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Uni Footballers star in AFLW GF

27 March; Rod Warnecke


The Football Club’s Ellie Blackburn held aloft the AFLW premiership cup on Saturday after she led the Western Bulldogs to victory against the Brisbane Lions. University footballers dominated the second season of AFLW more than any other club in Australia. 

The Bulldogs, who defeated the Lions 4.3.27 to 3.3.21 also included Melbourne Uni footballers Emma Kearney (one of the favourites for the AFLW Best & Fairest), Brooke Lochland (who won the AFLW goal kicking), Deanna Berry, Monique Conti (judge best on filed in the grand-final), Bailey Hunt, Lauren Spark and Aisling Utri. The Bulldogs list also included the 2017 AFLW No. 1 draft pick Isabelle Huntington (Science) who suffered a season ending ACL in her second game of the season, and Jessica Anderson (Commerce) who played with the Melbourne Demons in the 2017 AFLW. One of the Brisbane Lions best in the grand-final was Melbourne Uni’s Kaitlyn Ashmore while Nicole Hildebrand couldn’t overcome a concussion to be selected in the grand-final team.

Kearney, Conti and Utri are all dual-sport stars. Kearney played in the Women’s Cricket Big Bash League with the Melbourne Stars, Conti just missed out on a WNBL ring after her Melbourne Boomers lost the 2017-18 grand-final to the Townsville Fire while Utri has transitioned to football after holding a VIS Hockey scholarship. Three other Melbourne University code-hoppers debuted in the AFLW in season 2018. Melbourne University Lightning netballers Maddie Gay debuted for Carlton and showed she had what it takes to be a star in the years ahead, and the Lightning’s Championship-winning netballer Elle Bennetts showed her pace and ability to carry the ball throughout the season. And Melbourne University Blues and Australian volleyballer Eliza Hynes debuted for Collingwood and also showed she has what it takes to be a force in the years’ ahead.

AFLW listed players from the Melbourne University Football Club and/or other Melbourne University clubs in 2018 were:

 

Western Bulldogs

Brisbane

Carlton

Collingwood

GWS Giants

Melbourne

Jessica Anderson

Kaitlyn Ashmore

Maddy Gay

Mo Hope

Elle Bennetts

Cat Phillips

Ellie Blackburn

Nicole Hildebrand

Madeline Keryk

Eliza Hynes

Alicia EVa

 

Deanne Berry

 

Gabriella Pound

Cecilia McIntosh

Alexandra Saundry

 

Monique Conti

 

Nicola Stevens

 

Louise Stephenson

 

Bailey Hunt

 

 

 

 

 

Isabelle Huntington

 

 

 

 

 

Emma Kearney

 

 

 

 

 

Brooke Lochland

 

 

 

 

 

Lauren Spark

 

 

 

 

 

Aisling Utri

 

 

 

 

 

 

Two new teams, Geelong and North Melbourne, will join the AFLW in 2019 and will be very interesting to see which players end up at Melbourne University Football Club’s aligned partner club North Melbourne. With 23 University-connected footballers playing in the 2018 AFLW competition, the Kangaroos could have a very strong team in their debut season. In the interim, the Melbourne University Football Club begin their VFLW season on Sunday 6 May with an away game against Geelong while the first home game at the University Oval is on Sunday 3 June also against the Cats. With many of the best women’s footballers in the country representing the University in the VFLW, you’d be mad not to follow the team and get along to home games on campus throughout the 2018 season. See the 2018 VFLW Fixture here.

 


 

 
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