Lions seek bigger challenges

By Oliver Lees

The Sunbury Lions have jumped up to women’s division 1 in the Essendon District Football League after going undefeated the first three rounds of the season.

The Lions left their opposition scoreless in each of their division 2 matches against Westmeadows, Moonee Valley and Burnside Heights.

Last week the Lions recorded their biggest win yet, beating Burnley Heights 139 to zero.

Lions coach Daniel Brady said the decision to move up a grade was made after the coaching staff floated the idea with the players.

“We put it to the girls as a vote, given the margins we were winning by, it was a bit of an issue for us to keep all the girls engaged, especially with the girls down back not getting much of the ball and also having players on the bench” Brady said.

“Most of the players were keen to give it a go.”

The Lions will swap places with the Sunbury Kangaroos, who are winless in division 1.

Brady said the move to division 1 had excited the club and despite their winning form, there was always room for improvement.

“As a coach, I guess you’re always hunting for the perfect game, so we still feel we’re ironing out some things in our game.”

“We’ve got seven or eight girls that are playing their first season and it’s always a process for new players to learn the nuances on the field.

“We’re under no illusions that it’s going to be easy.”

The Lions also have some more experienced heads in their best 22, including Essendon VFLW-listed player Felicity Theodore and Calder Cannons-listed player Alisa Magri.

Although these players can’t play every week due to their other football commitments, Brady has been impressed by their leadership on the field.

In first season coaching women’s football, Brady said he’s enjoying the new challenge.

“I’m absolutely loving it, it’s very different,” he said.

“The best thing is having so many new girls, they don’t have any bad habits yet so you can play a role in pointing them in the right direction. “

The Lions will play at home against the winless Tullamarine Football Club in their first division 1 match next weekend.

Brady said the club would have a clearer idea of where they sit after their first month of football in division 1.