Victorian Fury extended its winning streak to 30 matches in the Australian Netball League in a thrilling finish to the regular season.
Fury claimed the minor premiership for the third straight season and will head into next weekend’s semi finals full of confidence after recording a one-goal win against hosts Southern Force at Netball SA Stadium in Adelaide.
Both teams went into the match undefeated and Force led by three goals at half-time, with Kate Shimmin standing strong in defence and shooters Cody Lange and Chelsea Lemke eager to finish off her good work.
But Fury, led by defender Jo Weston, wing attack Kelsey Browne, and shooter Emma Ryde, wrestled back the lead heading into what turned out to be a pulsating final quarter.
The two teams traded goal for goal and Force had a chance to level the match in the dying seconds but a desperate shot by Lange came after the final whistle and Fury claimed a 50-49 victory.
Victorian Fury will face Queensland Fusion in a semi-final at Waverley Netball Centre in Melbourne from 5.00pm on Saturday 25 July; a replay of last year’s Grand Final.
Head Coach Kristy Keppich-Birrell is confident ahead of the semi-final next weekend, with strategies in place to ensure the Fury players perform at their best.
“The next two training sessions will focus on the continual development of our game plan, and adding that little bit extra to give us every opportunity to bring home the title.”
“This group know how hard it is going to be next weekend and with the composure they showed today, we have every faith they will do everything in their power to play out the finals series with pride,” said Keppich-Birrell.
The two semi final winners will play-off in the Grand Final on Sunday afternoon for the 2015 title.
Netball Victoria encourages all fans to head to Waverley Netball Centre next weekend to support the Victorian Fury as they attempt to defend their title.
Victorian Fury v Queensland Fusion
Q1: 13-11, Q2: 26-19, Q3: 35-31, Q4: 49-40
Emma Ryde 32/40 (80%)
Alice Teague-Neeld 17/21 (81%)
Victorian Fury v Southern Force
Q1: 12-12, Q2: 23-26, Q3: 38-37, Q4: 50-49
Emma Ryde 37/44 (85%)
Alice Teague-Neeld 13/20 (65%)
ANL Ladder after Week 5:
|5||Netball NSW Waratahs||7||3||4||0||376||346||6||108.67|