By Michaela Gall
Rangers have secured their first win of the 2017 West Australian Netball League season, with a 51-48 victory over the Souwest Jets last night, however Head Coach Nat Jones said there was plenty of room for improvement.
“(We’re) happy to take the two points tonight, but there’s still a lot we can work on,” she said.
“It was a bit of a messy game here and there.”
That messiness stemmed from the tight defensive pressure that was evident all throughout the game.
From the first whistle, it was clear the matchup would be a fierce one, despite neither team having secured a win coming into the game.
The Rangers’ intense defensive pressure and fast ball movement down the court allowed them to start the game strong, however the Jets answered back through Kate Duncan, who shot at 100% in the first quarter as they took a one goal lead into the first break.
Despite rushing some passes, the Rangers took the lead back thanks to improved shooting accuracy and movement from Rose Aryang and Larissa Harrison.
Quick ball work and defence from Centre Bridgette Maxted allowed the Rangers to convert goal after goal.
The Souwest Jets quickly found themselves playing catch up as the margin stretched out to six goals at half-time.
The defensive pressure from Jayme Harkin and Kate Bunten was outstanding once again and gave their team countless opportunities to score from the hard-earned turnovers.
The Jets appeared to tire quickly, with the margin blowing out to 10 goals as the third quarter came to a close.
That tiredness disappeared in the final term, as the League’s newest side dominated the last 15 minutes of play.
Winning the quarter 16-10, shooters Kate Duncan and Shantelle Tassone picked up, as did the feeds from midcourters Cassady Anderson and Areii Scholtz.
The final minutes of the quarter delivered the tightest passages of the game, but thanks a game-saving intercept from Rangers goal keeper Kate Bunten, they held on to take the game 51-48.
Jones spoke highly of her team and the quality of their persistence and determination.
“We had a completely new line up due to injury, so pretty happy with what they put out on court tonight.”
She also praised the hard-work of her defence line.
“I think our defence did a great job at turning lots of ball over, I think we just need to make our connections in our attack and shooting end.”
Now with some points on the board, the Rangers will go on to play the in-form Costal Sharks.
“In preparation, we just need to focus on fixing our mistakes and again, trying to make those connections and getting the ball into our shooters.”
The Souwest Jets, still yet to chalk up their first win, will play the Wheatbelt Flames next week.
Larissa Harrison: 28/34 (82%)
Rose Aryang: 23/29 (79%)
Shantelle Tassone: 24/31 (77%)
Kate Duncan: 16/19 (84%)
Alkira Rodney: 8/11 (73%)