Suncorp Super Netball

Suncorp Super Netball: Round 4 Recap

Vixens vs Fever

Round four of the Suncorp Super Netball got underway at John Cain Arena with the Melbourne Vixens taking on the West Coast Fever. With the Fever scoring the opening goal of the match, Fever went up three to zero, before the Vixens found their range, with Mwai Kumwenda and Kiera Austin finding their way into the match, leading by six goals at quarter time, 23-17.

In the second quarter, the Fever fought their way back into the match, with some tough defensive pressure and key stops, with the defensive due of Courtney Bruce and Stacey Francis-Bayman providing a spark in the defensive end and going for those loose balls, but the Vixens turned to their bench, with Olivia Lewis injecting herself into the match, being crazy and causing problems for the Fever attack end and limiting the impact of Jhaniele Fowler, whilst Rahni Samason had an impact, alongside Austin, with the Vixens shooters shooting the lights out in the Super Shot period, going into the half time break by five goals, 41-36.

With the Vixens able to find their way after the first half, the Fever was eager to keep up with the Vixens, with the Fever backing up three days before against the Queensland Firebirds, looking to find any answers getting back into the match.

The third quarter started with both teams’ intensity and energy going to another level, with the Vixens having all the answers, with Olivia Lewis continuing her strong form in the third, whilst Emily Mannix partnered well with Lewis and continued to add the pressure. Whilst Emma Cosh came onto Goal Attack halfway through the quarter, looking to give the Fever some energy off the bench, the Vixens didn’t put the foot off the pedal, continuing to find flow from the defensive end to attack. With Glasgow nailing a goal at the three-quarter time whistle, the Vixens maintained their lead by eight goals, 57-49.

The Fever made multiple changes in the last quarter, with Rudi Ellis coming on at Goal Keeper, Courtney Bruce to Goal Defence, Sunday Aryang to Wing Defence, Jess Anstiss to Centre, Verity Simmons to Wing Attack and Alice Teague-Neeld, still recovering from COVID-19 to Goal Attack.

As the Fever kept making risks and tried to find anything and get back into the match, the likes of Kate Eddy stopped the flow from Simmons, with the Vixens not afraid of the changes made by the Fever and continued to maintain their lead and work well as a unit. Kate Moloney and Liz Watson were on song in the midcourt and continued their hard work throughout the match.

With the Vixens having a strong game, the home side took the win by nine goals, 75-66, with Liz Watson taking player of the match.

Giants vs Firebirds

Player of the match: Kim Ravaillion

In game two of the Tuesday night double-header and round, the Giants played their first home game at Ken Rosewall Arena. The Giants were desperate to bounce back for their first win, whilst the Firebirds were looking to bounce back after a tough encounter against the West Coast Fever.

In a scrappy match for both sides, the Firebirds found their groove in the early stages in the match, with the Giants fighting back. The battles between Amy Parmenter and Lara Dunkley was intriguing to watch, with Parmenter putting her body on the line and able to cause havoc on Dunkley.

Whilst the Firebirds had flair down the court, playing patient netball and connecting well in all areas of the court, the Giants turnovers were costly and unable to pull in those easy passes and fumbles of the ball. With both teams looking to break away, going into the halftime break, the Firebirds had a four-goal lead, 35-31.

The second half belonged to the Firebirds, with captain Kim Ravaillion playing a key role and leadership, the likes of Bueta and Wallam were on song, Jenner and Usoro-Brown were on song in the defensive end.

With the Giants battling throughout the night, they couldn’t find any rhythm, with shots from Harten and Dwyer not dropping, and being outplayed in the midcourt and defense, it was a tough ask, with many players still battling through illness and still recovering from COVID-19.

The Firebirds proved too strong, taking their second win of the 2022 season, 72-59.

Collingwood Magpies vs Sunshine Coast Lightning

Player of the match: Kelsey Browne

In game three of the round, the Collingwood Magpies faced the Sunshine Coast Lightning at John Cain Arena. Both teams were hungry and looking to get their first win on the board for the 2022 season.

The Magpies were hit hard with COVID-19, with Sophie Garbin and Gabby Sinclair missing the match due to COVID-19 health and safety protocols, with the duo shooters also missing round five.

With Ruby Barkmeyer and Nyah Allen getting the call up as replacement players, the Magpies were put the COVID drama aside and put together four consistent quarters. For the Lightning after a tight match against the Thunderbirds, they were looking to continue that form in round four.

The shooting circle for the Magpies in the first half were on song, with Nelson and Allen able to run rings around the Lightning defence, with Browne also on song with her strong drives to the circle and finding the vision down into attack.

Whilst the Lightning were struggling to find any rhythm, the Magpies were in total control in the second quarter, off a 19-8 quarter. Jacqui Newton made an impact in the match, with some superb intercepts and reading the playoff Wood and Koenen, but the damage was done in the second quarter.

Lightning coach Kylee Byrne described her sides’ second half as “unacceptable.” The Magpies continued to find easy space on the court, from the defensive end to attack.

The Lightning fought back in the third quarter but the Magpies continued to steady. Changes were made in the Lightning attack end, with Reilley Batchelder providing the spark and was on song hitting some super-shots, but it came late in the match, with the Magpies adding their first win to the season taking the win by 10 goals, 74-64.

Adelaide Thunderbirds vs NSW Swifts

Player of the match: Maddy Turner

In the final match of the round, the Adelaide Thunderbirds hosted the NSW Swifts at Netball SA Stadium. The Thunderbirds were eager to bounce back after a hard-fought one-goal loss to the Lightning, whilst the Swifts were looking to build from their win against the Magpies.

The Thunderbirds threw everything at the Swifts. With both sides shooting goal for goal in the earlier stages of the match, the Thunderbirds were able to find the lead. The defensive end for the Thunderbirds caused havoc for the Swifts attack end.

Helen Housby steadied the Swifts, nailing a Super Shot to give the Swifts the quarter time break by three goals, 13-10.

The defensive end of Sterling and Wilson caused all sorts of issues for the Swifts, with the ability to stop the connection of Housby and Fawns, able to read the play and getting defensive stops when a spark was needed. With the Thunderbirds having a run, the Swifts were eager to stop the run the home side made. The change between Fawns and Singleton was superb, with both players stepping up and playing a role when they had their opportunity. With the home side having the momentum, the Swifts went into the halftime break up by three goals, 23-20.

Going into the half, both coaches would be looking to address the steadiness in all areas of the court and looking after possession, with both teams unable to have an easy lead respectfully.  

The third quarter belonged to the Swifts, with Sarah Klau coming up with some key intercepts. The Thunderbirds continued to lift the intensity and not go anywhere, with the Swifts having to go backwards at times and restart to get the ball into attack. With the Swifts nailing Super Shots when needed, they maintained a four-goal leader at three-quarter time.

The final quarter was once again intense, with both sides not having any easy opportunities and both teams putting their bodies on the line to scrap for the ball. With Georgie Horjus nailing Super Shots from everywhere, she kept the home side into the contest. The sealer for the Swifts was off a tip by Fawns in the defensive end to seal the win, with the Swifts getting the win by one goal, 45-44.

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