The netball leagues started up again after the festive break with wins for Whalsay and Kiwis in division one, Unst and McEwans in the second division and Da Hooligans in division three.
Loungers 18, Whalsay 26
The first quarter started evenly with both teams a bit rusty after the festivities. Some great mid-court interceptions from Whalsay enabled them to gain an 8-5 lead at the end of the quarter.
However, Loungers were not deterred and Hazel Uren stepped in to play GA, supporting Stella Oldbury at GS. They worked well together, being fed in by Sandra Brand at WA who made a welcome return to the team.
The Whalsay defence of Sarah Kay and Janet Abernethy were as sharp as ever and made some vital interceptions, which were quickly converted to goals by Vaila Kay and June Williamson, who were back on form. The half time score was 17-8.
Loungers made some changes with Sandra Brand stepping into GA, Hazel Uren moving to centre and Julie Grant moving to WA. Whalsay remained on fire with Victoria Duthie standing out due to her ability to cover the whole court as centre, pick up loose balls and intercept various balls. Loungers improved in this quarter with some great shots on goal despite the tight marking.
Whalsay made some changes in the last quarter with Vaila Kay going off and being replaced by Natalie Polson. The Loungers defence of Jennifer Thomson and Louise Moar stuck to the shooters in an attempt to restrict their scoring. Diane Thomson provided good support on the circle.
Players of the match were Hazel Uren for Loungers and Victoria Duthie for Whalsay.
Kiwis 42, Challengers 14
Kiwis settled first with Kylie Wood and Julie Kirkness feeding some lovely passes in to the Kiwis shooters and helping take their team to a 12-2 lead by the end of first quarter.
The second quarter saw a more determined Challengers team display, Marie Anderson effectively linking defence and attack and Linda Irvine and Dianne Thomson giving the Kiwis shooting partnership of Dawn Manson and Marie Clark less room in the circle. Challengers managed to match the Kiwis goal for goal in this quarter and the half-time score was 19-9.
In the third quarter Judy Fraser and Brenda Manson were working hard to pick up interceptions and rebounds and gave Challengers shooters Louise Johnson and Lyndsey Pearson limited shooting opportunities.
The Kiwis centre court of Morag Fox, Wood and Kirkness continued to play hard and have patience working the ball in to their shooters, which resulted in the best quarter of the match for the Kiwis, going 34-11 ahead.
The final quarter was played at a much slower pace than the third, Kiwis looking to just hold on to their centre passes. The Challengers never gave up but were unable to make a dent on the lead that the Kiwis had built up.
It was a fine team display from Kiwis with Julie Kirkness claiming the player of the match, while for the Challengers, who never gave up, Marie Anderson stood out.
Wastside 17, Unst 32
The first quarter saw Wastside unable to settle with the movement and judgment needed for the game to flow smoothly being disrupted. Also, the excellent defence and teamwork of Unst’s Martha Clark and Linda Thomson resulted in Wastside’s shooters finding play more difficult.
In the second quarter Wastside fought hard with Julie Crossan working tirelessly against the Unst centre Kathleen Johnson who played strongly, steadily and remained calm throughout the game.
The third quarter saw Wastside having an improved burst of play, resulting in them scoring more goals than Unst. Alison Hunter and Kerry Wood for Wastside stuck tight on their players, preventing less attacking play and goals by Claire Priest and Alana Johnson who were both shooting the goals in steadily.
The last quarter saw Wastside begin to lose their cool again, but it was Unst who managed to retain the best composure, pushing on the attacking play which led to more goals and a victory.
Players of the match were Alison Hunter for Wastside and Martha Clark for Unst.
McEwans 32, Lerwick Juniors 20
The first quarter was evenly matched with impressive attacking and defending from both teams, McEwans just leading 8-5.
The lead increased in the second quarter with Frances Hutchison and Eileen Robertson working tirelessly in the centre court and feeding great balls into shooters Emily Shearer and Joanne Stewart who were rarely missing. At the other end, Caitlin Watt and Sadie Tait were having a tough time against Diane Irvine and Shona Moncrieff.
Lerwick Juniors came out fighting in the last quarter though and really started to pull back, with Katie McMillan, Alice Unsworth and Cara McNiven tightening up in defence and getting to every loose ball first. But the deficit was too great and McEwans went on to win convincingly.
Players of the match were Joanne Stewart for McEwans and Sarah Groat for Lerwick Juniors.
Da Hooligans 29, Mavericks 24
This game between these two young teams proved to be very close and exciting indeed. Both settled quickly and end-to-end play during the first quarter saw it finish 7-6 in the Mavericks’ favour.
The second and third quarters saw much more of the same play with GS Caroline Shearer shooting well for Da Hooligans and her opposite Chloe Miller netting goals from just about anywhere in the circle. At half time the scores were level at 12 goals each and by the end of the third quarter the Mavericks had a two goal lead of 18-16.
There was everything to play for in the final quarter with neither team willing to give an inch. Da Hooligans’ shooters were finding it difficult to break through the Mavericks strong defence, especially Amanda Gray who seemed to get her finger-tips to everything.
The Mavericks pulled ahead by three goals and were looking extremely strong but Da Hooligans made some quality interceptions through Shelley Sandison and were able to score vital goals to level it at 22 goals each.
Play continued to be extremely evenly matched with both teams linking well with their players. Centres Allie Elphinstone for the Mavericks and Vicky Irvine or Da Hooligans showed great support for their teams in all areas of play. The final few minutes saw Valerie Sales and Lara Kay score some crucial goals to pull Da Hooligans ahead.
Players of the match were Shelley Sandison and Vicky Irvine for Da Hooligans and Allie Elphinstone and Amanda Gray for Mavericks.