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Netball thirds well beaten in Roses encounter

In a scrappy encounter, York's netball thirds were undone by the better attacking quality of their Red Rose rivals (Thumbnail credit Image: Hoagy Davis-Digges)

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In a scrappy encounter, York's netball thirds were undone by the better attacking quality of their Red Rose rivals. Although they were able to match their opponents in possession, the rapidity of the Lancaster attack was too much for the York defence, which was ultimately the main reason for their defeat.

The first quarter saw a nervy opening to the match, with both sides very evenly matched in all areas of the court. This first period ended with the slight lead of 9-7 to Lancaster, but there was no real evidence to suggest the match's later path in these first glimpses of action.

The second quarter began again in this even fashion, with neither team an obviously dominant force. There was a frenetic pace to proceedings, resulting in multiple dropped balls and missed catches. However, the game finally began to settle towards the second half of this period. The difference emerging at this point was the impressive understanding of the Lancaster front four, who were moving the ball incredibly smoothly and rapidly around the D. The York defence were beginning to struggle in countering this play.

However, York were far from impotent in attack, thanks to the incisive shooting of Alia Khalil. Her impressive eye for goal was preventing Lancaster from running riot. York ended the second quarter narrowly behind Lancaster, the score standing at 19-15.

The third quarter became increasingly scrappy as Lancaster looked to maintain their lead. York's efforts were certainly not helped when substitute Wing Defence Jade Naylor fell awkwardly, leaving to large stoppage. Lancaster were beginning to run away with the result, as they were continually more efficient in attack. This was reflected at the quarter's end, with the score now at 27-20 to Lancaster, a large margin to make up in a single quarter.

The fourth quarter showed York to be running out of ideas. Their opponents were simply better drilled and organised. Understandably, York began to feel the pressure, with sloppy mistakes creeping into their game. They began to miss crucial shots, and even the previously reliable Khalil was not living up to her performance in preceding quarters. Meanwhile, Lancaster continued their impressively sharp passing game, closing out the victory in style, building the winning margin to 38-26 by the final whistle.

York captain Paisley Ross was philosophical in defeat, stating "I'm so proud of the team, everyone played their hearts out of the final whistles. We've had plenty of injury problems, and, in spite of that, we put in a good performance."

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