Thursday, 23 May 2013

Under 19s: Central no match for high-flying Ariels

Monash were no match for the class out fit that was Yarra Valley Grammar, as the Ariels confirmed their top four credentials with a 32-goal win at the State Netball and Hockey Centre on Wednesday night.

Monash were competitively early on, even after an early timeout was called, before the class of the Ariels took over.

The Ariels strong finishing to quarters were evidently, particularly through the first half, as they went small, but effective scoring runs to win the first and second quarters each by 10 goals.

Monash did little to help themselves with their passing; only able to convert a small amount of first possession from centre passes.

A much-improved third quarter saw Monash’s full-court pressure lift, as MUC lost the quarter by just three goals.

But they were unable to sustain the pressure beyond three quarter time, as the Ariels continued the trend from the first two quarters to post a big 67-35 win.

Anna Coffey was tireless, if a little inconsistent, at Wing Defence all day while both goalers in Rhys Carter-Coleman and Natalie Billings were efficient when given the opportunities.

Billings’ shooting effort was noticeably improved from previous weeks, as was her defensive intensity, making the Ariels defenders work to clear the ball.

Speaking post-match to, Coach Robynn Pym said a high error rate was mostly to blame for conceding so many goals.

“Yet again, our ability to hold possession when we had it was basically non-existent,” Pym said.

“We didn’t have any conviction with our passing and couldn’t get any flow into the game at any stage.

“Our goalers shot well again, but it’s becoming a trend that they shoot well but we’re only scoring 30-odd points.

“We don’t capitalise on our opportunities enough.”

Monash face a very tall order next Wednesday night against the top-of-the-table City West Falcons at the State Netball and Hockey Centre.

FINAL SCORE: Monash University Central 35 def. by Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels 67

MUC SCORERS: Billings 22 (85%); Carter-Coleman 12 (75%); Gourley 1 (100%)

Division 1: Monash recover for memorable win

Monash recovered from a slow first quarter to register a “very satisfying” seven-goal win over the Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels at the State Netball and Hockey Centre on Wednesday night.

The fourth-placed Central have taken great heart from knocking off the previously second-placed Ariels, especially after Round 3 draw couldn’t separate the two sides earlier in the season.

It was all Ariels in one-way traffic early on as Yarra Valley jumped out to a 6-1 lead, before Central pulled it back to within three goals at quarter time off the back of some strong defensive work from Centre, Michelle Andrews.

Monash were perhaps lucky not to be further behind when the Ariels nailed four the first six goals of the second quarter, before Monash went on a remarkable 12-1 run to not only take the lead, but also hold control of the remainder of the match.

The defensive trio of Kate Slattery, Melissa Wardle and Ebony Fietz were simply superb in constantly thwarting any attacking possessions of the Ariels, while both Shae Gee and Gabrielle Henderson showed nerves of steel.

The Monash goals both repeatedly knocked down shots to push Central to a six-goal half time lead.

Gee in particular continued her shooting clinic as the third quarter went almost goal-for-goal, before Monash extended their lead late in the term to lead by 12 goals at the final change.

Yet it was to be a heart in mouth final term, as Ariels pushed within five goals of the tiring Monash side, only to be saved once again by Gee, who’s final goal sealed a phenomenal shooting performance and the 50-43 win.

Speaking post-match, an elated coach in Jacqui Hansen told she was pleased to get the win over a side that has historically been a “bogey side”.

“We’ve had a lot of great contests with them which are usually decided by one or two goals either way and even draws,” Hansen said.

“We had a real focus going into today about trying to rectify the areas we fell down in last time we played them.

“We implemented that for probably three quarters and really set ourselves up in that second quarter.

“We did drop off in that last quarter with a few tired legs, but we hung in there, shot well and got the win.”

Monash’s task gets all the more challenging with another top four clash against City West Falcons next Wednesday night at the State Netball and Hockey Centre.

FINAL SCORE: Monash University Central 50 def. Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels 43

MUC SCORERS: Shae Gee 36 (84%); Gabrielle Henderson 14 (82%)

Championship: Monash hold off Ariels to continue mid-season surge

Monash have continued their mid-season resurgence, beating a dogged Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels outfit by 11 goals on Wednesday night at State Netball and Hockey Centre.

The win is the third in succession for MUC, the first time they have achieved that feat in season 2013 and also sees them jump into the top four on the Devine VNL Championship ladder for the first time since Round 3.

Slightly uncharacteristically, Monash started well enough to lead 4-2 within the first five minutes of a match before a 9-2 run saw them establish a lead that eventually proved too much for the Ariels.

However, Yarra Valley refused to submit to MUC led in no small part by Ariels’ Goal Shooter, netting 34 goals from just 37 attempts and giving the normally composed Georgie Davenport a bit to think about at the other end.

While Stephanie Tyrell’s shooting was near flawless in the first quarter, she and goaling partner Stacey Northey appeared to lose their way in the next few quarters, missing fairly regulation shots.

It would do little to affect the eventual outcome, although there was some cause for concern when Tyrell was substituted midway through the last quarter clutching her elbow. She later went to hospital to have scans.

Yarra Valley twice pulled within six points of the deficit during the third and fourth quarters, but in the end the composure of Lauren Tscharke and Lil O’Sullivan through the mid court was enough to see Monash home for the 60-49 win.

Playing both at Wing Defence and Goal Defence, Tara Cecil stepped up her own performance with some key deflections and interceptions in one of her better performances for the year.

Speaking post match, coach Leesa Maxfield told it wasn’t a pretty match, but the result counted the most in the end.

“Our intensity just wasn’t there tonight, at times we probably played for the sake of playing,” Maxfield said.

“Take nothing away from Ariels, they played well. There were times where we didn’t have any answers for the way they were playing.

“We didn’t do execute a lot of the basics of our game many times, but I guess we were still consistent enough to win and win well.”

Maxfield admitted Tyrell’s injury and some ill-health to Tscharke – who was also subbed at three-quarter-time – threw a spanner in the works, bring on unestablished players after two games in four days.

“Throwing Sarah in for less than a quarter after a physical game against Swisse was really our only option,” Maxfield said.

“It wasn’t ideal and also having Sophie (Knights) out there was a challenge.

“But the goals managed to keep coming even having Stacey (Northey) out at Goal Attack and we got ourselves over the line.”

Next week sees the clash with bitter rivals, City West Falcons next Wednesday night at the State Netball and Hockey Centre.

FINAL SCORE: Monash University Central 60 def. Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels 49

MUC SCORERS: Stacey Northey 33 (79%), Stephanie Tyrell 25 (79%), Sarah Main 2 (40%)