The fu­ture still looks promis­ing for Myrtle­ford’s net­ballers O&M NET­BALL By JUSTIN JENVEY

Myrtleford Times - - Sport -

DE­SPITE an­other one-win sea­son Myrtle­ford A grade net­ball coach An­ndrea Sullivan said the fu­ture looks promis­ing.

The Saints were the youngest team in the com­pe­ti­tion, start­ing the year with just one player older than 22.

They fin­ished the year even younger, with no player older than 22 af­ter vet­eran de­fender Brid­get Flint Chap­man suf­fered a sea­son end­ing knee in­jury in round eight.

With Am­ber Quirk miss­ing Satur- day’s fi­nal round match against Al­bury, Myrtle­ford’s team that took to the court was their least ex­pe­ri­enced all sea­son.

“With­out Am­ber we had to reshuf­fle the side and we had Grace (Taberner) in goal keeper at the ripe old age of 16 and So­phie (Cap­per­l­lari) in goal de­fence at 17,” Sullivan said.

“Ella Murtagh, who is also 17, started in wing de­fence so the back­bone of our team was teenagers who are play­ing A grade net­ball for the first time this year.”

It was a first half to for­get for the Saints as they trailed Al­bury by 30 goals at the in­ter­val.

But the young side fin­ished well, not let­ting the mar­gin blowout but outscor­ing the Tigers 24-22 in the fi­nal two terms as the match ended 33-61.

“If we had have started at half­time it would have been a good re­sult,” Sullivan said.

“We couldn’t buy a goal in the first half and just com­mit­ted too many er­rors but we made a few changes in the sec­ond half and were able to turn it around.

“Ella Mor­ri­son who turned 18 on Satur­day came on and played re­ally well in goal keeper.

“Al­bury is a very tough phys­i­cal side and they had to work a lot harder in the sec­ond half to get the ball into their shoot­ers.

“We played more di­rect and with more con­fi­dence in the sec­ond half so it was good to fin­ish off the way we did.”

Myrtle­ford’s sole win came against Wodonga Raiders in round 13.

“We’ve tried not to fo­cus too much on the wins and loss but what the girls are get­ting out of games,” Sullivan said.

“From the first game to the last game there’s been def­i­nite im­prove- ment, the girls might not see it but as a coach you do.

“As the year went on the girls got more con­fi­dent in each other and with some sta­bil­ity you could cer­tainly see what the girls were ca­pa­ble of.

“The last cou­ple of years we’ve lost half our A grade side from the year be­fore but we’ve got girls that should be around for a lit­tle longer yet.”

B grade was Myrtle­ford’s best per­form­ing net­ball side this sea­son win­ning eight games.

They nar­rowly missed out on a ninth vic­tory on Sun­day go­ing down to Al­bury 43-46 in a close fin­ish.

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