Grasshopper 1 regional had a full squad available for this match, but even so – the loss of just one centre pass in the first quarter meant that they trailed 12-13.
The team remained the same in the second quarter, to allow them time to settle down and it paid off, as by half time, they had overtaken Northants JMs and led 20-19; narrow margins.
At half time, changes were made in attack, with Freddie Marlow coming on at GA, Carly Varney on at C and Hannah Wale moving to WA, but the defence remained unchanged. It was still a very evenly poised game, but Grasshopper 1 turned over a couple of JMs’ centre passes and led 28-26 going into the final quarter.
For the final quarter, circle defence remained the same, with ‘Player of the Match’ Megs Palmer (GD) and Laura Watson (GK) doing a great job. Meanwhile Holly Walker moved to C, Carly Varney to WD, and Captain Donna Osborn re-entered the court as WA. This saw Grasshopper 1 score 16 goals to Northants JMs’ 11, leaving the final score 44-37. A well contested, hard-fought win.
Grasshopper 2 regional were fast out of the blocks, matching Cliftonettes goal-for-goal. Only one lost centre pass meant they trailed 10-11 after the first quarter.
Going into the second quarter, Grasshopper 2 continued to match Cliftonettes. The quarter ended in a draw, meaning Grasshoppers trailed 20-21 at half-time.
Changes made at half time saw Georgia Barnes move to WA and Grace Brooks move to GA, whilst Rachel Bullock come on for Kate Garner at WD. The changes appeared to unsettle Grasshopper 2 who lost some of their momentum, resulting in a 27-38 score-line going into the final quarter.
Grasshoppers regained their momentum in the final 15 minutes. However, in spite of some excellent defensive work in the circle by GK, Connie Smith and GD, Laura Scigliano (Player of the Match) it wasn’t enough.
Grasshoppers lost 42-54 at the final whistle – a respectable score against the Division 3 leaders. An excellent game of netball for the spectator, which sees Grasshopper 2 finish safe in mid-table and ready to go again next season.
A gulf currently separates these two teams in the league and it showed in the game; Grasshopper 1 was just too strong. The team started very well and by the end of the first quarter led 13-4.
Grasshopper 1 capitalised on this in the second half, winning it 18-4, to lead 31-9 at half time. At this point, Sadie Burch replaced Carly Varney at WD and the circle defence – Holly Walker and Laura Watson – swapped over, becoming GK and GD respectively.
The third quarter saw another strong performance, with Grasshopper 1 winning it 13-4, to lead 44-13 going into the final quarter. This quarter saw everyone remain in the same positions, winning this period by a 10-8 margin. The final score was 54-21. Player of the Match went to Katie Long, who returned some amazing shooting stats!
Overall, an excellent team performance and it leaves Grasshopper 1 sitting third in the EM Regional Division 2 and now challenging for the play-offs.
Grasshopper 2 regional anticipated a tough game against Sleaford Tornadoes and it did not disappoint. Early nerves and the loss of two centre passes saw Grasshopper 2 trail by the end of the first quarter, 8-12.
The team rallied in the second quarter, though, with some sterling circle defensive work by Connie Smith (GK) and Laura Scigliano (GD), and some good shooting by Andy Flewitt (GA) and Beth Smith (GS). Grasshopper 2 won the quarter to trail by just 23 goals to 24 at half time.
Grace Brooks (Player of the Match) swapped from WA to GA for the second half and Grasshopper 2’s purple patch continued apace, with an excellent standard of netball being demonstrated by both teams. However, Grasshopper 2 came out winners at the end of the third quarter, with the score at 39-35.
The start of the final quarter saw Sleaford Tornadoes whip up a storm to retake the lead and despite some hard work by Grasshopper 2, the team ran out of time and lost the game 46-49. A valuable two points gained, however, towards safety – hopefully.
A slightly different Grasshopper 2 line-up to normal played-out a closely contested first quarter against Falcons Yellow, ending 12-12 after the first fifteen minutes.
No changes were made going into the second quarter, in order for the team to get used to each other – particularly at the attacking end. Once more, it was very close with only a couple of forced balls into the attacking circle – which were subsequently lost – the difference between the teams. Grasshopper 2 trailed 20-24 at half time.
At the break, Rachel Bullock moved to WA, Grace Litchfield came on as GS and Becs Smith came on as WD. In spite of the changes and some really good defensive work by Player of the Match Laura Scigliano (GD), and Connie Smith (GK), Grasshopper 2 just failed to catch up, losing the quarter 10-12.
Going into the final quarter, Grace Litchfield moved to GA, Hannah Page came back on as GS and Grace Brooks went to WA. Another spirited performance ensued, but it wasn’t enough as Grasshopper 2 lost 38-42 at the final whistle.
