A chance conversation led to the girls from Kangaroo Island being invited to play in the Great Southern Football League Women’s competition.
That conversation was was with Yankalilla female football player Emma Crisp and the Yank’s club sports trainer at the South Australian Sports Medicine Association FAST Conference in February.
The outcome was that the KI girls would join the Yankalilla Women’s Football Team in Divisions U13, U16 and Open competing in women’s competition being played on Sundays.
That season finished in June and it has been a wonderful opportunity for the KI girls to be able to play in an all-girls football competition.
Four girls took up this opportunity, Ozzie Osborne and Amy Stevens in U16 and Eliza Havelberg and Kat Dodgson in Open.
We were faced with the prospect of covering the cost involved in getting them to the mainland every weekend.
We sought Sponsorship and are extremely grateful to Craig Wilson at Yankalilla Football Club and our sponsors, The Shed American River, Maggie’s Photography, KI Kitchen, Island Resort, Queenscliffe Hotel and Mogas.
SeaLink also gave us three trips as sponsorship. This enabled us to send an adult to accompany the players and sometimes a vehicle each week.
The U16’s reached the finals but were defeated in the Second Division final.
The Open team only won one game and the coach Craig said it was a credit to the ladies to play as well as they did because only three of them had ever played football before.
One of these is our very own Kat Dodgson.
Kat played football as a youngster in Kingscote Senior Colts but when the Colts age denied her, she gave it away as there were no opportunities for slightly built girls to play in Reserves.
So at age 23 she donned the boots again and had a bumper of a year, she was selected to try out in the Inter Association Women’s team but narrowly missed a place.
She is a determined, plucky, gutsy little rover who went into every scrimmage in an attempt to get the ball getting herself quite a few nasty bruises.
She was rewarded for her efforts at the Yankalilla Women’s Football presentation dinner, winning the Most Valuable Player for her team as nominated by her teammates.
We are planning to continue this program next year and hope that more Island girls will take up the opportunities provided by playing all-girls football. – Maggie Patterson, KI Women’s Football Coordinator