the square but was surprisingly unrewarded. The half time siren sounded with the ball in contest and the players gasping for air … Freo had doubled their score but not made the most of their opportunities.


HT Adelaide 4.0 (24) v Fremantle 2.4 (16)


While the players take a longer break than usual for half time, my beloved decided she would have been a full forward if she’d played. I make a note to dig Nathan Jarvis’s Origin of the Speccies (2006) out of storage. Jarvis reckons each position on the ground is a personality archetype, from the rock-star full-forward to the ‘last-kid-picked’ back pocket. Who needs a ‘rock star’ full forward when your 35% fit co-captain can kick a winning score by herself? Oh, that’s right, Erin Phillips is a rock star in every position.


The third quarter began with a brilliant centre clearance and quick goal to the visitors’ best defender, Antonio. Dana Hooker secured a 50 metre penalty, and the lead, with a neat goal.  The cheering in the House of the Heave Hoes got louder. Nervous pacing began. It was all Dockers in the early part of the third quarter but the Crows would not be beaten. There were huge tackles from both teams and a series of great bone crunching, lung bursting efforts. At one point Hooker was in the gutter (sorry Dana – that was as cheap as the shove that you got on the boundary – you’re a bloody champ!) and for the 97th time this season, I called on Chelsea Randall to come home to Perth before the West Coast Eagles get a team on the park. I can barely cope with Randall playing for the Crows but if she moves back to the west to captain the Eagles …


Meanwhile, Jessica Sedunary snaffled a goal square soccered six pointer. Scores were close. The Dockers had kicked two goals in the term but the Crows were tightening the screws. Angela Foley’s patch of form was as purple as the Darwin sky.


3QT: Adelaide 5.1 (31) v Fremantle 4.6 (30)


Behinds were kicked early as the Crows lead stretched to three points. The home team’s first goal of the final quarter kicked by Phillips. Again. What a player; strong, durable, driven. While contemplating how deadly she could be at full fitness I rued another Fremantle season without marquee Kiara Bowers. I hope ‘Turbo’ gets a chance in the final game. The AFLW competition, only 8 weeks long in 2017 & 2018, means a year-long injury can easily cost a player two AFLW seasons.


Amongst the grind and with five minutes left in the game, Freo’s best – Antonio, Atkins, Donnellan and Hooker – combined their talents to kick a goal and reduce the margin to three points. It was another gutsy game from Dana Hooker, this time with 2 goals and 20 odd touches. The Crows stole another behind, defended valiantly and won the game by 4 points.


Momentarily they are second on the ladder and still in with a chance to win a spot in the 2018 GF – what a story it will be if turns out that way.


ADELAIDE     3.0   4.0   5.1   6.4 (40)
 1.2   2.4   4.6   5.6 (36)

Phillips 3, Rajcic, Perkins, Sedunary
Fremantle: Hooker 2, Filocamo, Atkins, Antonio 

  Foley, Phillips, Randall, Allan, Cramey, Marinoff
Fremantle: Hooker, Donnellan, Miller, Antonio, Gooch, Janz

Our votes: Foley (3), Phillips (2) Antonio (1)

Umpires: Dore, Galbraith, Broadbent

Official crowd: 2159 at TIO Stadium



I'm a rusted on Fremantle Dockers supporter. Radio is my first love, followed closely by cricket. I coordinate the Broadcast Journalism Diploma at Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne.


  1. Yvette Wroby says

    Love your report Danae. Amazing how Erin Philips shines even through purple coloured glasses. I like that different teams are in contention this year. Now Freo are gone u can just enjoy the spectacle!

  2. Verity Sanders says

    The pack mark that C Randall took in the last quarter should be Mark of the Year surely. And as much as I have a soft spot for the west ( my dad was born in Kalgoorlie) I’m just putting it out there that any attempt to poach the aforesaid superhero from the Crows will be seen as a hostile act, and we may be forced to build a wall across the Nullabor State border (at your expense of course). Just putting it out there.

  3. Great report Danae. I’ve admired Dana Hooker’s work this season, she’s been superb. Freo have been so unlucky with injuries, I would love to see them with their marquees and senior players fully fit. Actually, that might be a little frightening for supporters of other teams…

  4. Danae Gibson says

    Thanks Yvette – we watched training down at Cockburn last night, some of the women looked sore but mostly they looked awesome. Excited about next year already. Really excited.

    Noted, Verity. Just send me the bill ?

    Georgina – Hooker is amazing. When Bowers joins that midfield and McGuire matures in the forward line – look out!

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