Our latest season review looks at one of the Dons' smooth movers.
Sophie Van De Heuvel
Avgs: 13 disposals, three marks
Sophie Van De Heuvel was a big improver for the Bombers in Season Eight.
Thriving in a more advanced role, Van De Heuvel started the season in good form with consecutive 17-disposal efforts against Hawthorn and St Kilda, offering a cool head as the Dons opened the year with back-to-back wins.
Van De Heuvel provided six rebound 50’s from half back in the round three loss to the Crows, generating plenty of attack from defence.
The 22-year-old suffered a concussion during the round four victory over Fremantle but rebounded in solid fashion with a career-best 19 disposals against former side Geelong in round six, propelling a big comeback win.
Van De Heuvel cracked the 50-game milestone in round 10, finishing as one of the Bombers’ best in a loss to the Suns, before featuring in the club’s inaugural final a week later.
With due reward, Van De Heuvel finished equal fifth in the Bombers' Best and Fairest count, capping off an important year of on-field development.
Growing in confidence, Van De Heuvel’s run-and-carry game will be important for the young core of the Bombers as they build into 2024 and beyond.