Royals cap perfect regular season with minor premiership, top seed

Headshot of Cameron Newbold
Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
Royals come together at half time.
Camera IconRoyals come together at half time. Credit: Cameron Newbold

Royals have completed a perfect regular season, downing reigning premiers North Albany by 13 points at Collingwood Park on Friday night to secure the minor premiership and top seed in next month’s semifinals.

In the expanded second season of the Great Southern Women’s Football League, the Lions finished the six-round normal season with a perfect 6-0 record after they were able to get ahead in the opening half against the Kangas.

Royals player-coach Claire Hard.
Camera IconRoyals player-coach Claire Hard.

The Lions led by a single goal at quarter-time and extended that advantage to 11 points by half-time after booting their third goal.

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Only two points were kicked for the entire second half, both by the Kangas in the third as they prevailed 3.2 (20) to 1.1 (7).

Midfielder Renae Parsons was terrific in the Lions’ sixth straight win, while Rachael Goetze booted two goals, and Bree Davy and Joslyn Pass also found plenty of the ball.

North Albany's Lorissa Ferrell and Royals' Leah Field have eyes for the ball.
Camera IconNorth Albany's Lorissa Ferrell and Royals' Leah Field have eyes for the ball.

The Lions had already secured top spot but the win ensures they will play the fourth-ranked team in the semifinals on May 3. The Kangas were well led by Laura Archer and Anita Onions, and Nardia Humphries, who kicked their only goal, also tried gallantly in the loss.

In the other round 6 contest, Railways won a fourth game of 2019 after defeating an improving Albany outfit by 19 points.

A pivotal three-goal second quarter was the difference in the end as clever forward Tiarna Delli-Benedetti kicked two goals and Darcy Ward also found the big sticks to push the Tigers ahead by 13 points at the main break.

Madison Dallimore was brilliant for the Tigers, her influence right around the ground telling in the 5.3 (33) to 2.2 (14) win.

Miriam Ward again won plenty of possession for Sharks, Shona Hardy was lively, and Abbigail-Louise Ballard and Grace Jones were also in their best players.

The Tigers finished second and will tackle the third-placed Kangas in the semifinals, the Kangas only holding onto third over Sharks by percentage.

The Sharks have the tough task of now facing the Lions in a bid to reach the grand final.

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