Women's Match Report: Panthers women book a place in the 2019 SANFLW Grand Final
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Norwood vs South Adelaide
Semi Final 2 - Coopers Stadium - 10/05/19
Goals: Charlton 2, Kirk, Copley, Page
Best: Campbell, Gore, Copley, Tahau, Wright, Charlton
South Adelaide's senior women have booked a place in the 2019 SANFL StateWide Super Women's League Grand Final after an impressive start against Norwood on a frosty Friday night at the Parade.
The Panthers 5.4 (34) to 3.3 (21) victory was built on the back of a strong opening term and hard-fought final quarter.
The side was without leading goal scorer Madison Bennett but were able to find plenty of options up forward, kicking four goals to Norwood's one in the first half.
However, the girls had to withstand a third quarter fight back by Norwood to which the Panthers fought back hard to counter, earning themselves a spot in the Grand Final.
In a game between the top two best performers from the home and away season, it was the Panthers who started the better side.
The first goal of the game came in just the first minute of play following a clever toe poke by Teah Charlton (eight disposals and six tackles). She then followed up five minutes later with a strong over head mark to give the Panthers their second goal in just the first six minutes of the match.
Nicole Campbell was influential in the midfield all game, gathering a total of six tackles, fifteen disposals, three clearances and a team high four marks.
Also impressive in the centre of the ground was Nikki Gore who totalled fifteen disposals, eight tackles and five clearances.
South Adelaide continued to push in the second quarter, helped by the run and carry out wide by Hannah Munyard (thirteen disposals and two marks).
With only two minutes left, Matilda Zander managed to kick Norwood's first of the game, giving South a 4.2 (26) to 1.2 (8) lead at the main break.
With a Grand Final spot up for grabs, the game broke into a tight battle in the third quarter, with the two sides combining for 120 tackles for the game.
Norwood threatened to take the lead with repeated inside 50s, but the Panthers backline held firm despite the immense pressure.
Sarah Wright worked extremely hard with fourteen disposals, three tackles and four rebound 50s to help disrupt several of Norwood's plays.
Meanwhile, Czenya Cavouras continued to apply her signature pressure with a game high eight tackles.
However, back to back goals by Norwood's Kate Fenton cut the lead to just five points heading into the final break.
South Adelaide continued to fight hard in the fourth quarter with contributions and key moments coming from all around the ground.
Montana McKinnon continued her impressive year in the ruck with thirteen hit outs and allowed South to get the first look at the ball with the side winning 20 clearances to Norwood's 18.
Meanwhile, young gun Indy Tahau continually crashed the packs and showed her explosive pace to provide South with four inside 50s.
With the game on the line and only ten minutes left to play, Tiffany Copley stepped up to kick her first ever SANFLW goal and the only goal for the quarter.
Despite the Panthers leading by thirteen points there was still work to be done to insure Souths place in the Grand Final.
Cheyenne Hammond (eight disposals and three rebound 50s) used her tremendous speed to stop an almost certain goal.
Meanwhile Elke Jarvis (five disposals) and Sam Pratt (five tackles) made several strong tackles and defensive plays to counter Norwood's efforts.
The girls managed to fight it out to the end against quality opposition, with the siren sounding to give the Panthers a 5.4 (34) to 3.3 (21) win and a ticket to the 2019 SANFLW Grand Final.
South Adelaide will now enjoy a two-week break and will face the winner of Norwood v North in the 2019 SANFL StateWide Super Women's League Grand Final on Sunday, May 26 at ACH Group Stadium (Glenelg).