ROUND 2 of the Suncorp Super Netball over the weekend saw some phenomenal matchups across all four games and some highly talented players take the court. The condensed fixture and introduction of rolling subs this year has seen plenty of young names already jump on the court and have a huge impact despite their lack of experience. We take a look at each game and note which players shifted the gears and switched up the momentum.
Holding the lead at quarter time the GIANTS were caught off guard in the second term by a desperate Adelaide Thunderbirds side. Pressing in the opening stages of the game the T’birds really kicked into gear in the second quarter with their increased defensive pressure and accuracy to post only missing three goals for the term. As the attack end fired on all cylinders it was the defensive efforts of Shamera Sterling and Kate Shimmin that inflicted the most pain with the duo fighting hard for space in the goal circle and putting fear in the GIANTS attackers minds. They combined for a whopping six gains and four rebounds to stop the GIANTS in their tracks and deny Jo Harten, Caitlin Bassett and Kiera Austin any easy avenue to goal. Shimmin showcased her impressive aerial ability while Sterling pounced on anything that came her way as the GIANTS only managed to add eight goals to their tally.
It was dominant performance from the Melbourne Vixens across all four quarters but it was back to back super shots from Caitlin Thwaites in the opening term that set the wheels in motion. Neck and neck for most of the quarter with Firebirds goaler Romelda Aiken strong under the post, Vixens shooter Mwai Kumwenda delivered the first super shot of the game to steal the lead and stamp their authority on the match at hand. From there, Thwaites took the game into her own hands backing herself from range. Up against the young and developing Kim Jenner, Thwaites made the most of her experience to glide into the circle and showcase her range to do damage from perimeter edge, open up a commanding lead and subsequently set the tone for the remainder of the clash.
Collingwood came out with plenty of intensity in the opening half with their connections and speed across the court slicing through the Sunshine Coast Lightning. Shimona Nelson was in ripping form under the post as the Magpies goaler snatched up everything that came her way. The late withdrawal of Diamonds shooter and Lightning lynchpin Steph Wood from the starting seven sent the Lightning into a tizz lacking their usual dynamic movement in the goal circle. but with the game getting away from them, Wood took the court and changed the course of the game. Her influence lifted the entire side with Laura Langman walking with a pep in her step, Cara Koenen finding space under the post and Laura Scherian hitting the circle edge with pace. Though she was not overly accurate to post it was her sheer presence that altered the entire Lightning outfit and their approach to the game.
The West Coast Fever stunned the reigning premiers in the opening half forcing them into uncharacteristic turnovers and suffocating their signature ball movement. Unhappy with their performance the Swifts switched things up in the third quarter prompting Sophie Garbin to go on a tear. Playing in at goal shooter, Garbin single-handedly turned the game on its head knocking back a whopping 21 goals from 23 attempts at 91 per cent. As the quarter went on her confidence grew with Helen Housby, Maddy Proud and Paige Hadley delivering the ball on a silver platter thanks to her strong holds and aerial ability to consistently reel in passes. Garbin made it look easy under the post with Olivia Lewis unable to combat her dominance as she slotted 13 consecutive goals to level the scores and wrestle the momentum well and truly back to the Swifts.