Top teams dominate district league netball

FIGHTING ON: Kiewa Lovett and the Taylors Lake A Grade team went down to Natimuk United at the weekend. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

FIGHTING ON: Kiewa Lovett and the Taylors Lake A Grade team went down to Natimuk United at the weekend. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

THERE were no surprises in round 14 Horsham District Football Netball League A Grade netball, as the top teams flexed their collective muscle.

Harrow-Balmoral's showdown with Kalkee was the closest match of the round and, not coincidentally, the only match that pitted two top six teams against each other.

Every other match featured a bottom four side against one of the top six.

Despite its status as the closest match of the round, Harrow-Balmoral did it relatively easily against the Kees.

Anna-Grace Close and Amy Lewis' work in goals was outstanding, with the pair battling against the Kalkee defensive tandem of Paula Wiedermann and Stevie Bibby.

Close finished the game with 24 goals and Lewis shot 28.

At the other end, Mikayla McAuliffe, 19 goals, and Hayley Thomas, 16, played well but were covered by Kate Houlihan and Roos coach and reigning league best and fairest Ebonie Salter.

The battle in the mid-court was an intriguing one, with Roo Sarah Langley and Kalkee coach Rachel Thomson both named the best players for their respective teams.

The result leaves the Kees in a precarious position.

They trail second-placed Natimuk United by one win, and are only one win ahead of fourth-placed Laharum.

A round 16 meeting with the Ewes could make or break Kalkee's hopes of a top three finish.

Laharum continued its resurgence with a 65-34 win over Rupanyup.

The Mountain Maids grabbed a commanding 23-4 lead in the first quarter and kept pushing to record a big win.

Laharum coach Emma Uebergang said the game was not as easy as the score suggested.

"Especially in the first quarter, the score wasn't indicative of how hard they played," she said.

"It was nice to have our second win in a row after we lost a few, and it was good for the girls' confidence.

"Caitlin Story shot beautifully and Ema Iredell was fantastic at the defensive end, so they were probably our best players."

For the Panthers it was Tayla Morgan, in goal attack and centre, who was the team's best player.

Goal defence Sarah Florence also battled well.

Noradjuha-Quantong was too good for Pimpinio in a 74-40 win.

The Tigers had their moments and were outscored by only six goals in the second half, but were made to pay for a flat first half.

Sammi Avery, 39 goals, shone for the Bombers, and Pimpinio wing attack Ashleigh Brooks was her team's best player.

Kelsey Hamilton led the Tigers in attack with 26 goals.

Edenhope-Apsley was too good for Swifts, winning 73-22.

The Baggies could only manage more than five goals in one quarter, as the Saints smothered them defensively.

The big win widened the percentage gap between Edenhope-Apsley and Noradjuha-Quantong, giving the Saints an edge in the race for fifth place on the ladder.

Taylors Lake could not keep up with second-placed Natimuk United, losing 77-29.

Kirby Knight and Sophie Hutchinson led the way for the Ewes, while Codie Marra and Grace Howden were Taylors Lake's best.

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