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Two in a row for VFLW Dons

The VFLW Dons have recorded back-to-back wins. (Photo: Ben Johnstone)

Essendon VFLW has recorded back-to-back wins, defeating Williamstown by 39 points at Williamstown Football Ground on Saturday.

The Bombers put together one of their most complete performances of the year, leading from the get-go to ultimately seal the 7.5 (47) to 1.2 (8) victory.      

Essendon hit the scoreboard early with a Maddy Collier major just four minutes in.    

The Dons started to show some speed and intensity controlling the contest but were wasteful with their inside-50 entries.                 

The Bombers’ back six, including Katherine McFadyen, Molly Warburton and Chloe Laan, worked overtime to force turnovers and limit Williamstown’s opportunities in front of goal.  

Essendon came out firing in the second quarter, as back-to-back goals to Shae Audley and Jessica Stassi saw it build on its first-quarter lead.               

Georgia Nanscawen and Ruby Svarc were impactful, trapping the ball inside the forward half as pressure from the Dons built around the contest.       

Essendon continued to hold possession and control the game, helped by a late goal to Federica Frew.      

It was a fairly scrappy start to the third quarter, as both teams struggled to gain any form of momentum.      

The Bombers’ courage and commitment were notable as they forced the opposition into quick disposals and a number of turnovers.  

Williamstown managed to worm its way back into the contest, controlling the play, as forward Moana Hope booted the Seagulls’ first goal of the game.          

The Bombers once again stormed out of the blocks, helped by two third-quarter goals to Alex Quigley.     

Cecilia McIntosh, Lori Stepnell and Maighan Fogas were important to Essendon’s forward six, providing the midfielders with strong targets up forward and adding pressure on the Seagulls’ defenders.        

Essendon was able to maintain composure and finish off the game strongly as a goal to Sian Wilson sealed the deal.

Senior coach Brendan Major said the team’s collective efforts had significantly improved.

“We probably played three-and-a-half quarters of consistent football, which is more than what we’ve done for the rest of the year,” Major said.     

“But I think our ball use across the ground was much better this round than it has been others”.   

Major was impressed with Quigley’s performance, and also had praise for Georgia Patrikios, who played an important role in her first game in the red and black.    

“I thought Quigley was best on ground,” he said.  

“Her defensive work, her willingness to fly in the air and bring the ball to ground makes her a very dangerous small forward.

“(Patrikios) she is absolutely elite, she’s clean, she uses the ball well and she takes the game on.  

“She is going to be a very high draft pick and have a great future at AFLW level”.

The Bombers will take on the top-of-the-table Saints next week as they look to break the latter’s winning streak.     

“We’ve just got to make sure that we’re trying to play our football for as long as possible,” Major said.

“The Saints are a very good outfit, they are very good around the contest, so we’re going to have to be clean and our communication is going to have to be good”.  

Essendon will play the Southern Saints from 11:30am on Saturday, August 3 at Windy Hill.  

Essendon            1.0    4.4    4.5    7.5 (47)
Williamstown    0.0    0.0    1.1    1.2 (8)      

GOALS

Essendon – Quigley 2, Collier, Audley, Stassi, Frew, Wilson    

Williamstown – Hope

Victoria Raptis is in the final year of her Bachelor of Communications (Journalism) degree at RMIT University. As part of their strategic partnership, Essendon Football Club and RMIT University are committed to providing opportunities for students, staff, players and the wider community.