Rd 8: Manly Warringah Sapphires v UTS St George Sparks
June 16, 2016
Round 8: Manly Warringah Sapphires 46 d UTS St George Sparks 41
It was a complete 60 minute performance from Manly Warringah Sapphires which saw them continue their undefeated streak in the 2016 SAMSUNG Premier League; however, it didn’t come easily with the second-place UTS St George Sparks pushing them until the final whistle.
The result looked like it could have gone either way throughout the match, with the lead never amounting to more than a few goals. But the Sapphires proved to be too good in the final 15 minutes, stretching their lead out to a five-goal margin; the largest of the match.
The contest opened with both teams looking to assert their dominance early. The fast pace of the opening quarter saw strong defensive pressure from both teams, resulting in some turnover ball which often lead to the opposition capitalising on the scoreboard. But it was the Sparks who settled first to take a slim one-goal advantage into the first break.
The match continued at a dizzying pace with both teams forcing their opponents to make errors under pressure. The Sapphires took control of the second quarter often stretching their lead out to as many as four goals, before the Sparks would hit back and reduce the gap. Throughout the match, it was clear that it would go down to the final minutes, with the Sapphires going into half time with a three goal lead.
Both coaches opted to make wholesale changes to their sides for the start of the second half; in particular switching up their shooting combinations in order to break the defensive deadlock. The Sparks had brought on young shooter Laura Towell into the match in the final minutes of the second quarter, while Lauren Cantwell replaced Georgia Marshall at half time for the Sapphires. A hard fought third quarter saw a spirited Sparks side level the scores at 32 goals apiece heading into the final 15 minutes.
The fourth quarter continued at the fierce pace that was evident throughout the match with the teams locked in a see-sawing battle of exchanging goals. However the Sapphires showed why they are the team to beat by putting in a solid final quarter performance which saw them win the match by the widest margin of the entire match (five goals) and continue their undefeated streak.
The Sapphires will now look to continue their winning form against North Shore United next Wednesday 22 June, while the Sparks will play the Panthers on Show Court at 8:40pm.
You can catch the Sparks v Panthers match-up LIVE thanks to our friends at BarTV Sports who will be streaming both the Under 20s and Opens contests from the Show Court; visit the Live Games tab at the top of page for more information.
SAPPHIRES | Q1 – 12 – Q2 – 23 (11) – Q3 – 32 (9) – Q4 46 (14)
SPARKS | Q1 – 13 – Q2 – 20 (7) – Q3 – 32 (12) – Q4 41 (9)
SAPPHIRES: 46/53 (87%)
C. Linaker: 27/28 (97%)
G. Marshall: 9/11 (82%)
L. Cantwell: 10/14 (74%)
SPARKS: 41/56 (73%)
N. Eldridge:9/15 (60%)
H. Pearce: 24/29 (83%)
L. Towell: 4/5 (80%)
C. Russell: 4/7 (57%)
Starting Team Lineups
SAPPHIRES | GS Cristy Linaker, GA Georgia Marshall, WA Brooke Miller, C Nicole Deegenaars, WD Victoria Low, GD Eliza Long, GK Keely Rodrigo
SPARKS | GS Natalie Eldridge, GA Holly Pearce, WA Tayla Fraser, C Brooke Lawrence, WD Amy Parmenter, GD Nicole Styles (C), GK Kara Styles
Round 8: Manly Warringah Sapphires v UTS St George Sparks
Division: Under 20s
It was a consistent four quarter performance which saw the UTS St George Sparks overcome a spirited Manly Warringah Sapphires in Round 8 of the 2016 SAMSUNG Premier League. Both teams were competitive throughout the entire match, however, the Sparks proved too good at the final whistle to go on to five-goal victors.
The opening half of the match was a see sawing contest with momentum changing between the two sides throughout the first 30 minutes. The Sparks asserted their dominance early in the half through strong defensive pressure; however, the Sapphires fought hard to reduce the gap on several occasions.
It wasn’t until the second quarter that the Sparks began to take control of the match and maintain a steady lead; breaking away to an eight-goal advantage before the Sapphires worked hard to reduce the gap. While the Manly side worked themselves into the contest, the Sparks’ defensive end stepped up to the challenge with their defensive pressure minimising the influence of the Sapphires’ shooters. The result saw the Sparks take a handy five-goal lead into the big break, and set up a strong second half performance.
St George’s second quarter resurgence proved to be the match winner, as nothing separated the Sparks and Sapphires in the third and fourth quarter – both finishing with 14 goals in the third, and 12 goals in the final quarter. While the Sapphires threw everything into the contest to will the deficit down, the Sparks proved to be too strong, holding on to and maintaining their lead from earlier in the match.
Both teams were competitive throughout the match and will now head in to Round 9 of 2016 SAMSUNG Premier League with the Sparks featuring on the Show Court, taking on the Panthers at 7:00pm. The Sapphires will meet North Shore United in the same timeslot on Court 2.
SAPPHIRES | Q1 – 10 – Q2 – 20 (10) – Q3 – 34 (14) – Q4 – 46 (12)
SPARKS | Q1 – 12 – Q2 – 25 (13) – Q3 – 39 (14) – Q4 – 51 (12)
SAPPHIRES: 46/69 (67%)
G. Westwood: 13/19 (68%)
K. Singleton: 7/15 (47%)
R. Lemon: 14/21 (67%)
L. Drinan: 12/14 (86)
SPARKS: 51/70 (73%)
J. Harding: 22/32 (69%)
J. Tweddle O’Donnell: 6/10 (60%)
T. Slater: 23/28 (82%)
Starting Team Lineups
SAPPHIRES | GS Georgia Westwood, GA Kelly Singleton, WA Chloe Katoa, C Latika Tombs, WD Samantha Horton, GD Eve Parker, GK Rebecca Fear
SPARKS | GS Jade Harding, GA Jazmin Tweddle O’Donnell, WA Tahisha Hunt, C Caitlin Campbell, WD Lisa-Marie Aitoa, GD Paige Pirotta, GK Khalia Rasch