By Dave Burton
THE 2019 season is over for West Perth in the WAFLW but not before two very good efforts from the Rogers Cup and the reserves sides against South Fremantle’s teams, which are both in the top four ready for finals.
The Rogers Cup team set the tone for the day, playing against the top side they remained competitive the whole game but the Bulldogs prevailed by 13 points 7.4 (46) to 5.3 (33).
At times the Falcons showed up the Bulldogs with some great ball movement and the ability to maintain possession for long periods of the game.
The effort from all the players was good, but Abigail Hunt certainly showed the way with her intent to always attack the ball, with second and third efforts creating turnovers and then being able to hit a Falcon teammate.
Summer Mollross put in one of her best performances, with her trademark tenacity and hard tackling also creating turnovers and then being able to break lines to drive West Perth forward.
Caitlin Guthrie, on the wing, ran all day and her ability to read the play effectively gave solid support to the midfied.
Coach Bryan Bennington’s influence in the second half of the season has been great, shuffling several players around and those same players all had big finishes to the season.
Although it took the reserves a quarter to kick into gear from then on the Falcons kept the finals bound South Fremantle under the pump – actually winning the next three quarters (even if only by 1 point) proving the second half of the season form has been excellent and very competitive.
But giving the higher placed Bulldogs a five-goal head start was never going to make it easy and in the end they won 9.5 (59) to 4.3 (27).
A late season recruit in Kelly Keane showed why she earned her inclusion with a best on ground performance, it was the fantastic tackling pressure she applied causing many turnovers that caught the coaches eyes.
Nicole Bombardieri who rucked solidly all day and marked strongly all over the ground, picked up the managers award and Ashleigh Greenwell wrapped up her first season at West Perth with a really hard fought effort across the half forward line.
With Edward Beck and Rebecca Boladeras coaching the team for the first time this year, lots of new personnel and different game style it may have taken a while for the team to really hit its straps but the players certainly finished the year full of running, ready for the next step in 2020.