<
>

Late goal gives Magpies tight AFLW win

play
Giants will 'never forget' Jacinda Barclay (1:12)

GWS star Alyce Parker remembers the life and legacy of the late Jacinda Barclay, and says her former teammate remains a big part of the values and attitudes currently lived by at the Giants. (1:12)

Collingwood's two-point AFLW win over St Kilda came down to the impossible miss and the improbable goal.

After Nicola Stevens blew what would have been the match-winning goal for the Saints from point-blank range, Eliza James celebrated her 19th birthday with a miracle goal that gave the Magpies the lead.

Collingwood then held on in the frantic last minute on Saturday at Moorabbin and won 4.12 (36) to 5.4 (34), avoiding a massive upset.

With three minutes left and the Saints four points ahead, they broke clear through the middle and a long pass found Stevens by herself in their forward 50m.

She could have strolled into goal, but hurried the kick and somehow only managed a behind.

"She'll probably identify that moment and be bitterly disappointed," Saints coach Nick Dal Santo said.

"I will be highlighting the other 50 throughout the game where she was superb and gave us opportunities to go forward, tackled ferociously and kept the ball in our front half or through the middle of the ground."

The Magpies, meanwhile, had blown several gettable chances themselves during the last quarter.

Then James nailed probably the hardest shot of the match, with her snap from an acute angle bouncing through.

It was reminiscent of Collingwood's improbable run of tight wins during the AFL season and AFLW coach Steve Symonds said that is no coincidence.

"One thing we did take away from our men's program this year is their ability, when they're behind, to just keep on being really bold with the attacking," he said.

"We've taken that mindset as well."

But Symonds said the game was tighter than they would have hoped, noting the Magpies led in several key categories.

They won the clearances 28-20 - centre clearances were particularly important - and dominated inside 50s 37-21.

"It's the old saying, scoreboard pressure is the biggest thing, isn't it?," Symonds said.

"When you don't capitalise on your opportunities, you leave your opposition there."

One area where St Kilda impressed was their tackling, with 74 to 59, and they brought plenty of pressure to bear on the third-placed Pies.

But ultimately, they could not quite nail the win.

"My initial emotion is probably disappointment - I felt like we did a lot of things right," Dal Santo said.

St Kilda's Hannah Stuart was best afield with 25 disposals and two goals, while key position player Kate Shierlaw kicked a goal in the last term and was mighty with her marking and pressure.

Collingwood acting captain Ruby Schleicher impressed in the midfield with 20 possessions.