Young Cats stand tall
The exuberance of youth is a tough metric to measure — and one that can produce inconsistent results at times.
But for Finley’s A grade Murray Netball League squad, the recipe has been just right since an initial loss to Rumbalara.
After defeating Numurkah in round one proper, the young Cats came out firing on all cylinders against Cobram on Saturday evening, eventually claiming victory against the Tigers by seven goals.
For coach Helene Steward, watching her inexperienced group click on the court so quickly has been extremely positive.
‘‘They have just jelled so beautifully as a team the last two matches, and (on Saturday) it just all came together for us,’’ Steward said.
‘‘Our second oldest player is only 20 or 21. They just showed incredible maturity for such a young squad.
‘‘Even at the quarter breaks I barely had to say anything, they were encouraging each other and talking about what they could improve on or what they were doing well.’’
The round two contest at Finley Apex Sports and Community Centre was tight throughout, with the final margin close to the largest of the match.
‘‘It was a really great game, it was a lot closer on court than what it looks from the final score,’’ Steward said.
‘‘It got to within two goals in the last quarter and we just managed to steady, it was tight and our girls just kept their head.’’
Shania Bentley impressed for the Cats alongside Ruby Russell in the goal circle, while Savannah Wilson and Lauren Yeo stood tall in the defensive third.
Maicie Close was fantastic again in WA with her drive through the midcourt and her defensive pressure was excellent.
Holly Robinson and Tiarna Burke also linked well through the midcourt to deliver the home side a seven goal victory. Final score, Finley 53 to Cobram 46. Awards: RS Club - Shania Bentley; Country Club - Maicie Close.
The B grade Cats had another tough, tightly contested game but it was Cobram playing a great last quarter to secure the win.
Helene Steward had a fantastic game in goals and worked hard defensively in the midcourt.
Elyse Price was again invaluable in defence getting many taps and intercepts and linking well with the attackers to get the ball through the midcourt. Final score, Cobram 40 to Finley 34. Awards: Eagle I - Helene Steward; Country Club - Elyse Price.
It was a tough game for the C grade Cats this week, with Cobram proving too strong. Final score, Cobram 61 to Finley 13. Awards: Kelly Grains - Sasha Wood; Daisy Mae’s - Kaylee Lonsdale.
The Under 17s saw a tightly contested game for four quarters with the Cats going down by one goal in the final seconds.
A fantastic effort across all positions on the court with Finley defenders Isabella Kelly and Isabel Alexander combining well.
Midcourters Sarah Haynes, Niamh Mason and Elle Rochford made strong leads and brought the ball through the centre and delivered well to the attacking end.
Charlie Mason played with intensity and a never give up attitude, defending every pass and putting the pressure on down the court.
Cats goalers Sarah Orro, Micaelie Price and Piper Doyle combined well, regardless of what combination was in the goal circle and they used their angles well to get a better position. Final score, Cobram 28 to Finley 27. Awards: Finley Bakery - Charlie Mason; FFNC Canteen - Piper Doyle.
A great team effort from the U15s Cats saw them record a 13 goal win.
Courtney Lunn stepped up into her defence position and dominated right from the first whistle taking intercept after intercept.
Down the other end of the court Amarlee Price rarely missed a goal and was very strong with her rebounding. Final score, Finley 24 to Cobram 11. Awards: Finley Bakery - Courtney Lunn; FFNC Canteen - Amarlee Price.
The U13s Cats had yet another great win this week against Cobram.
There were some great passages of play from Finley, with the versatility in the team a highlight. Final score, Finley 38 to Cobram 18. Awards: Finley Bakery - Sienna Burke; FFNC Canteen - Daisy Daniel.
Another much improved game by the U11s Cats saw them score a two goal win.
Cobram had some tall players but Finley made sure they came in front and made sure of their passes.
Addison Clarke had a great day in the goals and was supported well by Remi Pyle and Lexi Armstrong.
Ruby Taylor had another great game in the centre along with Zahlia Lawler.
Paige Gray, Imogen Nash, Charlotte Fleming and Lilly McNamara all worked well in defence getting plenty of intercepts along the way. Final score, Finley 5 to Cobram 3. Awards: Finley Bakery - Imogen Nash; FFNC Canteen - Remi Pyle.