South Australia claimed victory over Western Australia on Saturday. (Photo: SANFL/Twitter)

South Australia emerged victorious over its Western rivals, while the race for finals has had a few spanners thrown into the works in the VFLW.

The state game between South Australia and Western Australia meant that there were byes across both states’ competitions this week, but nevertheless still an exciting week of state league footy.

The SANFLW has reached finals, the VFLW is shaping up at the top end while bitter rivals did battle in Tasmania.

All that and more in this week’s edition of Around the States.

You can read last week’s here: Around the States: May 11

South Australia and Western Australia

State Game

The South Australian state team has retained the Haydn Bunton Junior Trophy following a 53-point win over Western Australia in a free-flowing, high scoring game at Adelaide Oval on Saturday afternoon. 

The SANFL side piled on eight goals in a row from midway through the third quarter to put the contest beyond doubt as fans made their way in for the Port Adelaide-Western Bulldogs AFL game to follow. 

Former Port Adelaide utility Matthew Broadbent took home the Fos Williams Medal as best afield for the Croweaters, following his role off half back picking up 29 disposals and taking 11 marks. 

Woodville-West Torrens veteran Matthew Goldsworthy was impressive early, getting the ball moving from defence to attack whilst former Adelaide and Carlton player Bryce Gibbs stepped up in the second half, finishing with 31 disposals  

For Western Australia, Jye Bolton was awarded the Simpson Medal as best visitor afield, amassing 29 disposals and laying three tackles. 

West Perth forward Tyler Keitel starred up forward for the WAFL, kicking four goals in a dominant individual display.

Stay tuned for our full report of the game detailing the strongest performers from both the SA and WA teams.

Final score: SANFL 20.10 (130) def. WAFL 11.11 (77)


South Adelaide has scraped through to the major round of the 2021 season following a one-point loss to West Adelaide at home on Saturday.

With fifth placed North Adelaide beating Sturt by 25-points thanks to an Ashleigh Woodland six-goal masterclass, the Bloods did enough to give the Panthers more than a scare, as they scraped through on percentage only. 

The result means that the two sides will do battle in the first semi final next week, as the South Australia’s premier women’s competition nears completion for the year. 

Following a strong third quarter and goals to Imogen Loftes, Melanie Elsegood and Lauren Young, West Adelaide opened up a match-high 21-point lead at three quarter time. 

But the home side weren’t done yet, having all the run in the last quarter, kicking an agonising 3.2 to fall just short of the win. 

Young was best for West Adelaide, picking up 22 disposals & eight clearances whilst Nicole Campbell and Teah Charlton both amassed 21 disposals each for the Panthers. 

Final score: South Adelaide 5.3 (33) def. by West Adelaide 5.4 (34)

Norwood has made its intentions for the finals series clear with a commanding 59-point win over wooden spooners Woodville-West Torrens on Saturday.

Finishing top of the ladder, the Redlegs will now face Glenelg in the second semi final next week, with a spot in the grand final two weeks later on the line. 

Following a Sarah Branford major late in the second quarter, at half time the Eagles were goalless, with Norwood piling on six of its own in a dominant display. 

The Eagles finally joined the party when Marlie Fiegert kicked truly within a minute in the third quarter, but any prolonged response was short lived as goals to Erika Sporn and Rosette Zerella (two) extended Norwood’s lead to 47-points at three quarter time. 

There would be no further response from the Eagles, as Norwood ran out 59-point victors. 

Najwa Allen was impressive for the Redlegs, picking up 19 disposals and kicking a goal, whilst Kiana Lee was best for the Eagles, following an 18 disposal performance. 

Final score: Norwood 11.7 (73) def. Woodville-West Torrens 2.2 (14)

Other results:

Sturt 3.4 (22) def. by North Adelaide 7.5 (47)

Glenelg 6.4 (40) def. Central District 4.5 (29)

Patrick Goldsmith


Like the WAFL, the WAFLW also had a bye on the weekend but will return this week as the season inches closer to finals. 

In round 12, the undefeated Swan Districts test themselves against a firing Subiaco outfit, Peel Thunder take on South Fremantle, who is still searching for their elusive first victory and Claremont play East Fremantle in hope of getting back on the winner’s list after three consecutive losses.

Rebecca Ruthven


The top 25 prospects for the AFL mid-season draft

‘I didn’t tell anyone I played footy’ – Debbie Lee on the VWFL: Part 1

The Lions’ Pride: ‘I’ve been lucky enough to be there’ – Mark Lawrence



Clarence vs North Hobart – Round 7

It was a grudge match that lived up to the hype, with Clarence overcoming North Hobart by just one point in a physical contest on Saturday.

Blundstone Arena was the scene for a rivalry that’s been brewing for several months, after four former North Hobart players joined Clarence over the off-season.

Baxter Norton and Jake Steele, two of the Demons most promising young players, were headhunted by the Kangaroos, while Colin Garland (OSFA) and Ole Angerstein (VFL) chose to don the red and white when they rejoined the TSL.

North Hobart coach Clinton French said during the week that the playing group had taken umbrage with the way Norton and Steele’s departures had unfolded and “our message is to still win the ball, but if you have a chance to nail a good tackle against those guys, you let them know.”

Another layer was added to the match when French (a former Glenorchy Premiership and Aspley player) was named for his first TSL game since 2019, despite saying just two weeks ago that a potential on-field comeback was unlikely anytime soon.

With all these factors and permutations heading into the game, the first quarter set the tone early, with plenty of feeling and spot fires to start the contest.

Two quick goals to Tyler Penwright and Keren Howlett at the end of the term ensured Clarence held a five-point lead at quarter-time.

