SUNS AFLW Senior Coach David Lake has challenged his players to make the most of the final week of the 2021 season.

The SUNS were competitive in the first half of the Round 8 match against Carlton on Friday night, but fell away after half-time as the experienced Blues kicked away at Metricon Stadium.

But it was the performance of some of the youngest players afield which had Lake confident the future for the team was bright.

“That first half anyone would be proud of,” Lake said post-match.

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“They’re the things that it’s hard not to get excited about.

“We’ve just got to keep going back and putting the right people around those young players as we take the time to grow.”

The loss means Gold Coast will be left hunting a victory over fellow winless side Geelong when the two teams meet this Saturday at Metricon Stadium for both clubs’ final match of the year.

“We’ve got eight days until another great opportunity, and it’s our last eight days,” he said.

“If that doesn’t get you going, nothing will.

“(We need to) have a positive mindset, you try to bottle the first half and review that then review the second half, but do them in isolation of each other.

“These next four points in terms of preparing the next six months ahead become really important because that’s the last feeling you have when you leave so we need to play like that really matters to us.”

The SUNS play Geelong on Saturday afternoon as part of a double header at Metricon Stadium, with the club also hosting North Melbourne for Round 2 of the men’s season.

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