VIKINGS def. Magpies
Magpies were a team possessed with passion and determination. Its intent was to demonstrate it had the potential to upset the premiership table placings. Not one player can be faulted for effort in the first quarter. All seven players were in stunning form. Aysha Zada and Kate Brusnahan were controlling the goal circle with Zada also owning two thirds of the court creating play and directing a clear passage to the circle. Flawless backup around the circle came from Talia Berry and Victoria Glen. Kelsey Ellis joined Ellie Packard and Jessie Maule with the domination of defending strategies to expose Vikings uninspiring performance through the court. Magpies achieved a 15-11 lead. At half time it led 27-26.
In response to saving its pride Vikings playing coach Casey Lukich switched the midcourt players positions in the third quarter. Amelia Etchells took the centre position, Lukich went into the wing attack position and unbelievably Tiana Freeman sat on the bench which placed Brittany Pascoe into the goal attack position to combine with goal shooter Lara Etchells. Jade Dawson came off the bench to assume the wing defence position. Magpies adapted to the changes with its players holding firm to hold the lead 40-38.
Not completely satisfied with the line-up Vikings switched players again for the last quarter. Lara Etchells took the wing attack position. Lukich undertook the centre position again. Amelia Etchells saw the rest of the game on the bench. Freeman re-entered the game to combine with Pascoe. Magpies kept in tune with its game plan and were doing really well until it misjudged the fast furious pace that Vikings had adopted. Where Magpies had eased out to a five goal lead at one stage players made mistakes that Vikings capitalised on. The game became a goal for goal episode in the last 3 minutes. Vikings strived for control. The goal defending possessions by Erin Egel and Tylah Jackson were the turnovers that secured a heartbreaking Magpies loss but a glorious Vikings 54-52 win.
ST JOSEPHS def. RAILWAYS
What was billed as the clash of the day was downgraded when both teams fronted with vacancies. Railways did not have Haynes or Mikayla Fuller who are two awesome players that provide drive through the midcourt. Jayne Rooney and Paige Ashman filled the vacancies competitively. St Josephs re-introduced Annie Packard in the absence of sharp shooter Lucy Janiak.
The first quarter was basically an even contest with a focus on assessing each other's approach to the game. St Joseph looked comfortable. Packard was on fire netting goals and playing coach Lisa Welfare gave all the encouragement for the successful result. There was the continued understanding between Leah Carling and Amy Green for successful centre passes and the exacting feed into the goalies. Taylor-Lee Breen and Courtney Webb weaved their usual magic to match the feats of the Railways goalies. Any rebounds were passed out to Ebony Butler who connected the play with Green and Carling.
Regardless of the admirable Railways effort it was St Josephs that led 30-25 at half time. Claire Schupelius and in particular Jaedina-Rose Venning were in awesome accuracy form. Jayne Rooney was a real asset as wing attack and Paige Ashman as wing defence, who gave St Josephs wing attack Green unattended space on the centre pass, tightened the closeness around the goal circle in an attempt to unbalance Green's effectiveness to pass into the goalies.
Not sure why Railways made changes for the third quarter but Fuller took the goal shooting position, Lily Fullerton came out of centre into the goal keeping position and Venning went into the centre. In hindsight it was not a good move because St Josephs jumped to the lead 39-30. The demise for Railways continued in the fourth quarter. St Josephs Carling, Green and Butler were awe-inspiring in the midcourt leaving their opposing players in the wake. The game plan all fell into place for St Josephs. The best skills of the players came to the forefront and thawed Railways enthusiasm to concede St Josephs the win 58-42.
Try as St Josephs did with the thankful inclusion of Libby Harrison in the goal circle with Tara Hogg it still played catch-up against a superbly coordinated Magpies team. What a wonderful goal scoring game Georgia Irvine generated under the defending pressure of St Josephs defenders Courtney Hannigan and Tara Nayda. The contest was close. At three quarter time Magpies led 35-31. The score line was an achievable target to reverse but Magpies Tanya Aird and Stacey Colson overpowered St Josephs scoring ambitions. The turnovers they earned whipped down court through Georgia Hewett, Tyrell Yarran Prue Martin and into the Magpies goal circle where Louise Kirkham and Irvine were positioned for goal scoring. Magpies won 47-40.
Quorn gave top classed Vikings a good run to earn its 55-34 win. This Vikings team can at its club training outscore it's 'A Grade' line-up so Quorn can be given some applause even though it started to run out of pace in the second half of the game. Phoebe Hunter was a great asset as wing defence for Vikings which added to the defence line of Bianca Reid and Kym Bishop. Quorn's Chelsea Fraser and Tayla Finlay could not afford to miss goals because the rebounding power of Vikings was strong. It was not so much that goals were missed as it was the interceptions prior to the ball getting to the Quorn goal circle. Jessica Freeman, Belinda Myles and Hunter did well to divert the ball to Vikings goalies Kellie Von Senden and Carlee Margitch to amass a credible 15-8 last quarter to put the sweetener on the win.
There was so much laughter between the teams in this grade that it has to be known as the enjoyment grade where the results come secondary to having fun. Did Railways really worry about Shamrocks Green being able to reverse the tables when it led 22-13 at half time? Not really. However a surprise in the last quarter sobered up the moment. Whilst Railways had Kristy-Lee Copley and Lynette Scott scoring goals it was Shamrocks midcourt players Kiah Promnitz, Kirby Franks and Kylie Gill who broke free to feed their goalies Jessica Grantham and Shanrah Davis in the second half. What an amazing shooting result. The two goalies netted 26 goals to Railways 14 goals resulting in a Shamrocks Green 39-36 victory. At the end of the game it was all about shaking hands on their efforts and being ready to meet again in a couple of weeks.
Railways Blue on the other hand reveled in the freezing conditions with Tracey Reid and Sarah Willis taking command in the goals with a tally of 37-14 by half time. It was helpful that Zoe Williams and Joanne Sansbury were active around the goal circle to feed the ball to the goalies. The second half flattened out to be a "let's enjoy" and share the rest of the game with merriment. Shamrocks Yellow blossomed in the last quarter even though it became a slower pace with a one quarter win 11-8. Britnee Arbon, and Ashleigh Bowden were consistent mid-courters that fed the ball to goalies Ashlee Boyle and Alexis Harvey. It was a friendly game that ended with a good result to Railways Blue after establishing an early intention to win 57-31.
There are eight teams in the Leaners division. Four teams are: Vikings, Magpies, Railways and Magpies-Rebels. Vikings consists of Sienna Michael, Juliet Hancock, Lori Harvey, Maygen Fricker, Christie Bowshire, Raquell Ware, Ashton Campbell and Layla Culbertson.
Magpies team consists of Janiquea Miller-Thomas, Maddison Jane Halls, Stephanie Strangways, Myah McInnes, Kiyanna Hudson, Krista Thompson, Hallie Grantham and Lillian Smith.
Railways team consists of Summer Warren, Jameeka-Lee Khan, Kaylee-Jo Bejah, Jade Clausen, Jordyn Norton, Eveisha Treloar, Savanna Haldane and Krystal Colson.
Magpies-Rebels team consists of Charli Warner, Mikayla Petrie, Maddison Loader, Callista Miller, Melissa Harrison, Sari Milera and Jasmine Cattanach.
All these players are enjoying the supportive on court coaching as well as the experience of learning the different positions. Being goalie is the most popular position. It's great to see family and friends reassuring the girls of their efforts. Next week the other four teams will be named.