For the last time in the 2019 home and away season, Emmaus St Leo’s women’s team will run out onto Bennettswood Reserve on Saturday, playing host to Prahran Assumption for their second encounter of the year. Two weeks ago, the Animalettes put on a show against Swinburne University away from home, securing their third win of the year and consolidating weeks of Animals spirit and determination into a win on the scoreboard. The VAFA-wide Representative weekend bye allowed them to celebrate the culmination of their efforts, but it hasn’t changed the intensity at training.

The last time they met each other, Prahran ran away winners by 66 points, with Emmaus St Leo’s women’s team being unable to put a score on the board. With Prahran sitting fourth on the ladder and the Animalettes sitting seventh, there’s a huge opportunity for them to beat a good opposition. Both teams are coming off wins and will be searching for another one when they take the field on Saturday.

Team selection has quite a few more names than there have been in recent weeks, with a proper bench named and players returning. In the backline, Soraya Jeanes, Sam Bridgland and Dee Burden will have some run provided by Shino Walsh, Claire Anderson and Abbey Gray at halfback. Maddy Hogan will start in the ruck, and Sam Hogarth, Shellby Lonie, and Shanelle Blachford at her feet. Out on the wings is Sarah Morley and Tara Ingham. On the half forward line is Jess Evans, Sheridan Harris, Kayla Hetherington and Kate Lucas, with Shannon Harris and Bridget Monaghan starting deep. Delightful inclusions has three named on the bench, with Kate Fletcher, Caroline Simon and Ashleigh Morley.

The win against Swinburne University only emphasised and heightened the sense of unity for Emmaus St Leo’s women’s team. With a couple of skilful and promising training nights under their belts, Saturday’s game is set to be a cracker. Will the return of a bench provide some extra legs for the Animalettes to run the game out? Are the inclusions of the likes of Tara Ingham and Caroline Simon likely to provide some more supply to the forward line? Get down to Bennettswood Reserve and find out! First bounce is 9.20am.

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