NSW hold out spirited WA

The NSW 17/U Team have maintained a perfect record on the opening day of the 2014 National Netball Championships, overcoming a passionate Western Australia 38-19 in Round 2 of competition.

WA came out guns blazing by stringing consecutive goals together, but that was all they’d score until the final minute of the opening quarter with NSW putting on terrific defensive pressure.  With GK Cassandra Radford going hunting for the long ball into the third, the defender ensured WA’s shooters were starved of possession.

Despite an injury timeout disrupting NSW’s momentum, Prudence Ellis didn’t miss a beat when coming onto GS for Brooke Fennings to combine well with mobile GA Kiera Austin.  Between them they moved well in the circle to provide options for their midcourters, seeing NSW take a 7-3 lead into the first break.

It was a more even affair in the second quarter with neither side gaining ascendency over the other.  When NSW scored, WA were quick to reply; it came down to luck as players threw themselves at every contest.

NSW GA Austin had her eye in, nailing shots from all over the circle however was ably assisted by tall target Ellis.  With NSW finding late form the Blues were able to extend their lead to 9 goals at the big break, 18-9.

The two sides picked up where they left off for the start of the second half, putting on an arm wrestle for spectators in the stands.  Midcourters Claire O’Brien, Kristen Kessler and Amy Parmenter provided plenty of speed and defensive pressure to enable NSW shooters to keep chipping away at the scoreboard.

As the intensity lifted NSW stayed level headed to maintain an 11 goal advantage at the final break, 25-14.

Gaha made further changes to her side, rejigging the midcourt and defensive end with fresh legs to lift her side for the final quarter.  NSW Captain Parmenter opened play with an intercept to set up an exciting final 10 minutes of play.

With a sniff at their second win from as many appearances, NSW continued to do the basics with WA unable to chase down their lead.  In the end NSW were able to post a 19 goal victory despite the contest seeming much closer on court.

NSW will enjoy a well-earned rest tonight before they’re back in action tomorrow at 9:15am AEST where they will meet Tasmania in Round 3.  Stay tuned to Netball NSW social media channels for live score updates throughout the match;
Instagram @netballnsw – using the hashtags #17UNetball #GoNSW

Quarter-by-Quarter Scores
NSW│ Q1: 7 – Q2: 18 (9) – Q3: 25 (7) – Q4: 38 (13)
WA│ Q1: 3 – Q2: 9 (6) – Q3: 14 (5) – Q4: 19 (5)

Shooting Statistics
NSW: 38/59 @ 64%
Brooke Fennings: 5/6 @ 83%
Kiera Austin: 15/23 @ 65%
Prudence Ellis: 18/30 @ 60%

WA: 19/30 @ 63%
Alex Morgan: 2/5 @ 40%
Miquela Vos: 9/16 @ 56%
A Bennett: 5/5 @ 100%
Moeriana Bullen: 3/4 @ 75%

Starting Line-ups
NSW│ GS Brooke Fennings, GA Kiera Austin, WA Kristen Kessler, C Claire O’Brien, WD Amy Parmenter (c), GD Lauren Moore, GK Cassandra Radford

WA│ GS Alex Morgan, GA Miquela Vos, WA Helen Taylor, C Tyler Rollo, WD Phoebe Wilcox, GD Natalie Bright, GK Hannah Cadlolo

Positional Changes
NSW│ Q1 Timeout – GS Prudence Ellis; Q4 – WA O’Brien, C Kessler, GD Kirra Jones, GK Moore.