In a physical match, Benalla was too strong for the Murray Bombers in the Goulburn Valley Netball League on Saturday.GEORDIE COWAN May 6, 2014 3:04am
Echuca stumbled to its first defeat of the Goulburn Valley Netball League season in what coach Gina Pearson described as a ‘‘very physical game’’ at home against Benalla on Saturday.
The Murray Bombers fought back in the last quarter to reduce the final margin, but ultimately lost 46-41.
The Saints started well to score the first four goals of the game and took a 13-8 lead into the first break.
The home side improved in the second quarter but still trailed by seven goals and the visitors again extended their lead in the third term.
Echuca slotted 14 goals in the last quarter after it made some changes, with the five-goal loss leaving the team in second spot.
Pearson said it was not a highly-skilled contest due to the physical nature of the match.
‘‘I probably haven’t seen one like this for a couple of years,’’ she said.
‘‘It was very physical, with lots of contact and it was very stop-start.
‘‘Other than that I thought their goalers were very accurate and that was a big difference for us.’’
Pearson thought her defenders played well, but said it did not faze the Saints’ attackers, who shot well.
‘‘We didn’t have (usual defender) Ange Slattery but Maree Gray did a great job on their tall goal shooter,’’ she said.
‘‘She was probably giving away five inches, but still did a lot of work and her and Charlotte Long took every opportunity they had.’’
The coach said her Benalla counterpart Kate Symes ‘‘belted’’ Holly Butler for most of the game and then did the same when she moved to centre.
Changes to the team saw the goaling end struggle on Saturday, with quite a low shooting percentage and it was only when changes were made and Emma Grant came on that the team improved.
Grant, who plays in B grade, played in goal attack and helped open up the attacking end.
‘‘As much as it’s disappointing to lose, it’s disappointing because of the style (of loss),’’ Pearson said.
‘‘The physicality affected the skill the game could’ve been played at
‘‘It is something that we’ll address.’’
Echuca will play Shepparton United after the bye, which Pearson looks forward to as a ‘‘fast-moving and highly-skilled’’ game.
Leukaemia diagnosis for Shepparton boy Travis Lamont, 17, hits his family hard.
Yarrawonga Football Netball Club senior footballer Jeremy O’Brien celebrated his 200th senior Ovens and Murray Football Netball League game against the Wodonga Bulldogs on Saturday.
The trip to Deakin Reserve pitted the fourth-placed Bulldogs up against sixth-placed Demons in a vital match to consolidate a finals berth.
Deputy Premier Peter Ryan and Deputy Nationals leader Peter Walsh are expected to make a significant and long-awaited bridge announcement tomorrow.
Sergeant Dale Simm of Rochester police is warning the public to be wary of phone calls offering all sorts of great prizes.
100 days at Tongala Primary.
Mark Grainger cannot believe his luck after suffering a heart attack on the day a new drug was approved to be administered by paramedics.
A man who attempted, but failed miserebly, to rob the Tocumwal Pie Shed is still on the run from police.
District residents judge the top releases from the Heathcote wine region during the second annual Heathcote Wine Show on the weekend.
A sporting precinct has emerged as the main driver behind merger of Cobram and Victory soccer clubs.
A top-three finish is on the cards for the Deni Rovers after they knocked off Jerilderie on Saturday.
Innovative irrigators are being encouraged to apply for a 2014 Rural Water Award and the chance to win a $2000 cash prize.
Three Benalla residents are speaking up to bring the issue of youth homelessness into the spotlight.
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