ELLIE La Monte has returned from a national tournament in Canberra no doubt looking to be selected for Perth Glory again this year.
The High Wycombe teenager debuted for Glory last season as a 16-year-old before a back injury put her out for a few months.
She has not long returned to the field and scored for WA against Victoria at the Girls National Training Centre (NTC) Challenge.
Coach Jessine Bonzas said the performance of the WA team, which drew six of its seven matches, was further evidence of the state’s improving talent.
“The girls had a really good week and they come back in great spirits and ready to continue their development,” she said.
“We were competitive the whole week – the consistency was there – and that hasn’t always been the case in the past. There were some games where we absolutely dominated and we just couldn’t convert out chances.
“We drew with Northern NSW, who were the top team, and NSW, who were second, and it’s the first time WA has taken a point off NSW in an NTC Challenge, so there are a lot of positives.”
WA’s Roisin Connolly and goalkeeper Morgan Aquino made the Select Team, consisting of players identified as the best at the tournament and who have the potential to play for the Matildas.
Though most players at the championship were 16 and 17, the WA squad included five 15-year-old players, including Aquino.
Georgie Ireland, Rosie Lehane, Cheyenne Wise-Jarvis and Alexia Moreno also showed ability beyond their years.
“All of the younger players stepped up and we saw so much growth from them,” Bonzas said.
“It showed that investing in our young talent, giving them opportunities and fast-tracking their development is a very good approach.”
The girls attended a workshop from Matildas coach Alen Stajcic and former national team player Heather Garriock.
They also watched the Matildas train for the Rio Olympics and met with WA striker and Australia captain Lisa De Vanna.