By ZAC MILBANK
Norwood strengthened its standing as the team to beat in the Statewide Super Women’s League after comfortably accounting for West Adelaide by 63 points at The Parade on Saturday.
Now sitting on top of the premiership table a game clear of closest rivals South Adelaide, the Redlegs are the only undefeated team having strung together five wins in succession.
Steve Symonds’ charges already boast an impressive percentage of just under 74 per cent, a number which could have been higher if not for Norwood’s inaccurate kicking for goal this season.
Against the Bloods, the accuracy was somewhat improved in front of the big sticks with a haul of 9.10, much cleaner than the 5.12 in Round 4 and 2.10 in Round 1.
Dominating every key statistic category, the Redlegs posted 38 inside 50m entries to West’s eight, a direct result of having 61 more kicks and 44 more handballs.
And it was clever forward Alison Ferrall who got the ball rolling for the hosts, kicking the first of her game high three majors four minutes into the opening term.
By the time Ferrall booted her second midway through the second term, Norwood had established a commanding 26-point buffer, with Chelsea Biddell’s behind the sole score for the visitors.
Former GWS player Najwah Allen continued her prowess around the ball for the Redlegs, finishing with 33 disposals, six marks and four clearances to be best afield.
But Allen also had plenty of assistance from fleet-footed Monique Hollick – 24 disposals – and the two Hannahs – Priest and Dunn – who racked up 41 possessions between them.
The ruthless nature of Norwood’s performance was reflected by Rosette Zerella piling on the team’s ninth major with less then 30 seconds on the clock before the final siren.
Positives for the Bloods came in the form of the clearances, only being shaded by four for the match while they also still sit inside the top four at the halfway mark of the minor round.
Running defender Madison Newman, a Powerade Breakthrough Player nominee this year, continued her good form for West to finish with 22 disposals while her captain Lauren Rodato also battled valiantly to finish with 17.
NORWOOD 2.1 5.5 7.6 9.10 (64)
WEST 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 (1)
LEADING DISPOSALS – Norwood: Najwah Allen 33, Monique Hollick 24, Hannah Priest 21, Hannah Dunn 20, Sophie Armitstead 17, Sally Riley 15.
West: Madison Newman 22, Lauren Rodato 17, Chelsea Biddell, Rebecca Owen 13.
GOALS – Norwood: Alison Ferrall 3, Sophie Armitstead, Hannah Dunn, Jo Hill, Monique Hollick, Matilda Zander, Rosette Zerella.
North Adelaide kept in touch with the top five with an 18-point win against Central District at The Parade.
Now just one win behind the Bloods and with superior percentage, the Roosters led at every change as they were powered by four goals from forward Kelly Barltrop.
Slipping seamlessly into the role vacated by Katelyn Rosenzweig, who was lining up for the Bulldogs, Barltrop kicked her first seven minutes into the contest before bagging another three after half-time.
Crows-listed Jessica Sedunary put in another strong performance for Central, finishing with 17 disposals, five tackles and two goals.
NORTH 2.3 2.3 4.5 6.5 (41)
CENTRAL 0.0 2.2 3.3 3.5 (23)
LEADING DISPOSALS – North: Nadia Von Bertouch 22, Jane Altschwager 16, Rheanna Lugg 15, Adrienne Davies, Amber Ward, Erica Greet 14.
Central: Danielle Stewart, Jessica Sedunary 17, Alicia Butler 12.
GOALS – North: Kelly Barltrop 4, Cristie Castle, Nadia Von Bertouch.
Central: Jessica Sedunary, Katelyn Rosenzweig.
South Adelaide overcame a slow start to power away from the Eagles by 54 points at Flinders University Stadium.
Conceding the opening two goals of the game, the Panthers clicked into gear during the second term as they booted 3.0 while keeping the visitors without a score.
Rick Watts’ charges – led by emerging star Teah Charlton with 24 disposals and three goals – were able to then keep the Eagles scoreless for the rest of the contest.
Despite the bright start, the Eagles remain at the foot of the table as the only side without a win in 2019.
SOUTH 2.3 5.3 5.8 9.12 (66)
EAGLES 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0 (12)
LEADING DISPOSALS – South: Teah Charlton 24, Nicole Campbell, Hannah Munyard 20, Czenya Cavouras 18, Emogen Johnson 15, Jessica Kirk 14.
Eagles: Jovanka Zecevic 16, Kiana Lee, Tesharna Maher 15, Teagan Usher, Stephanie Walker 14, Natasha Farrier 13.
GOALS – South: Teah Charlton 3, Madison Bennett 2, Nicole Campbell, Danielle Goding, Indy Tahau, Mykala Walker-Murphy.
Eagles: Kiana Lee, Caitlin Sampson.
Sturt earned its first victory of the season in unusual fashion, edging out Glenelg by two points at The Parade.
Neither team managed to kick a goal despite the warm conditions, with the Double Blues’ two extra scoring shots earning the premiership points.
Sophie Hoyle, Maya Rigter and former Crow Georgia Bevan were the key contributors for Danijel Herbut’s side, which had eight fewer disposals and four fewer inside 50m entries.
Chelsea Packer led the way for the Bays with 20 possessions, who still remain in third place despite losing their past two encounters.
STURT 0.0 0.3 0.4 0.5 (5)
GLENELG 0.0 0.0 0.1 0.3 (3)
LEADING DISPOSALS – Sturt: Sophie Hoyle 20, Maya Rigter 17, Georgia Bevan, Larissa Schenscher 16.
Glenelg: Chelsea Packer 20, Lucy Armitage, Lucy Bellinger, Caitlin Gould 18.
Sign up to see all the news from around the SANFL each week – directly in your inbox!