R3 : Sirens Vs Rhinos
Rhinos took to the court for their first game of the 2022 season
After a postponement in round one for Leeds Rhinos the team were ready to charge onto court for their first game of the 2022 season. Strathclyde Sirens were just as eager with this fixture being their first of the season in front of their home crowd in Glasgow at the Emirates Arena.
Rhinos starting seven included Amy Clinton for her Rhinos debut, she started the game in the Goal Shooter position partnering with Rhea Dixon in the shooting circle.
Abertheny of Sirens Netball took the first centre pass of the game, Clinton caused disruption, but Sirens took it to goal. Goodwin drove into the circle and converted a Rhinos centre pass bringing the score to 2-0. Co-Captain Jade Clarke made an intercept on the edge of Sirens attacking circle, a smooth transition saw the ball finally get slotted away by Clinton getting Rhinos on the scoreboard.
Sirens showed strong defensive pressure through the full court and caused a held ball call against Rhinos. After a long bomb from McCall of Sirens, Rhinos converted a Sirens centre pass with Clinton being successful on the shot to bring the game to three a piece. Again, Rhinos defensive pressure saw them create a turnover in the circle, transition down court was good but Sirens regained possession. Taylor Mckevitt turned over ball for Sirens and another smooth centre pass saw them pull a three goal lead. A few minutes later the game was back to level at seven all with both teams seeming to of settled into the game. Turnovers from each side see Sirens end the first quarter with a two goal lead (12-10).
Tracey Robinson made changes entering the second quarter of the game, these saw Amelia Hall enter court at WA and Brie Grierson come into the game at GA. Rhinos took ball straight to goal and a rare miss from Sirens saw Clinton bring the game to 12 all. The game continued goal for goal until a turnover from Rhinos which changed the momentum of the game. Sirens got themselves back on the scoreboard now two goals down. Clinton had found her rhythm and was successful on shot after shot, with a turnover from Vicki Oyesola, Grierson got herself on the scoreboard widening Rhinos lead to four (17-21). Sirens remained determined and on task and brought the game back to a two goal game at the end of the second quarter (22-24).
Entering the second half of the game Rhinos were confident knowing they had a 2 goal buffer. Emily Hollingworth started the 3rd quarter at wing defence. Keenan kept a strong hold on Goodwin forcing the ball off the backline for sirens, Rhinos transitioned through court and Grierson took the ball to goal, pulling out Rhinos lead to 4 goals (22-26). Full court defensive pressure and an error from Rhinos earned them multiple turnovers allowing them to extend their lead even more to 6 goals (28-22). A couple of errors from Rhinos then saw Sirens bring this gap back to just one goal. Oyesola and Keenan were strong in the circle getting rebounds and forcing balls off the backline to disrupt the flow of the Sirens shooters. Clarke was forced to the bench with an injury towards the end of the quarter which saw Lydia Walker come into the game at C for her Leeds Rhinos VNSL debut. The third quarter ended 30-37.
Clarke re-entered the court at WA for the final quarter, her vision into the circle was as strong as ever with Clinton getting on the end of it to add to her tally. McCall sinks a long bomb for Sirens keeping them in the game. Clinton and Grierson strengthened their combination and took Rhino’s lead to 10 goals (33-43). Rhinos defence forced Sirens off the backline, however Sirens regained possession and remained patient. Keenan made a tip but was pulled up for contact, another long range shot from Niamh Mccall and a simple centre pass from Sirens again saw the gap reduce. Rhinos remained determined and played with grit, despite a last two-minute comeback from Siren’s Netball Rhinos held on to come out on top at the end of the 60 minutes, ending the game with a 45-43 win.
Speaking after the game Rhinos head coach Tracey Robinson said: “We are pleased that we showed the resilience we did but there is still work to do. We had a 10 goal lead which we should of kept hold of but we are happy to have the win and points from the first game of the season.”
GS – Bethan Goodwin
GA – Niamh Mccall
WA – Bethany Dix
C – Gia Abernethy
WD – Taylor Mckevitt
GD – Emily Nicholl
GK – Towera Vinkhumbo
RES: Claire Maxwell, Abby Tyrrell, Kelly Boyle, Sarah Macphail, Cerys Cairns
GS – Amy Clinton
GA – Rhea Dixon
WA – Brie Grierson
C – Jade Clarke
WD – Michelle Magee
GD – Vicki Oyesola
GK – Tuaine Keenan
RES: Rebekah Airey, Amelia Hall, Emily Hollingworth, Sienna Rushton, Lydia Walker
Rhinos netball now look to their fixture on Monday (14.02) when they face Team Bath at the EIS Sheffield at 17:30 for their first ever home fixture within the netball super league, tickets can be found at tickets.rhinosnetball.co.uk
Match Report : Tyler Sue Chapman, Leeds Rhinos
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