FOUR sides in the current top five will play against the other in round five of the Horsham District Netball League.
It will be a tense affair between fourth-placed Edenhope-Apsley and third-placed Natimuk United while fifth-placed Noradjuha-Quantong will take on the undefeated and second-placed Laharum.
Natimuk United v Edenhope-Apsley
One of these two sides will move four points clear of the other when the round is up, unless there is a draw, which would be unlikely.
Each side is on 12 points, above Noradjuha-Quantong on the table.
The Saints have one of the best defences in the league this season conceding 122 goals while the Ewes have conceded just three more than its round five opposition.
Saints coach Leonie Lang said for the first time this season the squad will be full with nine players.
“It’s a really good time for us to come up against Natimuk,” she said.
“They could wipe us off the court but I think it will be a close game.
“Our strength is in our defence and our attack is getting there.”
Alex Lang has moved from defensive duties to attacking duties due to the sides lack of goal shooters.
“The three Van Dyk sisters will be a big part of our game this weekend,” Lang said.
“Monica is coming in with good form in goal attack and Eleanor will slot in well at the defensive end.
“Ursula will help out in the defensive end too.”
Laharum v Noradjuha-Quantong
A traditional match-up seen countless times will meet again but this time the tables have turned.
The Mountain Maids are coming into this game with a streak of hot form, currently undefeated and second on the table with the most stable defence to date.
The Bombers have lost one this season to the Ewes, a team the Mountain Maids conquered in round three, the Bombers sit in fifth and could risk being bounced out of the top five with a loss on Saturday.
Bombers coach Yolanda Francis said she thought her side needed the break.
“It was good to have the weekend off to reflect on our game against Nati,” she said.
“It gave a chance for the girls to nurse any niggling injuries.”
Caitlin Story is in red-hot form for the Mountain Maids and Francis is aware they need to stop her as much as possible if they have any hope of winning the game.
“I think both sides are even in mid-court, it will be a very exciting game,” Francis said.
“I have been impressed with Carly Creek in goal defence this season, she runs her opposition ragged and really rattles the goal attack.
“Georgia Francis has been having a cracker in centre this season, she has stepped up in maturity and I am excited to see where the season brings her.”
Jeparit-Rainbow v Pimpinio
The Storm will host the Tigers in round five and even though on the table the sides aren’t close this could be one of the better games of the round.
The Tigers boast the leakiest defence conceding 202 goals despite winning two games from four this season.
The Storm is yet to record a victory being one of two sides to have the same fortune.
It has the second leakiest defence conceding 198.
Expect this match to be a goal-fest.
Kalkee v Southern Mallee Giants
Kalkee has slowly been finding its rhythm after the A Grade side’s revamp this year.
Several new players joined the squad while others went through the exit door, this meant coach Bek Harvey would have to start from scratch.
The side has been showing an ounce of improvement each week but the Giants will be one of its toughest challenges to date.
Kalkee haven’t been great on the defensive end while the Giants have been potent in attack, a potential hurdle for the home side.
Swifts v Rupanyup
Another potentially close tie, both sides have one win this season and will be in good spirits after a slew of decent performances.
Each sides win came at the expense of Taylors Lake, the Baggies won by one goal while the Panthers won by 15.
If you were to go off those statistics alone it looks like the Panthers will have its second win of the season.
Harrow-Balmoral v Taylors Lake
It’s been a hard season so far for the A Grade cellar-dwellers Taylors Lake but the season is not over yet.
This game will be a whitewash, you can’t really see the Roos bottling this one.
The home side has been on-point all season while the Lakers will need a gallon of luck if it hopes to survive this one.