Girls continue to build North Coast footy reputation

After 40 years of footy in the region, AFL North Coast is continuing to build on the sport’s local history as the first ever Youth Girls Under 13 representative team is announced.

The introduction of a second Youth Girls age group this season has provided the opportunity to field the Under 13 girls only team, which complements the Youth Girls Under 17 team within the local talent pathway. This new age group has seen former players return to the sport now that they can play girls only football, and has also attracted a whole wave of new participants to the code.

Three former North Coast locals have been drafted to AFLW clubs with Nikki Wallace and Brianna McFarlane both being recruited by Brisbane Lions and Georgia Breward spending time on the Gold Coast Suns list. With the North Coast Force acting as the first step in the pathway to the Sydney Swans Academy the players in the newly announced Youth Girls Under 13 rep team are on their way to becoming the region’s next crop of AFLW players.

Paul Taylor, Community Football Manager, said that the formation of the rep team has come about much quicker than planned. “We definitely had plans to field an Under 13 girls rep team this year, but expected that we would have to wait until half way through the season once the girls had played more games and had the chance to realise how much they love footy and just how good they are,” Taylor said.

“When we called for trials for the mixed Under 13 team in early April we were overwhelmed with the number of girls who nominated for selection. Since the club season has started we’ve seen the interest in rep footy grow week on week as the girls have played their club matches and realised just how much they love the sport.”

Following a selection trial last night, eighteen players have been selected in the team (click here to see details). With several spots still available in the team, and with players who were unable to attend the trial, a further opportunity to press for selection will be offered in conjunction with the team’s first training session on Wednesday 25 May (6:30pm to 8:00pm at Fitzroy Oval). Anyone wishing to nominate to trial must complete the online form ahead of the trial.