HUNGRY FOR NEXT STEP: Jessy Keeffe of the Brisbane Lions in action against Collingwood at Victoria Park last Sunday. The 22-year-old wants to stay with the Lions next season.
HUNGRY FOR NEXT STEP: Jessy Keeffe of the Brisbane Lions in action against Collingwood at Victoria Park last Sunday. The 22-year-old wants to stay with the Lions next season. David Layden

EXCLUSIVE: Keeffe talks footy future, landmark AFLW season

AFLW: Her season might have come to a premature end when the Brisbane Lions fell short of the AFLW finals, but Jessy Keeffe remains optimistic of a bright future as she reflects on a landmark year.

Jessy was on the field when the Lions handed Collingwood their only win for 2019 last Sunday afternoon, which also left Brisbane one game short of a preliminary final berth against Adelaide.

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The former Gympie 22-year-old said the missed opportunities had weighed heavily on the players' minds since Sunday's final siren.

"We knew going into the game that (Collingwood) would be firing and ready to go,” Keeffe said.

"They hadn't won a game all year and we knew they'd be looking to end their season on a high note with everything to play for.

"It was pretty disappointing. We had what it took to beat them and we missed a lot of opportunities, but this will just fire us up even more and give us more passion and drive heading into next season.”

Keeffe, selected by the Lions with Pick 48 in the 2017 AFLW draft, successfully made her professional debut in the side's Round 4 triumph over the Western Bulldogs.

In her next game, despite losing to Geelong, a stand-out performance earned her a spot in the AFLW Team of the Week.

The 186cm ruck said she hadn't taken much stock of the milestones since the defeat, but she would look back on the achievements with pride later on.

Entering an off-season which brings a degree of uncertainty for all players, Keeffe said her priority would be to re-main with the Lions should a new contract be offered.

"This year has been so jam-packed, there has been so much going on, but there were certainly some confidence boosts for me.

"I'm a confidence player, so it was good for me to prove to myself that I can play at this level.

"The trade period doesn't open until April but I love Brisbane, I love the club and I love my life here so re-signing would be ideal.

"All my family is here so I definitely want to stay.”

Keeffe said she had plenty of footy to keep her busy in the offseason, with commitments to Yeronga in the QAFLW and the Brisbane Lions in the AFLW winter series.

She said she'd be keeping a close eye on older brother Lachlan, who looks likely to play with the GWS Giants on Sunday.