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Twelve Fremantle-listed players were in action in the first week of the WAFLW finals.
Senior coach Trent Cooper runs us through his thoughts on the games.
Semi Final 1
Swan Districts 7.6 (48) def Claremont 1.1 (7)
It was windy to start with and an absolute deluge followed! It was that heavy, you couldn’t even see the players on the far side of the ground. Swans got off to a good start and from there, they were never going to get beaten.
The first half was where the game was won and lost, and Ebony Antonio and Gemma Houghton were outstanding in the forward line.
Gemma Houghton – Swan Districts
Gemma was probably the most influential player on the ground in the first half. She kicked two goals and set up another one. She was really strong at the contest, she flew at her marks and her forward pressure was great.
Ebony Antonio – Swan Districts
Ebony has a really solid game in the forward line as well. She kicked an important goal and was always a presence across half forward.
Ashley Sharp – Swan Districts
Ashley was tagged on the wing. She didn’t have a big influence but it worked out well for Swans because Claremont lost one of their prime movers as well. It was a solid game from her without having a big impact.
Stephanie Cain – Swan Districts
Steph was really good and really clean. It looked like she had a dry ball when everyone else had a wet ball. She drove the ball forward and was great around the stoppages.
Ange Stannett – Swan Districts
Ange was named as Swans’ best on ground. She was really solid early and when the weather hit, she came into her own and her work around the stoppages was really influential.
Ange played as a defender at Freo in 2019 and we’ve been rapt with her development as a midfielder this season in the WAFLW. She was originally put in there to get a few more possessions, so when she returned to the backline at Freo she would be a bit more attacking. She’s actually tuned into a bona fide midfielder and that gives us some options for next season.
Laura Pugh - Claremont
Laura started back against Antonio and Houghton. She did a reasonable job considering how often the ball was coming down. As she was needed down back, Laura didn’t get to play in the midfield where she’s been so good this year. She’s had a really solid WAFLW season, which is unfortunately over with Claremont out of the race.
Semi Final 2
Subiaco 2.2 (14) def by East Fremantle 6.6 (42)
This was a really physical and at times spiteful game between Subiaco and East Fremantle. Subiaco were the minor premiers but East Freo were far too good on the day.
Hayley Miller - Subiaco
Hayley took a couple of really big hits but she never stopped getting up and going and trying to get her team back into it. They did take a fair bit out of her, so she didn’t have her usual influence on the game.
Lindal Rohde - Subiaco
Lindal was solid again on the wing. She had eight touches in the first quarter and linked up really well. As East Fremantle started to win the midfield battle, they bypassed the wings a bit so she didn’t have the same influence in the second half.
Philipa Seth – East Fremantle
Phil was really solid again. She gave a lot of run and carry through the midfield which was great to see. This is something that we hope she can utilise at Fremantle this year, and her form has been really good.
Evie Gooch – East Fremantle
Evie’s been in great form playing like a defensive type midfielder and she impressed again. She was named among East Fremantle’s best.
Gabby O’Sullivan – East Fremantle
Up until the finals starting, Gabby had just had an average WAFLW season - but she was clearly the best player on the ground against Subi. She played across half forward, she led up, her hands were really good, she kicked a goal and set up another couple. It was great to see her at her absolute best and we’re delighted to see her coming good at the right time of the year.
This week we look forward to the preliminary final clash between Subiaco and Swan Districts at Leederville Oval on Saturday at 2pm. It should be a cracking game and the winner gets to play East Fremantle in the grand final.