The U15 team WON their semi – final game against Footscray at Chadstone on Sunday.
Eltham’s under 15 girls entered their first final series since 1995 with an incredible display of tenacity this weekend. Having beaten Footscray the previous week, there was a sense of confidence the repeat performance was possible.
Footscray scored the first two goals but they were not easy to come by, the Eltham defence line of Maddy Smith, Isobel Pain and Bridget Bassett-Smith troubling them from the onset. Then Ruby Mileto of Eltham scored a fantastic goal from a fast break out of the centre won nicely by Jess Pham. Although Footscray scored two more in the half, Eltham led by one at the break, with Brooke Powell shooting a beauty following a brilliant dodge, Ruby shooting two more and the young Molly Perceval in goals saving several; the Eltham defence keeping Footscray scoreless for more than 10 minutes of the half. Following the break Footscray goaled in the first 10 seconds and followed up with two more in the next 5 minutes before Eltham’s Kate Poulier’s speed and attitude put one in for Eltham off a great pass from Briget Bassett-Smith. Another great save from Molly Perceval was then converted up the field to Ruby Mileto’s 5th goal and then some incredible defence from Maddy Smith led to Dani Wile’s first goal for the game. Eltham had to really work for control of the ball, Footscray were winning a lot of centres and at 3 minutes to go, they led by 2.
However, Eltham were by no means beat with 11 seconds to go they scored and following a fast break from the centre Kate Poulier scored again with 1 second left on the clock; the game was a draw. Two 3-minute halves of time on brought three goals a piece with a huge effort by the likes of Kate Poulier and Isobel Pain keeping Eltham in the game.
Finally, a sudden death playoff, the centre draw going Fooscrays way but the defense line again won the ball back, Sasha Pollnitz racing into attack and deftly passing the ball to Ruby Mileto for the final score of the game and a brilliant Eltham win!
The girls now go straight into the grand final to be played at Chadstone on 4th September.