A Strong Win
A great game for goal average
With the first 2017 game at home this weekend, the first team were buzzing for some Hillcrest style match teas after some very disappointing opposition’s kit kat and juice box attempts. This weekend saw Hillcrest A take on Alpha. A close score of 44-41 in the first half of the season meant we couldn’t take our winning streak lightly and knew we had to go out fighting for the win.
With Lauren Brown and Elizabeth Callaghan unavailable this weekend, the defensive line up started with Millie Oughton, Lily Rogers and Laura Cross. Attacking start was Emily Barber, Harriet Field, Becky Crisfield and Emily Nicholls at centre and super subs Katie Mayo and Anna Gray at the ready. The first quarter started a little shaky as both Harriet Field and Emily Barber tried to find their shooting boots. Defence kept up the great start from the previous week’s match against Karisma and made a few interceptions allowing attack to find their rhythm. The first quarter ended 14-4 to Hillcrest, a good start but still room for improvement.
2nd quarter saw no changes to the line-up and the rhythm continued to follow from the first quarter, with some fantastic quick feeds from Emily Nicholls and some great drives to circle edge from Becky Crisfield. Shots from Emily Barber and Harriet Field continued to go in with some great rebounds when they didn't. Defence continued to put pressure on the ball coming down the court making several interceptions, however 2-man zone (Lily Rogers and Laura Cross) often drifted away from their players and hunted the loose ball, often resulting in interceptions or tips; or in the case with Laura Cross running into Harriet Field. Second quarter ended 34-12 (20-8 quarter).
Although the first half of the game had worked well, Coach Anna Harris bought on Katie Mayo at WA and Anna Gray at GA for a second half mix up and prevent Alpha from anticipating our next move and give Hillcrest the chance to show how versatile we can be. The start of the third quarter didn't flow as well as before as attack tried to find their feet and Alpha stepped up their defence. Centre passes didn't flow as easily and numerous passes were made in the shooting third as Emily Barber and Anna Gray worked hard to get into their movement rhythm. In the first few minutes attack had made a start at attempting the world record for consecutive passes; despite the struggle, Emily Nicholls and Katie Mayo kept the ball steady making lots of offers on and off the circle using Lily Rogers and Laura Cross to reset when needed. After the first 5 minutes, the struggle disappeared and the ball flowed nicely from centre pass to shooting circle, with Emily Barber making some great overloads, creating the space for Anna Gray to drive along the back. Fantastic shooting from Anna Gray as she hardly missed a shot. Defence still worked hard to put pressure over the ball but Alpha managed to pass Laura Cross and Lily Rogers easier than in the first half allowing their attack to hit circle edge and put in some great feeds to their shooters, allowing Alpha to creep up on our goal average. Millie Oughton put in some cracking interceptions reading the overhead balls well and often tipping back on court, which ultimately ended in a Hillcrest goal. Third quarter ended 49-17 (15-5 quarter score).
With a comfortable lead the final change bought Becky Crisfield to C and Harriet Field on at shooter a new change in attack again meant Hillcrest started steady often moving the ball around the shooting third until the safe ball was on. Defensive backlines were an improvement from previous weeks’ games, but still an area to work on as balls took several passes to clear the defensive third before receiving in centre court; despite this every ball made it out, so although Wednesday’s training session of practicing backline passes fell through, Team D had obviously used the previous matches as guidelines of what not to do and utilised that. The last quarter continued to show some great match play by all players.
Alpha put out a great team but despite their hard work, consistent play and good shooting, Hillcrest had the edge and took the final score to 65-23 (16-16 quarter score). A great outcome for Hillcrest which helps towards the overall goal average with Omega and Barnes with slightly better averages, but hopefully not for long.
Players’ player and coaches player went to Emily Nicholls for her consistent sharp drives and circle edge feeding
Opposition vote went to Laura Cross for her interceptions, although this is debatable and most likely a sympathy vote :o)