Ararat outpace Stawell to open with win | Wimmera Netball Association 2017

Ararat started its Wimmera Netball Association A Grade season off with a comfortable win against Stawell at North Park on Friday.

The side recorded a 21-goal win with the final scoreline reading 49-21.

Ararat co-coach Jess Williamson said the it was a great way to start the season.

The Rats side settled in the new season quicker than its opposition as it jump out to a 16-5 lead at the first break.

Heading into the game with three new players meant round one was the first time the whole team had played together.

Williamson said the side gelled well given the preparation.

“The good start really set us up for the rest of the game,” she said.

“We had a bit of a lapse in the fourth quarter when we let Stawell score a bit more but the game flowed from the first quarter start.”

In the second term it was more of the same as the home team fell 17 goals behind at the half-time break.

The Rats’ defenders continually forced the Warriors’ attackers to take low percentage long range shots while up the other end goals were easier to come by.

The Warriors started to convert more opportunities in the second half but could not reel in the Rats.

A 21-18 goal second half extended the visitors lead and showed its new recruits could help push the side further up the ladder this season.

Cecilia Stewart was Ararat’s top goalscorer with 27 while Jemma Clarkson sunk 17 for Stawell in the 28-49 loss.

Williamson praised what Stewart brought to the team.

“I think having Cecilia’s height underneath the ring really helped us,” she said.

“Our defenders were really solid as well with the way they moved the ball up the court.”

Rebecca Skrabl also drew praise from Williamson for how she played in defence and the leadership she showed on court.

“I just hope this game sets the standard for the season ahead,” Williamson said.