Women's Panthers set Monaro finals charge

Monaro Panthers Women's Premier League player Ashleigh Palombi in action against ANU in May. Photo: Joshua Matic.

Monaro Panthers Women's Premier League player Ashleigh Palombi in action against ANU in May. Photo: Joshua Matic.

MONARO Panthers attacking weapon Ashleigh Palombi admitted "it was good to see how well" her side played while missing some of it's core players for almost two months.

The club's women's side will play their last Women's Premier League match before heading into the finals when they take on Weston-Molonglo at ANU Willows on Sunday.

But being just a single win behind League champions Belconnen United has been a huge effort for the girls, with coach Tilly Carbone previously admitting they had been tested in missing Palombi, her sister Brittany, Jaline Hoek, Hayley Hind, Nikola Orgill and Liz McPherson for almost two months.

And with Belconnen set to be without their four Canberra United W-League players throughout the finals, plus Monaro being back at full strength, the Panthers will be well on track to claim their first premiership in their second season.

Palombi was one of the competition's highest goal scorers before embarking on several weeks of holidays, and has since returned to her best form. The team lost two games straight 5-0 but hit back to win seven of their last nine matches.

"It was great to keep track of the results and see how well they were doing," said Ashleigh Palombi.

Palombi said there was a great feeling of confidence heading into the last round and the finals series.

"We've had some good games in the last few weeks, and although Belconnen took the minor premiership, we've had a great season altogether, everyone's been feeling good about it, and Tilly's been leading us well," she said.

The competition is already looking a split image of last season, with Belconnen finishing on top and Monaro second.

Monaro will be without star striker Meg McLaughlin, who is now in training with Canberra United. With a record 35 goals this season, she could prove to be a big loss.

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