The Victorian Fury have claimed the 2019 Deakin University Australian Netball League (DUANL) gold medal, defeating the Netball NSW Waratahs in a one-goal thriller.
In what was the game of the season the Fury looked down and out in the final quarter, trailing by three goals after leading for most of the match, but dug deep in the dying minutes to find a way past the dogged Waratahs and grab an unforgettable 54-53 victory.
For the Waratahs it was a silver medal finish to their season, but young attacker Sophie Dwyer was very impressive, taking out the Finals MVP award.
It was an eighth DUANL title for the Victorians, who overcame the Canberra Giants in the semi-final on Saturday, 12 months after falling in the semi-finals despite being minor premiers.
The Victorians have all but owned the DUANL competition from its inception in 2008, winning seven of 11 titles, but came up short in each of the last two seasons.
The Fury led for the majority of the contest, grabbing the ascendency in the second quarter, with goal shooter Emma Ryde picking up where she left off yesterday.
Ryde, who finished the season with 609 goals, was named the competition’s most valuable player.
Netball NSW Waratahs hung tough and chipped away at the margin, tying things up with a goal from goal attack Dwyer inside the last two minutes of the final quarter.
Throwing everything at the Victorians in the final moments, NSW were unable to come up with a turnover, leaving the visitors with silver.
Defending Australian Netball League champions the Tasmanian Magpies walked away with third place in the 2019 tournament, after overcoming the Canberra Giants in the bronze medal playoff.
The Magpies were pushed all the way by a determined Canberra outfit, with the result in the balance until the final minutes of the game, but they hung on to prevail by nine goals, 59-50.