Round 7 Wrap Up
First of a big congratulations to the following Darebin girls who have made the 2011 NFL metro squad which kicks of against Western on June 1st.
Emily Whitfield – Leadership group
Jessica Dal Pos – Captain
Emily Dal Pos
Versus St Damiens.
Finally the clash of the 2 undefeated teams at the top of the table.
Thursday before the game we had all players available with only Em Dal Pos and Shan carrying injuries and looking being rested. By Sat morning we had 13!
It started with Abbs injuring her angles at a school camp – ruled out. Then Sarah injures angle at basketball on Friday – out, Sarge goes down with ligament damage – out, Shan is told by Physio sat morning she needs one more week – out!
Em Dal Pos Straps up for the game and takes the field so we have 14 players. St Damien’s have their full compliment of 18 and are instructed by their coach to run us of our feet with their 4 interchange.
The ground is damp, wet and muddy and the first quarter starts with several Darebin girls being check closely. The quarter was furious with lots of stoppages and both sides going hard at the footy. St Damien’s scored the first goal with some great team work. Not to be outdone our girls won the ball out of the middle and pushed hard forward for Loz to swoop onto a loose ball and kick an absolute ripper (ala Didak) The quarter ended on a sour note with Bonnie (who was playing a blinder) taken to hospital after a head clash. We were now down to 13 V 18.
Darebin: 1 . 2. 8
St Dam 1 . 0. 6
The second quarter was just as frantic with both sides playing for top spot on the ladder. This quarter saw St Damien’s draw level with the only 2 points scored in the quarter. It was hard contested footy often in the muddy middle of the ground. Even with the ground conditions both sides were moving the ball at a cracking pace. Both backlines were on top and denied any worthy scoring opportunities. Towards the end of the second Rechelle received a nasty knock and could not participate any further. We were now down to 12 v 18.
Half time score
Darebin 1. 2. 8
St Dam 1. 2. 8
At Half time the girls were quietly regaining their breath and were noticeably fatigued and concerned for Bonnie who was now in hospital. The coach reminded them that football mimics life and sometimes it just sucks. With several players now carrying injuries, a couple of strategic moves, the girls were asked to rotate between themselves. The girls then got together and vowed to play out the game no matter what. What ensued in the third quarter was simply remarkable. St Damiens now had 6 on the bench which they rotated often to try and run us down. Our girls continually pushed numbers to contests and prevailed to kick the first goal which was kicked by Whitty ( who was on one leg). Em Dal Pos (injured) was asked to play at Full Back on their goal sneak and did so with great courage. Our back line led by Alice simply refused to concede even though the ball was down there for 50% of the qtr. It took a towering mark by their best player Richo who then kicked a goal to draw level again. Everyone who was there and witnessed this quarter by Darebin girls were extremely proud.
But the best was yet to come.
3 Qtr score
Darebin: 2. 3 . 15
St Dam: 2. 2. 14
The girls were out on their feet. A couple should have been rested but they refused. They were asked to simply keep going, run for each other and to simply play for each other. They were advised not to be disheartened if the opposition started to run over us due to the fresh legs they had but to continue right to the end. They made a pack they would not stop for Bonnie and Rechelle.
The girls came out firing and it looked like we had the 6 interchange players. The ball was kept in our forward fifty for most of this quarter with our girls having several shots at goal only to kick 2 points. With the lead only 3 points, our girls visibly fatigued, St Damien’s made a couple of late thrusts forward. With all at the bench with hearts in mouths we could only watch as our girls simply refused St Damiens a shot on goal. There were smothers, bumps, shepherds, some huge tackles, smart handballs and great clearing kicks to the boundary. This went on for the last 5 minutes (seamed like 15!) until the siren sounded. We all looked at the score board to see who had won such was the intensity of the last quarter. It was Darebin by 3 marvelous points!
This game will be remembered for all the right reasons not least what a group of friends can do when each and everyone refuse to concede and believe in each other and perform under extreme pressure. St Damiens played magnificently and deserve recognition for their fighting spirit.
PS- Bonnie is out of hospital and escaped any major injury and will be a bit sore for a while!
Darebin: 2. 5 – 17
St Dam 2. 2. – 14