Dees win a thriller to keep finals hopes alive
Friday, March 02 2018 @ 10:36 pm ACDT
Contributed by: Tash Gunawardana
The Dees came into this round 5 encounter after they had 2 losses on the road, so they were desperate for a win to keep their 2018 AFLW finals hopes alive.
The Dees came out all guns blazing in the first term led by their skipper Daisy Pearce who kicked two goals and she led from the front. Pearce slotted through the first goal of the match from a stoppage and her second from a stoppage near the goal square off a snap kick around her body. The Dees had higher disposal efficiency in the opening quarter than the Lions with an efficiency of about 60%. Kaitlyn Ashmore also started well for the Lions. Both teams made it hard for each other to break away clear from stoppages due to the strong tackling by both teams. The Dees with all of the attacking play early in this match and placed the Lions defense under heaps of pressure, but to the Lions credit their defense held up strongly and well. At quarter time the Dees kept the Lions scoreless and led by 15 points.
It was a different story in the second quarter, as the Lions were able to move the football more smoothly and efficiently forward. The Lions had a lot more of the football, as they lifted their intensity to match the intensity of the Dees. In the second term the Lions kept the Dees goalless and the Lions were able to score their first goal of the match. Sabrina Frederick-Traub snap kicked the Lions first goal of the match and the first of the second quarter after she used her strength to out muscle two Lions players. In particular the smothering from the Lions had been superb to start the match and the Lions defense held up very well despite being under siege by the Dees who had 21 inside 50s to 9. Both teams continued their strong tackling pressure. Pearce played great football in the first half of the match. She led from the front with 15 disposals and 2 goals. The Lions were down by 11 points at half time after they were able to shift some of the momentum back in the second term.
In the third term the Lions continued with the momentum they had in the second quarter and they slowly were able to get on top of the Dees. Brittany Gibson from 40m from goal kicked towards goal but the football fell short into the arms of Frederick-Traub who marked the football with a strong contested mark. Frederick-Traub kicks a banana kick off the side of her boot slotted through the goal nicely. Tegan Cunningham from the goal square on slight angle booted through a much-needed goal for the Dees after she took a strong contested mark in the pack. Courage shown by Hildebrand and Cunningham whose heads both collided in the air, as they both went fast and hard at the football. They both were slow to get up, but great to see that they both seem to be ok walking off the bench in the hands of their teams trainers. At three quarter time the Dees had a 14-point advantage over the Lions.
The final stanza continued to be a strong and tight tussle from both teams who did not drop off in intensity. Kate Lutkins kicked the football long to Frederick-Traub who marked the football strongly in the forward half of the ground for the Lions. Frederick-Traub kicked the football forward and Gibson took a strong diving mark deep in attack for the Lions to slot through the first goal of the final quarter. Kate Hore booted through a important timely snap kick at goal for the Dees from the stoppage after the football fell out of the pack. After a hard collision late in the third term, Hildebrand and Cunningham did not take any further part in the match and Cunningham was assessed for concussion. In the final quarter, Frederick-Traub and Pearce both collided and Pearce was slow to get to her feet, but she showed her toughness as she ran to the bench even though she looked sore. Frederick-Traub out of the ruck slotted through her third goal of the match. The last couple of minutes of the match were high-pressured and the Lions kept the football deep in attack, as they tried to put a stop to the Dees finals hopes in 2018. However the Dees held on and were victors by 6 points at their home ground down in Casey over a valiant Lions outfit that never gave in till the final siren.
Therefore the Dees kept their finals hope alive in a pulsating end to the match. Pearce played a beauty of a match for her Dees after she had been down in form over the last two weeks and she led from the front, because she was able to get her Dees over the line in a action-packed match of AFLW.