ADELAIDE continued their rampage into the final with a 42-point thrashing of the unbeaten Western Bulldogs at Norwood Oval on Friday night.
But the Crows’ 9.5 (59) to 2.5 (17) victory came at a high price when youngster Abbie Ballard was lost to a suspected anterior cruciate ligament injury.
CROWS v BULLDOGS Full match information and statistics
It is the first time the Bulldogs have started a season 0-7 since the conference system was scrapped in 2020, while the Crows remain undefeated with just three rounds remaining.
Ball magnets Anne Hatchard (25 assignments) and Ebony Marinoff (32 assignments) were influential overall, while Caitlin Gould led the way with three majors.
Alice Edmonds (25 hits) starred in a desperate Bulldogs scramble alongside Naomi Ferres (six blocked possessions), while the usually prolific Ellie Blackburn overcame a rare slow start to collect 13 Highest contested property in the game. While the Bulldogs lost strikers Deanna Berry (foot) and Celine Moody (shoulder) to season-ending injuries earlier in the week, the visitors were hit even harder when young midfielder Keeley Coyne suffered a knee injury five minutes later first half.
Less than two minutes later, teammate Kirsten McLeod was ruled out of the game with a concussion.
Sarah Hartwig threw in the middle finger to keep the visitors alive, but Adelaide held off the confused Bulldogs to lead by four points going into the interval.
And just when life couldn’t get any worse, the Bulldogs lost Dominique Carruthers to a brave scoring contest against Eloise Jones in the second term before Niamh Kelly showed off her pace to score the opponent’s goal. year candidate.
Crows captain Chelsea Randall scored her second goal of the season to extend the lead to 17 points at the end of the second half. The celebrations were cut short when Ballard fell to the ground in pain, the 21-year-old Adelaide striker holding his knee in tears before leaving the field after a harmless collision with Hartwig.
Ballard had been impressive up to that point, restricting Bulldogs captain Blackburn to just five touches of the ball before the incident.
The game continued to go the Crows’ way in the second half.
Adelaide have won by at least 10 points in every third quarter this season, and they continued that streak by winning 18 points in the term and extending their lead to 34 points at the last change.
Brianna McFarlane reduced the Crows’ tally to six in the fourth quarter, but with 12 minutes remaining her try proved too late.