Hor­sham on track for run at flag

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - Sport - BY COLIN MACGIL­LIVRAY

Hor­sham’s quest to avenge last year’s one-goal Wim­mera Net­ball As­so­ci­a­tion A Grade grand fi­nal loss re­mains on track as teams near the halfway point of the sea­son.

Af­ter Satur­day ev­ery team will have played each other once, and Hor­sham looks to have primed it­self for an­other run at a flag.

The Demons will face a tough op­po­nent in the War­rack Ea­gles, but sent an omi­nous warn­ing to the rest of the league with a ruth­less 34-goal win against sec­ond-placed Ararat at the week­end.

The Rats en­tered round eight un­de­feated, but were un­able to with­stand a with­er­ing on­slaught by the Demons in the sec­ond quar­ter af­ter trail­ing by just three goals at the first change.

Goal de­fence Krys­tal Fisher has been one of Ararat’s best play­ers this sea­son but could not dam the tor­rent of goals un­leashed by Hor­sham goalie Emma Buwalda.

Buwalda net­ted 17 of her 20 at­tempts in the sec­ond quar­ter to ex­tend the Demons’ lead to 19 at the long break, then fol­lowed it up with 25 goals in the sec­ond half to cap the 77-43 win.

With the game safely in hand the Demons ex­per­i­mented with their line-up in the third quar­ter, run­ning Ge­orgie Car­berry through the cen­tre and push­ing

Paige Lloyd to wing at­tack. The Rats also tin­kered with their line-up, mov­ing Tayla Bor­relli into goals in the sec­ond half and shuf­fling Tay­lor Ma­son from goal at­tack to goal keeper.

Ararat is in se­ri­ous dan­ger of los­ing two on the trot as it prepares for a road game against lad­der-leader Minyip­mur­toa.

The Bur­ras will have beaten ev­ery side in the as­so­ci­a­tion if they can see off the Rats, and ap­pear to be in top form af­ter a 51-goal throt­tling of bot­tom side Nhill.

Minyip-mur­toa put on a clinic in the sec­ond quar­ter with 28 goals to Nhill’s seven.

The Bur­ras smoth­ered Nhill through the mid­court as the Tigers failed to score more than 10 goals in a quar­ter un­til the fourth.

Alex Lang’s in­ter­cept work at goal de­fence was im­pec­ca­ble as usual and Hayley Campbell worked hard at wing at­tack to ap­ply pres­sure to Nhill op­po­nents Lau­ren Tink and Jenna Sch­nei­der.

Burra Kirby Knight was the ben­e­fi­ciary of plenty of Campbell’s passes and fin­ished with 51 goals in the 84-33 win.

The Tigers have been a punch­ing bag for some of the league’s top sides this sea­son but will be fired up on Satur­day when they take on Stawell.

The War­riors and Tigers are both win­less, and the op­por­tu­nity to earn some pre­mier­ship points will be a huge mo­ti­va­tion for both teams.

Stawell can take heart from its per­for­mance against Dim­boola at the week­end, which, while ul­ti­mately un­suc­cess­ful, showed plenty of pos­i­tive signs.

The War­riors found themselves ahead by four goals at half-time thanks in large part to the tire­less work of Tarnee Orr at cen­tre and Courtney Mcil­vride at wing de­fence, who helped turn de­fence into at­tack and pro­vide op­por­tu­ni­ties for Ebony Sum­mers and Jemma Clarkson in goals.

Al­though the Roos stead­ied the ship in the third quar­ter and even­tu­ally won 49-42, the War­riors can hold their heads high. Goal at­tack Bil­lie-jo Bar­ber fin­ished with 24 goals to be named best for Dim­boola, which now takes on Hor­sham Saints.

The Saints were tested by South­ern Mallee Giants, but did enough to keep their noses in front at ev­ery change and come away with a 48-44 win.

Gabby O’brien worked hard at wing de­fence and Abby Hallam slot­ted 35 goals to lead the reign­ing pre­miers, while for the Giants it was former Saints best and fairest win­ner Marnie Lehmann who shone at goal de­fence and goal keeper.

The Giants could have leapfrogge­d the Saints and climbed into the top five with a win, but now face an up­hill bat­tle to chal­lenge for a fi­nals spot in the sec­ond half of the sea­son.

They have a bye this week­end.

ON TAR­GET: Hor­sham Saint Abby Hallam shot 35 goals to help her side to a four-goal win against South­ern Mallee Giants at the week­end. Pic­ture: PAUL CARRACHER

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