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Monday, May 13, 2024 - 2:15 PM by Chris Pike

SOUTH Fremantle went ever so close to what would have been a stirring WAFLW victory against Claremont but it was the Tigers clinging to a one-point victory on Saturday afternoon.

South Fremantle did suffer a shock WAFLW loss two weeks ago against East Perth leading into last week's State game break, and then coming into Saturday's match up at Revo Fitness Stadium against a Claremont team who has played in the past two grand finals.

Claremont was also coming off its first loss of the season two weeks ago to Swan Districts as well so both teams weren’t short on motivation coming into Saturday's match up featuring the top two teams from the end of the 2023 home and away season.

In the end, it was the Tigers holding on for the 3.11 (29) to 4.4 (28) victory against the Bulldogs despite South Fremantle kicking the last two goals of the game.

South Fremantle remains in fourth position on the WAFLW ladder at the end of 11 rounds with a 4-5 record to be percentage ahead of the fifth placed Swan Districts.

South Fremantle's goals were kicked by Noa McNaughton, Kahra Sprlyan, Zoe Huggett and Annalie Polimeno.

Molly O'Hehir continued her stunning form for South Fremantle that also saw her play strongly in last week's State game against the SANFLW at Optus Stadium. She finished with another 25 possessions, 10 tackles, seven inside-50 entries and four marks.

McNaughton also picked up 20 disposals for the Bulldogs with Hunter Cronin going on to gather 19 touches, Lauren Vecchio 15 (10 tackles), Liusaidh Gilchrist 14 (eight tackles), Megan Bain 12, Alira Fotu 12 and Charlie Vandenberg 11 to go with 40 hit outs and seven tackles in the ruck.

The only score for either side in the first quarter was a rushed behind to South Fremantle and that was what the Bulldogs led by at quarter-time.

That soon changed in the second quarter with Claremont getting an early goal from Charlotte Tompkin before a string of behinds.

South Fremantle did respond with a goal to Zoe Huggett and that made it just a four-point lead the way of Claremont by half-time.

The Tigers did manage the first goal of the second half but the Bulldogs answered thanks to Kahra Sprlyan with Claremont ending up leading by eight points at three quarter-time.

Claremont then kicked the first goal of the final term thanks to Laura Cinnani to lead by 14 points, but South Fremantle threw everything at a big finish.

It started at the 15-minute mark with a goal to Noa McNaughton and then Annalie Polimeno added another three minutes later. Polimeno had another opportunity shortly before the siren, but just managed to kick a behind with Claremont holding on to win by a solitary point.

Round 11 in the Rogers Cup also saw South Fremantle take on Claremont and that took place on Friday night at Fremantle Community Bank Oval with the Bulldogs beating the Tigers 10.6 (66) to 3.1 (19).

Madison Hadley kicked three goals in the win for the Bulldogs as did Eva Flynn while Khesan Starr and Nicole Taylor-Thorpe added two goals apiece as well.

The victory improves South Fremantle to a 6-4 record on the Rogers Cup season to sit in fifth position and to just be narrowly behind the fourth placed Swan Districts on percentage.


SOUTH FREMANTLE                        0.1          1.1          2.3          4.4          (28)

CLAREMONT                                      0.0          1.5          2.11        3.11        (29)

SOUTH FREMANTLE – Goals: McNaughton, Sprlyan, Huggett, Polimeno.

Best: O'Hehir, McNaughton, Vecchio, Vandenberg, Gilchrist, Cronin, Fotu.

CLAREMONT – Goals: Tompkin, Arnup, Cinnani.

Best: Harken, Valentini, Cinnani, Tompkin, Ortlepp, Ritchie.