Vice-captain Bess Keaney believes the SUNS are as well-placed as they’ve ever been to charge home in the second half of the AFLW home & away season.

The SUNS sit inside the top eight with three wins from its five matches so far ahead of a crucial clash with Richmond at IKON Park on Sunday afternoon.

Keaney, now in her fourth season at the club, says there’s an infectious buzz amongst the group.

“To be at this point of the season and to feel the energy in the group, I’m really optimistic about the second half of the season and who we have here that can hopefully take us really far this year,” Keaney said.

“This is the most excited I’ve felt about the group that we have.”

The SUNS have taken stocktake from Sunday’s defeat against the Crows with plenty of positives coming from the clash.

Gold Coast finished on the right side of the ledger in a number of key statistics, including contested possessions, a figure that sits at the core of the side’s DNA. 

Ensuring the SUNS can translate its work around the contest and in its defensive half into scoring opportunities will be key to taming the Tigers.

“Obviously there’s work to be done on execution and going inside 50 and capitalising more, but the pressure around the footy and the defensive work led by our defensive line was really impressive (against Adelaide),” Keaney added.

That optimism is shared throughout the group with off-season recruit Maddy Brancatisano echoing her vice-captain.

“Playing week-in, week-out with this group, it’s really exciting football we’re producing. We have confidence in our game and ability to challenge the best teams,” Brancatisano said.

The former Tiger is in contention to face her old side for the first time since making the move to the Sunshine State but won’t be placing any extra emphasis on the occasion, rather focusing on the pursuit of a fourth win of the season.

“I’ll back our game style in (against Richmond’s),” she continued.

“I’ll treat it like any other game. Once the ball gets thrown up, it’s the same as every week.”

The two sides enter the contest with three wins apiece having met twice before in the AFLW for a win each.

First bounce at IKON Park is at 3.05pm AEDT. The match will be broadcast on Kayo, Fox Footy and the Seven Network (check your local guides).