In the lead up to the game against Lyndhurst the weather was cold and bitter and as a result our Wednesday night became a theory night discussing our game style, what we were currently doing and what we wanted to do. I felt the night was extremely beneficial to all who attended and gave us all a clearer vision on where we were wanting to go as the season got into full swing. The Thursday session was a great lead up to the game, we focused on picking the right option, short kicking and contested drills. Heading into the game Zoe, Christa, Dani, Miki and Maddi were unavailable. Pre-game We headed down the highway to Lyndhurst and after the week of ordinary weather the conditions at Lyndhurst were good for footy, rain had held off and there was virtually no wind. Our instructions were to move the ball in a less predictable way for the opposition to cover us, focus on our short kicking and to kick with intent and purpose and to spread out in the forward line to give our key forwards space to lead into. The midfielders and wingers were given instructions on how we wanted them to play. We were confident of a good showing but needed to get a good start.
As the game started it was revealed the opposition only had 15 players and the opposition coach was not happy that we were not showing the mercy rule by also not playing with 15 on the ground. A few minutes into the game the opposition team manager advised us that if we weren’t going to show mercy then the rules stated we could only have 3 on the bench so in order to give all 6 players on our bench a go we had to take off another player from the ground to do so. Meanwhile the game had well and truly started, and we got off to a great start asserting our authority from the start. From the get-go the night of theory and emphasis on our game plan seemed to be rubbing off. Our movement was the best it had been with the team moving the ball laterally and the use of handball in congestion was terrific to see. It all started with a point to Lily however we trapped the ball in our forward 50 which eventually resulted in Nush combining with Emily to kick the first goal of the game. Seeing Em with a big smile was great to see. A few minutes later we were at it again, but this time Emma Turner and Lily cleared the ball into our forward line where Sienna handballed to Emily who executed a brilliant handball to Nush who was able to kick a great team lifting goal. The handball by Emily under pressure was one of my highlights of the year so far. Lyndhurst were eager to get back into the game and as hard as they tried, they were only able to manage a point. Our defense was holding up well and our midfielders were linking together very well. Our 3rd goal of the term came soon after when Tilly intercepted an opposition forward thrust who then linked with Jules, Emma Turner and Lily to give Nush her 2nd goal of the quarter. Our confidence was growing, and we were playing a pretty good brand of footy, the movement of the ball was as we had asked for, we were chipping the ball around and making it hard for the opposition to get their hands on it. After a near miss to kick our 4th goal for the quarter Nush got her hattrick when Kristy, Sienna and Tilly combined with her where she made no mistake with a great snapshot for goal. Every player made an impact in the quarter and coming into the quarter time huddle we were looking the goods and had sailed away to a 25-point lead. Emma Turner, Emma Medland and Tilly were destroying the opposition, Jaclyn started the game well as did Jordy presenting well at half forward. Sienna was having an impact in the forward half and Emily was highly influential. We had winners all over and Nush had 3 goals by quarter time. We made lots of changes to get as many players involved in the game as possible and having 15 on the ground with 7 on the bench meant we had to rotate players consistently as we felt we had the oppositions measure. Many players were put into foreign positions and our focus for the 2nd quarter was to look for our rock in defense who we swung up forward to try to get a goal out of her.
It didn’t take long for us to post our 5th goal for the game when we won the center clearance when Nat, Rhi and Catty combined with Lily to give Lily her 1st for the day. Minutes later Lily almost kicked her 2nd when Stacy, Jordy and Catty combined with Lily but it was not meant to be. The opposition were finding it difficult to get the ball out of their defence and the frustration was starting to show with some rough tactics being used by the opposition including a brutal attack on Lily who is as tough as nails. The green card to the Lyndhurst player in many ways signaled the end with the opposition down to 14 players. Our team was relentless and were having some great passages of teamwork which saw Rhi take a mark within range but disappointed the crowd and herself when she tried to steer it through instead of super booting it where the ball landed short. Nush eventually kicked a behind but very soon after one of the highlights of the game and year came when Emma Turner and Lily were able to find Rhi who marked and set up for goal again. The crowd was in nervous silence when Superboot went back and unleashed a torp that sailed through the big sticks. The whole team got around her and the crowd went into a frenzy. As