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Gallant GIANTS Go Down To Crows

Alyce Parker put in another strong performance against the Crows. - AFLW,GWS Giants,Adelaide Crows,Unley Oval
Alyce Parker put in another strong performance against the Crows.

The GIANTS took the challenge up to conference A powerhouse Adelaide, but was subjected to a 32-point loss after the Crows flexed their muscles in the final quarter at Unley Oval on Sunday.

Adelaide has put itself in pole position for a home AFLW preliminary final, after the game was in the balance at three-quarter time (the Crows led by just eight points against a determined GIANTS outfit) before the Crows booted four goals in the last term to seal their fifth-straight victory.

Erin Phillips and Ebony Marinoff had 24 disposals each and Stevie-Lee Thompson kicked three majors as the Crows cruised home 9.5 (59) to 4.3 (27).

The Crows are now on top of Conference A ahead of North Melbourne and Fremantle on percentage.

With the Kangaroos and Dockers squaring off next week, the Crows will need to beat Melbourne at Casey Fields next Sunday to remain in top spot and host the second-placed team in Conference B in the first week of the finals.

For the GIANTS, Alyce Parker was particularly impressive early, and finished with 16 disposals - the third most of any GIANT, behind Alicia Eva (20) and Ellie Brush (17), the latter of whom played a strong game in defence.

The game took its toll on the GIANTS, who lost Jacinda Barclay (collarbone) and Nicola Barr (hamstring) throughout the contest.

The loss leaves the GIANTS (1-5) in fourth place in Conference B and rules them out of finals contention.

Point of difference

The Crows proved they are the best fourth-quarter team in the competition, using their superior fitness to overrun their rivals. The Crows booted four unanswered goals in the last term, taking their tally to 19 last-term goals in their past five games.

Work in progress

It's been a tough season for the GIANTS under coach Alan McConnell, winning just one of their six games so far. They went toe-to-toe with the Crows for three quarters, but a lack of numbers – losing Nicola Barr (hamstring), Jacinda Barclay (collarbone) and Alyce Parker (whiplash) – hurt their chances down the stretch. 

Say what?

"Over the last month our last quarters have been strong, so I feel they should have confidence in that. Clearly, it was a great contest and it just wasn't going to happen, so we acknowledge GWS brought a level of intent and energy that was going to be a challenge, but fortunately we were able to match them in that space." – Adelaide coach Matthew Clarke  

"I thought the Crows had the better of the moments in the first three quarters. We probably got a little bit lucky, we didn't generate enough Inside 50s, but in the end, the weight of numbers and the lack of rotations eventually catches up with you." - GIANTS coach Alan McConnell

What’s next?

The Crows will have their finals destiny in their own hands when they take on Melbourne at Casey Fields next Saturday, 4.45pm (AEDT). Meanwhile, the GIANTSwill hope to finish the season on a high when they host Geelong at UNSW Canberra Oval on Friday night at 7.15 pm (AEDT).

ADELAIDE         3.0          5.3          5.4          9.5 (59)
GIANTS             2.1          4.2          4.2          4.3 (27)

GOALS
Adelaide: Thompson 3, Ponter 2, Hatchard, Scheer, Phillips, Jones
GIANTS: Hicks, Bernardi, Staunton, Bonner

BEST 
Adelaide: Marinoff, Phillips, Foley, Thompson, Scheer, Randall
GIANTS: Eva, Parker, Brush, Staunton 

INJURIES
Adelaide: Nil
GIANTS: Barclay (collarbone), Barr (hamstring) 

Reports: Nil

Umpires: Adair, McPhee, Jones

Official crowd: TBC at Unley Oval