AFLW: Tigers hit new low; Blues, Pies triumph
THE "G-Train" could be at bullet speed to the Rising Star.
On one of football's most unique weekends, it was St Kilda key forward Caitlin Greiser who stepped up yet again to deliver the Saints their second victory and punish the Tigers on one of their most difficult days.
She's loved by her teammates, booting three goals as St Kilda sent Richmond to the first-ever goalless performance in AFL Women's.
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"She's a jet," teammate Rosie Dillon declared.
"G-Train … she's quick, good hands, kick a goal, we love her. Absolutely."
There was no crowd to celebrate to as the AFL shut the gates in an effort to do its bit to mitigate coronavirus, but that didn't stop her.
"Unfortunately there's no crowd, but hopefully they're all home watching," Greiser said on Fox Footy.
"It's going really well, but I can't thank the girls enough and all the coaching staff
"They've been helping me develop, and especially the girls. Getting the footy to the forwardline is amazing and just trying to hold it in there and score a goal. It's awesome."
WHERE TO FROM HERE?
The AFL is planning for every scenario.
Coronavirus fears and its spread is a moving beast, as the landscape changes virtually by the minute across the country and around the world.
The league opted to go ahead with this weekend's matches but without crowds, as health officials grapple with their next move.
"There's lots of planning scenarios," league women's chief Nicole Livingstone said on Fox Footy.
"We're dealing with what we're dealing with right now. The AFL Is keeping in touch with government authorities to be in front of what potentially comes towards us.
"There's some great footy taking place."
With players only contracted until the end of May, any delay could cause a significant impact.
TOUGH FOR TIGERS
Richmond's winless season rolled on for another week but this one came with extra pain - no goals.
But they've turned to tunes in an effort to reverse their ailing fortunes - or at least find a silver lining.
They're the first team to go goalless in AFL Women's.
Monique Conti, who only joined the Tigers' preseason a few weeks out from the season due to basketball commitments, bawled as she left the ground after Richmond recorded just three points for the day.
It was a scene that challenged coach Tom Hunter.
"It's tough. You do get quite emotional in this, because it is challenging," he said.
"You never see yourself (with) six losses in a row. You never see yourself that way. But you just want to be strong for them.
"There's times we let ourselves be vulnerable as a group, and we played a song before the game 'It'll be alright in the end'. We've just got to go through this little patch at the moment."
ST KILDA 2.1 2.1 4.5 6.6 (42)
RICHMOND 0.0 0.2 0.2 0.3 (3)
ST KILDA: Greiser 3, Shierlaw, Xenos, Guttridge
ST KILDA: Greiser, Dillon, McDonald, Vesely
RICHMOND: Conti, Monahan, Campbell, Ross
BLUES MAKE IT FOUR IN A ROW
Carlton have snared their fourth-successive win to stay on track for an AFLW finals spot, coming from behind to edge Melbourne by 16 points in Alice Springs. Carlton looked like they were in for a long night on Saturday at Traeger Park when the Demons dominated possession and set up most chances for an eight-point halftime lead.
But the Blues, who last year leapt from wooden spooners to surprise grand finalists, continued their 2020 charge with a 6.4 (40) to 3.6 (24) victory. Carlton snatched the lead for the first time midway through the third quarter and never surrendered the advantage.
Big-kicking forward Tayla Harris had a hand in two Blues goals in two minutes to turn the game on its head, kicking truly from a mark before her handball set up Grace Egan for another major.
Carlton's classy Madison Prespakis continued her outstanding season, collecting 23 disposals and kicking a stunning, crucial goal on the run in the last quarter.
"I'm pretty happy - it was very hot here," Prespakis told Fox Footy.
"We won a really important game and it just shows how hard we have worked over the pre- season together. It really shows through in big games like this."
Prespakis said in the second half "we hunted the ball pretty hard and the scoreboard showed that".
Adding to the disappointment for Melbourne was a knee injury suffered by Sarah Lampard.
Midfielder Karen Paxman's best year of her career rolled on with another outstanding performance, picking up 27 touches.
The game was played in an all-but empty stadium because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Despite Melbourne dominating the early stages, they weren't rewarded until the 10-minute mark via a stunning solo assault from Kate Hore.
The speedster snared the ball just forward of the wing, dashing downfield and taking three bounces before kicking in-field to Niamh McEvoy, who handballed back.
Hore snapped from an acute angle under pressure and the ball bounced truly for a spectacular contender for goal of the year.
"I was absolutely cooked when I got to the end of that," Hore told Fox Footy. "I'm just glad I put it through in the end." But Carlton rushed forward from the centre bounce, the ball ending up with Brooke Walker who responded with a goal, the Blues showing they would fight to the end.
The Blues, with a 5-1 win-loss record, jump above the Demons and into second place in ultra-competitive Conference B. They join Fremantle on 20 points, just percentage behind the Dockers, with Melbourne above Collingwood on 16 points only on differential, with three teams to go through to finals. - AAP
MELBOURNE 2.3 3.3 3.5 3.6 (24)
CARLTON 1.1 2.1 4.1 6.4 (40)
Melbourne: Hore, Perkins, Scott
Carlton: Walker 2, Gee, Harris, Egan, Prespakis
LIONS DON'T SHOW UP UNTIL HALF-TIME
Spectators were locked out of today's clash between Brisbane and Collingwood and the Lions also failed to show up in the first half to fall to their second-straight AFLW defeat.
The Magpies blew Brisbane away in the opening two quarters to run away with a 5.13 (43) to 2.2 (14) victory in front of only "essential" club, AFL and broadcast staff due to an AFL ban on crowds because of the coronavirus crisis.
The Lions kicked just the one behind in the first term and went scoreless in the second and fourth quarters as hardy supporters of both clubs stood behind the temporary security fencing that surrounded Hickey Park.
That metal fencing provided better defence than the Lions who trailed 16-1 at quarter-time after goals to Collingwood duo Sarah Rowe and Sophie Alexander and by 25-1 at the main break when a Chloe Molloy major extended the Magpies' buffer.
The statistics made for ugly reading for Brisbane who suffered their first loss of the season last weekend after allowing Fremantle to get off to a flying start.
At quarter-time, the Magpies had 64 disposals to Brisbane's 34 and by halftime the count was 113-62 in Collingwood's favour.
Despite their dominance in possessions and inside 50 entries, the Magpies also had more tackles than Brisbane (31-24).
The Lions were guilty of constantly turning the ball over to the visitors who should have been further in front at halftime.
Brisbane kicked their first goal of the match through a running Cathy Svarc early in the third quarter while forward Dakota Davidson lifted after a pep talk from coach Craig Starcevich and booted another goal for the Lions to close the margin to 14 points at the last change.
The Lions also upped their defensive intensity, laying 20 tackles to Collingwood's seven in the third term to drag themselves into the contest
But they failed to trouble the scoreboard attendant in the final term with Sarah D'Arcy and Jordan Membrey kicking goals for Collingwood who played most of the match one player down after former netball international Sharni Layton left the field with a finger injury.
Collingwood's Brittany Bonnici finished with a game-high 26 disposals, five clearances, four inside 50s and one scoring assist to be best-on-ground and received solid support from Brianna Davey, Stacey Livingstone, Stephanie Chiocci and Jaimee Lambert while Rheanne Lugg had 18 touches for Brisbane.
COLLINGWOOD 2.4 3.7 3.10 5.13 (43)
BRISBANE LIONS 0.1 0.1 2.2 2.2 (14)
Collingwood: C Molloy J Membrey S Alexander S D'Arcy S Rowe.
Brisbane Lions: C Svarc D Davidson.
Venue: Hickey Park.