The AHL Finals will be played on the Gold Coast from 25-28 October, with the quarter-finals commencing on Thursday.
Saturday's action saw wins for the Canberra Strikers, WA Diamonds and Queensland Scorchers, with the Scorchers’ ruthless 15-0 victory in Brisbane over the Tassie Van Demons confirming top spot in Pool A and a quarter-final meeting with NT Pearls.
The NT Pearls went down 5-1 to the WA Diamonds in Perth, securing WA third spot in the pool and NT fourth.
WA will play the NSW Arrows in the quarter-finals, after NSW lost 2-0 to the Canberra Strikers in a weather-affected match.
Canberra Strikers 2 (Middleton 28' PP) NSW Arrows 0, Canberra
The NSW Arrows have slipped into second spot in Pool A ahead of the quarter-finals after a weather-affected 2-0 loss to the Canberra Strikers at the National Hockey Centre.
The Strikers win, though, wasn't enough to claim second spot, after Queensland won 15-0 later in the day to leapfrog both sides.
Saturday afternoon’s match was delayed 30 minutes following lightning and storms in Canberra before the hosts piled on the pressure with a series of penalty corners.
Eventually they broke through during their PumpPlay late in the first-half, when English recruit Beckie Middleton deflected home on the slide, with the goal worth double.
NSW mustered plenty of attacking threats but were unable to penetrate before the conditions worsened again with five minutes to play.
Play was suspended and eventually the match was called off, with Canberra declared 2-0 winners.
WA Diamonds 5 (Squibb 40’, 40’, 56’ PP, Slattery 43’) NT Pearls 1 (Martin-Brown 8’), Perth
The WA Diamonds have claimed third spot in their pool and will face the NSW Arrows in Thursday’s quarter-finals after a 5-1 win over the NT Pearls at Perth Hockey Stadium on Saturday.
Penny Squibb accumulated four of WA’s goals, while Hockeyroo Kathryn Slattery grabbed the other after the struggling Pearls had taken a shock half-time lead.
After an early chance to Pearls’ Jacqueline Graf, Jessica Martin-Brown poked home at the far post to give the visitors an eighth minute lead, although WA keeper Aleisha Power saved from the field goal conversion attempt to keep it 1-0.
Sienna Archer almost levelled for WA with a diving deflection in the 24th minute but the visitors maintained their lead until the long interval.
WA came out of the blocks after half-time with renewed finesse in attack, winning a 40th minute penalty stroke which Squibb slotted past NT keeper Elizabeth Duguid.
Great Southern product Squibb followed up with an audacious lob from the field goal conversion to put WA ahead.
Slattery deflected home from a 43rd minute penalty corner to add to the Diamonds’ lead.
Squibb put the icing on the cake, which she fired past Duguid with a 56th minute drag flick from a penalty corner during WA’s PumpPlay, meaning the goal was worth double.
NT’s Hockeyroo Brooke Peris forced Power into a good reflex save in the 57th minute but WA preserved their 5-1 lead.
Queensland Scorchers 15 (Kershaw 3’, 3’, Malone 10’, 10’, 27’ PP, 27’, 46’, 46’, Greiner 23’, 23’, Kenny 28’ PP, 28’, Holzberger 39’) Tassie Van Demons 0, Brisbane
The Queensland Scorchers have sealed top spot in their pool, condemning the Tassie Van Demons to bottom spot after an emphatic 15-0 thrashing at Brisbane’s State Hockey Centre on Saturday night.
Queensland were ruthless throughout the contest, needing a six-goal win to claim top spot, but they didn’t relent.
Hockeyroos Steph Kershaw and Rosie Malone both scored and took their conversions to make it 4-0 at quarter-time.
Rebecca Greiner netted a field goal and the subsequent conversion to make it 6-0 in the 23rd minute, before the hosts took their PumpPlay late in the second period.
And they capitalised on their PumpPlay as Gold Coast product Malone netted a converted field goal, while Jodie Kenny fired home a penalty stroke and the conversion to make it 12-0 at the main break.
Jordyn Holzberger added another in the 39th minute from a penalty corner, before Malone capped a prolific night with another field goal and conversion.