Northampton Rams win their first ever GNFL women’s premiership with defeat of Chapman Valley Royals
Northampton ran out worthy winners in the Great Northern Women’s Football League on Saturday, claiming their first premiership to add to the minor flag they won this season.
The Rams kicked 3.2 (20) to Chapman Valley’s 1.3 (9) as the teams put on a solid defensive display.
Coach Josh Wilson praised his side and said his players had surprised him with their performance against a strong Valley midfield.
“It was absolutely sensational,” Wilson said.
“I knew Valley had really quality midfielders.
“It just blew me away how good our players were, they just wanted it.
“They were brilliant.”
He said Mikenna Schultz had “set the bar high” and was “brilliant”, while Asha Poletti had shown great bravery to play in a boxer’s helmet following a fractured cheekbone earlier in the season.
“I take my hat off to her,” Wilson said.
Hannah Trusso, Tiani Teakle and Georgina Brand were the goal scorers for the Rams, with Emma Scally getting a late consolation goal for Valley.
The Rams had taken the longer route to get to the final, losing by a single point to Valley in the second semifinal and being consigned to the preliminary while the Royals earned a week off.
They beat Towns 8.7 (55) to 1.4 (10) last Sunday to progress.
They did not look back, taking the game to the Royals at Greenough Oval in sunny, cool conditions.
The teams ran out fairly cautiously.
The game was marked by an incident early on as Valley’s Liz Lockyer was stretchered off after about 10 minutes.
Valley coach Jay Corlett confirmed Lockyer suffered a femur fracture and said there appeared to be no collision or other obvious cause of the injury. She was due to undergo surgery on Monday.
Both sides managed only one point each in the first half, with a lot of action on the wings and few promising attacks.
Northampton pushed hard in the second quarter, with Kimmy Schultz working to set up attacks, but a stalwart defence frustrated them.
Sisters Julia and Tiani Teakle showed composure under pressure for Northampton.
The Royals’ Erica Trotter marshalled her team with the battlefield skills of a general and delivered some threatening balls forward. The Rams gradually took control in the second half, and showed why they finished top in the qualifiers.
Tiani and Julia Teakle stepped up with support from Hannah Trusso.
They scored two majors in as many minutes.
Trusso snapped a kick home before Georgina Brand scored with a composed shot after an excellent mark.
Valley wanted a goal in reply but could not break down Northampton’s defence.
Schultz showed solid tackling and marking ability.
Tiani Teakle sealed the victory late in the last quarter before Scally scored to round off a fantastic performance in a losing cause.
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