The contest remained even and physical across the next two terms, with either side kicking four goals each.

The Kangaroos could have put the game away with their dominance at times, but peppered the sticks with an inaccurate 4.13 in the second and third quarters.

The Demons kept with pace through some of their experienced players though, with French providing the highlight after a strong contested mark and his first on return midway through the third.

The final quarter was an arm wrestle, with Clarence’s lead reduced to one point after consecutive goals from Jye Menzie and Jack McCulloch halfway through the term.

Penwright stretched the margin back out to seven with his second, but French had the instant reply as the game entered red time.

After an intense final few minutes, the siren sounded to give Clarence the barest of wins.

Penwright starred in his first game of the season after an interrupted pre-season, with two crucial goals for Clarence.

Angerstein won the ruck battle against his old side, while Ethan Jackson and Oscar Paprotny continued their good form.

North Hobart co-captains Hugh Williams Jnr and Jack Sandric led from the front, while two of the side’s best young players in Callum Kilpatrick and Tyler McGinniss stood up in defeat.

Final score: Clarence 9.16 (70) def. North Hobart 10.9 (69)

Other results:

Glenorchy 5.4 (34) def. by North Launceston 16.23 (119)

Launceston 15.13 (103) def. Lauderdale 8.7 (55)

Bye: Kingborough 

Hamish Spence


VFL – Round 5

It was a week of results that are beginning to show who the true contenders of the 22-team VFL competition are in 2021.

While Southport’s two other victories have been impressive, it has now registered back-to-back 100-point plus victories, over the injury-riddled North Melbourne last week and Queensland rivals Aspley this week.

The Sharks now sit firmly in the top four, dominating most statistical categories across the competition. Billy Gowers, Mitch Johnson and Connor Nutting all feature in the top 10 leading goalkickers, with 38 total between them.

Midfielders Jacob Dawson, Michael Manteit and Lukas Webb sit in the top 10 for disposals, Dawson averaging 31.4 touches and 6.8 tackles a game.

Southport played Aspley in round two, getting over the line by 14 points. An absolute force to be reckoned with in the rematch, the visitors piled on 71 inside 50s for a total of 41 scores.

The rest of the competition are on notice. The Sharks can smell blood.

Final score: Aspley 7.5 (47) def. by Southport 23.18 (156)

A couple of tight upsets to bottom of the ladder teams similarly shook up the competition, Essendon defeating Frankston while Williamstown was handed its first loss of the year by Sandringham.

Patrick Ambrose lead from the front for the Bombers, finishing the game with a bag of six and putting his hand, arm, leg, every thing he could up, for AFL selection.

Former Bendigo Pioneer and Swan Brady Rowles showed that he has some flair to his game, kicking the sealer and two goals total to get the Bombers over the line.

Frankston’s Nathan Freeman showed once again why is he one of the top prospects for the upcoming mid-season draft, the former Magpie and Saint putting in another incredible 43 disposal effort, with seven marks and four tackles to go with it.

Final score: Essendon 12.11 (83) def. Frankston 10.8 (68)

Other results:

Gold Coast 8.13 (61) def. by Brisbane 19.7 (121)

Port Melbourne 7.11 (53) def. by Coburg 12.17 (89)

Casey 7.19 (57) def. Geelong 8.8 (56)

Sandringham 13.9 (87) def. Williamstown 11.12 (78)

Richmond 19.9 (123) def. GWS 3.8 (26)

Sydney 12.14 (86) def. Collingwood 8.5 (53)

Box Hill 23.12 (150) def. North Melbourne 6.6 (42)


Southern Saints vs Geelong – Round 11

The ball just does not stop rolling for Geelong, and it has now increased its winning streak to seven games, second only to the undefeated Collingwood.

Halfway through the third quarter, the Cats looked gone. The Saints could smell finals, the chance to close the gap on the fifth-placed Bombers right in front of them.

Enter Richelle Cranston.

The Cats kicked the first goal of the final term through Claudia Gunjaca, who’s been a constant scoring threat all season, keeping her side in touch and leaving the margin at five points to the Saints.

Abbey Jordan responded for the Saints, the home side taking advantage of the Trevor Barker Beach Oval they know so well and launching forward repeatedly, only to waste their opportunities and score multiple behinds.

Geelong, not wasting time, came home hard through Cranston and scored four goals in the final four minutes of the game, ‘Rocky’ kicking her two for the match in the dying stages.

To say the victory was sweet would be selling it much too short.


The Cats made full advantage of their AFLW talent, Laura Gardiner and Rebecca Webster racking up 51 disposals and 20 tackles between them, a dominant midfield display.

While Dale Robinson will have been happy to see players including Tara Bohanna and Claudia Whitfort hit the scoreboard, wasted opportunities in front of goal by the otherwise strong Molly McDonald will haunt the Saints come finals time.

A Bulldogs side fresh off an upset victory over the Bombers looms next week for the Saints, a match they will need to win if they want to stay in finals contention.

The Cats will take on eighth placed Carlton, making a late finals charge of their own after a dominant 26-point victory over the top four Demons.

Final score: Southern Saints 5.5 (35) def. by Geelong 6.10 (46)

Other results:

Casey 3.7 (25) def. by Carlton 8.3 (51)

Port Melbourne 1.4 (10) def. by Collingwood 8.4 (52)

Williamstown 1.10 (16) drew with Darebin 2.4 (16)

Essendon 1.4 (10) def. by Western Bulldogs 4.4 (28)

Box Hill 4.2 (26) def. by North Melbourne 4.10 (34)

Alex Catalano

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