Falcons Black, the East Midlands’ Premier Division 2 netball team, started the season with a home game against Norwich-based, Thoroughbreds. Last season, Thoroughbreds competed in Premier Division 1 so Falcons Black knew that it would be a tough game from the very first centre pass.
However, Falcons Black made a great start to the game, especially considering the fresh, young faces that were in the starting seven. Some slick play, accurate shooting and impressive interceptions contributed to the new players making a positive impact and allowing Falcons Black to take a three-point advantage going into quarter time.
No changes were made to either side for the second quarter but Thoroughbreds came out firing, including having some early crucial turnovers to edge into the lead. Further losses of possession and infringements by Falcons Black allowed Thoroughbreds to take full advantage. In particular, Thoroughbred’s 6’4” Goal Shooter made no mistakes and gradually helped pull her team’s score away from Falcons Black – the second quarter score line being 18-7 in Thoroughbred’s favour.
Falcons Black players were clearly down from their second quarter performance but they never gave up and after the half time break pushed to close the gap in the score line. Some accurate shooting from both Charlotte Roye and Christie Simpson enabled Falcons Black to stay in touching distance of Thoroughbreds.
The last quarter gave an opportunity for another youngster to take to the court as Jess Smith replaced Eleanor Durcan at centre. Unfortunately for Falcons Black, experience ultimately prevailed and the away team pulled away again to increase the score line, despite a valiant effort from the ladies on the court. The final whistle saw Thoroughbreds run out winners at 61-43.
Starting lineup: GS Charlotte Roye GA Christie Simpson WA Eleanor Durcan C Katie Flaherty WD Kaylea McQuade GD Issy Beighton GK Jade Forbes-Wattley
Subs: Helen Hancock, Jess Smith, Sofija Djukic