GEELONG coach Paul Hood admits his team has a few things to work on as they head into the final round of the AFLW season after a 36-point loss to the Fremantle Dockers at GMHBA Stadium
Trailing by just one point at half time, the Cats ground to a halt as they failed to score after half time in front of a crowd of 4125 on Saturday afternoon.
Fremantle’s 6.13 (49) to 2.1 (13) victory leaves them right in the running for a Conference A finals spot.
Hood spoke of the Dockers’ physicality post game, with Kiara Bowers notched up an astonishing 19 tackles, highlighting the sheer pressure Geelong was under as soon as they gained possession.
Bowers, a Fremantle marquee signing in 2016, has had her fair share of injury struggles. After missing two whole AFLW seasons after having complications from an ACL recovery, she had 17 tackles to three-quarter time.
“Fremantle were just too good around the ball today,” Hood said.
“They had so many more inside 50s. They just got the ball forward too many times in the end, and too quickly for us to counter,” he said.
“So credit to them, they played a fantastic game.”
“The Fremantle players were just able to tackle and then run away, so they were certainly physical.
“(The Dockers) are a team that looks like they are developing really well, and they were just too good for us today.”
Despite the loss, Hood was eager to look to next week and what the Cats could build on heading into the pointy end of the season.
“For us, it’s a little bit more composure with the ball,” Hood said. “We were doing a good job, for the most part, defending, our defence has been really solid for the most part of the season.
“When we get the ball inside 50 we’re competing quite well; we just weren’t able to get enough entries today.
“When we got near the ball we just didn’t keep it for long enough. We’ll work on that.
“It was the total opposite last week in our previous game, so there are a few up and downs in your first season. That’s going to happen from time to time, but we’ll just try and play a much more all-round game.”
Although Geelong remains on top of the Conference B ladder, they may still need to beat the GWS Giants in Canberra in next Friday’s final round match.
The Cats will lose top spot to one of Carlton or Brisbane on Sunday, with the Blues and Lions – who have two wins apiece – to clash at IKON Park.
Geelong will welcome back ruck Aasta O’Connor from suspension while hoping to regain Anna Teague (back) and Sophie Van De Huevel, who were late withdrawals from the loss to Fremantle.
The Cats will also monitor the fitness of young gun Becky Webster (ankle).