Coming off the back of two big wins in Round 1, both the NSW Swifts and the Adelaide Thunderbirds were looking to build on their start to the season. It was the home side who came out on top, however, with a huge finish that earned them a full eight bonus points.
In the opening minutes though, the Swifts were a bit wobbly, with Paige Hadley making a wayward feed to Sam Wallace that landed straight into the Thunderbirds hands. She quickly made up for it in the next play with an intercept, giving control back to the Swifts.
Despite the accuracy of Sasha Glasgow and Maria Folau’s long bombs, Maddy Turner and Sarah Klau made up huge ground and wrestled the ball back for their home side, even forcing the umpires to call held on Folau.
Swifts jumped ahead 9-6 before the Thunderbirds called their first Time Out late in the first quarter. Good defensive pressure by the Thunderbirds had the Swifts hesitating to pass but their patience paid off. By quarter time, Swifts were ahead by three, 14-11, and claimed the first bonus point of the game.
Swifts capitalised on loose balls between the South Australians in the second quarter, widening the lead to six with nine minutes left of the first half. The Thunderbirds made a reshuffle of their line-up and moved many players around but it didn’t prove to be a winning combination.
Back-to-back intercepts by Turner and Klau built the momentum for the Swifts and the rest of the team responded, storming ahead and outscoring their opponents by 11 goals in the second quarter. At halftime the Swifts held a formidable 14-goal lead, 35-21.
The third quarter started off a bit shaky for the Swifts, throwing away two consecutive balls in the goal circle which Thunderbirds converted into a few extra goals. The Swifts called a quick time out to reset and it paid off for them. Both teams went goal for goal for much of the quarter, with the Swifts winning another bonus point, ending three-quarter time, 48-33.
The fourth quarter proved how strong the Swifts were on all ends of the court, with particularly stellar efforts from Turner and Klau. The NSW side’s lead was too wide for the Thunderbirds to make up ground, with the full time score reading a huge 61-43.
SWIFTS | Q1: 14, Q2: 35 (21), Q3: 48 (13), Q4: 61 (13)
T’BIRDS | Q1: 11, Q2: 21 (10), Q3: 33 (12), Q4: 43 (10)
SWIFTS | GS Sam Wallace, GA Helen Housby, WA Paige Hadley, C Maddy Proud, WD Kate Eddy, GD Maddy Turner, GK Sarah Klau.
T’BIRDS | GS Sasha Glasgow, GA Maria Folau, WA Chelsea Pitman, C Kelly Altmann, WD Beth Cobden, GD Layla Guscoth, GK Shamera Sterling.
SWIFTS | Q4: Garbin on at GS, replacing Wallace, Moore on at WD, replacing Eddy.
T’BIRDS | Q2: Shimmin on in GK, Sterling moved to GD, Guscoth moved to WD, Beth Cobden off, Glasgow off, Lange in GA, Folau moved to GS.
Q3: Shimmin in GD, Sterling to GK, Glasgow in GA.
Q4: Cobden on at WD.
SWIFTS: 61/65 @ 94%
S Wallace: 31/31 @ 100%
H Housby: 24/28 @ 86%
S Garbin: 6/6 @ 100%
T’BIRDS: 43/52 @ 83%
Folau: 19/23 @ 83%
Glasgow: 24/28 @ 86%
MVP: Helen Housby