Gladstone toast unbeaten run as netball champions
GLADSTONE are the toast of the state netball scene after taking out the women's division one title at the Country Carnival at Memorial Park yesterday.
The Gladstone 1 outfit went through the competition unbeaten, winning seven games in two days, in a performance which is unprecedented in the city's netball history.
Coach Tracey Davis said she had expected her side to be among the frontrunners but admitted she had never envisaged an unconquered run through to the title.
"We made that a new goal (on Saturday) after winning our first four games,'' Davis said.
"We knew we could do it because the teams we'd beaten were beating the teams we hadn't played yet.''
Davis said the victory could be attributed to all of her players producing their best form as individuals as well as working together well as a team.
"All the girls just played excellently all weekend,'' Davis said. "The defence was just awesome.''
Gladstone 1 fielded a strong lineup across the park with Mel Frost and Carly Cooke dominant in centre court and Niki Dennier, normally a shooter, also playing strongly when used in the middle.
Tracey Calis led the goal shooting charge with Davis estimating her accuracy at 85 per cent going into the final clash with Metropolitan while Helen Sherwood and Shannon Beckman also impressed up front.
The defensive work of Angela Mills, Andrea Williams and Kym Hetherington was described by Davis as being "like a brick wall'', setting the foundation for each of the victories. Southport Carrara finished runners-up.
In senior division two competition, Curtis Coast finished fifth and an injury-plagued Gladstone 2 sixth.
The Gladstone 1 side: Helen Sherwood, Tracey Calis, Shannon Beckman, Niki Dennier, Carly Cooke, Mel Frost, Kym Hetherington, Angela Mills, Andrea Williams.
Gladstone victories: defeated Broadwater 18-15, Southport Carrara 25-18, Bundaberg 26-16, Toowoomba 23-16, Townsville City 27-11, Redlands 20-13, Metropolitan 13-9.