North Melbourne's VFLW side has returned to the winners list, defeating the Saints in a thrilling contest to triumph by one point at Trevor Barker Beach Oval. 

Despite struggling to score during the first half, the Roos managed to boot three goals after half-time to ultimately overcome the Saints, 3.6 (24) to 3.5 (23).

The highly contested affair made smooth ball movement difficult to produce for both sides, but when things opened up in the fourth quarter, North Melbourne’s toughness prevailed as Nicole Hales reined in a grab to deny the home side late.


"It was a really tight contest right from the start today," VFLW coach Brett Gourley told NMFC Media.

"We had a strong focus this week on continuing to build our team defence and stopping teams from scoring against us in transition (and) it's something we're going to continue to focus on moving forward."

A scrappy start to the morning saw neither side concede a goal in the opening term, with the first term finishing three points to two in favour of the home team.

SAINTS v KANGAROOS Full match coverage and stats

Nicole Hales (19 disposals, five marks) was a rock in defence for the quarter, intercepting the ball and chipping in with spoils at crucial times.

Southern started off the second quarter in style with Charlotte Ryan kicking the first goal of the game, finally breaking through North Melbourne’s backline

Following Ryan’s early major, the Roos began to tally the inside 50s and were able to generate chances through Emily Paterno and Tahlia Meier but the duo struggled to convert.

After 10 minutes of play had gone by in the third term, Sarah Hosking wasn’t fooled while guarding the mark, and laid an important tackle deep inside 50 before converting to hand North Melbourne its first goal of the game.

"It (the tackle and goal) was really important. 'Hosko' (Hosking) played a really important role for us up forward today," Gourley said.

"We put her down there because of her tackle pressure and her speed and she was able to play a really important role for us up forward today."

Not long later, trusty forward Paterno slotted a set shot from range to put the Roos up by five points at the final break.

As the field began to open up in the fourth, it was defender-turned-forward Brooke Sheridan (one goal, nine disposals) who proved to be a difference-maker, kicking a significant goal four minutes in while creating problems for the Saints' backline.

It proved to be just enough for the Roos, who picked up their first victory since taking down the Blues on Good Friday.

"Brooke was great, I think she took seven marks today as well so she was really important for us up forward," Gourley said.

"She's really good aerially, and she's a beautiful kick of the ball as well so we were really pleased with what she was able to bring up forward and she did a great job."


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SOUTHERN SAINTS        0.3    1.4    1.5    3.5  (23)     
NORTH MELBOURNE    0.2    0.3    2.4    3.6  (24)    

Southern Saints: Hunt 2, Ryan
North Melbourne:
Sheridan, Paterno, Hosking

North Melbourne: Hales, Jackson, McSweeney, Di Cosmo, Zander, Sheridan


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