Saints to field teams in all levels
Edenhope-apsley has had an unsettled start to 2018 following talks of a potential merger and move to Kowree-naracoorte-tatiara league.
With leaders making the decision to retain the status quo, the Saints are now preparing netballers for their latest Horsham District league campaigns.
Netball director and A Grade player Cynthia Watt said pre-season was now in full swing, with solid numbers on the training track.
“We’ve been training a few weeks but it’s still early days,” she said.
“Until recently we’ve been constantly having merger talks so we were looking at numbers and contemplating shuffling teams.
“Now we know what we’re doing we can put plans in place.”
Watt said netball leaders were focusing on improving players’ fitness while providing game-play opportunities.
“We’ve been doing four 15-minute blocks to imitate a netball game,” she said.
“We’ve been incorporating a few fun games into our fitness schedule and also doing some court time, which the girls seem to enjoy.
“We have two practice matches coming up in the next two months, along with a couple of trials against Border Districts. That will be part of our selection process.”
Watt said the club had retained the majority of last year’s A Grade players, with the exception of the van Dyke girls, Monica, Ursula and Eleanor.
Monica, however, will remain in a coaching capacity and has taken over the A Grade leadership role from Leonie Lang.
“Monica is expecting her first baby and she’s excited to be taking on the coaching role,” Watt said.
“We’re taking a bit of a different approach to coaching this season.
“Although each grade will have a coach, we’re looking at a more collaborative approach, with a panel working across the grades.
“They will be working together in everything from Thursday night trainings to our fitness camp to game days on Saturdays.”
Watt said she looked forward to settling teams and preparing for round one against Rupanyup.
“We’re keeping most of last year’s A Grade players and we might bring up a couple of B Grade players,” she said.
“Last year we were a bit up and down, filling voids created by leave and holidays, so hopefully we’ll be a bit more settled this year.”
Watt said club leaders were happy with last season’s performances, with A and C grades making finals.
She said the club would look to enter teams in all grades in 2018.
The Saints did not field a 17 and under team last year after several girls moved away for school.
Sarah Domaschenz will coach the junior side this year.
Watt said the club would also put a C Reserve team together.
Last year the Saints withdrew from the C Reserve competition due to a lack of numbers before entering a team part-way through the season.
“This year we’re aiming to be a competitive club all round,” Watt said.
“Given our numbers we hope to put together some really competitive netball teams.
“We’ve got some really positive girls around and we are drawing on the experience of some very experienced netballers.”