Joy as Unst crowned netball champions

Unst secured the second division netball title with a fairly comfortable win over second-placed Wastside. The outcome of the first division will go right down to the wire after Whalsay gained the closest of victories over AHS and moved two points ahead of Loungers, both with one game remaining. The situation is the same in division three with Da Hooligans and Mavericks both in contention.

Division One

AHS 26, Whalsay 27

With Whalsay looking hot favourites to win the league title, a determined AHS team took to the court set on causing an upset.

It was a nervy opening from Whalsay as shots were missed and passes went astray. AHS defenders Emma Leask and Margaret Johnston, marking tightly and forcing errors in the shooting circle, helped their team pull ahead 7-5 at the end of the first quarter.

AHS opened the second period by scoring the next three goals, giving them a five-goal lead. They looked very comfortable on the ball. However, this Whalsay side can never be written off and experienced players Sarah Kay and Janet Abernethy began to pile on the pressure on the AHS shooters, forcing turnovers and gaining possession. The Whalsay shooting partnership of Vaila Kay and June Williamson began to find the net with their usual flair and by half time the lead had slipped, finishing 12 apiece.

The second half proved to be a real nailbiter with both teams fighting to win the match. AHS were finding space restricted in the mid-court due to tight marking by Victoria Duthie and this led to Louise Birnie intelligently mov­ing more into attack to help get the ball up court. Whalsay just edged ahead 19-18 going into the final quarter.

Both teams held their nerve in the last period and great competitive netball was on display, making for a thrilling end to a superb match with Whalsay just managing to maintain their lead and win by one goal.

All the participants should be congratulated on their performances but it was Vaila Kay and Emma Leask who picked up the player of the match awards.

Kiwis 30, Kinetics 47

Both teams struggled in the first moments, each having had a few weeks without a match. Kinetics settled first, however, and managed to get their shots on target to lead 11-7 at the break.

The Kiwis continued to struggle in the second quarter, making many mistakes which Kinetics quickly capitalised on. Dawn Manson seemed unable to find her accurate shooting form displayed at the inter-county and as a result the Kiwis struggled. The gap widened, mainly due to the determination of the Kinetics players and the usual consistent shooting by Kirsti Leask and Sarah Grogan.

With a 10-goal lead heading into the third quarter, Kiwis changed around their players in an attempt to get back into the game. Marie Clark went to GA and Dawn to GS, Morag Fox replaced Anne Wood at WD and a reluctant Judy Fraser came on at GK. Kinetics continued to play their own determined game and their defence remained tight. Marie Clark managed to keep her cool and get her shots in, but the gap increased to 13 points.

In the final quarter it looked as though the Kiwis knew the game was beyond them. Karen MacKay continued to work hard at centre, which rightfully earned her the player of the match award. Kinetics stayed focused and with a real team effort increased their lead further. Sarah Grogan was named player of the match for Kinetics.

Division Two

Unst 41, Wastside 26

If Unst won they would win the league for the first time. Unfortunately Wastside only had six players but managed to recruit Kerrie Craigie to make it a competitive game.

Both teams started slowly with early errors, but Wastside settled quicker and scored the first three goals. They were also strong in defence with Julie Keith and Alison Hunter making passing and shooting difficult. Unst began to regain some form, with good interceptions and passing, and gained a 9-6 lead by the end of the first quarter.

In the second quarter Unst brought on Jane Macaulay, which strengthened their attacking play with good strong feeds into their shooters. Wastside battled hard and showed determined play around their shooting circle, with Julie Crossan and Aimee Keith passing the ball around well. The half time score was 21-11.

This quarter saw Unst maintain their lead thanks to some great defending from Martha Clark and Linda Thomson. They were made to work hard by the Wastside shooting duo of Mhari Moncrieff and Catherine Henry, whose little passes and quick footwork are always tough to defend against. Unst had a 13-goal lead going into the final quarter.

Wastside had some great centre passes and interceptions and took the first five goals in the last quarter. However, Unst stayed in contention and when shooter Claire Priest scored some ex­cellent goals from distance the momentum swung back in their direction.

Players of the match were Martha Clark for Unst and Mhari Moncrieff for Wastside, while the teams were grateful to Andrea Jeromson and Valerie Morrison for coming out on a Friday night to umpire the game, when they may well have had better things to be doing.

Lerwick Juniors 27, Wastside 37

The game started well for both teams with end-to-end play throughout the quarter. Good passes into the circle from centre court players Kirsten Anderson and Aimee Keith for Wastside helped them edge into the lead at 9-8.

Throughout the second quarter both teams showed accurate passing up the court, the score at the end of the quarter being 17-14 in Wastside’s favour.

The third quarter was as well contested by both teams as the previous two and good accuracy from both shooting pairs left the score 25-21 to Wastside.

Throughout the final quarter both teams showed determination and interceptions were made throughout the court. However, Wastside pulled away from the tight score which existed through the game to win 37-27.

Players of the match were Mhari Moncreiff for Wastside and Katie McMillan and Sarah Groat for Lerwick Juniors.

Mishaps v McEwans

No report was submitted.

Division Three

Burra 28, Mavericks 33

The game began with fast play from both sides but good shooting from Hannah Clark and Bethany Laurenson ensured Burra took an 8-2 lead.

Both teams came back on court and were more settled into the game. Chloe Miller began to shine in this quarter with impressive shooting and rarely missed a shot. It was end-to-end play with accurate passing and shooting from both teams, the quarter ending 16-12 to Burra.

The second half saw changes to both teams with Mavericks bringing on Freda Leask. That seemed to have a calming influence on the team as Mavericks quickly started to pull ahead of Burra’s early lead. Burra worked hard to stay in the game but were unable to hamper the skilled play from Mavericks shooters Chloe Miller and Freda Leask.

Players of the match were Heather Henry and Hannah Clark for Burra, while for the Mavericks the award went to Chloe Miller.

Scalloway Juniors 22, Da Hooligans 33

Good passing and accurate shooting by Valerie Sales meant Hooligans gained a strong lead of 9-1.

The second quarter began with a change in the Scalloway team with Karen Bannister coming on as centre and Rowan Nicolson moving to GA. This benefited the Juniors as Karen Bannister made good links at the centre passes and at the circle. Leah Henry of Juniors helped out her fellow team members in centre court helping the flow of the game. This wasn’t enough though as Hooligans’ Vicky Irvine made good interceptions, making the Juniors’ job far more difficult. Hooligans continued to work well as a team and ended the quarter 19-9 ahead.

In the third quarter Hooligans made some changes with Zoe Irvine coming on at centre and Abbey Irvine at WA. This worked well and although Juniors’ Kirsty Duerden made good interceptions the quarter ended at 25-16 to Hooligans.

In the final quarter Hooligans’ Kerry Nicolson and Tammi Anderson continued to make some good interceptions and accurate passing. Juniors’ Julie Brown scored some vital goals even with the strong defence against her. However, Hooligans continued to gain many goals as Valerie Sales rarely missed a shot.

Players of the match were Vicky Irvine and Valerie Sales for Da Hooligans and Karen Bannister for the Scalloway Juniors.


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