Box Hill continued its undefeated start to the season with a 29-point victory over the Southern Saints on Sunday at RSEA Park.
Seven AFLW-listed Hawks featured during the contest with Bridie Hipwell making her VFLW debut alongside the returning Emily Everist.
Janet Baird, Charlotte Baskaran, Sarah Perkins and Tamara Smith also suited up for their second straight games while Sophie Locke played her third game in a row.
Box Hill Coach Cherie O’Neill said the Hawks had played one of their best games yet.
“I think it was the first time that we started gelling together as a group,” O’Neill said.
“Some things finally started to click and the team just looked like they were enjoying footy together.”
Read O’Neill’s thoughts on each AFLW-listed Hawk as well as who she liked from a VFLW-listed point of view.
Janet Baird (12 disposals, 5 marks)
“Janet’s been playing out on the wing. She’s still learning that position but keeps bringing something different to the game each week so she’s been good out there.”
Charlotte Baskaran (11 disposals, 2 tackles)
“Charlotte is a great in-and-under player. She provided great speed and pressure on Sunday. Her decision-making is also improving, which is good to see.”
Emily Everist (1 goal, 8 disposals, 3 tackles)
“Like Janet, Emily is playing on the wing which is a bit different for her. She played a little bit of a role for us on the weekend and carried it out really well. She’s getting a lot better with her structures.”
Bridie Hipwell (7 disposals, 3 marks, 3 tackles)
“We rotated Bridie through the midfield and forward line. The midfield role was a bit of a new one for her and gave her an opportunity to get more involved in the game. She’s doing really well and learning our structures.”
Sophie Locke (2 goals, 14 disposals, 10 tackles, 4 marks)
“Sophie played a bit up forward for us. She took a couple of great marks and converted on the scoreboard. She’s a great pressure player as well.”
Sarah Perkins (2 goals, 7 disposals, 5 tackles)
“Sarah was great. As I said the other week, she provides great leadership and a great target for us up forward. She converted a couple of goals and one really good one from the centre square so that was really good.”
Tamara Smith (14 disposals, 7 tackles, 2 marks)
“Tamara is always solid for us. She rotated through the forward line and the midfield and you just know what you’re going to get with her week in and week out. She brings a heap, brings the pressure and leads by example.”
Grace McRae (1 goal, 18 disposals, 8 tackles, 5 marks)
“Grace has had another solid week for us. Jordy (Mifsud) was being tagged a bit in the middle so Grace got to really take on that role. It banged her up a bit and made her work for her footy but she really let her footy do the talking.”
Maddie Boyd (17 disposals, 20 hit-outs, 9 marks, 4 tackles)
“Maddie rotated through the ruck and down forward. She’s always solid, like your Tamara Smiths, you know what you’re going to get. She’s a great footy player.”
Matilda Van Berkel (16 disposals, 6 tackles, 3 marks)
“Matilda came in for her first game this weekend and took some really great intercept marks from the backline. She racked up some high disposals and looked pretty dangerous too.”
The Box Hill Hawks will look to remain at the top of the VFLW ladder when they take on Collingwood at 3.30pm on Sunday at Box Hill City Oval.
The game forms part of a double-header with Box Hill’s VFL team, in what will be a memorable day for the program.
“The team always loves the double-headers at Box Hill,” O’Neill said.
“It’s a great opportunity to build on that connection piece with the Box Hill boys so I’m looking forward to it.
“I think Collingwood will have our work cut out for us when we play them.
“I’m looking forward to the opportunity to again, see where we’re at and have another great hit-out.”
As the only Hawks games in Victoria this weekend, it is the perfect opportunity to get behind Box Hill, with both the VFL and VFLW teams going undefeated to begin the season.