Karly McNiece, a Year 12 student at Santa Maria College was selected to represent Vic Metro in the National AFL U/18 Youth Girls Championships held in Melbourne on May 2nd to May 6th this year.  The Vic Metro team (who were undefeated throughout the whole tournament) won the 2016 Championship, defeating Western Australia and keeping them scoreless in an impressive game played on the MCG in the Grand final.

Karly’s pathway in Australian Rules Football began as a 6 year old, participating in Preston Auskick.  She then followed in her brothers footsteps, joining the under 10’s at the Preston Bullants.  Karly played 75 games with the boys team at the PBJFC, but found herself having to find a girls team as she was unable to continue with the boys after the age of fourteen.

She then continued her football career, joining the Darebin Falcons Women’s Sports Club with the Youth Girls Competition in the Northern Football League who also cater for U/18’s for her to continue playing.  Karly’s first year at the Falcons was a very successful year under coach Jess Dal Pos and assistant coaches Elise Casamento and Shannon Egan (past Santa Maria students).  Karly had a number of very successful years at Darebin, winning the team best and fairest for 2015 in the U/18’s.

Karly was selected to play and train with the Calder Cannons, an U/18 Youth Girls Development Academy, and was presented with equal Best and Fairest at the club presentations in April. It was through this academy that she was then selected to represent the Vic Metro team.

After months of training leading up to the Championships, the Vic Metro squad were well prepared to compete against the other state teams. All the girls who made the team spent six days living and training together leading up to the tournament and showed great maturity, resilience and enormous respect for each other, their coaches, the opposition and to the spectators. A great win by Vic Metro, and Women’s football, showcasing the young talent coming through for next year’s AFL Women’s Competition.

We would like to congratulate Karly on her success and encourage  her to maintain her dedication to sport.

Grand Final Result:

Vic Metro – 14 11 95 defeated

Western Australia –  0 0 0

Angela Douvitsas
Sport Leader