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September 28, 2021

Byron women’s AFL dominate ladder

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In full flight: a Byron Bay footballer (black) lines one up early this year against the Swans. Photo Adrian Etherson

The Byron Bay Magpies AFL women’s team in their second year have played their way to the top of the local competition with 10 wins from 11 starts.

Considering the side didn’t put a win on the board in 2018 the ascendency is even more remarkable.

‘We didn’t get a win last year, but we were always competitive,’ coach Dean Baulch said

‘We have improved out of sight this year. Everybody is really enthusiastic’.

The side has had a fair bit of turnover of players, with about 10 leaving and the same number joining. The key is that the new group ‘really want to play, win, and learn together,’ he said.

The ranks have been bolstered by experienced players coming to the area and joining the squad.

Cassie Hynes (ex-Geelong), Hillary Grubb (ex-Collingwood), Xena Campbell, and Kyla Guiffre all add experience to the team. Add to this some ‘good athletes who learn quickly’ and you soon have a team feeding off each other.

‘We have certainly caught up with the other teams in the competition,’ Dean said.

On the weekend the women Magpies called The Flight beat the Lismore Swans 5.4-34–2.1.13.

‘It was a pretty tough game given the (wet) conditions, but it is always good to beat last year’s premiers,’ the coach said.

The competition has five rounds of the regular season before the finals get underway in August.

This weekend The Flight travel to the Tweed Coast to take on the Tigers.

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