Bella Smith celebrates a goal during the round four match between Sydney and West Coast at Henson Park, September 24, 2023. Picture: Getty Images

SYDNEY has hung on against a determined West Coast to secure its second-ever AFLW victory with a 13-point triumph off the back of a dominant display from ruck Ally Morphett.

The Swans were given a scare in the second half but held on to win their first AFLW clash against the misfiring Eagles 5.4 (34) to 2.9 (21) at Henson Park.

SWANS v EAGLES Full match coverage and stats

Morphett was the most influential player on the ground from the early exchanges and finished with game-highs of 18 contested possessions, 10 clearances and 33 hitouts.


The towering ruck also gathered 20 disposals as she continued to make a strong impression in a breakout season.

While Morphett set the tone for the Swans (2-2), their boom recruit Chloe Molloy added the spark with 13 disposals and two goals.


Molloy looked a class above while also kickstarting the contest with the opening goal of the match, then lit it up with a stunning snap from the boundary in the second term.

Laura Gardiner was busy again and gathered 18 disposals and 11 tackles, while Swans young gun Sofia Hurley (16, eight) enjoyed arguably her best performance so far this season.

Bella Smith was lively in the forward half and booted two goals for the Swans, including a critical long bomb within seconds of the first bounce of the final term.


It was an improved effort from the winless Eagles (0-4) as they controlled periods of the game but ultimately paid the price for failing to make the most of their chances near goal.

Emma Swanson (22 disposals) overcame an early ankle tweak to arguably outdo Molloy’s right foot snap that gave the Eagles hope in the third term, but they lacked the firepower to match the Swans.

Belinda Smith (19), Aisling McCarthy (18) and Dana Hooker (16) also stood out for the Eagles.

Young Eagles ruck Lauren Wakfer (10 disposals, 11 hitouts) battled hard but found it hard to limit the impact of Morphett in the pivotal contest on the result.

Molloy magic mesmerises Swans
Chloe Molloy was superb whether battling for the ball around stoppages or linking play between the arcs. But the Swans' prized recruit still has the tricks to make her biggest impact near goal and lit up the contest with a mesmerising snap in the second term. Molloy gathered a bouncing ball deep in the pocket, had time to switch back onto her right boot and snapped truly for a goal that seemed to stun her teammates as much as the crowd.


Swanson makes most of Eagles forward push
The Eagles improved slightly on their average of 21.3 inside 50s in the opening three rounds to finish with 31 entries against the Swans, but then paid the price for wayward kicking. Emma Swanson took goalscoring into her own hands with a solo effort in the third term that ended with a spectacular right-foot snap from up against the boundary that might have even outdone Molloy.


Up next
Sydney will be out to make it back-to-back wins when it faces Carlton on Friday at 4.05pm AEST. West Coast will continue chasing a first victory of the season when it hosts Port Adelaide the same day at 7:15pm AWST.


SYDNEY             2.0    4.1   4.2    5.4 (34)
WEST COAST     0.4    1.4    2.7    2.9 (21)

Sydney: Molloy 2, Smith 2, C.Hamilton
West Coast: Gibson, Swanson, 

Sydney: Morphett, Molloy, Gardiner, Hurley, McEvoy, Tarrant, Kennedy
West Coast: Swanson, Hooker, Smith, Lewis, Thomas, Roberts 

Sydney: Nil
West Coast: Nil

Crowd: 4,595 at Henson Park