Kalangadoo gets MSENA title defence off to dream start

Kalangadoo gets MSENA title defence off to dream start

Mid South East Netball Association action kicked off on Saturday, with Kongorong, Glencoe, Tantanoola and Port MacDonnell hosting the season openers.

The battle of the red and white between Tantanoola and Robe was the closest match of the day, with the Tigers taking the win by two.

Mount Burr had a 10 point win, with the Eagles downing the Murphies by 20 and reigning premiers Kalangadoo defeating the Demons by 22.

Port MacDonnell lost to Kalangadoo 34-56

The Kalangadoo Magpies kicked off the defence of their 2023 premiership with a solid win over Port MacDonnell in the opening round of the Mid South East Netball Association on Saturday.

The Demons hosted the Pies in sunny, still conditions for the season opener.

The game started off as a tight affair with both teams converting early.

Demons GA Cody Manning shot accurately, as did her Kalangadoo counterpart Ebony McDiarmid.

Port Mac had good drive through the middle with Alysha Coon starting well in a new position of centre, while Megan Hein was effective in WD.

Down the other end Lara Munro started well at GK for the Pies, creating turnovers for her team and combining well with Magpies junior Georgia Gentile at GD.

At quarter time Kalangadoo was up 14-11.

The second quarter was again a reasonably even affair with Pies young gun Chloe Peacock injected into the game, providing fresh legs and speed through the middle.

McDiarmid continued her dominance in the goal circle for the visitors, despite the gallant efforts of Port Mac recruit Emily Thompson.

Jane Auld and Lauren Kain also had an impact, playing well for the Pies through the midcourt.

By half time the Pies had increased their lead slightly, up 27-20 at the main break.

Kalangadoo stepped up a gear in the third and advanced on the scoreboard, while Port Mac had no answer for the well oiled machine.

Abbey Duncan and McDiarmid combined fluidly despite the best efforts of Thompson and Alana Berkefeld.

Kain moved back to GD for the Pies and had an immediate effect with Manning only managing one goal for the quarter.

The Demons brought on junior Sophie Lewis into WA for her A Grade debut and she showed her speed, agility and made some nice passes into the Bay’s Kori Collins who was having a good game at GS.

Despite this, the Pies increased their lead to 44-28 at the last break.

The fourth quarter was again all Kalangadoo with Munro and Kain brilliant in defence, making Collins and Manning earn every goal.

Megan Hein took the WA bib for the Bay and worked well with Coon in the midcourt.

While it was a strong performance from a young, new look Demons outfit, it was the experience and skill of the Pies that finished well on top with the final score 56-34.

Best for the Pies were Munro and Gentile, while Collins and Hein took the honours for the Bay.

Kongorong lost to Mount Burr 35-45

The Mozzies and the Hawks had a great tussle to start the new season, with the Burr getting off to a great start, shooting the first couple of goals unanswered.

Kongorong then settled to peg it back but the Mozzies had another little run thanks to some accurate shooting to take a three goal lead at the first break.

Danika Shepherd and Laura Schultz shared the shooting with six goals each.

The second quarter was evenly contested with both sides creating some nice turn overs.

Buckingham and Sealey worked well in goals adding eight to the scoreboard.

Zara Von Stanke and Ella Easterby provided their respective teams with some solid drive down the court.

Defence was tight at both ends but the Burr held on to a five goal lead at half time, with the Hawks heading into the third quarter with work to do.

Kongorong defenders Emily Lightbody and Rachel Perry worked hard in defence with some tidy turnovers but the Burr fed their goalies well around the goal circle to retain an eight goal lead at the last break.

Both teams continued to fight hard defensively at either end to run out the game.

Lightbody’s and Perry’s pressure progressively built and was well supported by Lawson and McKinnon down the defensive end for Kongorong whilst Haggett and Thiele up the other end capitalised on any errors and transitioned the ball down the court.

Despite the young Hawks’ improving game and attempts to limit the damage on the scoreboard, Mount Burr was able to get a look at much more of the ball in attack which allowed them to take the game by 10 goals.

Perry and Von Stanke were named best on for Kongorong, while Shepherd and Easterby took the honours for Mount Burr.

Glencoe defeated Hatherleigh 59-39

Glencoe hosted Hatherleigh for round 1 and both teams entered the game with adjusted line ups from the 2023 season.

The Murphies welcomed back Ashlea Pfitzner to the midcourt and Caitlin Hentschke to the defensive circle, while the Eagles welcomed new recruits Bree Harris in the goal circle and former Glencoe player Chelsea Owen at WD as well as the elevation of junior player Kali Nettle in the midcourt.

These player movements and the unknowns of the first game of the season set up an intriguing battle.

The Murphies took the first centre pass and scored through the hands of Chantelle Cocks with the Eagles responding with a converted centre pass of their own.

High hands from the Hatherleigh defensive line disrupted the vision of the Murphies and forced some miscommunication down the Glencoe attack line.

