If her first AFLW goal and a win on home turf wasn’t enough to solidify Saturday night’s game as one Danielle Ponter will never forget, a Rising Star nomination will do it.
The young Crow is the first Northern Territory player to be nominated for the AFL Women's Rising Star. She is also Adelaide’s first nomination for 2019 after kicking two majors and finishing with a 90 per cent disposal efficiency in front of family and friends at TIO Stadium in Darwin.
The naturally-gifted footballer shined in her first move into the forward lines since making her debut in Round Two, contributing to the Crows' 42-point victory over Fremantle.
It was only fitting that inaugural AFLW Rising Star Ebony Marinoff broke the news.
From West Lakes, Marinoff put in a call to Ponter as she arrived at the Michael Long Learning and Leadership Centre in Darwin.
The pair discussed whether the 19-year-old had done enough to hold on to her spot in the forward line before Marinoff told the new Crow she had good news.
“Do you reckon you lit the show up, enough to be a star? Do you reckon you’re a rising star?” Marinoff asked.
“Bulls**t,” was Ponter’s reply, her shock evident as she took in the news.
“You’re the Round Four nominated for the Rising Star mate,” Marinoff said.
“Oh wow,” Ponter said.
Ponter is the latest in her family of talented footballers to thrive at AFL level, being the niece of Essendon legend Michael long and Hawthorn great Cyril Rioli.
She was the Crows’ fourth selection and pick No. 48 overall in the 2018 NAB AFL Women’s Draft.
All AFLW players 21 years and under as at 1 January 2019 and who have not previously been nominated as a rising star qualify for consideration for the award.
AFLW 2019 Rising Star nominees
Round One: Nina Morrison (Geelong), Alyce Parker (GWS Giants)
Round Two: Madison Prespakis (Carlton), Sabreena Duffy (Fremantle)
Round Three: Courteney Munn (North Melbourne), Eden Zanker (Melbourne)
Round Four: Danielle Ponter (Adelaide), Sarah Dargan (Collingwood)
Two players will be nominated each week of the NAB AFL Women’s season. Each of the 14 NAB AFL Women’s Rising Star nominees throughout the season will be awarded $500 prize money from NAB to acknowledge their great achievement. In addition, NAB will continue to support the development of future footy stars by awarding junior clubs of each nominee with a NAB Club Recognition Award pack of practical and financial resources, valued at over $2500.
The overall NAB AFL Women’s Rising Star winner will be awarded $20,000 from NAB and a private banker to assist with securing their financial future.