The Western Bulldogs have given themselves every chance to play VFLW finals next week, after a tightly contested match against Casey on Saturday afternoon.
In front of a passionate home crowd at VU Whitten Oval, it was clear from the first bounce that the Bulldogs had come to play, resulting in a 5.10 (40) to 4.4 (28) upset win.
The victory puts the Bulldogs in sixth position on the ladder, needing results to go their way tomorrow to confirm their spot in the finals series.
Midfielder Isabelle Pritchard set the tone early, winning plenty of the ball with the help of some clever ruckwork by Nicole McMahon.
Key forward Simone Ruedin was a force to be reckoned within the arcs, kicking a major in the first term to give the Bulldogs a handy seven-point lead heading into the first change.
The second quarter was a high scoring affair, with Casey kicking three goals and the Bulldogs converting twice - thanks to the work of forwards Gemma Lagioia and Mary Sandral.
Despite nursing a heavily strapped quadricep, acting captain Katelyn Betts led from the front all day, while Danielle Marshall also proved crucial in defence.
Elisabeth Georgostathis was at her bullocking best in the midfield, providing plenty of aggression at stoppages, as just three points separated the two sides at the last break.
However with a spot in the finals at stake, the Bulldogs put their foot down in the final term.
Consistent performer Lagioia managed to kick her second goal of the game, before young star Trinity Skenderis converted to see the Bulldogs run away with a 12-point victory.
The Bulldogs will now await the results from the upcoming Southern Saints vs North Melbourne clash, with a Kangaroos’ win needed in order to secure a position in next week’s finals series.
WESTERN BULLDOGS 1.2 3.6 3.9 5.10 (40)
CASEY DEMONS 0.1 3.1 4.1 4.4 (28)
GOALS: Lagioia 2, Ruedin, Sandral, Skenderis.