AFLW Draft Wrap: Five players land at Eagles’ nest

West Coast has drafted five young talents who will join the Eagles’ squad in their 2022 campaign

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A key defender with a clean marking ability, Western Australia’s top ranked midfielder in this year’s AFLW Academy and a tall utility have rounded out the Eagles’ top three picks of this year’s draft.

AFLW List Manager Jordan Loxley and Head Recruiter Chad Morrison were pleased with the outcome garnered from National picks 3, 21, 24, 40, and 47.

Tonight the club secured Charlie Thomas from the Subiaco Lions, alongside Peel Thunder’s Courtney Rowley and Beth Schilling.

Thomas looks set to inject some needed height into the Eagles’ forward line, while Rowley will be utilised as an outside midfielder in the West Coast engine room.

The 17-year-old may also spend time playing onball, after claiming more than nine tackles per game, alongside an average of 22.7 disposals and 95.7 fantasy points in the AFL Women’s Under 19s Championships.

Meanwhile pick 24 Schilling looks set to play as a key defender with an ability to pinch hit in the ruck if needed.

At pick 40, former basketballer Sarah Lakay is set to be utilised as a tap ruck, who possesses the ability to play forward with a strong overhead mark.

And the final name nominated by West Coast was Claremont’s medium defender Emily Bennett, who showcases an ability to read the play off of half-back and win one-on-one contests in the defensive arc.

List Manager Jordan Loxley says the draftees will integrate well into the current playing group.

“Really pleased with how the draft panned out for us tonight, a lot of work has been put in by a lot of people throughout the year, particularly from our Head Recruiter Chad Morrison which has come into fruition tonight,” he said.

“All really good people, one of the main characteristics we look for in players is good quality people, and they’re all that – as well as talented.

“We cannot be more happy with the talent that we’ve brought in, with a good mix of key position players and midfielders who will complement our existing squad well.

“All the players that we’ve brought in tonight are great people who will fit in well at the club.”

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