Sport

Next gen raising the bar

by
April 30, 2018

Shepparton United’s teenagers took charge in its win against Shepparton Swans, despite plenty of experience available.

Shepparton United’s teenagers took charge in its win against Shepparton Swans, despite plenty of experience available.

While a host of young players filtered through the side last season, their full-time move to A-grade is already paying dividends for the club.

Olivia Kirby and Elle Brooks made up the defensive end and the two Goulburn Valley League netball under-17 premiership teammates of last year were sensational.

Already with plenty of rapport, working in tandem they did not let the ball enter freely to the Swans’ circle, which rotated between coach Jana Bruinier and recruits Annie Cobbledick and Sophie Atkinson.

Laura Cole also played a role in centre as the trio continues to form a solid foundation to build the side around.

Bruinier was impressed with her opposition, which benefited from the Swans needing time to consolidate in new positions.

‘‘They’ve got some real potential there and the defenders have a crack, they’re young kids that stuck to their structures and did a really good job,’’ Bruinier said.

‘‘Then they’ve got some great leaders and the goal circle of United in its second year is much more cohesive.’’

With the defensive end young, Jessie Barnes-Hill and Sarah Bohn showed their experience with fantastic movement around the goal circle.

Maddi Moroney is the Swans’ own upstart to watch and showed how valuable she will be for the Swans, with a lively third quarter in wing defence where she attacked every ball with her side under pressure.

‘‘I guess a bit like the United players she gets out there and has a go and we’re looking to get more minutes into her on the court,’’ Bruinier said.

‘‘We’ll work her into playing longer periods of time and she contained Bree (Hanslow) really well, so she’s doing a great job and fits in well.’’

Going down by 10 goals, the Swans won the last quarter by three with Bruinier still enthusiastic about her side’s potential.

‘‘We’re building away, so we’re not too upset, we’ve got new goalers, a new midcourt and a new defence end which doesn’t get to spend a whole lot of time with each other than games,’’ she said.

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