Strong start by Loungers as netball leagues resume
Loungers got off to a strong start in the post-Christmas SNLA Division One of the netball league with back-to-back victories. In Division Two Wastside overcame Mishaps while in Division Three Da McEwans, Da Hooligans and Tingwall were victorious.
Division One – SLNA
Loungers 38, Kinetics 29
Both teams began the game looking quite comfortable albeit experiencing a shock to the system after the festive period. Loungers took an early lead and started to net a few goals but it wasn’t long before Kinetics did the same. The Loungers shooters played well and managed to find good spaces for the passes into the circle. So well that Loungers finished the first quarter five goals ahead of Kinetics.
Loungers continued with strong play into the second quarter and the goals became regular. Both teams were attempting a different style of defending whereby the defence really focused on blocking particular shooters from gaining access to the circle. The second quarter ended with Loungers ahead at 23-14.
By the third quarter the pace of the game started to slow. Kinetics changed their defence and forced the Loungers shooters to make more passes to their C and WA in order that they could get into their preferred shooting positions. Loungers seemed more content with the slower pace of play which resulted in the widest score gap of the game, that being 32-20.
The last quarter saw Kinetics change their goal shooter. This quarter proved to be Kinetics’ strongest as they racked up 12 goals. This was due to their strong and accurate passing and flawless shooting. Loungers however continued to keep the pressure on as they were determined to keep hold of their lead. The game ended 38-29 to Loungers.
Loungers awarded Chloe Miller player of the match for her outstanding shooting and Stella Oldbury was the player of the match chosen by Kinetics.
Team Rowley 55, Kinetics 26
Team Rowley and Kinetics ended last season on equal points and with the playoff for the league still to be arranged, both teams took to court missing key players and were keen to secure a win in the first match of the new league.
The game started at a fast pace and for the first half of the first quarter, the game was very evenly matched with the Kinetics youngsters Holly King (WA) and Keira Kelly (WD) coping exceptionally well with their first match in the senior league. Team Rowley stepped up a gear towards the end of the quarter, with consistent shooting from Lisa Morrison and steady play in the rest of the court. The first quarter score was 15-6 to Team Rowley.
The second quarter saw Kirsti Leask take to the court in the unfamiliar role of GD. Louise Fraser (C) played consistent netball and the Kinetics shooters of Sarah Grogan (GA) and Chloe Miller (GS) were shooting accurately when they got the chance, but Rowley defenders Maisie Unsworth (GD) and Fiona Dally (GK) were making vital interceptions which were being converted to goals in the Rowley circle. Team Rowley further increased their lead to 27 goals to 13 at half time.
Kinetics continued to fight in the third quarter but Team Rowley worked hard as a team. Unsworth and Dally were still making interceptions and picking up rebounds which were being swiftly carried up court by the Rowley mid court of Anne Wood (WD), Kylie Wood (C) and Karen Bannister (WA) to the shooters, Marie Clark (GA) and Morrison. Impressive long range shots from Morrison gave the Kinetics defenders Ingrid Nicol (GD) and Vaila Hough (GK) little interception or rebounding opportunities and Team Rowley extended their lead to 42-20.
The last quarter remained competitive, with Kinetics aiming to achieve half points. Louise Fraser continued her steady play at centre, assisting her team mates in both defence and attack. Team Rowley remained focused and continued to work hard as a team, demonstrating some slick, fast play to score goals and increase their lead. Kinetics narrowly missed out on half points: the final score was 55-26 to Team Rowley.
Player of the match for Kinetics was Louise Fraser who played consistently well, supporting her team in all areas of the court, but special mention must go to Holly King and Keira Kelly who both made impressive debuts in the senior league. Team Rowley’s player of the match was Lisa Morrison whose accurate shooting, impressive long range shots and quick movement meant there was little the Kinetics defenders could do to contain her.
Loungers 29, AHS 21
The game started at a fast and furious pace, leading to unforced errors from both teams. No easy goals were scored in this quarter as possession changed hands a number of times before shooting opportunities presented themselves. It was a low scoring quarter with the AHS team putting in that extra effort to steal a Loungers centre pass, giving them the lead 6-4 going into the second quarter.
Loungers took control in the second quarter as they started making crucial interceptions and converting them to goals. Loungers had a run of five goals netted effortlessly by shooters Stella Oldbury and Claire Young allowing them to take the lead. AHS defenders Emma Leask and Megan Keppie were making the Loungers shooters work hard to get every ball as they marked tightly to try and stop the Loungers attack. The quarter ended 11-9 to Loungers.
Both teams made some changes to their line-ups going into the third quarter. For Loungers Inga Woods came on at GA, Kristen Johnston came on at GK and Diane Thomson took to the court at WD. Sophie May Leyland and Allie Elphinstone worked tirelessly around the circle to feed their shooters, however Johnston’s height was proving to be difficult for the AHS shooters. Loungers capitalised, working well as a team, moving the ball up court to convert into goals. Woods put in a great performance in the shooting circle, using her speed and slick movement to secure her position under the post. Hazel Uren and Vicki Henderson worked well together in the mid court feeding their shooters effectively. The quarter ended 22-13 to Loungers.
AHS were not defeated yet as they came out fighting with shooters Debbie Smith and Claire Morris moving well in the circle and converting some great long range shots. AHS had a great fourth quarter, demonstrating their fitness and determination, but Loungers had given themselves a good lead and pushed till the end to take the win 29-21.
Players of the match for Loungers was Vicki Henderson and for AHS defenders Emma Leask and Megan Keppie.
