20th May 2018
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Hotly-contested match as Loungers see off AHS by single goal in netball first division

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Loungers defeated AHS by a single goal in the netball first division while Team Rowley had a thumping win over Wastside. In the third division there were victories for Hotfooters and Scallywags.
Division One

Loungers 27, AHS 26

This was undoubtedly the closest game these two sides have ever played together. AHS immediately started to pull ahead and netted the first few goals. Loungers initially took a while to settle into the game and to keep the ball in their play.

Both sets of shooters rarely missed a shot in the first half of the game. However, the Loungers shooters had to fight hard to get into their preferred positions and relied on their WA and C at the edge of the circle to support them. The first quarter ended 9-6 to AHS.

AHS continued to keep hold of their lead in the second quarter and ended it 14-11.

Both teams changed some player positions going into the third quarter. By this point Loungers were looking more comfortable despite the fast pace of play. All the AHS players defended extremely tightly throughout the whole game.

Loungers felt the tight marking on them and responded with careful but strong passing making every effort not to lose the ball. As a result, for the first time in the game Loungers gained a lead. However, AHS didn’t let this last and continued to play well, getting their lead back in the third quarter to end it two goals ahead.

Loungers looked calmer in the fourth quarter and they really started to play their own game. The Loungers defence in the circle did particularly well at catching the rebounds and capitalising on them. For the second time in the game, Loungers gradually pulled ahead to even the score with AHS.

Throughout the last quarter it was particularly hard fought and too difficult for anyone to call. With a minute remaining on the clock Loungers pulled ahead to increase their lead by one goal. When the whistle blew for time it was too late for AHS to equalise.

Players of the match were Hazel Uren for Loungers and Claire Morris for AHS.

Team Rowley 60, Wastside 15

Team Rowley started the stronger team, immediately applying pressure on Wastside. Shooter Lisa Morrison was on fine form along side shooting partner Marie Clark who was creating space and conducting excellent play up the Rowley attacking half, assisted by centre court players Karen Mackay and Julie Kirkness. The first quarter ended 16-4 to TR.

The second quarter saw Wastside struggle as Rowley were finding their form, linking well up and down either end of the court. Anne Wood and Maisie Unsworth were making it hard for Wastside centre court players to reach their attacking circle. However, efforts from Erica Mikolajczak and Mhari Moncrieff were not to go un-noticed as they provided shooter Julie Odie with the ball through some small effective passing.

TR’s Karen Bannister was dominating her defensive circle and making some superb interceptions which Unsworth was able to capitalise on and send the ball back up the court to the TR shooting duo of Clark and Morrison who were slotting in long range shots with ease. The second quarter ended 34-8 to Rowley.

In the third quarter both teams made some changes with TR switching their shooters around and Wastside making some centre court changes.

It was Wastside that started with the first centre pass which seemed to give them a positive outlook for the rest of the quarter. They upped their game and slotted in some shots to try and close the gap. However, TR was proving to be too strong as they saw Mackay and Morrison make some great interceptions and feed the ball back into Clark who was eagerly waiting close to the goal post. The third quarter ended 47-15 to TR.

In the fourth quarter Rowley completely changed their line up, switching their defenders for their shooters and mixing up their centre court players. However, Wastside continued to fight hard to close the gap with some excellent interceptions from Pauline Walterson.

TR’s Unsworth, now playing at GS, was also on shooting form up at the other end of the court to increase the score to a 45-point gap.

Players of the match were Karen Bannister of TR for her dominating defensive play in the first and second quarter and Pauline Walterson of Westside for never giving up and making some effective interceptions.

Division Three

Scalloway Juniors 13, Hotfooters 34

Scalloway Juniors won the first centre and both teams started off showing some great play. Rowan Nicolson and Leah Henry were linking well down the court to shooters Kirsten Flett and Julie Brown.

But it was Hotfooters who gained the lead with accurate shooting from Liza Fullerton and Gillian Morrison. The first quarter ended 13-9 to Hotfooters.

The second quarter began with Hotfooters making some changes with Jenny Anderson going to WD and Lauren Odie to centre. Scalloway Juniors worked hard but it was Hotfooters who continued to increase their lead with their accurate passing and shooting to 22-11.

The third quarter saw Scalloway Juniors make a few changes with Kirsten Flett going to GD and new faces Ava Macdonald at GS and Krissi Macdonald at WA. For the Hotfooters, Anne Leask moved to WD and Laura Cheyne came back on at WA. Rosanne Georgeson and Iona Holmes were keeping tight defence and making sure the ball did not get to the opposition.

In the last quarter Lois Gray came back on at WA for Scalloway Juniors. Megan Halcrow and Kaylee Mouat were making some great interceptions but the Hotfooter shooters proved too good on the night. Both teams were working hard right to the last whistle but it was the Hotfooters who sealed the win.

Players of the match were Gillian Morrison and Liza Fullerton for Hotfooters and Julie Brown for Scalloway Juniors.

Ness 17, Scallywags 25

Ness started with the first centre pass, with “thrown in at the deep end” teenager Clare Farmer stepping in as centre at the last minute. This didn’t seem to phase Ness as they went 3-1 up quite quickly with Elizabeth Williamson scoring well.

Scallywags were not to be beaten though and through some great centre court play between Gwen Malcolmson , Andrea Henderson and Nicola Smith they managed to control the quarter much better.  Ingrid Devine scored well, giving her team four goals in a row to lead the first quarter 7-5.

Ness had a sloppy start to the second quarter with poor passing, which was quickly picked up by Scallywags, allowing them to dominate the centre third and move 9-5 up. Eventually the Ness attack came back into it and closed the gap, ending the half 12-10 to Scallywags.

The first centre pass of the second half seemed to cause confusion as it should have been a Ness pass, but went to Scallywags. This unsettled the Ness team. Scallywags took this advantage and ran with it, scoring five with no reply. Young Farmer was tiring in her first full game in the senior league, allowing Gwen Malcolmson to dominate and feed well into her shooters who were rarely missing the hoop.

Naomi Johnson for Scallywags was intercepting well, and with the Ness shooters losing their nerve, Scallywags finished the quarter 19-13 up.

Ness moved a few players around to cover for the tiring centre, and this seemed to pick them up for the first part of the quarter and were slowly catching up. But with Ness feeling like the calls weren’t going their way and noticing a lot of contact not blown for, heads went down, allowing Scallywags to dominate again.

Although it was a superb team effort, best on the night for Scallywags was Gwen Malcolmson who never tired and kept control of the centre third. For Ness it was “golden oldie” GK Gina Scanlan who had a tough job keeping down on the accurate shooting and great semi-circle movement of the Scallywags shooters.

• For league tables see The Shetland Times on Friday.

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