Round 10 – Brisbane V Melbourne
Dees survive first quarter onslaught relatively unscathed.
Having dealt effectively with table toppers Adelaide in Round 8, Brisbane showed that they can be formidable on home turf. The Dees would have to bring their best game to Springfield in their first meeting since last year’s Premiership clash.
It was first blood to the Lions when Dakota Davidson marked, then kicked a 35m set shot to put the hosts on the scoreboard. A minute later, Brisbane had their second when Ellie Hampson marked the ball just inside 50, before turning and launching from 45m. The sherrin landed in the square and bounced serendipitously across the goal line.
It was all Brisbane, with Melbourne struggling to get out of their defensive half. The maroon tide was relentless and quarter time couldn’t come soon enough for the Dees.
Luckily it didn’t come too quickly though, as with two minutes to play, Melbourne found some space for the first time and made the most of it, getting the ball inside 50, where Casey Sherriff took an uncontested mark, 20m from goal. The conversion was clinical, and the Dees had their first six pointer of the match.
Melbourne redress the balance.
Having been dominated in every stat during the first term, especially inside 50, the Dees would have been satisfied to be trailing by just eight points.
Taylor Harris, making her return from injury, got Melbourne’s second when she took a contested mark to the right of the square, going back to slot the goal.
It was a high stakes game for both clubs, with every possession immediately challenged; the tackling ferocious and unforgiving.
Melbourne was doing a good job of containing the Lions early on, until they suddenly burst through and stormed up the ground. A series of accurate kicks and marks eventually got the ball to Charlotte Mullins inside 50. The forward ran on and slammed the ball into the open goal.
The lead was back to eight points but not for long, as Tyla Hanks was awarded a free after being taken high. Her 35m set shot was low flying but made the journey to safely cross the line.
Melbourne won the bounce and was back inside 50, where Kate Hore collected the ground ball and snapped it through from 10m.
The visitors were in front for the first time, but Brisbane again went on the offensive and retook the lead within a minute, after Dakota Davidson marked on the goal line and slotted her second of the night.
The Lions run amok.
It was a tight game at half time, but Brisbane had home advantage and what seemed like an almost deranged determination to avenge last year’s Grand Final loss. Maybe I’m reading too much into it though?
Kate Hore almost had another goal in the opening minutes of the second half, but just failed to get boot to ball as it crossed the line.
Up the other end, Taylor Smith was able to take possession in the open goal square and connect to stretch the margin back out to eight points. After the bounce, Brisbane was back inside 50, where eventually Sophie Conway marked the ball, then converted from 25m.
The Lions had three in a row when Ruby Svarc was awarded a free kick 10m to the left of goal. Then with thirty seconds left, Sophie Conway kicked her second of the term, from a 40m free kick set shot.
Dees unable to close the gap.
Melbourne are pretty much unbeatable in fourth quarters, but it would take a monumental effort of Herculean proportions to get home against a fired up Brisbane side on home soil, with a twenty seven point buffer. Still, you have to try.
The Dees pressed hard, attacking the Lion’s defence and dominating inside 50. However, they were unable to land any must have majors.
In the end Melbourne won the quarter but could only reduce the margin to twenty five points; again missing out on the minor premiership.
None of that matters now though. The Dees will be solely focused on their qualifying match again North Melbourne.
Go the Mighty Dees!!!