THE lady Eagles have been the standout success story of the season so far. After a number of seasons to forget, the rejuvenated team has carried all before them, chalking up their seventh consecutive victory at the weekend.
After Saturday’s 140-point annihilation of Claremont they now sit proudly in top spot on the SFLW Division 3 ladder. In seven games so far they have averaged more than 100 points a game and conceded an average of less than 10 – giving them the phenomenal percentage of over 1925.
Supporters have been asking why the big improvement this season after some tough years where the lady Eagles were being beaten by over 100 points consistently. The answer has been recruitment and a lot of hard work. There has been gradual development over the last couple of seasons within the playing group. Last season coach Ben Shaw concentrated on getting the women focused on team work and club culture. They won their first game and participated in finals for the first time. This season new coach Dean King has been working on the players techniques and game plans.
The recruitment of Zoie Crawford and Jemma Hay (Glenorchy), Olivia Harris and Chloe Ford (Brighton), Melinda Green (Lindisfarne) and new players Annie Robilliard, Siobhan Smith, Montana Percy, Maddison Devine, and Nikayla Roach has given the lady Eagles much needed fire power up forward and significantly more grunt around the ground. The natural improvement of a number of the core players from the previous couple of seasons has them playing a good brand of football that is really showing on the scoreboard.
The lady Eagles travelled to Abbotsfield Park to play Claremont for the second time this season. After beating them by 140 points in their first encounter it was expected that the lady Eagles would record another comfortable victory. The lady Eagles jumped out of the blocks and peppered the goals recording seven goals three behinds to skip away to a 45-point lead at the first change. The second quarter saw an inaccurate lady Eagles hold Claremont scoreless again while adding five goals six behinds for an 81-point lead at half-time. Claremont managed to score their only goal of the match in the third quarter. However, the lady Eagles were still dominating. and added another six goals to lead by 112 points at three-quarter-time. The last quarter saw the lady Eagles once again flex their muscles scoring six goals six behinds, which was an exact replica of the previous week, while keeping Claremont scoreless to record a strong 154-point victory.
Although the lady Eagles now sit two games clear on top of the ladder, there is still much work to do, and Dean will continue to work with the players with the aim of getting the team deeper into finals. This Saturday the lady Eagles travel to New Town to play St Virgils at the Newtown Bike Track. This will be a tough game as St Virgils defeated Brighton last week and will be eager to turn the tables on the lady Eagles following a loss in their first encounter. The game begins at 9.30 am.