The eighth round of the 2022 Mount Gambier Netball Association Under 19’s season was all about Hobitz as the club’s sister teams faced off for bragging rights at Olympic Park on Saturday.
After four hard-fought quarters Hobitz Red showed why it’s on top of the ladder by besting Hobitz Blue.
The blue team was always going to be up against after going down by 11 goals in a mid-week fixture back in round 3, but it wanted to prove it can bring the heat.
They certainly did that for most of the game with the result in the balance until the final quarter.
The tone was set during a back-and-forth opening term where both sides had their moments.
Hobitz Blue was able to build some strong connection between centre Lily Oakley and goal shooter Abbey Knowles with the latter slotting seven goals to get her team on the board.
But they could not keep up with Hobitz Red which ran riot to open an early lead.
Emily Stockwell and Sophie Couldrey were both working well under the ring and needed little time to find their accuracy.
By quarter time Hobtiz Red had established a six-goal advantage which proved handy as its rivals stepped up the intensity after the opening break.
Suddenly there was nothing between the teams as they went toe to toe in an even passage of play.
Hayley De Nys became a factor in the goal attack position and was the driving force behind Hobitz Blue’s charge.
Despite the blue team enjoying its most productive quarter of the game with 13 goals, Hobitz Red was still able to maintain its advantage.
The tense battle for possession did not disappear after the teams had made some changes at half time.
Oakley continued to get plenty of the ball and her teamwork with De Nys helped Knowles enjoy numerous shots at goal.
Meanwhile at the other end of the court, Hobtiz Red’s inspirational captain Maddy Cowland had moved from centre to goal attack and kept the scoreboard moving.
But blue’s hard work paid off as the team marginally won the third term to trim the deficit back to just six goals to keep all results open.
Despite losing some momentum, Hobitz Red showed why it is undefeated by stepping up when it mattered.
Cowland went back to her familiar role in the middle of the court and took control.
Stockwell and Couldrey were the beneficiaries of their captain’s efforts and proceeded to bombard the scoreboard.
The shooting pair scored 19 goals in the final term to put the result beyond doubt and steam home to a 56-39 win.
Although Hobitz Red put the foot down near the end, both teams can take a lot out of the hard fought encounter.