Grasshopper 1 Regional began the game with their usual starting line-up and, after a closely contested first quarter, led by 3 goals: 10-7. At this point, Captain, Donna Osborn, came off and young Freddie Marlow took her place at GA for the rest of the game, with Katie Long as GS.
Grasshoppers’ strong defence of Laura Watson (GK), Megs Palmer (GD) and Holly Walker (WD) began to dominate in the second quarter, with Hinchcliffe only scoring 5 goals. At half time the score was 23-12.
At the break Carly Varney came on as C to replace Hannah Wale. The change meant Grasshoppers lost a bit of momentum as the players got used to each other. Grasshoppers lost this quarter 7-11. However, the final quarter saw them pull it back again with some sterling work by the defensive unit. Grasshoppers won the final quarter 12-10, beat Hinchcliffe 42-33 at the final whistle. Once again, a great squad performance. Laura Watson and Holly Walker both earned the Player of the Match award.
Grasshopper 2 - Regional League Division 3
GFORCE TEAMWEAR sponsored Grasshopper 2 Regional’s match against Nottingham City Comets was neck-and-neck during the first quarter, which ended 12-12. However, the second quarter saw Grasshopper 2 nudge ahead, to lead 23-19 at half time.
The third quarter saw Nottingham City Comets fight back but Grasshopper 2 maintained a slender lead (34-32) going into the final period.
The final quarter saw Grasshopper 2 Regional pull away from a 42-42 score-line, only for Comets to level the scores again; only some savvy possessional play at the very end of the quarter saw Grasshopper 2 Regional team come out winners 46-44. A very well deserved win!
Grasshopper 1 - Regional League Division 2
Grasshopper 1 Regional were disappointed to draw their last game against Brigg so another match between these two teams brought about a new opportunity for Grasshopper to convert that one extra chance to taste victory.
The first quarter was extremely close, with Brigg just coming out winners (12-13). However, Grasshopper 1 fought back in the second quarter, to lead 26-21 at half time.
At half time, Laura Watson replaced Tracy Glover at GK but the rest of the team remained the same. Another close quarter ensued, with Grasshopper 1 Regional winning it 12-11.
However, Brigg responded the final quarter, winning it 10-11. However, it was not enough and Grasshopper 1 Regional held on to win 48-43 at the final whistle. Some sterling defensive work – in particular by Player of the Match, Megs Palmer. A gritty performance by all the squad members.
Pennine took the first centre and an early lead, but then G2 found their rhythm and romped ahead, winning the first quarter 17-9.
G2’s Captain Kate Garner came on as WD to give Pennine something else to think about for the next quarter, which turned out to be a very close contest. However, some excellent defending by GK Connie Smith and GD Laura Scigliano, coupled with some excellent shooting by GS Beth Smith and GA Freddie Marlow, and good up-court linkage from C Katie Clarke, saw G2 lead 32-21 at half time.
G2’s Rachael Bullock came back on as WD in the third quarter, helping out in defence, whilst WA Grace Brooks fed the shooters well. G2 had a superb quarter, playing some sublime netball to lead by 30 goals at the end of this quarter, with the score at 57-27.
This ‘purple patch’ continued into the final quarter, with everyone playing an excellent standard of netball. G2 won the last quarter 22-10 (final score 79-37). The ‘Player of the Match’ award this week was won jointly by GK Connie Smith and GA Freddie Marlow. An awesome match for G2.
Grasshopper 2, buoyed by their £750 grant from GForce Sportswear, sit fourth in Division 3 after coming back from six goals down, to draw against Ripley.
Grasshopper 2 started well through some brilliant shooting from Beth Smith and Georgia Barnes, and took a four-goal lead midway through the first quarter. However, Ripley fought their way back into the game to finish the quarter level at 11-11.
Ripley’s scoring spree continued in the second quarter as Grasshoppers struggled to find their momentum (24-20). Changes were made: Laura Scigliano came on as GD, Connie Smith replaced Kate Garner at GK; Grace Brooks replaced Beth Smith at GS, and Tia Dewick came on as WA.
The changes didn’t stop Ripley extending the gap to six goals (33-27), leading Garner coming on at WD, Smith on at GS and Brooks replacing Barnes at GA.
Everything came together for Grasshoppers in the final quarter, as Garner, Smith and Scigliano made some key interceptions, whilst Smith and Brooks converted most of their shots. Meanwhile, Player of the Match, Katie Clarke, was pivotal at C, linking well with Dewick to turn over several Ripley centre passes. The match finished at 41 goals apiece.
Picture: Grasshopper 2 Regional sporting the new hoodies bought from their GForce Sportswear grant, before their game against Ripley yesterday.