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Country Champs Senior, 17U and 15U Reports

Updated: Jul 12, 2022


This year a very young group of talented players put their hand up to represent NENA at the Netball SA Country Championships. Playing coach Katie Liebelt (South Clare), Captain Gracie Ross (Min Man) and Katie Woodrow (South Clare) brought leadership and experience to the playing group. Kasey Bigg (Blyth Snowtown), Taylah Wurfel (South Clare), Makenzie Schoenberg (Min Man) and Molly Ross (Min Man) all took their game to another level in their second year of A Grade Country Championships. The remainder of the team was made up of young A Grade debutantes in Robyn Coles (North Clare) and Amelia Squire (BBH) who performed at a level beyond their years. Whilst a relatively inexperienced squad on paper, this group excelled and produced some fine performances across the weekend. Long time NENA servant Kathy Woodrow took on the Team Manager role for the weekend, sharing her experience.

On Saturday the girls started superbly with an emphatic win over Kangaroo Island (43-12). In the second game NENA took on an experienced Great Flinders in what was a very tight contest throughout the game, with scores level at half time. In the second half NENA showed great fight to come back from 5 goals down to tie the game (26-26). In the third game they took on Whyalla and had a disappointing loss, allowing them to control the game (14-36). However this loss was a good lesson for the team in controlling the game. The final game of the day saw the team record a brilliant win over KNT in an outstanding team performance (24-23). After a highly successful day the girls undertook recovery and Team Building games with the NENA junior teams at West Beach. On Sunday, in front of a huge NENA spectator crowd we took on Roxby Downs. The team performed superbly and showcased the talent we have in NENA, winning 43-19. The final minor round game saw NENA take on Yorke Peninsula in a must win game to secure a place in A Grade finals. NENA had a slow start but demonstrated a high level of skill and team play to come out winners 26-24. After finishing with an excellent result of 3rd after the minor round in the A Grade competition, NENA met the strong contenders Mid South East in the semi-final. Despite a determined team effort all over the court, NENA lost by 6. NENA was very happy with the result, having given 110% and playing a high level of netball against a quality opponent.

The NENA A Grade team should be very proud of their efforts. Their team focus and endeavour on and off the court was outstanding. All of the young girls performed beyond their years and this signals a bright future for our NENA Association representative teams for years to come. A highlight was Katie Liebelt being named in the SA Country Championships A Grade Top 12. A special thank you to Kathy Woodrow for her role over the weekend as our fabulous Team Manager. Also to Carly Marshall who volunteered to umpire across the weekend. Special thanks to Caitlyn Squire who scored every senior NENA game for the weekend. Thanks to Graeme Heneker for his role as trainer and we wish him all the best for his retirement after many years of dedication to NENA Country Championships. The A Grade team was highly appreciative of Laura Ross and Rachel Schoenberg from Min-Man Netball Club for organising the 2022 NENA Country Championships teams.

U17 Match Reports

The team for 2022 was Leah Edmunds (B/S), Halle Smith, Olivia Hadley, Gabbi Scobie (MM), Ella Smith (Captain), Abbie Brereton (NC), Krystal Rains (BSR), Amelia Lalic(Vice Captain), Ellie Johnson, Jade Chapman (SC), Claire Schiller (E/R). Coach Ingrid Smith (NC), Team Manager Terry Edmunds (B/S)

Day 1

Round 1 North Eastern v Western Border

Western Border came out strong with firm leads and accurate shooting by Lara Munro. North Eastern settled in the second half but Western Border were too strong, with accurate shooting, direct passage of play and excellent defensive strategy.

Round 2 Eastern Eyre v North Eastern

Both teams started well with NEN’s accurate shooting securing a 5 goal lead at half time. Eastern Eyre’s changes at half time saw calculated play and strong defence. North Eastern’s passing let them down, and Eastern Eyre claimed a 3 goal win.

Round 3 North Eastern v Kowree-Naracoorte-Tatiara

The first half saw a tightly contested fight for the ball, with KNT establishing a small 3 goal win at half time. KNT continued to prove stronger at both ends, forcing many turnovers and converting them to a 19 goal win through accurate shooting and solid defence.

Round 4 Mid Hills v North Eastern

Mid Hills started with strong play through the mid court, feeding the goal circle well to create a 5 goal lead at half time. Despite robust defence from North Eastern, Mid Hills’ desire for the ball was greater and resulted in the convincing win.

Round 5 Hills v North Eastern

A well contested battle from the start with many turnovers and solid defence at both ends. Hills fought hard to maintain their 5 goal half time lead. North Eastern continued to fight back, with good feeding into the circle and defensive strategy. In the end, North Eastern were not able to shut down the accuracy of Hills’ shooter, resulting in Hills’ 7 goal win.

