K rock Football

Crows claim top spot in Conference A

ADELAIDE has booked a spot in the AFLW finals by smashing Melbourne by 60 points in their final-round clash at Casey Fields on Saturday.

The Demons needed to win to keep their finals hopes alive, but the resounding 10.8 (68) to 1.2 (8) result emphatically ended their season, even though they’ll probably finish up as the fourth-best team in the competition.

Unfortunately for them, though, they will also be the fourth-best team in Conference A, and only the top two from each conference make it through to the preliminary finals.

With so much to play for, Melbourne surprisingly saved their worst performance in their history for their most important game.

After being held scoreless in the first half, the Demons didn’t register their first score – a behind – until five minutes into the third quarter and had to wait until the final term for their solitary goal on the way to registering the equal-lowest score in AFLW history.

The 60-point loss was also Melbourne’s worst ever defeat – almost doubling their previous worst of 34 points – and the second-largest margin in the history of the competition.

Erin Phillips was Adelaide’s best with 22 disposals and nine clearances and could have made the margin even bigger by kicking straighter, but she had to settle for three behinds.

Elise O’Dea (21 disposals) and Harriet Cordner (19) didn’t stop trying for Melbourne while Chantel Emonson finished with 15 touches and a goal.

Needing to win by five goals to make the finals, Melbourne employed a high-risk game style going forward from the get-go and unfortunately for them it backfired badly.

They opened themselves up and top-placed Adelaide didn’t need a second invitation to make the hosts pay by booting five first-half goals, including a goal-of-the-year contender from Courtney Cramey after a brilliant dribble during the second term.

The Crows’ pressure was relentless and they were also more composed with the ball while Melbourne were panicky and let down by errant disposal.

Adelaide kicked the first eight goals of the match, ending the game as a contest in swift fashion.

© AAP 2019

ADELAIDE 3.3 5.4 8.6 10.8 (68)

MELBOURNE  0.0 0.0 0.1 1.2 (8)

Goals: Adelaide: A Considine 2 J Foley 2 C Cramey C Scheer D Ponter D Varnhagen E Marinoff S Thompson. Melbourne: C Emonson.

Best: Adelaide: E Phillips J Foley E Marinoff C Cramey C Scheer. Melbourne: E O’Dea H Cordner C Emonson.

Injuries: Nil.

Reports: Nil.

Umpires: Paul Rebeschini, Trent McPhee, Patrick Burns.

Official Crowd: 2,239 at Casey Fields.