By Ant Wingard
Wilston Grange 1.5, 3.6, 3.13, 4.14 (38)
Coorparoo 0.1, 1.2, 3.3, 4.4 (28)
GOALS, Wilston Grange: M. Peeters 1, C. Daniec 1, M. Campbell 1, J. Yorston 1. Coorparoo: J. Wuetschner 1, L. Blue 1, J. Govan 1, J. Tawhiao-Wardlaw 1.
BEST, Wilston Grange: K. Lutkins, S. Campbell, C. Svarc, E. Svarc, B. Dawes, C. Daniec. Coorparoo: E. Mckenzie, C. Edmunds, E. Gibson, J. Ellenger, J. Wuetschner, L. Blue.
Wilston Grange have qualified for their first ever Bond University QWAFL Grand Final with a gritty ten-point win over Coorparoo at Bendigo Bank Oval on Saturday evening.
The Gorillas led from start to finish in the contest, but never fully looked comfortably in a position to win in the 4.14 (38) to 4.4 (28) affair, as costly kicking and a hungry Coorparoo side ensured the contest was competitive for the four quarters.
Inaccuracy plagued the home side throughout the game as the Gorillas failed to solidify anything more than a two-goal lead.
Coorparoo had their work cut out for them though, especially given the side have failed to beat Wilston Grange in any of their two contests so far this year.
Courtney Daenic managed to get the Gorillas off to a hot start but drawing first blood in the fourth minute, converting a down-field free kick for the game’s first major.
Daenic’s goal was the only major of the term, but already the Gorillas’ scoring woes had settled in with 1.5 for the term.
Michaela Campbell and Maddy Peeters added to Wilston Grange’s lead in the second term despite Laura Blue producing Coorparoo’s first midway through the term.
Blue gathered the ball right on the 50m arc but at full speed, she ran toward the boundary line, curling in the shot to get the Kings’ on the board.
Coorparoo, desperate to inflict the Gorillas’ second loss of the season, came out in the second half with a vengeance, rendering the home side goalless while booting two of their own.
Jenae Govan and Jesse Wardlaw – two regular goal-kickers for the Kings – added their names onto the scoresheet to decimate the margin to ten points.
The foundations were laid for a tense final term and with Coorparoo having the hot-hand in front of the sticks, the contest could have gone anyway.
But Wilston Grange, who had kicked 3.13 up until the final break, finally broke their deadlock between goals through Jaqcui Yortson, who found herself in an opportune position deep in attack to give the Gorillas the go-ahead lead.
Jess Wuetschner added a consolation major for the Kings later in the term yet that only reduced the lead back to ten points and still without given the time left in the game.
Kate Lutkins was among the bests for Wilston Grange playing in her usual role across half-back and through the ruck.
The Brisbane Lions AFLW best and fairest winner took a number of strong intercept marks while also using her raking boot in attack; setting up Yorston’s game-winner.
University of Queensland 2.3, 2.3, 6.4, 8.5 (53)
Coolangatta Tweed 1.2, 3.3, 4.3, 4.3 (27)
GOALS, University of Queensland: M. McGorm 4, S. Webb 1, M. Wood 1, R. Vetter 1, N. Grider 1. Coolangatta Tweed: M. Roberts 2, S. Carter 1, B. McFarlane 1.
BEST, University of Queensland: M. Beaven, M. McGorm, J. Henning, N. Grider, S. Webb, J. Stone. Coolangatta Tweed: B. Pinchin, M. Roberts, E. Hagan, S. Goodman, Z. Wood, Z. Lattanzi.
University of Queensland has continued their winning ways with a lucky 26-point win over Coolangatta Tweed, who have bowed out of the QWAFL season on the back of six consecutive defeats.
The Red Lions were challenged continually throughout the contest by the Bluebirds who all but won the midfield battle despite the score-line in the game.
Maddy Roberts was a colossus through the middle for the away side, willing herself to every contest. Her efforts didn’t go unrewarded either having produced a number of clearances and two goals of her own.
The Red Lions, following the win, can book a spot in the QWAFL Grand Final with a win over Coorparoo this coming weekend.
If the university-based club were to beat the Kings though, the side would need to overcome the lapses in efforts and concentration the team produced in their win over the Bluebirds.
Despite leading the contest at the end of the first quarter, the Red Lions almost stopped in their tracks and allowed the Bluebirds to regain footing.
Coolangatta nailed home two majors to take the lead heading into the main break as victory seemed more likely than it had for the Bluebirds at any stage over the past month.
University of Queensland, with their season on the line and a four-game winning streak at stake, fired back in the premiership quarter to jostle their way into the lead.
Lead by Round 17 hero, Marnie McGorm, the Red Lions booted four goals to one in the third term including three to the in-form McGorm.
Her hot-streak in front of the big sticks continued after the final chance with two fourth quarter majors to cement the Red Lions’ name in the second week of the finals.
The win keeps the Red Lions’ chances at an unlikely premiership triumph, but their progression into the second week of the postseason has already ensured the team’s best result for a number of years.
Bethany Pinchin was instrumental for the home side in the win, playing her best game of the season on the outside.
For Coolangatta Tweed, the loss spells the end of another season.