St Therese strike on Blackhawks in MLeague round nine

Melbourne’s weather wasn’t the only thing heating up this Wednesday as the MLeague courts felt the fire of teams striking down on their opposition. 

In Men’s Premier, St Therese brought the force against Blackhawks for the second time this season in a match that would move them up the ladder. Things got exciting for Men’s Division One when Southern Storm gave Bucks a run for their money to tie, while across the court in Mixed Premier Panthers took their undefeated title another week further.

Don’t miss out on all the rivalries that hit Victoria Wednesday and check out your Round 9 match report now!

Men’s Premier

St Therese (65) def Melbourne City Blackhawks (58)

 

Last time these two teams met St Therese dominated the court, forcing valuable turnovers and creating an immense amount of pressure to pile onto the Blackhawks.

The end of round eight saw both sides with an equal amount of points on the ladder. The winner of this week would take a needed advantage in the competition to move from 4th to 3rd place. With old history and new motivations, this match forced players to bring their A-game!

Nothing could split the two in the first half, only a one goal difference in scores with the advantage going to St Therese. The talk from St Therese picked up in the third quarter as each player guided their team mates. This saw the defensive pressure from St Therese’s midcourt pick up and force Blackhawks to pass cross court, giving plenty of opportunity for Tristan Comans and Mathew Longhurst to strike for intercepts.

The absence of Riley Richardson also saw Chris Cameron rise to the occasion and lead his team throughout the court in centre.

Blackhawks executed some outstanding cross court passes by driving hard and fast to make space. The two talls in the goal circle for Hawks worked to their advantage, with Daniel Cooke and David Chisolm sharing the load for the night, before mixing things up in the fourth quarter by switching Lucas Farrimond in too. These combinations were vital for goal count to keep with St Therese. 

It was consistency that got the best of Blackhawks, especially in goals, in the final half and gave St Therese the conversions for a win.

Ariels (59) def by Pasifika Sharks (71)

 

Yet again, the word that comes to mind when watching Pasifika play has to be feisty! Sitting just out of the top four they surely had reason to play this way.

Only a five goal difference at the first break, it was the second quarter where Sharks asserted their dominance on the court.Their booming voices and plays on court allowed them to execute direct passes into their goalers, who confidently shot with accuracy.

Constant feeding on the wing was utilised by Ariels to allow goalers Michael Dower and Kurt Thompson to free space on the base line and drive. This was made increasingly difficult for them though with the erratic intercepts from Sharks’ Poni Smith who came from no where to take the ball.

Sharks keep themselves with a chance to make the top four by the end of the season.

Southern Seahawks (33) def by Sirens Netball (55)

 

Sitting only one match behind top spot holders, Geelong Cougars, another decisive victory from Sirens puts them one step closer to shaking up the ladder.

Seahawks kept up with Sirens in a closer first half than what was anticipated. However, Sirens took the ball and ran away with it in the second half to see them take a 22 goal win home.

Sirens defensive efforts were crucial to the final outcome. Their constant and tight on the body strategies demonstrated why they’re a key threat in Men’s Premier. This forced Seahawks’ goalers to move out of the circle more than usual, and in doing so shoot farther from the ring which gave opporuntity for Sirens to attain rebounds

As well as their defence, Sirens shot up a storm in their goals again this week with Brodie Smith and Josh Roberts as agile as each other. Moving along the base line has become a known trait of Smith, who once again outplayed his defender to shoot optimally.

DDNA (47) def by Geelong Cougars (67)

 

Our Men’s Premier front runners stayed in control again this week with another double-digit clean win over DDNA.

Geelong came out quick to take an early lead on DDNA, which they managed to maintain across the full 60-minutes. Alastair Punshon and Luke Rawlings proved themselves as one of the strongest defensive duos in the competition. The elevation when jumping to defend shots allowed them to deflect a number of DDNA’s goal attempts, which were converted into goals of their own.

Elevation was also evident in Geelong’s attack with clean and concise lobs into Brayden Pastore and Cam Allum. However, towards the second half it seemed the pair’s movements became predictable as David Priddle and Daniel King from DDNA blocked passes in and movement out.

Communication is what other sides need to learn from Geelong, who each and every week bring an unstoppable connection on and off the court.

Mixed Premier

Melbourne City Blackhawks (30) def by Parkville Panthers (72)

Parkville Panthers’ recipe for success came down to three things this week – trust, opportunity and a whole lot of power plays. Their 42 goal victory was formed from their first half start that gave them 17 point lead that they almost doubled by the end of the match.

It was a battle of the Wing Defence’s for both sides, as Casey Adamson from Panthers and Liv Ellis from Blackhawks worked hard to force the pressure in the midcourt and get plenty of touches and turnovers. Blackhawks’ goalers shot some impressive long bombs for shining moments, however it was the goaling duo of Brodie Roberts and Uneeq Palavi that stole the show.

As Panthers sit undefeated, the question stands if anyone can get a win against them…

DDNA (62) def by Pasifika Sharks (64)

 

It was like a game of cat and mouse where one team would tie up the scores for the other score and turn the table. Match ups sparked fierce competition down the court between DDNA and Sharks.

Sam Mackerras and Chelsea Imanisani were fundamental for DDNA, capitalising in the midcourt when they needed it the most, keeping DDNA well and truly in the game. Despite being four goals down in the second half, DDNA brought i back to two goals entering the final quarter.

Sharks’ Roni Lee Nuku didn’t stop running, providing assistance in midcourt as a key play maker alongside Ricky Papara. For Sharks, their defensive pressure was electric and forced needed turnovers that kept scores so close throughout the match.