Division Two – Ocean Kinetics
Wastside 45, Mishaps 34
After many team changes for Wastside in recent games, due to flu, injury and other commitments Wastside were hoping to have better luck down in the second division. With some of their players back for this game they didn’t want to lose after a bumpy time in the first division.
Wastside got off to a good start to win the first centre pass. Erica Leask contributed by opening the game with an accurate first centre pass and following that moved again to receive and deliver. Erica and Julie Crossan linked well in centre court, and with the reliable assistance of Mhari Moncrieff she was able to feed the ball into the circle where Catherine Henry was geared up and set to pot the ball in the net.
This gave them the advantage of an early lead. However Mishaps were quick to respond to win the ball back and score. In addition Mishaps shooters Gayle Henry and Leane Tait did close down the gap. Defenders Pauline Walterson, Lindsey Morrison and Erin Morrison responded well as they were quick to intercept in the Mishaps circle and prevent some scoring opportunities, helping their team maintain a 25-17 lead at half time.
After time out Wastside started the second half a little scrappy, making some unnecessary mistakes. Mishaps took advantage of this by winning possession back. In defence Kara Thomson and Rona Simpson reacted to this and got the ball back up into their attack. And Suzanne Manson and Carly Gray for Mishaps made good strong passes in attack.
As play went on Wastside stepped up their game to remain their lead.
Julie Keith and Pauline Walterson influenced the game with their well defended efforts and Lindsey Morrison attacked well, linking soundly with her team mates. This was a fast paced game with both teams working hard looking to gain that lead.
Players of the match were Catherine Henry and Mhari Moncrieff for Wastside and Suzanne Manson for Mishaps.
Division 3 – Evelyn Rae
McEwans 50, Scallywags 26
This match was very even during the first quarter as both teams took time to settle and remember how to play after the Christmas break. Da McEwans started to pull ahead during the second quarter as Emily Shearer and Joanne Stewart combined well in the shooting circle and began to find the net.
At the other end Cindy Pottinger and Gwen Malcolmson were feeding good balls in to their shooters but the Da McEwans defence of Sonya Shearer and Diane Irvine were on good form and getting crucial interceptions, giving Da McEwans a good lead at half time. Although the Scallywags battled hard in the second half, with Nicola Smith, Dana Stewart and Joy Duncan defending well, Eileen Robertson and Maggie Irvine were dominating the mid court and Da McEwans went on to win convincingly.
Ness 26, Da Hooligans 29
Ness took the upper hand at the start of the quarter with good passes into the circle from Megan Smith (C) and Kirstin Sineath (WA). Caroline Wood (GA) and Stephanie Adamson (GS) rarely missed a shot. Da Hooligans were playing with a few people out of position, so it took them until half way through the quarter to settle. Once they did, they scored a few in a row to take the lead 9-8.
The second quarter had a very fast pace, which allowed for a lot of loose balls. Both teams were able to intercept well, particularly Da Hooligans’ Abbey Irvine (WD). The difference in this quarter was the fantastic circle play by Da Hooligans GS Lara Kay and Holly Jamieson (GA), who scored three or four in a row with no Ness response, increasing their lead to 17-14.
Da Hooligans were linking particularly well in the third quarter, with fast passes up the court from the defenders to the shooters. Holly Jamieson took most of the shots and scored on almost every one, leaving the Ness defenders helpless. Ness usually pick up their game in the second half, but Da Hooligans got stronger as a team and increased their lead again to 25-19.
Even being six goals behind, Ness still had a feeling of belief they could come back. This showed as the team rallied together and put a lot of pressure on Da Hooligans’ lead. Ness GD Gina Scanlan got the handle on Holly Jamieson and made some crucial interceptions, sending the ball back up the court for Stephanie Adamson to score. Unfortunately for Ness, it all came together a little too late in the game. Best team on the night was Da Hooligans who won 29-26.
Players of the match were Stephanie Adamson for Ness, who moved well in the circle and rarely missed a shot, and Holly Jamieson for Da Hooligans, who played outstandingly well out of her normal position.
Tingwall 30, Scalloway Juniors 19
Scalloway Juniors had first centre pass. The ball was quickly in the Scalloway circle but a good interception from Wilma Poleson saw the ball returned down the court where Paula Sinclair netted the opening goal for Tingwall. Both teams took a while to settle but once they did, play flowed from end to end and with good tight marking from the Scalloway defence of Amy Thomson and sisters Nicole and Kaylee Mouat scoring opportunities for Tingwall were restricted. During the remainder of this quarter both teams were very evenly matched and the score when the whistle went was 6-3 in Tingwall’s favour.
During the second quarter the Tingwall centre court players, Alexis Jamieson (WD), Jennifer Wadley (C) and Elaine Kirk (WA) stepped up a gear and took charge of the play, and with accurate shooting from GA Zoey Symington and GS Paula Sinclair Team Tingwall increased their lead. Scalloway Juniors fought hard, their defence marked well and the centre court players Leah Henry, Lois Gray and Rowan Nicolson continued to intercept passes and convert into goals.
With Tingwall in the lead both teams took to the court for the third quarter. The Scalloway shooter Rachel Young and GA Julie Brown were being closely marked by the Tingwall GK Louise Arthur and GD Anne Bennett but by using their attacking players effectively, WA Krissi Macdonald and Nicolson, allowed Scalloway to open up play round the circle and allowed them to find better positions to shoot from. This was Scalloway’s best quarter, scoring nine goals.
The last quarter saw Tingwall’s GS Karla Stewart netting most of her shots which was good, as the taller Mouat sisters were getting most of the interceptions under the post. Both teams fought for every pass, marked well and played some exciting netball but Scalloway were unable to catch up.