Crows AFLW finals hopes survive after win

The Adelaide Crows remain in AFLW finals contention after a narrow win in their must-win clash with Fremantle.

The Crows hung on during a tight last quarter on Friday to triumph over the Dockers 6.4 (40) to 5.6 (36) in in Darwin.

Adelaide led for most of the first quarter and all of the second, before momentum swung in the third and the Dockers clawed back the margin to just one point by the three-quarter time break.

Star forward Erin Phillips played a major role in her side's win after only playing half of last week's game due to "quad awareness".

Last season's league best and fairest kicked two goals in the first quarter and a third in the last to seal Adelaide's win, while defender Sarah Allan fended off a number of late Fremantle attacks.

Angela Foley, acting as captain for the night in front of her home crowd, proved crucial in keeping the Crows in the contest after a quiet third quarter.

Adelaide coach Bec Goddard said the team had not won in Darwin before and "had a point to prove".

"Our Darwin contingent make a sacrifice every week," she said.

"They deserve to have a win in front of their family and their friends and their home crowd and that was a really key point that we made pre-match today."

In addition to Foley, the Crows drafted Sophie Armistead, Stevie-Lee Thompson and Jasmyn Hewett from the Northern Territory.

Hot and humid conditions prompted the AFLW to invoke its heat policy, extending the breaks between quarters.

The sixth-placed Dockers proved stiff competition throughout the match, with Dana Hooker finishing on 20 disposals and kicking a goal late in the fourth to keep her side in contention.

Goddard said Hayley Miller, Kara Donnellan and Ebony Antonio had also proven damaging for the Dockers.

"The just kept that pressure on because they're experienced and cool heads under pressure," she said.

The Crows move into second position on the ladder following their win, and will travel to Melbourne to take on Collingwood in the last round of the season next week, while Fremantle are at home to Carlton.