Despite matching each other’s fourth quarter goal count, 20 each, it was Sharks who had the slight upper hand to get them across the line for a win.

St Therese (42) def by Valley Wolves (66)

 

After a loss last week, Wolves picked themselves back up this week to take home a stunner of a win against St Therese (not to mention with the addition of new uniforms!)

A hard fought first quarter saw Wolves lead by six goals. As the match went on so did Wolves’ lead, their determination down the court giving them a 20 goal second quarter, and attain a comfortable 24 goal win.

It was a thrilling match up of Shannon Blackman and Hannah Kuhar in the midcourt, elevating each other’s play while opposing one another. Kuhar and Jason Heard’s movement in the midcourt demonstrated strategy in Wolves’ plays which allowed them to transition the ball with speed and precision down to Nat Billings and Alastair Punshon in goals. Niamh Vahland in Therese’s defence put up a strong contest, forcing Wolves to feed in and out to readjust and find free space.

Wolves secure 3rd spot on the ladder for another week, only one match win behind 2nd.

Geelong Cougars (52) def Eastside Sonics (44)

 

A close but comfortable lead at half time reflected Gelong’s clear cut driving down the court that resulted in turnovers for them to capitalise on. The defensive play between Sarah Szczykulski and Luke Rawlings proved successful in limiting the passes into Sonic’s goals and disrupting their plays. The duo played well to confuse the space of Jack Carpenter and create turnover opportunities for the Cougars.

Samara Harris had a tough contest against Geelong’s Allie Smith, but the teamwork between herself, Jesse Failla and Bella Hodgson allowed them to overcome Geelong in the midcourt. In goals for Geelong were the formidable force of Brayden Pastore and Julia Woolley, with the pair sharing the load relatively evenly at the post and utilising the circle space. Their precision goaling finished off the hard work of their team.

Despite going down to Geelong this week, this determination from Sonics give us excitement to see how they progress through the season. 

NNE Vipers (BYE)

 

Men’s Division One

Northern Titans (44) def DDNA Teal (34)

 

It was a tough contest for Titans and DDNA who possessed their own strengths in areas of the court. For Titans it was their dynamic midcourt plays and for DDNA their tough to break defence.

Despite DDNA leadin in the first half, Titan’s tight play down the court couldn’t be intervened by DDNA in the second half and they were left playing catch up to take back the lead. Things are still tight on the ladder, so another win for Titan’s is crucial at this point of the day.

Melbourne Bucks (45) drew Southern Storm (45)

 

Southern Storm gave Bucks a run for their money to tie this week in a match that couldn’t be predicted.

Storm, who five match wins behind Bucks, showed a side of them we haven’t seen this season. They shook Bucks from the very first quarter to come out with decisive plays and a clear sense of direction to lead by five goals. Shooting another 14 goals in the second quarter, their lead was maintained as a result to their consistency.

Both sides demonstrated strengths within their thirds in the third quarter which resulted in the scores fluctuating up and down, however more up for Bucks who looked on route to come back from a slow first half.

With intent and some tricks up their sleeves, Bucks delivered a striking final quarter to come back from a decent deficit and draw.

DDNA Red (47) def St Therese (27)

 

St Therese just couldn’t reach it this week against DDNA who came out on top by 20 points.

Some fumbling of the ball by St Therese gave the opportunity to DDNA to score off these turnovers and take a steady lead. Accuracy in DDNA’s goal end outshone St Therese and the feeding in their attack set the goalers up well. Their mid court looked just as strong as usual and made a large difference to their winning margin.

DDNA Teal (BYE)

 

Mixed Division One

Ariels Juniors (40) def by St Therese (66)

 

St Therese played a strong four quarters to lead the entire match and take it home with a runaway final quarter.

Larni Howard in the midcourt and Ryley Cornell were instrumental to their teams’ win. Larni directed the play of the ball with confidence and Cornell was ready to pounce at any chance for an intercept, taking several notable ones in the match.

Ariels played well themselves,  putting pressure on St Therese’s passes into goals to limit options. It was St Therese’s teamwork and strength in every third that saw them take out a sizeable victory to make it their third for the season.

Ariels Mixed (50) def DDNA Red (45)

 

Ariels continued their fine form in the competition to continue their five week winning streak with a fival goal win against DDNA.

Ariels shot a mammoth 32 goals in the first half, doubling DDNA’s scoring shots in the second quarter. However, DDNA weren’t one’s to be kept silenced and brought the fight in the second half to tighten the scores. Despite this comeback intensity, Ariels managed to hold the lead with teamwork and strategic passes into goals.

Melbourne Bucks (43) def by Fitzroy Phoenix (68)

 

From the very first centre pass, it was clear the Phoenix had nothing but victory on their mind today.

Strong transition work between thirds allowed Phoenix to take a comfortable  lead going into the last quarter. Determined to tighten the margin. Although Bucks achieving some much-needed turnovers, Phoenix were too strong to be beat.

LTU Eagles (48) def by DDNA Pink (54)

 

In their best match of the season, DDNA Pink found their feet to achieve their first victory of the season!

DDNA’s strong talents as a team were the highlight of their match this week against Hawks Netball, their framework and strategic play on court evidenced after weeks of attempts. They started slow but came back strong in the second half to take the lead away from LTU a deliver a whopping 17 goals in the third quarter.

St Kilda Bullets (BYE)

 

Make sure to keep up with next weeks matches and check out the 2019 MLeague fixtures!