West Coast AFLW coach Daniel Pratt couldn’t fault the effort of his resilient side but the search for a four-quarter performance remains the key objective after Monday’s loss to Brisbane.
The Eagles were dominant in the opening quarter at Hickey Park, however they couldn’t capitalise and a late goal to the Lions, combined with the visitors’ inaccuracy (1.5 to 1.0) ultimately proved costly.
The League-leading Lions wrested momentum in the second quarter to take a one-point lead into the main break, before blowing the game open with a five-goal to nil third term.
It has been a similar story for West Coast against three established teams in the opening rounds of the season - with one poor quarter undoing their hard work - however Pratt has been pleased by his side’s ‘never say die’ attitude.
“I’ve been really proud of our effort for periods of the game,” Pratt said post-match.
“Even the last quarter, their resilience to fight on again – it was two shots each and Brisbane kicked two goals and we kicked two points, and they were makeable shots.
“Against good teams you need to play for four quarters. Brisbane are top of the table for a reason and they made us pay in that third.”
Brisbane’s centre square quartet took control in the third term, putting West Coast’s back five under immense pressure.
“It’s hard to arrest momentum when it comes from the centre bounce,” Pratt said.
“I think it was 4-1 from the centre clearance in the third quarter, so it goes straight into your backline and if your backs aren’t winning those contests you’re on the back foot straight away.
“They had nine shots in 16 minutes and it came from that field position they got. It’s been a pattern with the season so far.
“It happened against Adelaide (in round one), so it’s something we can address and talk about this week.”
After bravely playing against the Lions after splitting her webbing in her hand last round, tall forward Andrea Gilmore will miss the trip to face Greater Western Sydney on Sunday after being placed in the League’s concussion protocol.
Defender Tayla Bresland should be fine after a corked leg, while Alicia Janz could be back from a calf complaint.