|Venue: VU Whitten Oval, Footscray.|
|Date: Sunday 17th March, 2019 (4.05 pm)|
|Result: Won by 3 points.|
|Goalkickers: Brooke Walker 3, Chloe Dalton 2, Tayla Harris 1.|
|Umpires: Broadbent, Annand, Edwards|
|Ladder: 1st (Conference B)|
Game ReviewBlues hold off Dogs to sew up top spot in conference
Carlton withstood a comeback from the Western Bulldogs and warmed up for its finals campaign with a three-point win in the NAB AFL Women's Pride Game at Whitten Oval on Sunday afternoon. Rugby sevens convert Brooke Walker booted three goals in the first half as her side emerged victorious 6.5 (41) to 5.8 (38). The game was effectively a dead rubber, with the Blues needing to be thumped if they were to be dislodged from top spot in Conference B. After a slow start, the Dogs awoke from their slumber in the second quarter to dominate general play but rued missed shots at goal. They wouldn't kick one until a couple of minutes into the final term, via a Katie Brennan set shot, but then made it a real contest after Aisling McCarthy and Libby Birch converted accurately. Brennan fluffed her fair share of chances in the second term, missing everything with an admittedly very tough set shot and also juggling a mark and going over the goal line. She and Sarah Hosking had a nasty head clash in the third quarter but both returned to the field. After Brooke Walker marked about 55m out from goal in the first term, she decided to go long. Launching from inside the centre square, she was hoping a teammate could take a pack mark. Walker must have connected with the footy better than she expected though, because the ball soared over a group of players and bounced through for a monster goal.
Rough ending for the reigning premiers - It's been an inglorious campaign for the Western Bulldogs after their magnificent premiership last season. Losing Emma Kearney and Jenna Bruton to North Melbourne was always going to make things tough, and having gun forward Isabel Huntington's return from a knee reconstruction delayed after a setback made the job even more difficult.
Finals on the agenda - Carlton has progressed past the home and away season for the first time after finishing on top of Conference B. Daniel Harford's side has won three matches on the trot and his forward line looks dangerous. Tayla Harris was taking marks and testing her hamstrings with some huge kicks, while former rugby sevens duo Walker and Dalton will be a handful for any side. - Dinny Navaratnam.
Best; B. Walker, B. Davey, C. Dalton, M. Prespakis, T. Harris, N. Stevens
|B:||21 Nicola Stevens||36 Jayde Van Dyk||9 Kerryn Harrington|
|HB:||11 Jess Hosking||6 Gabriella Pound||2 Katie Loynes|
|C:||10 Sarah Hosking|
|HF:||15 Chloe Dalton||7 Tayla Harris||4 Madison Prespakis|
|F:||3 Darcy Vescio||16 Breann Moody||1 Brianna Davey (c)|
|Ruck:||30 Alison Downie||19 Georgia Gee||14 Brooke Walker|
|Interchange:||20 Charlotte Wilson||5 Abbie McKay||18 Tilly Lucas-Rodd|
|12 Lauren Brazzale||8 Amelia Mullane|
|Emg:||32 Nat Plane||17 Courtney Webb|