Saints dan­ger­ous

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - Wfl Finals - BY COURT­NEY CLOUGH

If there was ever a dark horse, smoky or what­ever other ti­tle you would use for a dan­ger­ous un­der­dog team ap­proach­ing a net­ball fi­nals se­ries, Hor­sham Saints cer­tainly qual­ify. Wow! The Saints have mir­rored their foot­ball coun­ter­parts and come from nowhere and are per­haps con­sid­er­ing adding some sil­ver­ware to their new clu­b­rooms at Cough­lin Park. Hor­sham Saints have fin­ished fifth, which on pa­per is good but noth­ing to re­ally write home about. But it’s their threat­en­ing form that has Wim­mera Net­ball As­so­ci­a­tion abuzz and the nerves of op­po­si­tion teams aflut­ter. What’s hap­pened to sud­denly make the Saints so dan­ger­ous? The team ap­peared rel­a­tively un­set­tled and was on the end of con­fi­dence-shat­ter­ing losses early in the sea­son. But all of a sud­den, with the crit­i­cal scalp of War­rack Ea­gles in round 11, the team’s con­fi­dence jumped and the team’s con­nec­tions have started work­ing. The side is danc­ing to its own tune and ig­nor­ing op­po­si­tion rep­u­ta­tions and even cir­cum­stances to com­mit to game plans. Play­ers are keen to main­tain their spots in the team. The Saints are get­ting a sniff of what they need to do and gain­ing a clear un­der­stand­ing of the level they need to reach to com­pete against the com­pe­ti­tion yard­sticks The team’s growth in stature strength­ened with a nar­row but fight­ing two-goal loss to Minyip-mur­toa in the fi­nal round, send­ing alarm bells out across the top five.

Hor­sham Saints boast an eclec­tic and tal­ented mix of play­ers and none are more ex­cit­ing to watch than Caris sis­ters Mag­gie and Rene.

They are se­ri­ous book-end play­ers and ris­ing stars with the old­est of the pair and fierce com­peti­tor Rene hold­ing down a keeper po­si­tion, and Mag­gie con­stantly tick­ing the score­board over as shooter.

They will play a crit­i­cal role in any Hor­sham Saints suc­cess, but form sug­gests that what the out­fit needs to progress deep into the fi­nals is a broad team ef­fort.

The Saints also have a ver­sa­tile star in Tara Jasper who is a proven ball-win­ner in ev­ery po­si­tion from goal de­fence to the mid­court, and now form­ing a com­bi­na­tion in at­tack with Mag­gie Caris.

She is also a tough com­peti­tor, sim­i­lar to many of her team-mates, and it might be many of the play­ers’ pur­suit of women’s foot­ball op­por­tu­ni­ties on the side that has added ex­tra steel to their game.

Oth­ers play­ers to watch for the Saints in the fi­nals are Shan­non Rein­heimer, Ash­lee Grace and Ash­ley Hobbs, who can mix it with the best through the mid­dle of the court.

Me­gan O’con­nor might also be an ex­tra foil in at­tack and there is no doubt team leader Jess Can­nane pro­vides in­spi­ra­tion out of de­fence.

The word from Cough­lin Park in Hor­sham is – watch out, the Saints are up and about.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.