The Eagles had some early opportunity with the ball but were unable to penetrate through the high defence of the Murphies with Sarah Edwards able to reap the rewards of the Glencoe pressure with some floating intercepts off Hatherleigh’s defensive transition.

As the Murphies settled into the quarter they were able to accumulate a slim early lead.

The Eagles made use of the new tactical sub rule swapping Erin Watson to C with Nettle to WA.

This increased experience on Donna Jaeschke and Pfitzner in the midcourt for the Murphies did at times slow up the play but was unable to stop the feed going into Cocks who scored 10 of Glencoe’s 15 goals in the opening quarter, while Hatherleigh converted 11 of their own.

Both sides remained unchanged heading into the second quarter.

The Murphies got off to a great start with tight defence from Edwards and Hentschke causing turnover ball in the Hatherleigh attack line.

Down the other end the frontline combination of Pfitzner and Paproth began to gel together nicely, finding their familiar form from their last pairing in the 2022 season.

As the Hatherleigh defensive circle of Lara MacGregor and Maddie Pulmer began to double team Cocks, Paproth was able to take on the driving load in the circle and open up the space.

Pfitzner found her straps and was dominant over former teammate Owen, who had no answer to the strong drive of Pfitzner.

Seeing the momentum begin to favour the Murphies, the Eagles tightened up on the body and fastened the pace of the game.

This rattled the Murphies who lost some composure and were forced into error by the Hatherleigh defence.

Some impressive long range shooting from Demi Vanderhorst and Harris kept the Eagles in the quarter, eventually only increasing their deficit by one goal.

Hatherleigh adjusted their attack line at the main break swapping shooting bibs between Vanderhorst and Harris and injecting the fresh legs of junior Niah Faulkner into WA in an attempt to find easier avenue to post.

An unfortunate knee injury to Pulmer early in the quarter saw an extended halt in play.

This forced more movement for the Eagles with Owen covering GK, Faulkner moving to WD and Nettle returning to the court at WA.

The Murphies continued to forge ahead with Pfitzner continuing to lead the attack line with calm and accurate feeding.

In the Hatherleigh attack end Vanderhorst and Harris struggled to find space and eventually utilised the tactical sub rule swap back to their original positions.

Going into the final break the Murphies led the Eagles 39-30.

Heading into the final quarter with a nine goal deficit the Eagles made further changes in hope to peg back the score.

Vanderhorst moved to GK, Owen back to WD, Faulkner to WA, Harris to GS and Nettle into GA.

With all players asked to come off the body the score was blown open by the Murphies.

Now with space to move freely the Glencoe side asserted its dominance and class and easily ran over the Eagles in the final quarter.

The many changes for Hatherleigh were unsuccessful with the inexperience of Nettle no match for Hentschke and Edwards in the circle.

Further changes were made by the Eagles returning Vanderhorst to GS, Harris to GA and calling up A Reserve player Ellysia Redden to GK but it was too little too late as the Murphies had full control of the momentum.

In the end the more settled Glencoe outfit was able to outlast Hatherleigh winning 59-39.

Best players for the Murphies were Pfitzner and Paproth, while MacGregor and Nettle took the honours for the Eagles.

Tantanoola defeated Robe 53-51

The much anticipated rematch of last year’s second semi final which was only separated by a goal in favour of Tantanoola did not disappoint spectators on Saturday.

Robe scored from the first centre pass with an easy goal.

A fumble in Robe’s goal circle, followed up with a defensive rebound from Tantanoola, gave the Tigers a small lead early.

This was short lived as Robe’s strong defensive pressure through Alannah Jennings, Emilee Gould and Sophie Bates was then able to create some opportunities with the Roosters’ goalies able to capitalise.

Robe started the second quarter strong, scoring the first few goals and gaining a small buffer.

Bates used her speed to create turnovers whilst Jennings picked off any wayward passes going into the goal circle.

Robe captain Demi Carter certainly had her eye in, pulling off a great shooting display to score 11 from 11 and helping her team to push out the lead.

This prompted the Tigers to make a change with Bella Poulish and Kate Bromley swapping positions in the goal circle to reset.

Tantanoola settled through the experience of Jami Walker and a strong presence in the circle of Emma Gould.

In the third quarter the new look combination of Poulish and Bromley gained confidence and created a number of turnovers to provide their side with more scoring opportunities and reduce the seven goal margin.

Casey Walker, in her 150the A grade game, had a strong contest with Annie Regnier through the centre whilst young player Molly Cushion in her first senior A grade game did not look out of place.

Scores were level at the start of the final quarter at 39 a piece, with all players working at high intensity for their respective teams.

Accurate shooting by Tigers’ Walker and Gould combination enabled the home side to get over the line by two goals in a high quality game.

Walker and Gould were named best players for Tantanoola, with Bates and Jennings awarded the honour for Robe.

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