NSW fight hard in losses to old rivals

Both NSW 17/U & 19/U Teams have been dealt losses by Victoria in Round Four of the National Netball Championships in Darwin.  The 17s were defeated by 12 goals, while the 19s –w ho led at the first break – finished with a nine goal deficit at the final whistle.

The 17/U State Team took the court first, with the match played hard and fast from the very first whistle.  The two teams traded goals for much of the quarter, however NSW GK Ashley Valeni gave away 18cm to her opponent GS Emma Ryde-Coad, which VIC used to their advantage to open a small lead at the first break.

A tough and physical game, the young NSW midcourt tried to move the ball quickly to their attacking end to feed possession to their shooters and leaders GS Georgia Marshall and GA Lauren Yager. NSW were able to close the gap on their old rivals, however a run of three goals late in the quarter saw VIC go into half-time with a 10 goal advantage, 21-11.

Head Coach Lenore Blades made her one and only change for the game, bringing on Hills District junior Natasha Strachan to WD.  NSW were able to open the score for the second half, with vice-captain Yager pumping up her teammates at every centre pass.

With her fresh legs, Strachan looked to lift her NSW teammates with her defensive play – cutting off passes and limiting the space for the VIC midcourt to feed into their shooters. Despite a bigger effort from NSW in the second half, VIC were able to hold on and finish the match 12 goals clear to claim victory.

Captain Georgia Marshall said the team were gutted to lose, but know they can’t dwell too much on tonight’s match.

“It’s really disappointing to lose – you always want to win, especially against VIC – but I thought our second half was much better, we just need to build on that for tomorrow,” Marshall said.

NSW 19/U started their match against VIC strongly, winning the first quarter eight goals to four with captain Brooke Lawrence making a statement early by intercepting VIC first centre pass.

However VIC regrouped in the second quarter, putting on a superb defensive effort to limit the ball to NSW shooters.  VIC set up a ‘box’ zone at the top of NSW attacking third to limit the space for players to run into, which saw NSW limited to just two goals for the quarter.

At the other end, GK Billie Gurr had her hands full with VIC GS Megan Rosser, who combined with GA Elle Rice, missed just two goals between them for the first half to give VIC a four goal lead at the big break, 14-10.

VIC carried their momentum through to the second half, opening the score before the teams traded goals.  NSW were able to put three in a row to claw back the deficit, however VIC finished the quarter strongly putting on four unanswered goals to extend their lead to seven.

A fast-paced a physical match, players from both sides were throwing themselves at the ball in aid of their teammates, with the noise increasing as the clock wore down.  In the end NSW second quarter proved costly as VIC held out to claim victory, 27-18.

Gutted with the loss to their old rivals, captain Brooke Lawrence said the team need to pick themselves up and move on quickly.

“We can’t dwell on tonight’s loss (against VIC) … tonight we just weren’t good enough, but I believe in this team that we can learn from our mistakes and come back stronger tomorrow and for the rest of the week,” said Lawrence.

“The second quarter was really disappointing, and we let ourselves down, but I’m really proud that the girls didn’t give up; they kept at it, so I’m really proud of them and looking forward to learning and building on tonight for ACT tomorrow.”

Due to a knee injury sustained in their Round Three victory against Northern Territory, 19/U defender Tahlia Goodwin will not participate in the remainder of the Nationals tournament . Tahlia will stay with the team and continue to work with Netball NSW medical staff for the rest of the week, before seeking further treatment from specialists upon her arrival home.

NSW are back on court 9.30am (local time) tomorrow (Wednesday 10 April) when the 19/U State Team meets ACT, before the 17/U side take the court against ACT at 11.00am. Stay tuned to facebook.com/OfficialNetballNSW for quarter score updates and photos.

17/U Quarter-by-Quarter Scores
NSW Q1: 5 – Q2: 11 (6) – Q3: 19 (8) – Q4: 26 (7)
VIC Q1: 10 – Q2: 21 (11) – Q3: 29 (8) – Q4: 38 (9)

17/U Shooting Statistics
NSW: 26/34 @ 76%
Georgia Marshall: 11/16 @ 69%
Lauren Yager: 15/18 @ 83%

VIC: 38/47 @ 81%
Emma Ryde-Coad: 19/25 @ 76%
Alice Teague-Neeld: 19/22 @ 86%

17/U Teams Starting Positions
NSW: GS Georgia Marshall (c), GA Lauren Yager (vc), WA Charlotte Jasprizza, C Elyssa Pierce, WD Madeleine McCathie, GD Cassandra Radford, GK Ashley Valeni
VIC: GS Emma Ryde-Coad, GA Alice Teague-Neeld (c), WA Libby Birch, C Emily Browne, WD Casey Adamson, GD Victoria Honner, GK Stephanie Boyce

NSW 17/U Position Changes Q3: Natasha Strachan WD

19/ U Quarter-by-Quarter Scores
NSW Q1: 8 – Q2: 10 (2) – Q3: 15 (5) – Q4: 18 (3)
VIC Q1: 4 – Q2: 14 (10) – Q3: 22 (8) – Q4: 27 (5)

19/ U Shooting Statistics
NSW: 18/26 @ 69%
Claudia Russell: 9/14 @ 64%
Stephanie MacGougan: 6/9 @ 67%
Isabella Keogh: 3/3 @ 100%

VIC: 27/32 @ 84%
Megan Rosser: 20/21 @ 95%
Elle Rice: 7/11 @ 64%

19/U Teams Starting Positions
NSW: GS Claudia Russell (vc), GA Stephanie MacGougan, WA Tanisha Stanton, C Zoe Gilbert, WD Madeline Hay, GD Brooke Lawrence (c), GK Billie Gurr
VIC: GS Megan Rosser, GA Elle Rice, WA Maggie Lind (c), C Vanessa Augustini, WD Maggie Taumaoe, GD Chloe Watson (vc), GK Emily Mannix

19/U NSW Position Changes
Q3: Gloria Masiasomua WA, Stanton C; Q4: Isabella Keogh GS, Russell GA