THE CREAM rose to the top in round five, with Fremantle, North Melbourne and Melbourne all recording big wins, and the trio occupy the upper rungs of womens.afl's Power Rankings.
We're seeing the emergence of distinct tiers of clubs, and there was a fair bit of movement within the at-times inconsistent middle group of teams.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT A snapshot of round five
With the competition split into two conferences, it's interesting to bring the two pools together to get a gauge on how the teams stack up against each other.
However, this isn't a simple combining of the ladders. It's an attempt to place a subjective value on the wins and losses to ascertain just who is the strongest team at this point in time.
1. Fremantle (first in Conference B, 5-0, 164.8%, ranking last week: 1st)
Freo, five-and-oh. The Dockers have seen off every team who's come their way, including the previously undefeated Brisbane. Most pleasingly for coach Trent Cooper was a return to the ruthless form of the first two weeks.
2. North Melbourne (first in Conference A, 4-1, 209.5%, ranking last week: 3rd)
There's beating the reigning premiers, and there's demolishing them. The Roos – now the highest scoring team in the competition – did the latter to an injury-hit Adelaide and have Geelong and the Western Bulldogs to come.
3. Melbourne (second in Conference B, 4-1, 214.3%, ranking last week: 5th)
There's a fair bit of shuffling going on week by week in the high-ranking spots, due to the evenness of the premier sides. Melbourne put lowly West Coast to the sword and would be most pleased by its nine individual goalkickers.
4. Carlton (third in Conference B, 4-1, 149.3%, ranking last week: 4th)
The Blues did what they had to against the tricky Saints, who have unstuck a few sides this year. This weekend's clash against fellow Conference B finals aspirant Melbourne in Alice Springs looms as a one of the most important games of the season.
5. Brisbane (second in Conference A, 3-1-1, 129.6%, ranking last week: 2nd)
Slid more so on the back of other teams' performances rather than their own. The Lions were beaten but not bowed by Fremantle, and as long as they can bank another win (they have Richmond in round seven), should qualify for finals barring a disaster.
6. Collingwood (fourth in Conference B, 3-2, 137.8%, ranking last week: 6th)
A handy 20-point percentage boost off the back of a comfortable win over the Western Bulldogs. The Pies rebounded well after a poor performance against Melbourne and have a big task ahead against Brisbane.
7. Geelong (fourth in Conference A, 2-3, 97.9%, ranking last week: 11th)
A big jump from Geelong after an impressive win over the dogged Gold Coast. Nina Morrison's improving week on week, the goals are flowing and the Cats are ready to pounce on that third finals spot. Huge two weeks ahead against North Melbourne and GWS.
8. GWS (third in Conference A, 3-2, 123.1%, ranking last week: 9th)
You could be swapping Geelong and GWS back and forth in the rankings all day. Giants just sit below the Cats due to their inconsistent form – their best is good, but their worst is very poor.
9. Adelaide (fifth in Conference A, 2-3, 80.3%, ranking last week: 7th)
The Crows looked like they were coming good a few weeks ago, but have slid back into the pack on the back of more injuries and some quite uncompetitive footy. Erin Phillips and Eloise Jones look likely to return for this weekend's must-win match against GWS.
10. Gold Coast (sixth in Conference A, 1-1-3, 84.0%, ranking last week: 8th)
A surprisingly disappointing fade-out from Gold Coast, who have previously been pushing sides right to the line. The Suns will need the nine-day break between games in Mackay and Perth, given the side has a lot of players still adjusting to the footy-work/study balance.
11. St Kilda (sixth in Conference B, 1-4, 67.1%, ranking last week: 10th)
After some plucky performances in recent weeks, the Saints were outclassed by an experienced and disciplined Carlton. While injuries haven't helped their cause, a few X-factor players should be on St Kilda's shopping list in the Trade Period.
12. Western Bulldogs (fifth in Conference B, 1-4, 71.1%, ranking last week: 12th)
The dog is starting to lose its bite after a steady exodus of top talent over the last few years. The framework is there, but the turnover has left a side lacking a solid group of players in their mid-20s, with the connection between the forward line and midfield an area of concern.
13. West Coast (seventh in Conference B, 1-4, 33.2%, ranking last week: 13th)
All the joy of last week's first win quickly evaporated when West Coast made the long trek to Casey Fields. The equal all-time lowest AFLW score of seven points is not a record you want to have in your back pocket.
14. Richmond (seventh in Conference A, 0-5, 40.0%, ranking last week: 14th)
Things are grim at Tigerland. Katie Brennan and Courtney Wakefield's unavailability due to concussion ripped off the paper attempting to cover cracks in the line-up. There are some good honest triers, but as it stands, the list needs some work.