Essendon VFLW has recorded its second win of the season, beating Melbourne Uni by 13 points at Melbourne University main oval on Sunday.                                 

Despite the trying conditions, the VFLW Dons led from start to finish to record the 6.4 (40) to 3.9 (27) victory.                    

Essendon broke away with the lead early in the first term, scoring two consecutive goals via Jessica Stassi and Lori Stepnell.

Both teams struggled to gain possession in the second quarter, with the first major scored nine minutes in via Melbourne Uni’s Jasmine Grierson.         

Given the chance to respond to last week’s loss, the Bombers were relentless in their approach and brought pressure to the contest, rewarded for their efforts with a late goal from Sian Wilson.     

Essendon carried its intensity into the third term, as Melbourne Uni struggled to break the early momentum.                              

Shae Audley led from the midfield with high-intensity tackling pressure, while Kendra Heil impressed with her run through the backline.

Katherine McFadyen and Georgia Nanscawen led by example, capitalising on every opportunity despite the scrappy contest.           

Melbourne Uni continued to work as both teams traded goals, but was never able to snatch the lead.

Essendon continued to dominate in the fourth term, as it looked to cement the win.       

The VFLW Dons booted two goals to one as the back six worked overtime to save potential scores.     

Maddy Collier and Cecilia McIntosh did well to secure several forward entries as the Dons held on to claim the 13-point victory.              

Senior coach Brendan Major said he was pleased with the team for bouncing back from last week’s loss.    

“The difference between today and other weeks is that we played four quarters of footy,” Major said.

“For us, it was about going back to what we had been training for all pre-season.

“It’s just about continuing to play our style of football, using the ball well, making sure we use each other, that’s the most important part”.   

Major also praised the efforts of 100-gamer Kirby Hicks.

“I think it’s the best game I’ve seen her play,” he said.  

“She prepares like no other and today she went out there and impacted contests that she needed to impact”.   

Hicks celebrated the personal milestone in style, making  her impact known with a strong start early in the contest.   

“To play 100 games and to be able run out with the girls was really special,” Hicks said.

“It’s always hard to tell, but I felt really good out there today. I felt really strong and competed really well.     

“I felt really special today and I can’t thank the club enough for having me on board”.

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

“This will be a very big challenge for us, (the Magpies) are obviously playing some really great football,” Hicks said.  

“They’re rotating a number of their AFLW players throughout the team and they’ve got a good variety of players.     

“Our challenge this week, coming into the game against Collingwood, would be to do what we have done, which is to work on our basic football, to be clean and compete”.

Essendon will play Collingwood from 12pm on Saturday, July 6 at Windy Hill.                   

Essendon           2.1    3.1    4.4    6.4 (40)
Melbourne Uni   0.1    1.3    2.4    3.9 (27)    

Essendon – Stassi 2, Stepnell 2, Wilson, McIntosh
Melbourne Uni – Grierson, Gibson, Hay

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.