Port Adelaide superstar Erin Phillips has celebrated her 50th match in fine style, with the Power breaking through to the club’s first-ever AFLW win on a ‘herstoric’ day for the fledgling team.
The weather didn’t come to the party, with wind and rain lashing Alberton Oval on Saturday, but while the conditions made it tough for players, they didn’t dampen the celebrations on and off the field as the siren sounded on a 66- point smashing of the Sydney Swans.
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It was a battle of expansion teams, and two of the four winless sides heading into Round 4, although Port had claimed the club’s first-ever premiership points in a draw with Carlton.
But the Power were a class above the Swans, who didn’t manage a goal, while the home side booted its highest score to date.
Phillips set the tone early and finished with 16 possessions, but couldn’t put the cherry on the cake with her first goal for Port.
Instead, she was the provider with five score assists in an eye-catching display.
Hannah Ewings and Abbey Dowrick starred for the home side with 19 and 24 disposals respectively, with Ewings booting three goals and Dowrick kicking a goal and laying 14 tackles.
Port hadn’t kicked a goal in a first quarter or been in front at the first break in any of the opening three matches, but the home side flew out of the blocks against the Swans.
Phillips and Dowrick led the charge with eight possessions each as the Power slammed through three goals.
Jade De Melo converted from close range after Phillips found her with a pass, Jade Halfpenny booted her first AFLW goal and Brittany Perry made it a 21-point lead at quarter-time with her goal in the dying seconds.
Port went inside forward 50 14 times to Sydney’s one in the first quarter and on that solitary occasion the ball was easily intercepted by a waiting defender and came straight back out.
Alarm bells were ringing early for the visitors, who were on the wrong side of a lopsided 32-17 contested possession count.
The Swans had the leakiest defense in the league after three rounds, conceding 166 points in their three losses, but they were at least able to stem the bleeding in the second term.
The Ewings behind was the Power’s only score for the quarter, but Sydney was unable to muster a major either, with Aliesha Newman’s shot bouncing the wrong side of the post.
Ewings and Dowrick have already earned Rising Star nominations and showed why the future is bright for the Power with their roles in a third-quarter blitz.
The hapless Swans conceded five goals, with Ewings bagging a couple and Dowrick banging through a superb long-range effort from outside 50 as the home side stormed to a 52-point at the last change.
Ewings’ first major probably goal of the day honours, however, with the 18-year-old gathering a loose ball just outside 50 and launching a towering drop punt that split the middle on the bounce.
Top draft pick Montana Ham battled hard for a team-high 20 touches for the Swans but there were few other positives on a bleak day for the fledgling team.
Scott Gowans’ side awarded its highest-ever score in the heaviest loss of its four-game existence and was held goalless for the first time.
Ham booted accounted for half of her side’s score with her third-quarter behind, but it would be unfair to lay the blame for the toothless display entirely on the forwards with the visitors going inside attacking 50 only 12 times to Port’s 41.
The Power had 51 more disposals, 15 more marks and 26 more tackles in the dominant display.
Originally published as Port Adelaide claim historic first win in 66-point annihilation