Prespakis the match-winner as Cats pip Tigers in AFLW thriller

Gabby Newton screams with delight after kicking a goal

Young Geelong star Georgie Prespakis has kicked the first two goals of her AFLW career, giving the Cats a four-point AFLW win over Richmond.

Key points:

  • Georgie Prespakis goals with seconds remaining to give Geelong victory over Richmond
  • Former number-one draft pick Gabby Newton kicked two for the Bulldogs in a win over GWS
  • Meanwhile the Lions were close to their best in a big win over Fremantle

Prespakis earned a free kick with less than a minute left and her shot from about 30m out sailed through to give Geelong the 2.3 (15) to 1.5 (11) win on Sunday at Kardinia Park to end round one.

The midfielder snapped the first goal of her career in the third term to put the Cats on the board.

The ease with which Prespakis kicked the match-winning goal was in stark contrast to the rest of the game, with only three goals kicked despite ideal football conditions.

For all the fierceness of the contest, the two sides put an extra player behind the ball and butchered a number of inside-50 opportunities in a grinding game.

The Tigers were left ruing four behinds in the second term, all gettable set shots.

Courtney Wakefield kicked their only goal in the first term.

Richmond finished 11th last season, one place higher than Geelong, and the two sides will struggle to break into the finals again this season unless they can dramatically boost their forward firepower.

The Cats suffered a blow in the opening term when Rachel Kearns was forced out of the game with an A/c joint injury.

She sat out the match with her right arm in a sling.

Prespakis, the number two pick in the 2021 draft, impressed with 16 disposals and eight tackles, while captain Meg McDonald was rock-solid in defence.

Richmond defender Eilish Sheerin was outstanding in her AFLW debut, racking up 19 disposals and five marks.

Sheerin looked to have made a game-saving tackle late in the last tackle in the Geelong goal line, only for Prespakis to be awarded her decisve free kick moments later.

Tigers captain Katie Brennan did not come up in time from her off-season foot surgery and acting skipper Sarah Hosking had a team-high 22 disposals.

Bulldogs on target for win over Giants

The Western Bulldogs have reaped the benefits of a firing new-look forward line to kick off their AFLW season with a seven-point victory over GWS.

Gabby Newton screams with delight after kicking a goal
Gabby Newton had a big impact up forward for the Bulldogs.(Getty Images: Michael Willson)

The Bulldogs lost leading goalkicker Bonnie Toogood to Essendon over the off-season but comeback kid Gabby Newton and Celine Moody booted two goals apiece in the 6.5 (41) to 5.4 (34) victory at Princes Park.

Skipper Ellie Blackburn (21 disposals, nine clearances) was typically brilliant while Isabelle Pritchard (18 disposals), ruck Alice Edmonds (28 hitouts) and defender Eleanor Brown also excelled.

Giants vice-captain Alyce Parker (25 disposals, six clearances and a goal) was outstanding while veteran forward Cora Staunton sparked GWS with three goals.

Lamb dobbed the Dogs’ first goal just over a minute into the clash but the Giants hit back through 18-year-old Jessica Doyle and led by a point at the first change.

The Bulldogs lifted at the start of the second quarter when former number-one draft pick Newton caught Georgina Fowler holding the ball and dobbed her first career goal.

Newton was making her return after missing all of last season due to a double shoulder reconstruction.

Author: Ivan Robinson