Darley is showing encouraging signs in the first few rounds of the AFL Goldfields’ Women’s competition.

Fielding a side for the first time, the Devils are facing some teams with more than five years’ experience.

Coach Peter Curran said the other teams had been surprised how they had adapted to the game.

He said they had 23 players on their list, many who had never played before. Several players had joined the club just weeks out from the start of the season.

“About 90 per cent of the side is made up of brand new footballers,” he said. “Some had never kicked a football, let alone played before.

“We had one lady join 20 minutes before our second game. She’s an ex-kick boxer, who didn’t know a thing about footy.

“What they’ve learnt in the last month or two is magnificent.

“We’re new to the league, some teams have been around for four to five years.”

While the Devils are yet to win a game, Curran said there was plenty of pleasing signs.

He said the coaching staff of Ballarat congratulated them on their performance in round two, as they were shocked at the level they had played at.

He said their off field bond was starting to show on the field.

On Sunday, the Devils lost to Carisbrook 13.5 (83)-0.0 (0). Curran said for the side this year, it wasn’t about the scoreboard.

He said it was about learning the game and starting to provide that pathway for the junior players coming through.

“They love getting out there and it’s like a second home,” he said.

“They’re having fun and improving and wins are a bonus.”

Curran has been involved with the club’s female program since it started. He coached the youth girls side in its first four years, before coaching the club’s first under-13 side last year.

“The aim is to develop a side and with the top age under-18s coming through, there’s a bit of talent coming through.

“It’s the last piece of the pathway and moving forward we have high expectations in four to five years.”

He said he loved the game and had the passion to share his knowledge with those coming through.

“The girls really listen and they want to learn.

“It’s just a good feeling.”

In other results, Bacchus Marsh proved no match for Gisborne. After splitting their two matches last season, the Bulldogs easily won on Sunday, winning 12.10 (82)-0.2 (2).

Caitlin Mahony was named the best for the Cobras. Melton Centrals had the bye.