Former Geelong Falcons midfielder Olivia Purcell was nominated for the 2019 NAB AFL Women’s Rising Star award following a stellar performance for the Geelong Cats in Round 5.
In what was her fifth AFLW match, the 161cm 19-year-old racked up 20 disposals, laid 10 tackles and kicked a goal in the Cats’ 27-point victory over Brisbane at Moreton Bay in Queensland on Saturday.
— AFL Women's (@aflwomens) March 2, 2019
Purcell was selected by Geelong with pick no.14 at the 2018 AFLW Draft after starring in the Falcons’ undefeated run to the Victorian U18 Girls premiership. The tough on-baller claimed the club’s best-and-fairest award – ahead of competition best-and-fairest and subsequent no.1 AFLW Draft pick Nina Morrison – and earned a second straight U18 Girls Team of the Year guernsey.
She also represented Vic Country in four games at the 2018 AFLW U18 Championships, after which she was named in the AFLW U18 All Australian team.
The St Mary’s (Geelong FL) product then played five Swisse Wellness VFL Women’s games for Geelong later in 2018, including all three of the club’s finals. She recorded 19 disposals and 11 tackles to be among the VFLW Cats’ best players in their Grand Final loss to Hawthorn.
Purcell joins fellow former Victorian U18 Girls players Nina Morrison (Geelong Falcons to Geelong AFLW), Madison Prespakis (Calder Cannons to Carlton AFLW), Eden Zanker (Bendigo Pioneers to Melbourne) and Sarah Dargan (Calder Cannons to Collingwood AFLW) as AFLW Rising Star nominees this year.