Round 8 – Narrm V North Melbourne

Liam Chambers

North just edge out the Dees in the opening term.

The Dees started the game knowing a win would put them back on top of the ladder, after Adelaide fell short against the Lions in Brisbane. North applied the pressure from the opening bounce, giving Narrm no opportunity to gather any momentum.

Niamh Martin kicked the opener and her first AFLW major, when presented with a sitter from 10m out. Having secured the first goal, the Roos again went hard in pursuit of their second.

Narrm reacted well, regaining some control and making repeat entries inside 50.The Dees kept threatening to score and eventually Casey Sherriff kicked the equaliser from a 20m set shot, after being awarded a 50m penalty.

North kicked the next goal against the run of play, when Tess Craven’s shot from 45m landed in the square, where it bounced across the line, despite Tahlia Gillard’s attempt to get a last second touch.

After the bounce, the Roos looked to have the momentum back, again pressuring the Dees’ defence. However, Narrm dealt with the attack and countered, making their way up the ground and back inside 50.

Paxy Paxman, having taken a superb one handed mark, found Eden Zanker in a scoring position. Incredibly, the mark wasn’t paid by the umpire; adding to the list of dubious calls against the Dees. Perhaps I’m biased though.

Narrm gain the upper hand.

The stats pointed to a fairly even competition in the first quarter. Narrm looked more likely to score but it was the visitors who were leading where it mattered, on the scoreboard.

The Roos seemed to be having the best of the play in the first five minutes of the quarter, but the Dees kicked the opener after Kate Hore took a superb contested mark at the top of the square. Narrm had the lead for the first time and set about playing the game on their terms.

The hosts were playing fast and hard but North fought valiantly to keep their opponents at bay. A free kicked awarded in the ruck gave Georgia Campbell the opportunity to add to Narrm’s tally. She slotted the 20m set shot perfectly to give the Dees an eight point advantage.

The Dees consolidate their advantage in a low scoring game.

North was tackling and marking well but Narrm was starting to dominate in most of the other stats.

Tyla Hanks was having a great game and it got even better when she scored the first and only goal of the third quarter, after scooping up the loose ball from the stoppage and weaving her way through to kick from the top of the square.

Narrm had all the momentum and were dominating inside 50, leaving North frantically chasing the ball, unable to get out of their defensive zone. The Roos eventually got themselves back in the game; attacking the Dees’ defence but unable to break down the wall in front of goal.

That’ll do nicely.

Narrm had a handy sixteen point advantage in a what was turning out to be a very tight match. North Melbourne would be eager to turn it around though, and the Dees reputation as strong finishers would again be put to the test.

Neither side was able to get their game flowing, with each attack ruthlessly dealt with. North kept finding a route to inside 50 but the Dees kept finding a way to repel them.

Narrm finally landed the killer blow when Eden Zanker took a contested mark inside 50 and blasted the 35m set shot, snuffing out any flicker of hope that North fans still harboured.

Another victory and another great team effort. Definitely the best side to wear the red and the blue in the seven seasons of the AFLW competition.

This week it’s Fremantle’s turn and Narrm will be optimistic about retaining their position on top of the table.

Go the Mighty Dees!!!