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2018 WNA grand final | A mighty battle between Horsham and Horsham Saints in season finale

Emma Buwalda, Liam Price, Ryan Kemp and Shannon Reinheimer with the WFL and WNA premiership cups.

Emma Buwalda, Liam Price, Ryan Kemp and Shannon Reinheimer with the WFL and WNA premiership cups.

By DEAN LAWSON
Wimmera Netball Association’s A Grade grand final is primed to go to the wire with arch rivals Horsham and Horsham Saints drawing up battle plans for the season finale.
Reigning premiers Horsham Saints have taken their whirlwind finish to the last game of the year, setting up a mighty climax on the court at Warracknabeal’s Anzac Park.
The Saints, who had managed to sneak into the finals on the back of a topsy-turvy year, last week confirmed their spot in the big game with a 55-44 preliminary-final win over Warrack Eagles.
The Saints’ ability to finish games strongly, evident last weekend when the side produced a big second half against the Eagles, looms as a major weapon this weekend.
Saints coach Shannon Reinheimer agreed that her team’s season had been ‘hit and miss’ and stressed that patience would be critical in the final.
“It’s going to be a tough contest but we must be patient with the ball, avoid panicking and wait for the opportunity to pass in,” she said.
“Horsham produces tough defensive pressure and that is something we have to work around.”
Horsham coach Pauline Butler said the Saints getting through to the grand final had come as no great surprise and she also expected a tough encounter.
“We have to play a consistent four quarters of netball and capitalise on turnovers,” she said.
“In fact we pretty much need to play a flawless game to win.
“There are going to be some pretty good match-ups across the board.
“We have a lot of young talent but also some experienced heads to steer the ship.
“It’s going to come down to who gets a good early start and who has the most will to win. It will no doubt be ebb and flow.”
Major weapon
Horsham has a major weapon in freshly crowned Hatcher Medallist and shooter Emma Buwalda, but the Saints also boast a teenage superstar in Maggie Caris at the other end of the court.
One of the most intriguing battles is likely to emerge between Buwalda and Elly Barnett, who alongside Rene Caris has been critical in the Saints’ late-season push.
Horsham has skipper Liv Jones directing traffic out of the centre and more than handy lieutenants in Tamika Mentha and Georgie Carberry feeding the ball to Casey Jess.
Defender Victoria Taylor is likely to get the job on Maggie Caris and will work with Elley Heard to stifle Saints opportunities.
The Demons will find the Saints hard to stop considering Lavinia Fox works under the attacking ring with Caris, fed by the likes of coach Reinheimer and Ashlee Grace.
Gabby O’Brien, providing mop-up duties at wing defence, will also play an important turnover role.
Horsham crushed Horsham Saints 68-37 way back in the season opener and then the Saints won by a goal in a round-10 thriller.
In other games at Warracknabeal on Saturday, Horsham and Horsham Saints will also clash in B and C grades and 13 and under grand finals.
Dimboola and Horsham will clash in a 17 and under final, Horsham and Ararat play in a 15 and under A match and Horsham plays Stawell in 15 and under Bs.

The entire September 19, 2018 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

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Posted on Sep 19 2018

Posted by on Sep 19 2018. Filed under FEATURED, Sport. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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