Round 6 North Eastern v Southern Hills

Scoring the first goal of the game, North Eastern moved on court with purpose. In a highly contested fight for the ball, both teams created effective plays down the court. NENA’s accurate shooting and strong defence resulted in their 3 goal win.

Day 2

Round 7 Adelaide Plains v North Eastern

Both teams started evenly matched with great leads and drive through the mid court. NENA established a 1 goal lead at half time. A determined Adelaide Plains fought back in the second half applying effective defensive pressure to defeat NENA by 4 goals.

Round 8 North Eastern v Port Pirie

North Eastern flew out of the blocks and took control of the game from the first whistle. Port Pirie struggled to regain control, with NENA’s strong attack, effectively making use of every scoring opportunity.

Round 9 Yorke Peninsula v North Eastern

A very evenly matched competition with strong leads and excellent turnovers by both teams. Yorke Peninsula held a 6 goal lead at half time. Despite Yorke Peninsula’s persistence, NENA’s defence was too good, limiting their goal count for the second half to 3. NENA’s mid court feed and attack line had flow and rhythm during the second half, securing 12 goals, and the 3 goal win.

Round 10 North Eastern v Pt Augusta

A low scoring game with good contest. Port Augusta had a strong start to the game with some accurate shooting and determined defensive play from end to end. Whilst NENA continued to apply pressure, they were unable to catch up Port Augusta’s 3 goal lead at half time. Both teams fought goal for goal in the second half, but Port Augusta proved too strong in the end.

Round 11 Riverland v North Eastern

A highlight of the weekend’s competition, this fiercely competitive match saw North Eastern (positioned 10th on the ladder) face off against Riverland (positioned 2nd on the ladder). Unshaken by Riverland’s confidence and determined to try and make the finals, North Eastern gave it their all. As Riverland confidently executed swift play all the way down the court, North Eastern’s mid court rose to the challenge facilitating a 3 goal lead at half time. With a few positional changes at half time, NENA increased the pressure in defence and made the most of every turnover with fabulous feeds and accurate shots, securing them a triumphant 5 goal win.

15U Report

The team for 2022 was Zoe Pawelski (Captain), Laney Mullighan, Keely Pearce (North), Poppy Wilson (South), Lucy Nicholls, Emmerson Schoenberg (Vice Captain), Addy Ackland, Annabelle Smith (Min-Man), Mia Parkinson (RSMU), Matilda O'Brien (E/R). Coach: Rachel Pearce, Team Manager: Vanessa O’Brien.

Day 1 Wrap up

Game 1. Eastern Eyre V NENA. Starting strong, settling quickly into new team. Strong leads, accurate shooting and confident play. A great start to the weekend games. NENA won by 10. 31-21.

Game.2 Mid Hills V NENA. Another strong game with great contest by both teams, loose balls provided turn overs when needed and NENA stayed in control to win by 5. 29-24.

Game.3 Great Southern V NENA. A close first half, a very defensive Great Southern team and height made scores increase. NENA found it harder to break the solid play by Great Southern. Going down by 8 goals. 26-34

Game.4 Barossa and Light V NENA. NENA kept with B & L for first half and we tried hard to convert turn overs and chase the score. B & L grew in confidence and controlled their play to capatalise and took the win. NENA 19-26

Game.5 KNT V NENA. KNT started strong from the start, NENA had unforced errors that gave opportunities to the opposition to take a small lead and carry through with a win. NENA down by 9. 16-25

Day 2 Wrap up

Game 6 Southern Hills V NENA A defensive game turning over opportunities for the goalies to take the lead early in game and finish with a 18-25 win.

Game 7. Mid South East V NENA Again NENA settled quickly to lead at half time by 7. Unforced errors gave Mid South East a window to return, but NENA kept in front until the final whistle to win by 2. Final Score 18-16

Game 8 Pt Augusta V NENA Playing the top team, NENA upped their game play and with an intense second half and excellent court play by all, went down by only 2. A great game to watch. 17-19

Game.9 Western Boarder V NENA Shooting with accuracy, NENA applied pressure all over the court and ball and won convincingly 31-23.

Game.10 Eastern Eyre V NENA An intense game with Eastern Eyre leading well at half time, NENA responded in second half to chase the score. Going down by 1. 19-20

Day 3 Finals

Div 2 Quarter final. We played Western Border 2 from pool B. A slightly nervous start by the girls but the second half saw them settle and come away with a great team win, 23-17.

This progressed us to Div 2 semi final verses River Murray also from pool B. A great spectator game with the lead swapping between teams and within 1 for the majority of the game. Unfortunately when the final whistle went we were down 18-19. This meant the end of the carnival for us. Well done to all the girls, they represented their clubs proudly both on and off the court all weekend. They were an absolute pleasure to coach.

Thankyou to all the wonderful parents for supporting and scoring when needed. Much appreciated.

Thank you to Plains Producer for the pictures

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