Football: Loreto prevails in grand final bid

Loreto College has claimed the inaugural intermediate girls AFL Victoria Herald Sun Shield premiership after a thrilling 24-point win over Bentleigh Secondary College at Victoria Park on Tuesday. 

Loreto kept Bentleigh goalless until the third quarter in what was a strong defensive effort.

But despite the low scoring, Loreto coach Matthew Flight said it had been a tough game. 

Premiers: The successful Loreto College team.

Premiers: The successful Loreto College team.

“Bentleigh started off quite strong and dominated the first half of the first quarter, but then our girls were able to settle in and start getting on the scoreboard,” he said. 

“They were elated (when they won). 

“When they all got together, they all started cheering and enjoying the moment, and belted out a pretty big rendition of the school song.”

While Loreto controlled most of the game, in the final term Bentleigh was able to turn up the heat with two late goals in quick succession. 

“It put us under pressure a little bit, they really got a bit of momentum, but the girls responded with a goal to put them out of touch,” Flight said.

“It did get a little bit close there at the end, but the girls really rallied well and fought out the game.”​

Ally Trigg sustained an ankle injury after a tackle in the second quarter, resulting in Loreto being a player down for the rest of the match. 

While Trigg was a star player for Loreto in its previous final, Flight said the team was able to readjust and play out the match well. 

Centre-half forward Alannah Stevens kicked three goals in a dominant display in the forward line. 

Ballarat Youth Girls’ best and fairest winner Sophie Molan was best on field, and was supported by strong performances from Laura Fitzgibbons, Madison Selmon and Lucy Donegan. 

Flight said the girls had been excited to play the game at Victoria Park in Melbourne.

“It was nice to play with the grand stand around us and the girls really relished the opportunity to play against some good competition,” he said.

Flight said the school was proud of the fact that it had won the inaugural competition at intermediate level. 

“It’s really exciting that we have this talented group of girls coming through and we are looking forward to the future,” he said.

“We are hoping that the group will stick together.”