On Saturday morning, Emmaus St Leo’s women’s team kicked off proceedings of another triple header at Bennettswood Reserve but were unable to repeat their efforts from earlier in the season, going down by 51 points to Bulleen-Templestowe.

With Kayla Hetherington and Soraya Jeanes unfortunately having to miss the game due to illness and injury, the Animalettes came out of the blocks firing, making their presence known to their opponents in the Bulleen-Templestowe Bullants which Head Coach Roy Fenton was ecstatic with. On field, there were a couple of players being switched around with Claire Anderson starting on the wing and vice-captain Sam Bridgland playing full back.

Despite the fast start, the Animalettes couldn’t make an impact on the scoreboard, their only goal of the game coming in the second quarter due to a rarely-seen 100m penalty that saw Bridgland herself line up for a set shot 15 metres from the line and kick her first ever goal for the Animals. She had to run back to the backline quickly before the next bounce. For the first half, the Animalettes did what the do best, with tackling pressure up and a huge sense of belief encompassing the ground. Unfortunately, as Fenton laments, ‘our movement and control of the ball deteriorated as the game went on. Bulleen were more aggressive to the footy and were able to get it forward more often than us.’

It wasn’t all bad news, with Shellby Lonie having an incredible game off halfback and Sally Hood slotting back into the backline nicely. Anderson played well in her new role on the wing, running hard and enjoying the freedom that comes with a midfield role. Maddy Hogan continues to impress everybody with the way she goes about the ruck, and provides a tall target when the ball gets forward. In the end, the Bullants ran away winners, consistently elevating their score each quarter til they finished the game 7.16.58 to Emmaus St Leo’s 1.1.7.

Despite the loss, Fenton was impressed with how the team ‘maintained our spirit and never say die attitude til the end, which is a huge credit to the girls.’

The Animalettes have the weekend off due to the Queen’s birthday bye. Their next opponent will be a tough one in Oakleigh, away from home. Hopefully the two weeks off means Emmaus St Leo’s women’s team will come back refreshed and ready to attack the remaining games of the season. They head to W.A. Scammell Reserve for a 9:20am start and will look to shake off the cobwebs and get a win away.