It was the battle of the birds with the Augusta Margaret River Hawks taking on the Busselton Magpies at their home ground in Margaret River.
LEAGUE: The game started slowly with the Magpies up by 12-8 at the first break in a low scoring game. Leaving positions unchanged in the second quarter the girls found their rhythm and with Yasmin Riley at keeper backing herself to go out hunting which resulted in multiple intercepts along with the constant hustle of Ash Ritson, Nina Simonetti and Mia Pethybridge the turnovers were created and with the ball delivered safely into Chief Maia Bratton and Sunny Manners hands the shots were converted and the Magpies were up 26-14.
At the main break the Hawks made some changes and were not ready to give up as they worked out what the Magpies attack plan was and they forced the errors and outscored the Magpies by two goals. Major changes were made with Tamara Thornley moving to keeper where she soon showed her experience with some intercepts of her own as Riley was moved to shooter. Meg Bolton moved into center along with Phoebe Pethybridge in WA while sister Mia had a crack at WD. The new lineup had an immediate impact. The defences and midcourt took the intercepts and the ball was delivered in with rapid succession to the goalies. With some creativity in the circle between experienced Bratton and Riley they combined to score 17 goals and the defences kept the Hawks to a mere five goals. The final score was 51 to 29. Coach Bratton was pleased to announce the Busselton Bush Shack Steakhouse player of the day Yasmin Riley for her outstanding defensive efforts and great movement in GS.
The League team find themselves in a precarious position sitting fourth, but with a bye next week they may get knocked out of the four so will be watching game outcomes next weekend.
16s: The Hawks started strong in the first quarter and took advantage of some wayward passes by the Magpies. It was a fairly even quarter with some strong defensive play by Elle Mullumby, Kalani Bate-Henry and Jaimee Lyons. Jordan Sapsford made good use of the bounce pass, with Lucy Burge making it count and the Magpies were up by two goals. The Hawks came out firing in the second and soon took charge. It was a physical battle in the defensive circle with the Jaimee Lyons' intercept proving a turning point in the quarter with the Magpies making it count. Felicity Watson's speed out of the centre matched with Jenna Begley's athleticism on the wing led to more turnovers along with Sally Conroy and Jordan Sapsford's accurate aim extended the Magpies lead to 13 at half-time.
In the third the Magpies attack started strongly with fresh legs in centre Tamsin Falconer. Montana Ternadi's defensive lean on the shot disrupted the Hawks shooting. The Magpies won the quarter and were up by 18 goals. The final quarter was fast and furious; more like tennis than netball and entertained the crowd.It was the dominating quarter with the Magpies taking the match convincingly with the final scoreline 54-24. The young squad has a bye next week as they finish the season as minor premiers and look likely to come up against arch rivals the Blackwood Ravens in the semi final.
18s: Magpies had a convincing win over the Hawks. The first quarter was a masterclass in circle feeds as Jenna Begley and Phoebe Pethybridge delivered beautiful passes into shooters Nikira Brock and Nikki Smith. Smith and Brock combined to produce a formidable team with impressive accuracy at the post. Returning from injury, Ella Griffin wowed with multiple intercepts. Jaymee Dahlenburg and Arielle Hockey injected fresh speed and dynamic play into the game as the Magpies ran out to an 18-goal lead by half-time. Ruby Simonetti and Hannah Bowden challenged the Margaret River attack with heavy pressure, forcing many a wayward ball. Coach Beth Stokes was able to create effective new combinations with the Magpies recording an emphatic 58-26 goal win as finals loom. They are now in a three-way tie for second spot with Carey Park and Ravens with one round to go.
The Masters and 18s host the Harvey Bulls at the Geographe Leisure Centre at 10.30am on August 25; get court side for the action.