Wyong Lakes Magpies falls just short of ultimate glory in their Black Diamond AFL Womens campaign

BLACK AND WHITE: Wyong Lakes came so close, yet so far, from ultimate glory in the Black Diamond AFL Women's 2018 season. Picture: Marina Neil
BLACK AND WHITE: Wyong Lakes came so close, yet so far, from ultimate glory in the Black Diamond AFL Women's 2018 season. Picture: Marina Neil

Wyong Lakes may have taken the fairy-tale road to the Black Diamond AFL Womens decider, even going so far as to knock the minor premiers off a week before, but the final hurdle proved too much for the Magpies.

City, who have now captured three championships in the four seasons since the women’s competition began, led 0.3 (3) to 0.0 (0) at the first break, 2.6 (18) to 0.1 (1) at half-time and 2.9 (21) to 1.1 (7) at three-quarter time.

It was a goal from Tayla Braithwaite, who carried a back injury into the match, early in the last period which Hallyer felt gave the Stars some breathing space ahead of the 5.10 (40) to 1.1 (7) win over Lakes.

Braithwaite picked up the Best on Ground Medal for her tireless effort in the midfield.

Teammate Sarah Halvorsen was another stand-out performer, kicking a match-high two goals. Kristel Gavenlock and Stephanie Miniter also kicked goals for City while Lakes’ only one came in the third quarter through Rebecca Ives.

While the Stars did march out triumphant at the No.1 Sportsground last weekend, their captain Ash Hallyer admitted she hadn’t felt uncomfortably in control until the final quarter.

“We just plugged away and – to be honest – I never really felt comfortable because funny things can happen in finals, but after the goal from Tayla in the last quarter, I thought ‘We're OK now’,” Hallyer said.

“We definitely had a game plan and everyone did their bit. We've got people like Sarah Halvorsen who runs all day and the girls that I play with in the midfield just work really hard to make the tackles and put the pressure on.”