Lak­ers sunk by Stan­hope

Seymour Telegraph - - SPORT -

Nagam­bie coach Abby Misiti is look­ing at the pos­i­tives af­ter her side’s shock loss to Stan­hope on Satur­day — only the Lak­ers’ sec­ond de­feat for the sea­son.

Just a week af­ter they com­pre­hen­sively top­pled the pre­vi­ously un­beaten Avenel, the Lak­ers were hum­bled by Stan­hope, go­ing down by 13 goals.

‘‘It’s a lit­tle bit dis­ap­point­ing, but it gives us some­thing to work on prior to fi­nals, and a loss won’t hurt us,’’ Misiti said.

‘‘We were prob­a­bly cruis­ing along a bit but the loss has opened up our eyes and the girls are still re­ally pos­i­tive.’’

The game wasn’t nec­es­sar­ily as one-sided as the score­line sug­gests, with the two sides neck-and-neck for the ma­jor­ity of the game.

The Lions took the open­ing term 9-7, while it was rel­a­tively even in the sec­ond and third quar­ters.

But it was the fi­nal term that proved telling.

Nagam­bie trailed by just three goals at the fi­nal change, but a dis­as­trous fourth quar­ter saw Stan­hope outscore the Lak­ers 16-6 to record the con­vinc­ing win.

Misiti cred­ited Stan­hope’s wa­ter­tight de­fence, which all but shut down Nagam­bie’s usu­ally pro­lific goal­ing duo of Sharni Lloyd and Bianca Wil­lis.

‘‘In the first quar­ter we had about 10 turnovers that we didn’t con­vert, so we could have had quite a nice lead by quar­ter-time — but it wasn’t to be,’’ Misiti said.

‘‘We need to take op­por­tu­ni­ties like that, our goalers need to take their chances and con­vert.’’

Nagam­bie sorely missed Vikki Bester, who was dom­i­nant in de­fence in the Lak­ers’ big win over Avenel the week prior.

The Lak­ers strug­gled to find an an­swer for Stan­hope’s lofty goal shooter, who was supreme in the win­ner’s goal ring.

‘‘We ex­pected a tough game, Stan­hope had won seven or eight games in a row and were on the up as they fight for that top six spot,’’ Misiti said.

‘‘They were a good de­fen­sive side and they just shut down our drive into at­tack, and our girls were quite flat, they were noth­ing like the week be­fore against Avenel.

‘‘But all credit to them, they had done their home­work and had an an­swer to ev­ery­thing.’’

It was the fourth con­sec­u­tive week that Nagam­bie has lost the fourth quar­ter of the game, and Misiti said it was def­i­nitely some­thing that needed to be ad­dressed as the fi­nals draw nearer.

But she doesn’t put the blame en­tirely on her charges; Misiti said she made some changes at three­quar­ter-time that may have played a part in her side’s down­fall.

‘‘It might be the changes I’m mak­ing and the ro­ta­tions I did on Satur­day just didn’t work,’’ she said.

‘‘I’m still not 100 per cent sure on what our best com­bi­na­tion is, and I’m prob­a­bly not leav­ing the girls to get set­tled for long enough.’’

Nagam­bie has slipped to third spot on the lad­der af­ter the loss, trail­ing sec­ond­placed Tal­ly­ga­roopna by per­cent­age only.

Score: Stan­hope 43 d Nagam­bie 30.

Nagam­bie made a great start to the game, with the girls tak­ing a six-goal lead into quar­ter-time.

A strong mid-court saw the Lak­ers dom­i­nate over the Lions with great pres­sure all over the court, and with the sup­port of ac­cu­rate shoot­ing from Rylee and Bree, the girls came away with a good win.

Awards went to Lucy Zotti and Rylee Alder­ton.

Score: Stan­hope 32 lt Nagam­bie 46.

Go­ing into the match, C-grade knew it was com­ing up against an im­proved Stan­hope side, and with a few play­ers out, it was al­ways go­ing to be a great test for our girls.

Af­ter a closely con­tested first quar­ter the girls started to set­tle.

Some great pas­sages of play in the at­tack helped Nagam­bie main­tain its com­fort­able lead.

Well done to all de­fend­ers, who cre­ated many op­por­tu­ni­ties for the at­tack­ers.

The in­clu­sion of Tas­man re­ally opened up the at­tack, which was lovely to watch.

Awards went to Jackie Dray­ton and Sarah Heath­cote.

Score: Stan­hope 26 lt Nagam­bie 42.

I was an un­for­tu­nate loss for the Lak­ers.

Stan­hope came with a stronger, louder team than at the be­gin­ning of the year.

The girls worked ex­tremely hard all game but un­for­tu­nately gave away too many turnovers, play­ing right into Stan­hope’s hands and giv­ing the Lions a three­goal vic­tory.

Awards went to Ali­cia McLeod and Mad­di­son Biggs.

Score: Stan­hope 37 d Nagam­bie 34.

The Lak­ers got off to a slow start once again.

By the sec­ond quar­ter the girls be­gan to set­tle into the game and show what they are ca­pa­ble of.

Mik, Ada, Bree and Shae used their feet to move around their play­ers to cre­ate lots of turnovers.

Millee flew through the air in­ter­cept­ing all over the place, while there was some beau­ti­ful goal­ing by Sarah, So­phie and Mia.

Awards went to So­phie Moore and Millee Thom­son.

Score: Stan­hope 21 lt Nagam­bie 36

— Lower grade re­ports sup­plied by Nagam­bie FNC

B-GRADE C-GRADE UN­DER-17 UN­DER-15

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