ACTION resumed in the Optus WAFLW Premiership Season on the weekend as the race to the finals heats up and there were Round 10 victories for Peel Thunder, Swan Districts and Subiaco.
It has been a bit of an interrupted time in the WAFLW season of late, but things got back to normal across the weekend and it was Swan Districts who maintained their undefeated form while the reigning premiers Peel Thunder had a strong win and Subiaco won to move into the top four.
Round 10 in the 2021 Optus WAFLW Premiership Season got underway on Saturday evening at Mandurah's David Grays Arena with Peel Thunder recording the 8.11 (59) to 4.6 (30) victory.
The other two Round 10 match ups took place on Sunday afternoon with Swan Districts winning the top-of-the-table battle with Claremont 6.9 (45) to 4.2 (26) at Claremont's Revo Fitness Stadium.
Subiaco then moved into the top four by closing out the round with a 5.10 (40) to 2.3 (15) win against South Fremantle at Leederville Oval.
That all means that after Round 10 with every team having played nine games, it's Swan Districts still out on top of the WAFLW ladder with a perfect 9-0 record.
Peel Thunder (7-2) has improved to second spot as they attempt to defend their premiership from 2020 to sit ahead of Claremont (6-3) and Subiaco (3-6).
East Fremantle (2-7) and South Fremantle (0-9) are the two teams currently out of finals positions.
Meanwhile in Round 10 of the WAFLW Reserves competition, East Fremantle defeated Peel Thunder 3.4 (22) to 0.4 (4), Swan Districts were too good for South Fremantle 10.11 (71) to 0.0 (0) and West Perth beat Subiaco 6.6 (42) to 1.7 (13).
And in the Youth Girls Rogers Cup action, Peel Thunder beat East Fremantle 6.4 (40) to 1.5 (11), Swan Districts downed East Perth 4.13 (37) to 3.3 (21) and West Perth beat Subiaco 9.7 (61) to 2.0 (12).
OPTUS WAFLW PREMIERSHIP SEASON – ROUND 10
PEEL THUNDER 8.11 (59) defeated EAST FREMANTLE 4.6 (30)
Peel Thunder made sure its premiership defence remained on track as the WAFLW competition resumed on Saturday by recording an impressive 29-point victory at home over East Fremantle.
It was a battle between the first two premiership winning teams from the first two WAFLW seasons when the Thunder hosted the Sharks at Mandurah's David Grays Arena on Saturday.
That set the stage for a tantalising match up with both teams having plenty to play for as well with the Thunder needing to win to strengthen their push for a top two position while the Sharks just needed a win to stay in the top four altogether as the finals race heats up.
Both teams might have had four scoring shots apiece in the first quarter, but it was Peel who took their chances the better kicking the only two goals to lead by 10 points at quarter-time.
East Fremantle, though, was able to kick the only goal of the second quarter and that meant it was well and truly game on at half-time with Peel only up by five points.
The Thunder blew the game open in the second half, though, starting with three goals to two in the third quarter, and then three goals to one in the fourth.
That saw Peel record the 8.11 (59) to 4.6 (30) victory to move into second position on the WAFLW ladder with five rounds remaining while East Fremantle slipped outside of the top four as a result of the defeat.
Kate Bartlett ended up kicking three goals for the Thunder, Ella Roberts two and Aisha Wright two.
Best players for Peel included Courtney Rowley, Sabreena Duffy, Chloe Wrigley, Cassie Davidson and Kate Bartlett.
East Fremantle's goals came courtesy of Roxy Roux, Sharon Wong, Madeline Ross and Gabby O'Sullivan.
The standout performers for the Sharks included Laura McClelland, Philipa Seth, Gabby O'Sullivan, Sharon Wong and Stephanie Dalton.
CLAREMONT 4.2 (26) lost to SWAN DISTRICTS 6.9 (45)
Swan Districts took a giant leap towards locking away the WAFLW minor premiership for 2021 with an impressive 19-point win away to Claremont on Sunday afternoon.
Swan Districts came into the game looking to protect its undefeated start to the season over the opening eight matches, but Claremont was looking to maintain their own pace for top spot and had the home ground advantage at Revo Fitness Stadium in their favour too.
It shaped as a fascinating top-of-the-table contest and it proved a tight battle most of the way, but Swan Districts did enough for the 6.9 (45) to 4.2 (26) victory.
The win means that Swans improve to a perfect 9-0 record on the season and with far and away the best percentage in the competition, and now a two-win lead on the chasing pack and just five games remaining, they are in the box seat to claim the minor premiership.
Claremont has slipped back to third spot at 6-3 as a result of their loss but the Tigers look secure still for at least a top three finish with a three-game and huge percentage lead over the fourth placed Subiaco.
Swan Districts started strongly kicking two goals to one in the opening quarter to lead by seven points at quarter-time. The black-and-whites added another two goals in the second term but so did Claremont with Swans up by 11 points at the main break.
Swan Districts kicked the only goal of the third quarter to stretch their lead to 17 points by three quarter-time before both teams kicked a goal each in the last term with Swans running 19-point victors.
Tara Stribley, Brianna Hyde, Kellie Gibson, Nyra Anderson, Stephanie Graskoski and Sarah Wielstra all kicked a goal apiece for Swan Districts.
Best players for Swans included Brianna Hyde, Dana East, Sarah Wielstra, Jaime Henry and Eliza Gelmi.
Tessa Doumanis kicked two goals for Claremont with one each to Brooke Whyte and Jasmin Stewart.
Ella Smith, Tessa Doumanis, Brooke Whyte, Jasmin Stewart and Matilda Dyke were among the best contributors for the Tigers.
SUBIACO 5.10 (40) defeated SOUTH FREMANTLE 2.3 (15)
South Fremantle's hopes of that elusive first ever WAFLW victory were crushed by Subiaco on Sunday with the Lions not only claiming a 25-point victory, but moving into the top four in the process.
South Fremantle's two closest attempts at a first WAFLW victory both came against Subiaco so the Bulldogs had good reason to head to Leederville Oval thinking that Sunday might be their day to make history.
However, the presence on the team list for Subiaco of Hayley Miller and Ange Stannett playing their first games of the 2021 WAFLW season on the back of their AFLW campaigns meant that South Fremantle would have their work cut out.
That's how it panned out even though things were tight for three quarters and the game was still well and truly up for grabs by three quarter-time.
Both teams kicked a goal apiece in the opening stanza for scores to be tied by quarter-time, and while Subiaco had the only four scoring shots of the second term, none of them turned out to be goals and the Lions were only four points up by the main break.
It was then a goal apiece from either side in the third quarter with Subiaco only leading South Fremantle by three points at three quarter-time with the game on the line.
Subiaco responded when it mattered most, though, and kicked three goals for the final quarter while holding South Fremantle scoreless to end up winning 5.10 (40) to 2.3 (15).
The win improves the Lions to fourth position on the ladder and for the first time in 2021, they look genuine finals hopes while the Bulldogs continue to chase that elusive first victory in the WAFLW competition.
Subiaco's goals came courtesy of Madizen Wilkins, Amy Hunt, Tarnica Golisano, Abbey Dowrick and Jamie Rust who also finished with four behinds.
Jayme Harken, Caitlin Walker, Hayley Miller, Abbey Dowrick and Jamie Rust were among the standout performers for the Lions in the win.
Liusaidh Gilchrist and Zoe Huggett kicked a goal apiece for South Fremantle.
Liusaidh Gilchrist, Pia Durk, Casey Byrne, Kiara Templeman and Holly Denholm were among the best performing Bulldogs players on the afternoon at Leederville Oval against Subiaco.