Netballers edge overall victory

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College Select: Lancaster 21-15 York

Lancaster secured one the first points of Friday’s sporting line-up with a 21-15 win in the battle of the two college select teams. Each university appeared to have a different take on the meaning of this title and played two very different types of teams.

Lancaster had held trials and picked the best players from the eight college teams in the inter-college netball, in contrast to York who instead of a college select had selected a college, their college cup winners, Alcuin.

Lancaster had the better of the early exchanges and led 4-2 after a tight first quarter, with Laura Christie scoring three. Both Lancaster and York made changes after only one quarter; this coupled with the strict officiating led to yet another disjointed quarter. The scoreline read 7-7 at half-time.

Player of the match Sarah Kelly-Olatunji was a rock at the back for Lancaster rarely letting anything past. With Christie and Molly Lynch especially in inspired form going forward there was only going to be one outcome. In spite of a spirited late fight-back from York, in particular goal-attack Amy Moye, Lancaster triumphed 21-15 in a relatively comfortable fashion.

College Winners: Lancaster (Fylde) 21-35 York (James)

The second netball match of the day saw the two inter-college netball league winners do battle; Fylde for Lancaster, James for York.

The early stages of the game followed a similar disjointed pattern to the college select match from earlier in the day. It was yet again a low-scoring first quarter, with York edging it 5-3 courtesy of superior finishing.

Lancaster trailed 13-8 at half-time as the second quarter followed a similar pattern to the first. Fylde seemed to receive an inspirational team talk at half-time as they flew out of the blocks to narrow the gap after the first three quarters to 20-17. It was a closely contested match, until York began to run away with the game in the last quarter as a few Fylde heads began to drop.

The final score read 35-21 to James College of York. Goal-attack for York Rachel Bunce was in inspired form throughout the whole match as she nonchalantly dispatched each opportunity as it came. York’s finishing prowess and ruthlessly efficient performance was ultimately too much for Fylde.

3rds Netball: Lancaster 24 – 21 York

Throughout the first quarter of the match, the Lancaster team displayed strong defence and sheer determination, alongside the working partnership of the Goal-attack and Goal-shooter to see the scoreboard read 7-5 to the away-side.

The second quarter began in a back-and-forth manner before York eventually scored the first goal of the quarter reducing the deficit to just one.

However, Lancaster did not let this start of a come-back phase them, with exciting passing between the attackers and excellent blocking from the Lancastrian defenders, they soon had the York-side trailing by 4 points.

The tensest spell of play came in the last 5 minutes where York, from 22-17, brought the score back to 22-20. Lancaster clung on to position for a lot of this time and within it managed to only let one more York goal in, whilst obtaining two of their own. The final score read Lancaster 24, York 21. An impressive and well fought victory for the away-side.

Rachael Dawson, captain of the Lancaster thirds said to SCAN: “It was an excellent effort from the whole team. We finished second in the League this year, so it is the end to a brilliant season. It is my last year this year and the first years were really nervous, so this victory meant a lot.”

2nds Netball: Lancaster 34-41 York

The Lancaster team narrowly lost out to their York counterparts in an extremely competitive and impressive game of netball.

York opened up the score line relatively quickly with a shot at goal from their Goal-shooter, but this was to quickly be equalised by Lancaster’s Goal-attack.

As York led 6-3, the away-side had a period of play which exuded confidence and they brought the opposition within one point of drawing.

From this point onwards, the goals flowed freely. The score was soon 33-26 to York, nearing the end of the game. Despite a couple of missed shots at goal, the Lancaster side showed an impressive comeback on the lead and got as close as 34-32 thanks to the shooters.

However, it simply wasn’t meant to be for the valiant Lancaster side as York slotted in a few more to make the final score 41-34.

Grace Biggins, captain of the 2nds, stated: “We gave it our all, it was really close. We’ve had a good season and came top of the league so we can still be proud.”

1sts Netball: Lancaster 39-38 York

This game was one of the closest and most unpredictable games of the entire weekend.

It was the home-side who opened up the scoring with a shot at goal within the initial minute of the game. A penalty pass to York was well defended in the area, despite some silly errors that were being made. Nonetheless, the Lancaster side soon equalised.

York pulled away to a 4-1 lead because despite Lancaster’s many opportunities for a shot in the net, the tall York defence prevented a score.

The home-side’s defence remained strong throughout the first half, but Lancaster never let them completely out of their sights with the half-time score standing at 21-16, only 5 points down.

However, half time is where the Lancastrian side took it up a gear. York started to make a couple of errors with regard to footwork and obstruction, which left the away-side slightly more open for some attacking play. By the end of the third quarter Lancaster were drawing with the opposition, 28-28.

The last quarter of the game was by far the tensest moments of the game, but both sides used it to their advantage and displayed some fantastic netball. A great stretch of play by Lancaster saw them edge ahead to 32-30, putting them in a great position to hold onto.

But the home-side refused to give up and kept coming back at the Lancaster team. With two minutes to go the score read 38-37 to Lancaster, but everyone knew this was bound to change just because of the sheer pace of the game.

It was an incredibly close game that neither side deserved to lose. Lancaster finished on 39 points and restricted the York side to 38, a mere one point away.

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