Fremantle recorded the lowest score in AFLW history, registering just one behind as they were held scoreless for the first time in their history in a terrible 26-point loss to Geelong.
In a low-scoring affair in wet and windy conditions at Fremantle Oval, the Dockers forwards barely had a glimpse as the wasteful Cats prevailed 3.9 (27) to 0.1 (1) to start their season with two wins.
Mim Strom’s last-quarter point, rushed by the Geelong defense, was the only score for Dockers in a deeply disappointing follow-up to their first-round loss to Brisbane.
The AFLW’s previous low mark was 0.2 (2), which St Kilda scored against Carlton in February and Gold Coast recorded against Brisbane in 2021.
“Very tough. We started pretty well but the group just lacks a bit of confidence,” Dockers coach Trent Cooper said, lamenting a pre-season plagued by COVID-19-related injuries and absences.
“When we couldn’t connect forward and hit the scoreboard, when Geelong came out on top, our confidence went down and then they had a run.
“We kept chasing, trying and tackling but we were just too reactive and things couldn’t happen and all credit goes to Geelong.
“To be honest, it was definitely not a step forward in any way and the band really appreciate that and are keen to address it and reverse it as quickly as possible.”
Geelong’s Amy McDonald hoarded the ball at will, collecting 29 takedowns, five clearances and 19 contested possessions.
She was well supported by Georgie Prespakis (nine clearances and 20 eliminations) and Rebecca Webster (23 eliminations).
Midfielder Kiara Bowers was Fremantle’s best, collecting 18 touches, 12 tackles and seven clearances while skipper Hayley Miller had 14 touches and five clearances.
Both teams failed to score in a crushing opening period where Bowers had seven takedowns and seven tackles.
The Cats drew their first blood when Nina Morrison really cracked in the second term.
But Geelong was otherwise plagued with imprecision and added just five points in their dominating third quarter.
They finally broke through when Julia Crockett-Grills added their second early in the last term, while Georgia Clarke added a third midway through.
Fremantle eventually scored with just under six minutes left in the game as Strom’s shot went for a point.
“Rapt. This is our first win we’ve had in WA as an AFLW club that we’re very proud of,” Cats coach Dan Lowther said.
“We came here with a plan to pressure Freo and build our baseline from that and it worked today which was very nice.”
Docker Gabby O’Sullivan’s day ended early with a hamstring issue.