Round six of North West AFL delivered mixed results for the Gunnedah Bulldogs.
The Bulldogs Poochettes women recorded another impressive victory while the Bulldogs men went down as both sides battled The New England Nomads at Wolseley Oval last Saturday.
On a landmark occasion for the club – acknowledging past players for an ‘Old Boys Day’ – jack of all trades John Woolaston chalked up his 200th appearance for the club.
Woolaston has been a staple of the Bulldogs’ backline since 2004.
He also played one match in 2003 and has since performed every role within the organisation on a committee and playing level.
Alongside fellow stalwart Brian Lenton, Woolaston is regarded as one of the club’s most important alumni in its 44-year existence.
On the field, however, the Poochettes were ruthless in recording a 72-nil drubbing of the Nomads to solidify their position at the top of the North West AFL women’s ladder.
Full-forward Gyarn Waugh booted five majors to take her tally to 20 for the season and Laura Ewington booted two to be the only other multiple goal kicker.
The margin could have been broader had the Poochettes been more efficient in front of goal – they kicked nine majors from 27 shots on goal.
The Nomads travelled light for the match bringing just 10 players on the day, which meant the Poochettes offered a few players from their own squad to make up the match.
Best on ground for the Poochettes was Casey O’Connell in the backline. O’Connell’s repeat efforts in the defensive arc at ground level and in the air, helped to maintain forward momentum for the Poochettes.
Abbey Ruttley was also dominant at fullback and along with O’Connell, were strong in defence to keep the Nomads score to zero for the match.
O’Connell swung forward late in the game and rewarded herself with a goal.
This combined with Ruttley’s efforts, allowed the midfield to work at ground level and direct the ball to Waugh at full forward.
Waugh is a key target for the Poochettes inside the forward 50m, as she is adept at drawing the ball to ground in aerial contests and has the ability to outmark her opponents.
The win has the Poochettes as outright leaders in the competition and continues their impressive winning streak since their inception into the women’s North West AFL
The Bulldogs men’s side was not as productive and went down by five goals – the final score read 138-108.
The Bulldogs kept pace with the Nomads throughout the match but inevitably, the five-goal margin was a representation of a Nomads outfit that snuffed out the Bulldogs on many occasions to keep them at arm’s length for the majority of the fixture.
Adam Curgenven and Des Tuckerman were two of the Bulldogs’ best in the centre of the ground, particularly in winning a contested ball at ground level.
The pair combined with ruckman Alistair Hillard to give their rovers continual supply.
Evergreen Mark Ewington kicked five and posed a constant threat for the Bulldogs, as did James Mack whose ability to pack mark landed him four majors.
Meanwhile, Braydyn Finlay on a half-forward flank continually worked up and down the ground, and back into defence, to help repel the Nomads forward entries on multiple occasions.
The competition takes a zone bye for this week’s June long weekend before the Bulldogs and Poochettes return against the Tamworth Swans in round seven. 

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