WEST Coast got its very first AFLW win, Fremantle got out of jail for the second time in two weeks and the Grand Final rematch was one to remember. Here's what happened in round four of the 2020 NAB AFLW competition.
Highest scoring match
- Richmond 7.3 (45) lost to Geelong 10.7 (67). The Tigers make the cut for the second week running, but after a much better result. The goals were flowing for both sides at Bendigo's first AFLW game.
- Jasmine Garner (North Melbourne), 30
- Monique Conti (Richmond), 28
- Anne Hatchard (Adelaide), 27
- Emma Kearney (North Melbourne), 26
- Ally Anderson (Brisbane), 25
FULL FIXTURE Every round, every game
Leading goalkicker for the round
- Courtney Wakefield (Richmond), 3
Overall leading goalkicker
- Jesse Wardlaw (Brisbane), 7
WATCH IT LIVE How to follow the AFLW this weekend
- Ash Brazill (Collingwood), knee
- Katie Brennan (Richmond), head/neck
- Jess Foley (Adelaide), ankle
- Danielle Higgins (Geelong), wrist
- Kate McCarthy (St Kilda), leg
- Ruby Schleicher (Collingwood), wrist
- Bonnie Toogood (Western Bulldogs), knee
- Tarni White (St Kilda), knee
COLLINGWOOD 4.2 (26) defeated by MELBOURNE 7.4 (46)
- It was a worst-possible case scenario for Collingwood. The Pies were tired and off the pace after playing Fremantle in Perth, and then dropped a match against a fellow Conference B side. They look set to miss star defender Ash Brazill (knee) for a lengthy period of time, while Carlton rubbed salt into the wound by defeating Adelaide, pushing the Pies a game out of the top three.
- It's amazing what happens when you kick straight. The Demons shook off their goalkicking woes and converted, with their strong and composed structures around the ground also holding the Pies at bay.
RICHMOND 7.3 (45) defeated by GEELONG 10.7 (67)
- It was a vastly improved performance from the Tigers, who seem to have developed a tweak to its gameplan mid-season and are employing handballs at a much higher rate. After missing a chunk of pre-season due to basketball, Monique Conti is now hitting her straps.
- Geelong has now recorded its highest score in two consecutive weeks. The Cats continue to tinker with their forward line, bringing in Kate Darby for Maddy Boyd, and it made an immediate difference. Phoebe McWilliams may not be hitting the scoreboard, but she's an important conduit across half-forward.
NORTH MELBOURNE 6.11 (47) defeated GOLD COAST 5.4 (34)
- Jasmine Garner's stunning season continued with a whopping 30 disposals, rotating between the midfield and up forward. Garner is now averaging 21 touches a game, up from 13 last year.
- Coach David Lake defiantly said the Suns aren't making up the numbers this year, and that was clear in their performance against a flag favourite. They have unearthed a few clever forwards in Kate Surman and Kalinda Howarth, while Lauren Bella is growing in stature in the ruck.
WEST COAST 4.6 (30) defeated WESTERN BULLDOGS 3.8 (26)
- It was a jubilant celebration from West Coast after winning its first AFLW match. Skipper Emma Swanson (22 touches) led the way, while Hayley Bullas' accidental backheel goal needs to be seen to be believed.
- The Dogs have been hit by injury in recent weeks and fielded seven players aged 21 or under. Defender Izzy Huntington's prowess in front of goal was illustrated with a stunning set shot from a tight angle with a few minutes left, but Kirsten McLeod's accuracy in front of goal continues to haunt her, missing what could have been the winning shot.
ADELAIDE 4.4 (28) defeated by CARLTON 5.6 (36)
- All eyes were on Erin Phillips after the co-captain returned from a torn ACL. Playing primarily forward with stints in the midfield, the superstar picked up 13 disposals and four marks, but looked understandably rusty.
- Carlton has got its revenge over Adelaide after the 2019 Grand Final thumping. It was a stunning win by the Blues, overrunning then holding the reigning premiers at bay with clever and accurate ball movement. They set a record for most marks in an AFLW game (100).
ST KILDA 3.5 (23) defeated by FREMANTLE 3.6 (24)
- Poor Molly McDonald. The rules are clear, you must hand the ball back to your opponent on the full after a free kick, otherwise it's a 50m penalty. Kate Flood was taken straight to the goalsquare after McDonald had a brain fade and rolled the ball away following an out-on-the-full free. The subsequent goal made the score even with two minutes remaining and a Dockers winning behind soon followed.
- The great escape. The Dockers were outplayed for vast portions of the match and weren't converting in front of goal when the opportunity presented. Undefeated for now, but tougher matches await against Brisbane, Melbourne and Carlton.
BRISBANE 7.9 (51) defeated GWS 3.5 (23)
- Brisbane continued its dominance over GWS, recording a fourth-straight win over its southern neighbours. Cathy Svarc only picked up the game a couple of years ago but starred in the midfield with 23 disposals, 11 tackles and two goals.
- The Giants were beaten in every major statistical category: disposals (232-180), clearances (27-13), inside 50s (37-15), contested possessions (85-105) and tackles (45-59).