What a tough week.
After learning of the passing of Premiership player Ellen Maple early in the week, we were all shocked with the news. Ellen was loved by everyone (bit of a favourite within our 2017 group) and the news really rocked everyone.
It was an emotional week and I think the pre-game build up and post game tribute will remain in everyone’s memory for ever. To play a knock out preliminary final was really the last thing on everybody’s minds and it wasn’t until Wednesday that we started to get our focus back on the match approaching.
The group were terrific in supporting each other and the group committed to ensuring the remainder of the week would be a tribute towards Ellen.
Over recent weeks our form had been building as we were confident if we got our game right we could make our way into another grand final. North can be a very offensive team and capable of kicking big scores, we knew going into the game we had to play to our strengths of winning contested ball and applying manic pressure.
In the end we got it right. The girls played a committed, tough brand of football as they repeatedly put their bodies on the line, in reflection of the tenacity in which Ellen was admired for.
The conditions were extremely windy causing the game to be a low scoring affair. Both defences held up strongly as both teams struggled to get any free flowing play going.
The game literally moved from contest to contest at ground level. Under the constant contested pressure our girls were terrific in tight and were able to apply constant pressure to the opposition to not allow them any time and space. Whilst the contest was frantic, our ability to be composed at the right times and keep our ball movement simple, allowed us to get a win in a low scoring game by 8-points.
It was an incredible win and a total team effort (our trademark) as the club should be very proud that the girls could represent them in such a tenacious and passionate way.
The tribute by the Norwood, Sturt and North Adelaide Football Clubs towards Ellen and her family at the end of the game will be a memory shared by many and we are so proud that the girls were able to pay their respects with such a good performance.
We now move on to the big dance against South Adelaide on Anzac Day. South have been the pace setter all year and are going to be very tough to beat. We are again peaking at the right time of the year and we know that if we bring our best game and can play the game on our terms, we give ourselves a good chance.
We will have Ellen looking down on us and we will play with the fight and spirit that our culture represents.
We look forward to seeing and hearing great support at the game as we attempt to go back to back.
NORWOOD 0.4 0.4 2.6 2.6 (18)
NORTH 0.0 0.1 0.1 1.4 (10)
Best: E. O’Dea, N. Burns, E. Gallagher, R. Busch, J. Fitzgerald, R. McMahon
Goalkickers: Cutting, McMahon
(Norwood FC – Womens State League Head Coach)