ERUPTIONS echoed across Ballarat Grammar grounds on Wednesday afternoon as the school’s senior girls’ football side kicked its way into the history books.
Grammar defeated Ballarat Clarendon College 7.10 (52) to 3.7 (25) for its first premiership in the Ballarat Associated Schools series.
A bumper crowd braved the wintry conditions at Grammar’s Tunbridge Oval to watch the visitors open a five-point quarter-time lead.
Clarendon’s pressure was enormous early, but it failed to make the most of what would prove to be few chances as Grammar wrestled back control of the match in the remaining three quarters.
The second term alone saw the home side kick three goals to one and open up a handy 18-point lead before extending it to 20 points at the final break.
Clarendon managed to lock the ball in its forward 50 for much of the fourth quarter but failed to make an impact on the scoreboard.
The win was capped off by a Grammar goal from a hurried kick forward with 52 seconds left.
The two schools have played off in the past three grand finals and shared the home and away points earlier this season.
Clarendon notched up a 27-point win over Grammar in the first round before the latter perfected its run into finals with a 59-point thumping in the last round. College has won every premiership since 2009 and missed out on the flag just once, in 2002.
Victorious coach Matt Hanlon dedicated the win to those who had missed out on taking the premiership in the past three grand finals.
“It means so much for the girls who have been involved in grand finals of recent years,” Hanlon said.
“To get up and actually clinch one, particularly against the calibre of College, just shows how far we’ve come.
“The girls really understand the game – not just positions, but being able to play in that style we were able to absorb the pressure and eventually turn it around our way.”