Trio picked for academy

By Jamie Lowe

Three Deniliquin footballers were recently selected for the Goulburn Murray Youth Girls Academy.

Deni Rovers players Jemika and Shaleah Cooper, along with Jerrah Caruso will all put their football skills to the test as part of the academy.

The program focuses on fundamental skill development, healthy habits and an introduction to strength and conditioning for girls aged 12 to 15. 

Jerrah’s mother Kylee Caruso said it is an outstanding opportunity for all three girls.

‘‘This it the first year they’re running this program,’’ she said.

‘‘It’s a good way for them to get their foot in the door if they want to further their football careers.

‘‘They will compete in various footy carnivals throughout the year, but with Jerrah being a bottom-aged player she may take a few years to reach that stage.

‘‘One thing that made Jerrah excited is the fact that the academy is affiliated with Richmond’s AFLW side. She’s a mad Tigers fanatic.’’

All three girls have got to know each other quite well recently, having all played as part of the Riverina Girls Aussie Rules side in 2019 and being teammates at the Rovers.

‘‘They’re all similar  personalities so that has made things a little easier for them all to settle,’’ Kylee said.

‘‘Jerrah was quite nervous for her first day at the academy, worried that she wouldn’t know anyone.

‘‘Then she saw the two Cooper girls there and she was all good.’’