AFL Quebec Women’s Tournament Recap
The Montreal Angels are the 2016 AFL Quebec Women’s Tournament Champions!
Saturday 14th May 2016 was a historic day for Australian Football in Quebec, as footy was played for the first time ever on a full sized oval field at Cégep Marie-Victorin. The historic day was made all that better by the (almost) beautiful weather, high quality of footy and the passion and sportsmanship with which it was played.
The Angels succumbed to the Ottawa Swans in game one, by 44 to 8, the fifth time in a row the Swans had beaten the Angels. With New York winning game two over the combined Demons (Boston and Toronto) and the Jillaroos from Columbus it looked like the scene was all set for a final game showdown between New York and Ottawa.
But whether it was back to back games for the Pies or a rallying speech from Angels captain Andrusyshyn, the home team surprised all in attendance with a shutout 26 to 0 victory over last year’s champions. The Swans continued where they left off in game four with a comprehensive 38 to 1 point victory over the Demons/Jillaroos.
Credit to the combined team of the Toronto High Park Demons, Boston Demons and Columbus Jillaroos who despite having between them a whole host of Rookies and along with the obvious unfamiliarity factor still played some quality footy. All three teams can go back to their representative cities with a lot of positives to take away from this tournament.
The final round of games saw the Angels beat the combined team by 48 to 2 and all the pressure was now on the New Yorkers who needed to secure a victory by two clear girls over the Swans to advance to the final. For long stages off the game this looked possible but the Pies, who travelled with the smallest squad on the day, legs started to grow heavy and the Swans turned on the after burners to eventually run out 58 to 18 victors.
And so it was the Angels and Swans who took to the field for the final, and what many though was a formality in which the Swans would condemn the Angels to a 6th straight defeat. But in what will go down in history as a historical day for day for footy in Quebec, this game will forever be remembered by the Montreal Angels as their greatest ever achievement. The Swans are a formidable, well coached team oozing class from back pocket to forward pocket and coupled with an earlier trashing by six goals, the Angels put all that to one side and delivered their performance of a lifetime to take home the 2016 AFL Quebec Women’s Tournament by less than a goal.
And while the day was all about Women’s Football, and seemingly mother nature agreed, there was the annual Boston v Montreal Men’s game to round out the day. What is year in, year out a fiercely contested game was made all the more appealing by the introduction of the Devine Cup, in honour of PJ Devine who plied his trade for so long with Montreal and now does so with our counterparts across the border.
The game was also the first time in AFL Quebec history, 18 a side men’s football was played in the province of Quebec. And while the rain started to drizzle down and eventually get heavier, it did little to deter the quality and spirit in which this game was played. Montreal started the brighter and led at quarter time but a strong second and third quarter by the Boston Men saw them take a commanding lead. But credit to the Montreal boys they battled hard but it was too little too late as the Boston Men ran out deserved 13 point winners, 9.10.64 to 7.9.51
Stay tuned for Sébastien's photos!